Children of the Screen
As much as I like FaceBook and text messaging, I know that it needs to be limited a great deal in my life. Like so many things, I have learned over the years to balance good things like FB and texting so that they don’t take up all my time and energy. In fact, for most adults, we know our limits, whether it’s ice cream, television, shopping, or wine. We may blow it now and then, but we learn to balance, or else it consumes us and we suffer in the long-run.
Unfortunately, teens and preteens are not very good at balancing the good things in their lives. I remember coming home from high school football practice and eating an entire large bag of Doritos and a couple bottles of Yoo-Hoo as a snack. I remember watching three movies in a row on summer nights. I remember playing video games for five hours straight. And this was not at all unusual for me or for my friends. Kids, by nature, are much more impulsive, much less logical, and much less educated about the consequences of their behavior. They do because they can, and they don’t truly believe that there can be too much of a good thing.
Here is an article which describes the addiction of texting and Facebook in the lives of so many teens. It’s worth reading. Click here
This is where we, the adults, need to get involved and discuss the consequences of electronic addictions. We need to provide leadership.
First, we need to understand the power of teenage addictions – that teens are far more prone to addictive behavior, and their brains record those good feelings intensely and permanently. It sets the default buttons in the brain, so that when the child grows older, those addictions come back again and again. In other words, a teen who is addicted to something will feel that pull toward that particular addiction throughout his or her life.