#parent | #kids | I sleep easier since I learnt how to monitor my daughter’s smartphone

All of my 12-year-old daughter’s classmates have a smartphone. Every single one. Over the past month, the final few who weren’t already attached (physically and emotionally) to an iPhone or Samsung Galaxy or Google Pixel, or whatever, were handed a device that connects them with everything we hope to keep our children away from.

Including my daughter.

Not accidently, it coincided with the sacrament of Confirmation, which, of course, is about accepting responsibility for your faith and destiny. In Ireland, it is now often, apparently, celebrated by handing 12 and 13-year-olds a super-charged gateway to everything evil in the world. It has, at least in my part of the world, become one of the sacraments of initiation into adult world.

Everyone knows what the rules are – even if they are viewed as draconian.


A new rite of passage.

I have been having nightmares about it.

I don’t need to go into the dangers of a child having a mobile phone. It’s well documented.

I suspect, like many in the same situation, I know the question, but don’t know the answer.

How the hell do we keep our children safe in this new world?

An American study just last week found that most parents are worried that their children are addicted to their devices (and nearly half of teenagers had the same concern about their parents).

In the survey, more than 40 per cent of teenagers said they checked their phone a few times each hour, and one-third admitted to checking their phone in the middle of the night.

That should be a wake-up call for any parent.

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