Why We’ve Chosen to Let Our Kids Have Devices and Social Media

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teen girls laying on floor on stomach looking at their phones

This has to be one of the hardest – if not the hardest – generation to parent in all of human history.

Our children are bombarded with so much sin and debauchery, there are times when I have no idea how to navigate this strange and very dangerous world we’re living in right now.

It’s very much like trying to navigate a minefield.

One wrong move, and the unthinkable might happen. And it does for many parents.

I routinely daydream about taking away all of our screens, TV included, and going back to life 150 years ago before there was so much technology.

The fact is, I can’t.

I can’t even go back 40 years ago, when the age of personal computers was just burgeoning and life was relatively simpler.

And it is precisely this line of reasoning that is leading me to create this post today.

Why We’ve Chosen to Let Our Kids Have Devices and Social Media

I am in a lot of homeschool groups with parents that run the gamut: some like me allow their kids to have devices and social media – and we likely allow our children to use their devices more than many other Christian families.

There are others who either don’t allow their children to have phones and social media, or their children’s phones have no internet access.

I am not going to tell other parents what to do. I believe every family needs to decide what is best for their family and family vision.

I am just sharing the perspective that has led to our decision.

What I have observed is that children from even the strictest homes sometimes fall into the traps of inappropriate games and digital material.

This is in no way reflective on a person’s parenting. It can happen to anyone.

The trap is real and all too easy to fall into… and so often you don’t realize you’ve been “had” until you find it’s outside of your control and ability to get free.

That’s when I realized that it isn’t humanly possible for me to always know what my children are viewing.

  • I can completely forbid all access to the Internet
  • I can put extremely narrow boundaries around my children’s use of the Internet

But eventually, my children will be away from my eagle eye.

At some point, they’ll be out with friends who have far different boundaries and perhaps even unfettered access to the Internet.

And then what?

That’s when I remembered what my dad did with my brother when he inherited our grandpa’s thirty-aught-six rifle.

He took him to a gun safety class where he learned how to safely and responsibly handle firearms.

This is when I knew what our family needed to do.

What better environment for my children to learn safe and responsible use of the Internet than under my direction and care?

We allow them to use YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and search engines – but with sensible boundaries.

There are apps that are strictly forbidden, such as Snapchat and TikTok. Those apps are forbidden for a very specific reason that has been carefully explained to my children.

I feel strongly that rules must have a clear and understandable “why”.

We shouldn’t provoke our children with purposeless and senseless rules, especially concerning something so important to their spirit as Internet and social media usage!

Eventually, my children will leave our home. By that time, technology will have advanced to a degree I can’t even imagine right now.

What will happen if they don’t know how to safely handle that technology in a way that pleases God?

It would be like putting a pistol in the hand of a toddler!

Dangerous to them and to others.

But if they have been properly equipped with reasonable boundaries that are in place for the sole purpose of learning how to utilize the Internet and social media for the glory of God, then I have equipped them properly.

In the end, I wanted to share this with you for this reason:

Dear mom, we should never parent out of fear.

There are a million-and-one reasons to be horribly afraid as a mom. Especially in today’s culture where fentanyl deaths are mounting rapidly – even by children who don’t do drugs and didn’t intend to take anything illicit.

In a culture that is so outrageously predatory.

In a culture that seeks to undermine our morals at every turn.

And yet – God still calls to parent out of faith and not fear. To trust that He can protect our children better than we can.

Letting go to that degree makes your heart race and a cold sweat to break out – but it’s crucial we do this!

Parenting out of fear causes us to squeeze the boundaries too tight, make rules just to make us feel better, and in the end we clip their wings.

If we can put the fear aside and understand the importance of leading our children to navigate this crazy world safely and in a God-honoring way, we will give them something of great worth.

Dear mom, I hope this has given you some food for thought.

What have been your decisions about letting your child use the Internet and social media?

What boundaries have you put in place?

Check out these other posts:

How to Turn On the YouTube Safety Feature {and why web accountability is important}

Why My Kids Won’t Watch Squid Game, Play Roblox, or Use TikTok

What Is Wrong With Magic and Sorcery in Entertainment?

The Reason Why God Cares About the Movies We Watch

Two Reasons Why I Will Not See the Movie Redeeming Love

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