Teens typically think their smartphone use is reasonable.
Parents and teachers, however, think teen smartphone use is out of control!
Who is right?
That’s the question I just proposed in the brand new blog I’m writing to teenagers every week (the blog is being hosted by that amazing new Faith Happenings site, the new online hub of Christian happenings in your city).
Here’s a snippet of that blog post:
I Don’t Spend Too Much Time on Social Media… Do I?
I’m in a unique position where I hear regularly from teens and from parents. It’s funny being on both sides of the coin because parents regularly complain, “My daughter spends too much time staring at her stupid phone!” And teenagers always protest, “My mom won’t let up about my phone use!”
So who is right?
Last month I had a teenager I know pretty well ask me honestly, “You don’t think I really spend too much time on my phone, do I?”
She had heard all the hype about “too much time on screens.” You probably have too:
- It can hinder sleep.
- It can make your grades drop.
- It’s a new playground for bullying.
- It creates a pressure to be liked in a world where many females already feel self conscious about looks, their thigh gap, etc.
- It’s an arena growing number of teenagers use for sexting.
- It has so many distractions, experts now claim kids shouldn’t be on it until they are 13-years-old.
Let me come clean. If I am being completely honest:
I think the Smartphone is an awesome tool for teenagers, helping them become more organized, better informed, and enhancing their personal relationships.
Let’s face it. All the people who wrote those articles linked above warning us about the dangers of smartphones and social media… they all own smartphones! I own a smartphone. I love it. (I just used it 10 minutes ago to find out the name of the song playing in a restaurant—thanks Shazaam!)
So when does tech become a problem?
The answer is simple…