Thursday, 1 August 2013

Need help with being a great parent?

Whoever said that being a parent was a simple job obviously had no appreciation of the real world and real children!  Unfortunately for those of us who are parents nowadays, it is becoming more and more complex as time passes. This is not because children are naughtier or more mischievous or anything else due to physical or biological changes; it’s simple because children + technology = headache!  And a big one at that!

We all talk about what the world was like when we were children.  We played out in the sun all summer, roamed the countryside as free as a bird during the school holidays and only came home for tea when we got called in by mum and dad!!  Maybe there are a few children that still like to do this, but for many parents, we now find ourselves competing with and having to deal with the dramas created by technology.

In such a complex time it is great to know that there is help at hand.  Websites like can help us keep things in perspective and share our thought and our problems.  No matter what issues we are having to deal with, it’s great to know that there are like-minded parents around going through equally stressful times and trying their best to cope with being a parent.   Websites like this cannot take the problems or the stresses away but they sure can help point both parents and children in the right direction when it comes to dealing with a world full of constantly changing technological items. 

Even if we are not that much interested in modern technology ourselves, we owe it to our children to help them negotiate their way around the vast arena of products and services that are available and growing by the minute.  Our children are proactively targeted by advertisers who know what buttons to press.  They know how to best approach them and how to make their latest product the ‘must have’ of the moment.  Of course we don’t want them to miss out on anything, but we also have to help them know where to draw the line.

By understanding the new technology ourselves we can help them map out a future that will enable them to grow and flourish, using the latest products to aid rather than hinder their progress through into adulthood.  Yes technology can be fun but it can also be fraught with dangers for children and their families that are not switched on to what is happening in the virtual world.  Whether it’s something as simple as ‘should they have a TV in their bedroom’ or something more complex such as ‘how can I restrict my child’s internet browsing’ forewarned is forearmed.  Being aware of the pitfalls and the mistakes that others have made enables us as parents to move forward without falling at too many fences.   We need to be able to guide our children in the right direction, rather than finding out retrospectively that they have already gone in the wrong direction and trying to put things right!

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