With a world obsessed with texting and smartphones, your kids aren’t safe from the lure of the elusive text. Forget family dinners and casual nights having a chat around the fire, if your teen has a cell phone, say bye bye to quality time.
These days teens are obsessed by texting and whether parents like it or not, there’s little to stop the savvy teen from texting up a storm.
While some kids have the sense to text at appropriate times, the smartphone and text can be super addictive and super anti-social. So if you’re trying to figure out if your teen is hooked on text and need to figure out the warning signs here are some of the typical ways to see if your teen has a texting habit you might want to put the breaks on.
1. Lack of Attention
We’ve all been in conversations where you can’t get a peep out of your teenager as they are feverishly texting up a storm to their buddies. If you’ve got a hunch they are texting more than listening and missing out on school work, relaxation or just life, in general, you might want to listen to the warning bells.
2. Acting Secretive
When your teenager is acting shady or secretive about who or what they’re texting you want to pounce on that bad boy and get an idea of what the fuss is about. While your teen needs a certain amount of privacy if they are looking like they are not doing the right thing or they aren’t prepared to show you who they are texting and what they are texting about it’s time to ramp up the transparency. While your interest in their texting might be annoying to your teen, you could wind up saving themselves from shady behavior that they want to avoid like the plague.
3. Bad Company
We all know that your kids and good influencers in their friendship groups and bad influencers, so focus on weeding out the friends that are not going to lead your kids up the garden path into inappropriate texting behavior. Keep an ear out for who are the ‘good’ kids and ‘bad’ kids in the school and guide your kids to hang with teens that are going to lead them in more positive directions where possible.
4. Dangerous Driving
We’re all guilty or texting while driving, and if your teen is kicking off their driving career, you’re going to want to be sure that their head is around the dangers of texting while driving. Whether you use shock tactics or you share some stats about the serious dangers, whatever you do, make it super clear that the risk is high for teens that text while driving. You should also be focused on practicing what you preach so that your teenager can see the dangers of being distracted while driving.
If you need some backup stats, check out this study from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute.
5. Lack of Attention
Do you get frustrated by your teen’s commitment to texting at any and every opportunity? While it’s one thing to multi-task, ignoring you and lack of attention is a massive alarm bell when it comes to whether your teen needs a digital detox on their texting plan. Texting while talking, ignoring the world around them and general lack of attention is not only poor manners but just plain annoying.