Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Cell Phones for Kids!!

Firstly, I consider myself a die-hard luddite. I don't like technology. I don't want technology. And, I am being dragged into the 21st century, kicking and screaming (you should have seen the fight I put up concerning blogging--but, I'm finding it's an awesome way to communicate, so here I am doing just that). If I could, I would spin my wool for blankets and communicate with smoke signals. So, you can imagine how I protested against my kids getting cell phones.

Now, I'm sure you know the next twist in the plot:
My two oldest kids have cell phones!

My soon-to-be teenager just got a Kajeet phone and was more excited than Aunt Bea at a state fair when she tore open the package! In less time than it takes for me to fold a load of clothes, she had already figured out how to text, download, get ringtones, send pictures, do special effects, and just about everything else that leaves me in a perpetual fog (I'm still trying to figure out speed dial). As she was testing out her new cell phone, I looked at my husband and asked, "Is this going to cost us an arm and a leg?"

His reply? "Check this out. It is SO cool!" He took me to the computer and showed me how we can control if she pays the bill or we pay the bill, how we get alerts if the "wallet" gets low, how we decide what calls she can receive, and also how we can choose when she is allowed to use it (I'm seeing school hours as off-limits). My final opinion? This is technology I can live with!

I would love to hear how other moms out there handle cell phone issues. Personally, I like knowing that I can always contact my kids, even when they are out with friends. I also believe that kids can get absorbed in computers and cell phones, so limits need to be set. But silly me, forever the luddite... I still write letters and can my own pickles (Aunt Bea would love me)!


Kelly said...

I think cell phones for kids -- with the right phone and the right rules laid out -- are a GREAT idea. Although my child is still a toddler, when she is old enough, I will definitely get her a cell phone! They make some cool ones that even the youngest - or least responsible - kids can do, with only 3 buttons, one to call Mom, one to call Dad, and one for Emergency.

Eileen said...

Love the line about Aunt Bee!

I'm not sure my six home-schooled children have any idea that they could have a cell phone, and for now, that's more than ok with me. They probably will have to survive without them for a few more years, till they are responsible enough to be more independent, and/or we move to a place as safe as Mayberry. My oldest turns twelve this weekend, but really, her best friends live under the same roof as her (aka siblings), and her other friends (also home-schooled semi-luddites)don't have phones, either, for which I am grateful. It helps to have like-minded friends! I imagine by the time they start driving, we will want them have their own phones, though. Maybe when they can pay the phone bills, too. Certainly it is each Dad & Mom's choice if or when to get a child a cell phone, and how to pay for it.

Here's a question for 'ya: Can you imagine what an episode of Andy would be like if Opie had a cell phone?