Thursday, November 14, 2013

Put Down That Phone!!!

Put Down That Phone!!!

Did I get your attention? Seems everywhere I turn there is someone out there telling you that you are a bad parent if you have your phone in hand when your children are present. It's on Facebook, on the news, in magazines, etc. 

Part of me just wants to say "bug off". The other part of me wants to break it down for those who seem to think they've got all the answers. 

So here it goes: 

First off, mind your own damn business. If you don't like to spend time on your phone when your kids are around, so be it. 

But here's the thing, there are so many reasons why that parent is on the phone. Let's think of some ideas: 

1. They are making an appointment. 
2. They are checking in on a sick parent. 
3. They are taking a call from a spouse who is coming home early from work to be with his/her famly. 
4. Their spouse is in the service and can only call home at certain times. 
5. They took the day off from work and in order to do so they have to respond to an email. 
6. They are checking on a flight of an arriving loved one. 
7. Or hell maybe they've just had a stressful day and are playing some mindless game for 5 minutes. 

I am sure I could think of 100 more reasons of why a person might be on the phone in their child's presence. But here's the thing, unless you live with the person, you are seeing them for a fraction of their day. You have no idea what they have done with their child(ren) outside that 20 minutes you saw them at the park. Yeah, there's a chance they've been ignoring their kid all day long. But there's also a really good chance that they've bathed, dressed and fed that child...that they've read books and colored and sang silly songs dancing around the living room. And there is the chance that after that 20 minutes at the park, they'll make their way to the grocery store to buy ingredients to make supper and chocolate chips cookies together...and then they'll go home and make cookies and after supper they'll play a game as a family. 

The point is mind your own damn business. Stop judging parents for things like using a phone. 

I love my kids to death - would walk on fire for them - take a bullet - fight a bear...you name it, I'd do it. That said, if we are at the playground and I want to putz around on my phone for 20 minutes while the kids are busy going down the slide and swinging, that's my prerogative. See, for me I don't feel the need to be attached to my children 24/7. I benefit from having time apart from them and I am a better mother for it and they benefit from time apart for me. My children also need to learn that they are not the center of the universe - I don't need to drop everything I am doing to look at them go down the slide for the millionth time, etc. And frankly it chaps my ass to think that someone else is taking the time away from their children to sit and worry so much about what I am doing. Pot meet kettle! 

And please before you spout off the evils of social media, let me tell you that just cause I am on my phone doesn't mean that I am on Facebook ...I use my phone as an ereader, so quite often I am reading a book because I am avid reader. 

Before you start judging random strangers, just make sure your own "house" is in order!