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July 11, 2014

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July 11, 2014

Smartphones and Social Media are Truly Anti-Social!

July 11, 2014
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I’ve been thinking about this topic for a long time and I thought it might be fitting to post about it since this blog IS called “Like Like No One Else.”  And it all really started from us wanting to become debt-free and not be like most Americans who use credit cards on a daily basis, have consumer debt and live paycheck to paycheck.

But I’m finding that we Live Like No One Else in many other areas too.  One of them being how we choose to raise our children in regards to today’s electronic toys.

FIRST, please do take the 5 minutes to watch this video.  It is AWESOME.  I could never convey into words what the creators of this video did…but it sums up my feelings exactly!

We live in a very affluent area (in the older part, but we still have million dollar homes a couple houses down from us and across the street).  My hubby loves this area as he grew up here.  It’s a couple of houses away from his parents.  It’s super close to the highways and can get us to places far away very quickly.

It may be a beautiful area to live in, but I would be happy moving.  Besides the real estate taxes getting out of hand, there is a lot of peer pressure to drive nice, big expensive cars, have nice expensive clothes, have big beautiful houses, the best and most recent toys and electronics, to eat out every single day, to run crazy from driving your kids around from one activity to the next (to name a few).  NONE of which we want to participate in.

We have one TV in the family room and I’m the only one that has a smartphone.  My oldest son, who just turned 15 does have a phone.  We got him the phone for Christmas in 8th grade (when he was 13) as we felt that we needed another phone since we got rid of our land line.  My nephews had cell phones since they were like 8 or 9,  When he started high school last fall, he started texting a little bit and I didn’t like seeing the extra charges.  I cancelled that feature on his phone.  He came to me and told me that he needed texting as some of his teachers used it to communicate with their students.  I told him that I would enable that feature on his phone as long as he pays the $10/month for it.  The was the last I heard about it.

It’s probably easier for me as I have 3 boys and they seem to have no problem actually calling and talking to their friends on the phone.  Neither my 12 yo or my 15yo are on any of the Social Media sites either (no Facebook, no Instagram, etc.)  How do I know.  Well they have laptops, but they stay in the family room and each one has Safety Eyes on it. So we can monitor the usage of their online activities.

I do understand it would be harder and that there is more pressure for girls and if we had girls, they still would not have smartphones (here’s a great article if your kids do have them:  Some rules to follow when your kids have smartphones and To My 13-Year-Old, An iPhone Contract From Your Mom, With Love).  But WE, as parents, need to make decisions that are in the best interest of our children. We can’t have today’s society raising our kids and telling them and us what is and what isn’t okay. 

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. ~Jiddu Krishnamurti

My hubby was at a family party last Saturday (I was out of town) and said all the kids were like zombies (some of the parents too)..sitting there with their faces glued to the screens.  Very anti-social.  My hubby said to me, “Smartphones should be treated like drugs and alcohol..it’s such a strong addiction.”  I agree whole-heartedy!

You might think that we are mean parents.  An really, I don’t care.  God gave us these children to raise, love and protect and that’s what we’re going to do!

You may disagree with me, yet I cannot think of any GOOD reason for children to have their own smartphones.  What do you think?

 

14 comments

  1. I totally agree with you and am glad to hear there are people out there concerned about the problem. And I do see it as a problem. I totally agree with the video as well. Good for you for swimming against the stream. Your children are lucky.

    1. Thank you Nancy. It is not an easy thing to parent children today. But luckily, our boys seems to understand our choices and accept them. They have no choice! 😉

  2. Moving video. I don’t spend any time on my phone, but I admit my butt is in front of my computer much more than I’d like. My daughter is glued to her computer. She’s drawing all day but also interacting with other artist friends and writers from all over the globe. I wish she had more in-person friends, but she rarely leaves the house except for when she goes to school. It’s a different day and age. iPads and smartphones have replaced real toys that require imagination to play with them. Kids can’t just go out and play or ride a bike for fear of being abducted or abused by a next door neighbor. And when was the last time you saw a teenager mowing lawns or shoveling driveways for money? Times have changed so much since we were kids.

    1. Hey Lorraine. Yes, I agree that it is a different day and age. And your daughter is an amazing artist and if she is in love with her art and spends lots of time doing it, then it will only lead to success for her. It took the Beatles 10,000 hours of practice before they started making it big!!

      But I do believe that children need to be well rounded and at times we force the kids outside just to run around, ride their bikes or simply just to free play and use their imaginations. To go out and be kids. I know their is a fear of something happening to your kids and it depends on where you live. But I won’t keep my kids sheltered and home all the time for fear of something like that happening. Every time I fly or get in the car there is that threat of me getting in an accident and dying. But it will not stop me from living a full life. And both my sons, the 12 and 15 year old do mow the lawn of their grandparents who live a few houses down and shovel snow in the winter for a lot of our elderly neighbors to help them out. And they are often rewarded with a few buck. Our 15 yo babysits in the neighborhood and is now a Volunteer at our local zoo. I want my kids to grow up with lots of experiences and adventures!

