Children observe us from day one, which is why my babies held the remote control to their ears and babbled into it while pacing. I gab on the phone a lot. I gab on my house phone and my iPhone. I don’t text and drive but I talk on the phone and drive. Recently on the Today Show they showed segments from AT&T’s “It Can Wait” campaign. They interviewed the parents of a recent teen fatality due to texting and driving. I thought: I wonder if those parents used to text and drive too.
I should have been aware of how I am using my cell phone and social media from day one, but now that I have an almost 10 year old girl who is asking for an iTouch, I am thinking about how I need to practice what I preach. And model better behavior. More appropriate for a 41 year old mom of three.
Which brings me to kind of a rant, which is about me but also about many observations on bad judgement by parents that goes beyond talking on a cell phone while driving.
On Facebook, Twitter, Instagram (these are the main channels I use), women and men who are over 30 (giving some leeway here)
- Complaining about their jobs, their child’s teacher, bus driver, cafeteria lady, neighbor, etc.
Do you not know that your boss may not be your friend on Facebook or following you on Twitter but someone they know is? Do you realize you could get fired?
Do you want to show your child to respect authority or to broadcast disrespect?
- Posting photos with alcohol.
Sure, we are of legal age and like a few glasses of wine or a few beers or maybe even a cocktail or two, but there’s something to be said for discretion.
- Showing too much skin.
I salute any woman who can rock a bikini over 35, but do you want your teenager to text photos of herself in a bikini or post on social media?
And while we are at it, let’s put down our iPads and Blackberries during dinner and during kids’ games and school activities. If work is so important, stay at work. Show your kid that they deserve your attention, and maybe you will deserve their attention when they are teens. Or at least they won’t be able to use “you do it too” against you.
I feel strongly about this subject because I am already hearing way too many stories about school-aged kids as young as elementary school making serious mistakes because they are not being monitored or getting the right guidance.