My Family Fantastic

Creating Experiences That Help Relationships Thrive

3 Ways to Connect Despite the Noise of Devices

We’re having a lot of problems with him. And, we can’t seem to get him off of his cellphone and Xbox.” That’s what the lady sitting behind me at breakfast said the other day. I immediately sat up straight and leaned a little closer to listen in. (Okay, so I’m nosy.)

She wanted her son to be present.  She wanted to connect. And, she also wanted her husband to help in cutting her son’s addiction to electronic devices.

But, she felt alone.

I have the same problem with my 17-year old brother.

There is a 16-year age gap between us and I no longer live at home. I really want to connect with him before he graduates and goes to college. But whenever we hang out together, he is distracted by incessant text messages and Instagram likes.

Did you know that a teenager will text an average of 3,400 times per month and will spend more time with media than with parents or teachers?  It’s true based on a 2012 CNN Story.

Given that my parents have raised eight children, I asked them what they thought about parenting in the digital age. I was raised in the nineties…when all the cool kids had private land lines. But, I wasn’t even allowed to talk on the phone after 9 p.m.

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*Story Initially Featured on Black and Married with Kids


  1. My mouth literally dropped when I read that statistic about the amount of time teens spend on electronics in a month. Whoa! That is mind blowing. I love fact that your parents do screen free weekends. I do that occasionally myself. And when I lived alone, I would call my siblings, parents, friends that connect all the time, and warn them that I was having one. That way, if they couldn’t reach me they wouldn’t assume the worst. It truly is a re-energizing technique!
    Faith Simone recently posted…Book Review: Mama’s Boy by ReShonda Tate BillingsleyMy Profile

    • Simone

      August 24, 2015 at 5:50 am

      I know right?! When I read that, I was like…how do you do anything else in life if you are texting an average of 110 times a day?! But then I smiled, because I grew up having like 100 texts per month (so I still have the scarcity mindset). And, Chile, anything over my limit was money coming out of my Kroger’s paycheck to pay for the overage…none of this unlimited texting business:-).

      Yes, I’m learning to appreciate the wisdom of my parents in screen-free weekends. And you are sooooo right, it is such a great way to recharge and get quiet. The thing I struggle with sometimes is “the fear of missing something.” So, I like what you said about letting your loved ones know what’s going on…in the event of an emergency they are the ones that REALLY matter.

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