By: Sara Music
Self-Esteem, Self-Worth, Self-Image…
Everyone needs to invest in these, nurture these, but we are bombarded with another word…“SELFIE”. All of a sudden these important self-evaluations become the equation of direct messages, likes, shares, follows and the list goes on. Believe me when I say, as a teenager, I looked for the “selfs” in all of the wrong places and today all the wrong places are now streaming live. I want so much more for my daughter and I know I need the tools and knowledge to protect her.
From my perspective, the struggle is much more real when a stranger can enter your home and your child’s mind without physically being there. Children have access to so much more media, and with the wrong mindset, it is self-destructive and it brings in a self-vulnerability so “quietly” that it allows for grooming, sexual predation, bullying and much more.
My daughter is 4. I don’t emphasize the internet. She doesn’t have her own iPad or Kindle. My husband and I use electronic devices but we are adults, and even as so, sometimes we need the reminder to “put it away”. I want my daughter to realize that life is about what you see in front of you, what you experience, it doesn’t live in a screen. The art of comparison will steal your joy, lower your self-esteem and open you up to feelings of depression and so on.
We recently down-sized our house (people look at us so crazy for that), we eat dinner together at the kitchen table as a family each night, we read books together… I don’t know that this is the right way but I am striving to make my home a safe space where anything can and will be shared.
Limiting screen-time is hard:
- Restaurants have them
- Friends have them
- Classmates have them
- Grandparents have them
- Cousins have them
They bring them to beauty shops, weddings, and even funeral viewings. We are constantly saying no, and I am sure you will agree that always saying “no” is exhausting! I come home from work and the last thing I want is a fight but the fight (for me) isn’t about electronics, it’s about my daughter’s future. I know that I must find a balance. I am far from the teenage years, but I am hoping to set a foundation for that time, now.