  3. No one (including me) has a smartphone in our house. My husband and I have the cheap phones that are just for calling/texting. My two oldest children received those same kind of phones when they turned 13, and my youngest will do the same next year. I should note that this is a gift from their grandma, and if I had to pay for it, they would probably all have to share a phone. For my kids, they spend some time in the evening talking and texting with friends, but during the day they are outside riding bikes, swimming, running around and playing. We also talk about phones and manners a lot! No texting at meals or when company is over or when one of us is trying to have a conversation with them.

    1. Hi Kimberly. I love that! And how you guys talk about phones and manners. It seems that manners is becoming a quite outdated term…not much of that going on these days. I do have my smartphone, but need it for my work. But I’m never on it for facebook, twitter or anything like that. I use it for work emails, navigation and looking things up on Ebay! 😉

  4. I am in agreement with you 125%!!! I absolutely HATE HATE HATE the obsession people have with their damn phones! The WORST are those who them while driving, and the HORRIFIC are the parents who use them while driving with children in the backseat. I’m at a total loss of words for who or WHAT could be so important that you’d risk the lives of your children??!!! Makes me batshit crazy! What a horrible example these parents are setting for their children, huh?!!

  5. Good rant, Margaret! I love that video too.

    I was just listening to a great talk by Andrew Pudewa at the Institute for Excellence in Writing about nature deficit disorder. You would love it too: http://iew.com/shop/products/nature-deficit-disorder-causes-consequences-cures-andrew-pudewa. That is just part of why we chose to homeschool, as it give our kids more time to be outside in the garden, more time playing in nature with random objects, more time reading while sitting in a tree.

    Nice to find your blog and read some more about you!
    ~Julie

    1. Hi Julie, thanks for stopping by. Glad you liked the video. Yes, you are right about Nature Deficit Disorder…I think most kids today have it! I love reading your posts about how much your kids enjoy being in the garden and the joy they experience from it. As you know, I’m a fairly new gardener, but we as a family have always done lots of hiking, walking and spending lots of time at our local forest preserves and parks and gone on little camping adventures, trips to the beach, etc. My oldest son, 15, loves raising chickens and rabbits and spends quite a bit of time outdoors with them. What I found is that parents are a great role model for kids. The more time we spend outdoors, so do our children. When my kids were born, I really didn’t know anything about homeschooling. But if I were to do it all over again, I would do the same. I’m a bit older than you, 39. But I have to say that I am very impressed with you and your hubby and how sharp you guys are with everything…kids, finances, etc. Love your blog Julie!!! But you already know that! 😉

  6. I loved this! The video is awesome as well! I’m very interested in living a more simplified life. I find myself online way too much and definitely need to come up with some boundaries for myself as well as for my family. My kids are only 20 months and 4 months, but I can tell that my oldest is mimicking my husband and my behaviors. We are their biggest influence and it’s up to us to make a positive impression.

    1. Hi Whitney, you are right. We as parents are role models for our children. They see, they listen and they mimick what we do. Your kids are still tiny so you are lucky as you can make changes that will be good for your family and your kids will go right along with it. It’s harder when parents have teens and try to make changes!! Thanks so much for stopping by!

  7. This was a great post! I admire anyone who figures out just what they value and lives their life accordingly:) We, too are digging our way out of the debt-hole. My husband, son and myself have basic phones with texting. My son is 21 and very responsible with his money. I CANNOT believe how many people, both co-workers and relatives comment on the fact that he doesn’t have a smart phone and ask him almost daily when he is going to upgrade?! Really! He’s pretty good about letting all the comments go but it bugs the heck out of me that other people think they know what is best for your life and your budget and are willing to tell you so.. UGGGG! Keep up the good blogging’!

    1. Hey Teresa, thanks for stopping by. You are right..and it’s not just strangers too. Family does the same thing. Peer pressure is a bitch. When we first bought our home and were renovating it, my FATHER (of all people) was telling us that we should just go ahead and rip off the roof and put a 2nd floor on the house. He didn’t want to be outdone by his brothers’ and sisters’ kids. They all have humongous houses and humongous debt. I told him that I would if he’d like to pay for it. LOL

      I remember reading an article about things people say when they are on their death beds..one of the things frequently mentioned is “I wish I had lived life for myself instead of living it the way everyone else wanted me to!”

      Thanks so much for stopping by and it’s great that there are like-minded people our there! 🙂

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