Is there an equivalent of this today?
How about the teen who goes in their room, closes the door and texts their friends.
Most of the conversations I’m sure are very similar to the ones I had as a teen.
However, that’s where the similarities end.
Here are some reasons why:
1. Sarcasm and other emotions are not recognized by the words in a text. Emoticons can’t convey everything.
2. With the depersonalization of texting it is much more likely that teens would share highly personal information (many times too personal) than if they had to speak on the phone.
3. Teens are not learning the art of conversation by texting. They choose to text instead of talk. However, the real world will catch up and those conversational skills will be needed for the rest of their lives.
The important point to remember is that successful relationships need to build intimacy, moving through texting and other less-direct forms of communication to more direct connections. Many of us use technology to distance ourselves from each other, so that the more connectivity we have, the less connected we actually are. It’s a double edge sword. Challenge your teen to pick up the phone and call a friend. Give Grandma a call and ask her how her bridge game was.
The sooner teens develop active communication skills with their peers, family and community the more likely they are to flourish in the social world around them. It’s not that they need to drop texting but build a balance to have their technology and use it wisely.
As parents we need to be there to guide them and to model those skills for them.
Though the phones are now cordless the message is still the same.
Communication is essential.