ULOG #12: Digital Lifestyle and Kids
My conversation with my daughter a few days ago about this whole Momo challenge thingie...
Me: Anong gagawin mo ulit, when you see this face? (What will you do when you see this face?) (Referring to the creepy photo that allegedly appears while on YouTube)
Bubbles: Turn off the phone or give kay Mommy. (Turn the phone off or give the phone to mommy)
Bubbles: Para ki-kill ni Mommy. Pano mo ki-kill Mommy? (So that Mommy will kill it. How will you kill it, Mommy?) (Yeah, she knows what "killing" is. Only because I explained how this momo chuchu works. But, nothing violent or morbid.)
Me: Hanapin ko siya, tapos pu punish ko siyang sobra. (I'll look for her, and I'll punish her to such extent.)
Bubbles: Hanggang ma-dead siya? (Until she dies?) (Yes, she lost a dog recently, so she understands what death is.)
Bubbles: Edi tanggal mo na lang sa charger yun cellphone, para ma dead siya. Para di ka na mapagod. (How about, you just unplug our phones so that it will die on its own and you won't have to tire yourself?) (Because their phones only last a while when unplugged. Hand-me-down phones!)
Witty, right? My daughter is Miss Dismiss. All the alarms, messages, calls, get dismissed in .0005 second if she's holding phones, so I shouldn't be worried. I was relieved for that then.
But, seriously... This event is alarming. Ideally, at their age, they shouldn't be introduced to gadgets just yet. But, every generation changes. We are now in a generation that's being raised by gadgets and electronics. My friend Jerica explained, we are living in an era where our kids are Digital Natives, and we, as parents, are Digital Immigrants (Google that if unfamiliar). They knew about video calling even before actually learning how to read. We knew about video calling only when it became video calling. They were born and raised with it. At the same time, we are just getting along with it. As much as we want to control their gadget use, we can only do so much...
Having open communication is still the best way as with any parenting issues you have to deal with. Let them understand what gadgets are really intended for. Why is it right and not suitable for them? Tell them why you need to see what they are doing and why you need to limit their gadget use.
Keep in mind that you are your kids' role model. The more they see you on your mobile phones/gadgets, the more they think it's ok to do the same. An extra challenge for me being a wfh mom and always being on my laptop. ☹️
I'm lucky my kids are into taking care of pets, so they're not on screen all the time. If you can, introduce them to other exciting hobbies to moderate their time online.
If all else fails, tell them you're leaving, and you're never coming back, so a grumpy, witchy mommy can replace you. Works for my kids