That’s what I used to do after school anyway, I often phoned my best mate when I got in and she only lived three doors down the road. Furthermore, we coud easily stay on the phone gossiping for an hour. These days social phone calls are normally carried out when I am doing other things at the same time, indeed the only people I speak to from my landline are my Dad and my Auntie.
It goes without saying that times have changed. These days both adults and children are glued to their mobiles. My phone is my alarm, diary, work platform (I use a number of apps for work) source of news, watch and fitness tracker. That’s without music, social media and websites that are used almost purely for escapism purposes. Older boy is becoming increasingly dependent on his phone for entertainment, even though he has had it for less than a year. For various reasons, many of them to do with sleep, I decided this week to impose a screen time limit. On Wednesday I declared to both boys that there would be no screen time after 8pm.
I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, the first hurdle was the Xbox. The first night I had to use force to get both boys off, with the full knowledge that this was just the beginning. Older boy then realised that he wasn’t allowed his phone either and consequently threw what can only be described as full-scale toddler tantrum, which involved waking his brother up, throwing a duvet out of the bedroom,and ripping a page out of a book when I tried to read to him in a bid to calm his down. It wasn’t pretty but it wasn’t ever going to be. After an hour he eventually went to sleep. The second night was surprisingly less stressful. Last night started in the same vein as the first and I ended up having to hide his phone. It is going to be something of a process.
On reflection this reminds me massively of the controlled crying controversy from babyhood. The only advantage one has there is that babies cannot move or do much damage; they certainly cannot leave the room in protest. You don’t even need to hide things from a baby.
Alas there is no easy answer. I firmly believe that it’s just a case of sticking to my guns. Easy peasy lemon squeezy (can you tell I already have Pancake Day on my mind) she says, not.