Parenting is a Game of Intervention & Prevention
A few weeks ago, I was sitting with three other community leaders discussing Dream Big programs and the conversation turned to good ol’ fashioned parenting. To correctly lay the landscape, all of us devout fathers that are connected to every resource within our local community. As we were discussing the internet, the conversation immediately turned to a tangent of stories of different social media platforms, access privileges, and pseudo accounts.
My kiddo’s ages range from two to nine, while theirs were closer or already in the dreaded teen years. At that moment of the conversation, I realized “Good parenting isn’t enough” nowadays. My parents had the privileges of just being there, being a little proactive, and focusing on current issues made them good parents. Unfortunately, the tide has turned and parenting requires so much more to ensure outstanding contributing citizens in this world.
Here’s why parenting just got harder:
Unlimited Technology- our technology is a double edged sword. As my once coveted encyclopedias sit in boxes in my garage, accessing information/knowledge on any subject isn’t a problem anymore. You can Google it, YouTube it, Facebook it and there will be an answer. No matter the question, you’ll find an answer. Unfortunately, our children can access the same info, see the same materials, and learn without an adult presence.
Social Media- going to the mall or a local park is no longer cool to meet new people within your age group. Our technology eliminates the need to be uncomfortable doing uncharacteristic activities. The new person-to-person interaction comes from Facebook, Twitter, Omegle, Instragram, SnapChat, Text+, Tumblr, and so many more. If you don’t know all the apps on your kid’s phone, I suggest you take another look or look into family safeguards.
Dating Sites- don’t think this doesn’t apply to your 12 year old or older. There is no “Photo ID” verification during registration. If you haven’t spoken to your child on dating, sex or relationships, their curiosity could be fulfilled by Plenty of Fish, eHarmony, Zoosk, Black Planet, or Chemistry. Even worse, some scout in human trafficking could already be teaching them the ABC’s with this. By not speaking to your pre-teen about this topic could have very serious ramifications, so don’t underestimate this subject on having correct relationships.
To all my parents, please know that “good” is a great start. To be great, I’m learning you need to be involved. Being involved requires every parent to earn their child’s trust, respect and know they’re a miniature adult in the making. With all that said, I still have my kid’s teen years to go through so I know the challenges still remain to be seen. Lord, help me (LOL!).
I write this because my business is personal. My struggles are for your gain. No strings attached.
Nathan A. Webster, MBA
September 16, 2018
September 9, 2018
September 2, 2018