Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Teen Texting - Not Good?

I've been noticing many peeps on their cell phones lately, madly texting as if their life depends on it. And, most of them are teenagers.

(photo found at this site)

As a 20-something person, I get it. Texting is fun. It's easy. It's entertaining. It allows you to connect and get incessant attention.

But, is it a problem for teenagers?

I have to say yes. Teenagers are developing habits of non-listening, short attention spans, and forgetting about the Present moment. Sure, some peeps may think it's awesome to be able to multitask, but when we focus on 5 million things at once, something is bound to suffer.

Like if you're texting while driving, you're probably going to hit sweet, ol' grandma as she walks across the street. Okay, that's not the best example, but you know what I mean.

Yet, what are we to expect with televisions, Playstations, and computers? I haven't seen a freakin' teenager playing outside in months. Do they even know what exercise is besides being forced to run in gym class once a week?

It's an issue--parents, psychologists, doctors, etc.-- will acknowledge this, but is there really anything we can do? Not really, unless you don't give your child a means to communicate, but that's not fair. Then again, you can always monitor how many texts your kid sends a month by looking at the phone bill. Kinda stalker-ish though.

Let's break it down --

You can't control peeps, especially teenagers. It's not fair and it's not kind. Yeah, teen texting is bad right now, but so are a lot of things like drugs, sex, and alcohol. I say live and let live, but don't let shiznit get out of hand.

I remember watching an episode of "The Cosby Show" in which Cliff (Bill Cosby) found a joint in Theo's pocket. So, what does Cliff do? Confronts Theo, of course. And when Theo tells Cliff that his friend put the joint in his pocket, Cliff ends the discussion because he trusts Theo. Although Theo didn't have to, he forces his friend to tell Cliff and his mother in person that it wasn't his joint.

I share this story because it's a great example, though it's from a television show, of how good parenting should be. Sure, we can focus on texting and say that's the issue, but I think we're a little off in our way of thinking. Perhaps if we build trust, confidence, and love with our children, they will be open and honest about things with their parents.

It's all about the foundation, not what goes on top.

Check out this article on teen texting

1 comment:

Keith Haskel said...

Miss Lauren,
I didn't read your entire post (no attention span), but don't be so quick to discredit teens and texting habits. Everytime new technology comes around people say it makes us dumber and will kill our brains (the printing press: the easier it is to publish something, the more junk will be published. Instead, more people became literate. With television, people said it would stop people from reading. Instead, information traveled faster and more people were informed. Etc.)
Texting and Twitter and whatever comes next may appear to dumb down current culture, but also increase communication and allow for more efficien multitasking.
End rant.

Are you in NY? Let's hang.