Quick Tips: How to Prevent Late-Night Talking and Texting

Filed Under: Mobile Usage

  • M obile phone are the center of our kids' universe. It's how they communicate, stay connected, and advance their social lives.

  • But it also can be how they get into trouble, especially if they're talking and texting all night long when they should be asleep.

    With this in mind, parents should consider setting ground rules around mobile phone usage, and one of the first and most important rules you can set is: no mobile calling or texting at night. When it comes to our teenage and adolescent children, let's cut the pillow talk.

  • To help you with this task, the following are some guidelines and tips:

  • If you're not sure whether your child is talking and texting when they should be sleeping, check your mobile phone bill to see if they're using their phone after bedtime. When kids keep their phones with them at night, you have no idea who is calling them and when.

  • Keep phones in a basket or a recharging station in a public place in the home (in the kitchen, next to a hallway, in the parents' bedroom, etc.) As the phones are checked into this safe spot before bedtime, your kids realize that late night chats and texts are not feasible. Plus, if they're savvy, they'll tell their friends not to call late at night for fear you'll check the caller i.d. and see who's trying to reach them at 1:00 a.m.

  • If and when you disconnect your kids, you are going to get serious pushback. They'll get mad, indignant, and downright stubborn as you try to outlaw nighttime mobile phone use. You have ways, however, to communicate this concept to them. One way is to explain that taking phones away at night is really about their privacy. The whole world comes through their phone, so it's like leaving a door wide open to the commotion and excitement they should have left behind at school.

  • We need to help kids set boundaries with all technologies - not only to keep them safe, but also to let them know that it's okay to be disconnected once in a while. In the end, by establishing rules and codes of conduct - i.e., you can't call or receive calls past your bedtime - you convey that you care about your child's well-being. Your kids may resist the rules at first, but (someday!) they will appreciate that you are involved in their lives.

Filed Under: Mobile Usage

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