We are living in a time where we are surrounded by the internet and social media. If we look around us, we will see almost every individual consumed by their electronic devices. Surprisingly, kids and teens are more likely to spend more time on their devices and the internet compared to most adults.
Because kids have increased their screen time before their digital devices, the job of parenting has become more challenging for parents. Especially for those who work fulltime. Parenting itself was not an easy task and the use of electronic devices and social media has made the job more complicated for parents.
Digital parenting is so demanding that most parents have no choice but to resort to spy phone apps such to secretly monitor their kid’s digital activity. Constantly hovering around kids and keeping track of their online activities is not an easy thing to do, especially when you have got other things to manage.
On the one hand, parents marvel at their kid’s technical skills. Using and operating digital devices and the internet has become effortless for them. But on the other hand, it is terrifying. Parents have all the right to be worried about the possible adverse impact of too much screen time and digital exposure.
Why Digital Parenting Is So Hard?
We learn to parent our kids in the same way that we were parented by our parents. However, we cannot get any reference point from the ways we were parented because at that time there was no technology and mobile phones.
The digital world simply did not exist and thus parenting wasn’t that difficult as it is has become now. Today, our kids are growing up in a digital world where they are surrounded by technology and the internet all the time. Whether they want to look up for information for an assignment or chat with a friend online, the need for a smartphone is always there.
Due to persistent demands from kids, parents usually hand them smartphones. However, they are not fully aware of the repercussions of their kids having smartphones at an early age. The internet is undoubtedly a great learning source for kids but at the same time, it can also pose serious threats to your kid’s wellbeing.
Most kids are not aware of the internet dangers that surround them all the while they are using the internet. These internet dangers are mostly found on social media platforms where kids spend most of their time.
Cyberbullying, sexting, sexual predators, and pornography are some of the major online dangers that kids can be exposed to while using social media or other online platforms. Protecting kids from these dangers can be a huge challenge for parents.
They can only protect their kids from these dangers once they know whether or not their kids are in danger. This can only be found if parents use some monitoring apps or parental control solutions. Without them, it would be extremely difficult to track their kid’s online activity.
How to Become A Successful Digital Parent
Like we discussed earlier, digital parenting is an arduous task. However, if you understand the gist of it, the job doesn’t remain harder. As a parent, you can definitely consider installing a mobile spy app on your kid’s phone
However, there is another important thing that you can do to become a successful digital parent. Apart from monitoring your kid’s online activity and mobile usage, you can also open a discussion with them. The key to becoming a successful digital parent is communication.
You need to start an open and honest communication with your kids so you can talk to them about using the internet safely and wisely. You can also talk to them about how to deal with different online dangers and how to stay away from them.
When you provide a comfortable environment for your kid, he/she won’t hesitate to come over to you and talk about their problems. You need to make your kid feel comfortable so they can come to you without any hesitation and speak about whatever problems they are facing on the internet.
For instance, if your kid feels he is being threatened by someone online or being bullied by someone on a chat platform, he should be upfront with you about it and be able to narrate the entire incident. Remember that your kid will only open up to you if you make them feel comfortable and provide them with enough trust and confidence.
If you scold them away or punish them for using the internet in the wrong way, they would never come to you again. Therefore, you need to welcome them with open arms and listen to what they have got to say.
Teach your kids how to prevent cyberbullying. Tell them not to engage with people online who they haven’t met in real life. Make sure your kids do not give their cell numbers to strangers on the internet or share their home address with them.
Keep a regular check on their privacy settings because sometimes kids can get around them and change them. You need to make sure they are set in place.
Those kids who are well informed of the internet dangers and know how to tackle them face fewer problems when they are using the internet. Kids are intelligent so parents should take them into confidence and explain everything about online safety before handing them their smartphones.
Digital parenting is hard but with a few important tips and monitoring tools you can make it much easier. Do not take parenting as a job. Accept it as a learning process, a mission you are doing to deal with for the rest of your life.