Should I give my kid a cell phone?

I begged and I begged before my parents finally caved in and gave me my very first cell phone. It took several long months and several extended appeals for my own safety before they agreed to front the cash for it. I chose a cool looking model that children would now tease me about if I brandished it and I got a fancy case to clip to my belt and an antenna with a light that blinked on the end. The only problem now was that not many kids my age had a cell phone and I didnn6xi10vr_sdfsfpst have anyone to call or text. Things are a bit different these days and children are more concerned with processors and bandwidth than blinking lights on the case, but the question of when we should give our children cell phones is just as perplexing as ever.

Some parents have seen too many horror stories about cyber-bullying, online fraud and child predators to give their child a portal to a global network where these things do exist. Some parents will say that their children are growing up in a different world and we need to give them access to the Internet in order for them to fit in. Some would argue about the safety aspect of cell phone. Letn6xi10vr_sdfsfpss look at some of the positives and negatives to come from giving your child a cell phone.

The Positives

First and foremost, when you give your child a cell phone, you are giving them a means to communicate with you and you can always know where they are if you are ever worried. They might not answer the phone or respond to your texts, but at least by giving them a phone you are giving them a means to communicate. Similarly, a cell phone will allow them to communicate with emergency services should something go wrong fast.

When I begged my parents for a cell phone, one of my arguments was that everyone else had one, which was not necessarily true. Nowadays that statement is more likely to be true, especially in cities because phones are often cheap and easily accessible. If you give your child a cell phone, you will be helping them to fit in with the other kids and forbidding cellphone ownership may alienate them from other kids.

Whether we like it or not, technology is evolving rapidly and it really is the future. Kids can learn in more ways than we ever could and having cell phones and access to the global network of data and media can assist them in their professional and personal development. Phones hold the equivalent of every text book, phone book, road atlas and more all in the palm of the hand.

The Negatives

Smartphones and any Internet-enabled device connects our children with the rest of the adult world instantly. Growing up, I never even heard the words grooming or cyber-bullying but now they are used frequently because of how much the Internet has changed the way we need to think about safety and public presentation of ourselves. Children can be naïve and gullible which makes them susceptible to fall for ploys set by those who mean them harm. By giving them a cell phone we are giving them potential access to that world.

Nobody talks to each other anymore. Kids prefer to talk to the person sitting next to them via social media messenger application and if we provide children with cell phones then we are simply giving them further means to ignore everyone around them and stay glued to their screens. We need to teach children social protocol and etiquette if they are to succeed in making friends and meeting people in the real world.

Technology addiction is a real thing. Kids can get addicted very easily to their phones and the popular applications which are certainly not healthy habits. It can harm their eyes, disrupt sleeping patterns and cause developmental issues that could be avoided by simply not having a cell phone so why would you risk their health?

Conclusion

There is no clear answer to this question and there is definitely not an answer to the appropriate age that a child should have a phone. As a parent, you should be able to gauge whether your child is responsible enough and independent enough to own their own mobile phone. You should teach them about the risks and monitor what they have access to.

It is true that there is a lot of nasty stuff online and we should filter this from them as much as we can. Some of this stuff shouldnn6xi10vr_sdfsfpst even be seen by adults and we need to make sure that our children are not allowing it to pollute their minds. We need to teach our children to ignore, block and report bullies because harassment can be stopped quickly if it is noticed. It is imperative that our children are taught online and cell phone safety and whilst this is improving at school, extra-curricular safety lessons are a must. If your child can prove they are responsible and mature enough then it is entirely your decision. You should also be ready to withdraw the phone rights if something goes wrong or the rules arenn6xi10vr_sdfsfpst followed and all of this should be discussed ahead of time so that there are no surprises later on.

 

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