Social Media—Not Always the Bad Guy
The perils of social media have been well documented. Protecting personal privacy is essential. Drexting—texting while driving—is dangerous and illegal. However, with good boundaries in place, I’ve found that social media has its benefits.
We are a large extended family. There’s rarely time for quiet, serious discussions. Surprisingly, texting has stepped into that void. A family member posts something for us to discuss. We’ve covered politics, favorite scriptures, child-rearing, cooking and yes, even the dangers of social media. Of course, we have to remind those at work to turn off their phones until break time. Often a member has turned on his phone to discover 75 or more texts waiting for him. As our children have grown, we’ve added them to these adult conversations. Our “text talks” have helped us all to grow and define who we are as individuals and as a family.
We have strict boundaries about video games and apps. But recently, my daughter allowed her junior-high-aged son to join an online game with his uncles. Time spent with them planning strategies and bargaining for tools has strengthened his bond with his uncles. Most recently, when he had his phone taken away at school for playing during class time, he received a severe dressing down from his uncles . . . not only for improper phone usage but also because his absence caused their team to lose.
Yes, we’ve discovered that with proper limits and boundaries, social media can be the good guy.