Do you think 'texting while parenting' is something to feel guilty about?

Katherine - posted on 10/02/2012 ( 25 moms have responded )

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As in not watching the kids but texting instead?

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Toni - posted on 10/11/2012

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if i am txting at the playground I prob have a good reason for it - not just chatting. However if it's a midweek trip to the park I think we can safely assume it's a SAHM who is needing to get a break just as much as the kid running around. I try to engage my dd at the playground, but after a morning of cleaning, baking, crafts playing dancing etc - the pg is one place she doesn't need my full attention. Also - most of the moms i know have eyes in the back of their heads and ARE watching for accidents, predators etc, If you aren't well maybe you need to be.

Gretchen - posted on 10/03/2012

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I text, check my e-mail and read e-books while with my children and do not feel guilty about it!



Of course, I also play with them, read books with them, cook with them and everything else. Just like with everything else in parenting, it's about balance. Sometimes I am fully present in what they are doing and sometimes I step back while they do their thing and I do mine. My children know that I love them and am interested in what they are doing. But they also know that they are not the center of mine, or anyone else's, universe. Which in the end is much healthier for everyone.

Melissa - posted on 10/08/2012

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A lot of these comments were very judgmental and maybe Stacy you should reread yours and think about how your wording things if you are not being judging because it sure sounds that way! It is quite possible to text and keep on eye on your child at the same time. I would love to do social the old fashion way as well unfortunately that doesn't work for some people. And like I mentioned in my previous post I am with my kids 24/7 I literally do not get a break from them, there is never a time it's not me and my kids together. Congratulations you get time that's not one on one with your kids! Please recognize this is not the case with every parent, I can not wait until I'm not around my kids to get some social interaction and take care of my needs as a person so I can be the best parent. Maybe that mom at the park that you were so quick to judge and say her actions were not right, maybe she spend the entire morning at home with her kid doing activities together and came to the park so he could play independently while she got a break to catch up on some issues she had been ignoring all morning long. Maybe she had a friend or family member in a crisis that needed some advice and her trip to the park was to give her a chance to respond and help out another person in need. The fact is you didn't know the situation but you DID judge the situation.

Melissa - posted on 10/05/2012

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1. People need to not be so judgmental of other parents you don't even know, you have no idea what's going on! 2. I'm probably that mom you see texting the enitre time their kid is playing at the park. I'm a SAHM mom and bring my kid to the park 3-4 times a week and to the zoo 2 times a week. Some days I play with him at the park but some days I end up texting most of the time we are there and those texts are often the only form of adult conversation I get. Some days at the park I intentionally don't play with him because he is learning to be independant, I'm taking him for his own personal play time, not for quality one on one time with mommy, which is does get in some form everyday it's just not always why we are at the park. My husband who is working 2 jobs and going to school rarely gets to take him to the park so when he does it is for the sole purpose of spending one on one time with him and he will play with him the whole time, but this happens 1-2 times a month at most.

So before judging that mom you don't even know at the park stop for a minute and realize you have no idea what the situation is.

Melissa - posted on 10/03/2012

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I think it depends on the extent, it's all about balance. I'm literally with my kids 24/7 I'm going to text, e-mail, facebook, etc while with them, but I do also spend quality time with them, take a break from electronics and play with them, read to them, talk to them, etc. I text a lot, I would rather text then talk and I feel like that is being a better parent b/c I can set my phone down mid text if they need me and go back to it later, that is much harder and more frustrating for the person on the other end to have to keep stopping during a phone call. It all depends on the circumstances and it's all about balance.

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Sheena - posted on 11/06/2012

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So are mine. That shows that what we are doing is working for us. Well done! From one Mom to other.

Cathy Jo - posted on 11/06/2012

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Thank you Sheena. My children are doing well. This has been quite a lively discussion with many viewpoints.

Sheena - posted on 11/06/2012

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Cathy, I totally agree with you, but at the end of the day, to each her own. I feel as long as you are doing the Best that you can and YOU'RE happy with it, it doesn't matter what other people think. Sometimes the Best Mother's children end up being the manice to society. You could give them the tools of life and show them how to use them, but its up to them once they are in the situations, and they don't always choose the path we want them too.

All the Best with your child/children.

Charlene - posted on 11/06/2012

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nope i watch my kid all the time, i make sure hes safe i am a good mother, thank u very much!!

Cathy Jo - posted on 11/05/2012

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A mom needs to model what they would like in return so no texting. Engage in your child's life at all ages and you will be sending a clear message of what you would like in return. Enjoy the time with your children. The text will always be there the moment will not.

Charlene - posted on 11/05/2012

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i love texting and i also love my child and he gets all the attention he needs and than some!! i agree about not texting and drive though!!

Sheena - posted on 11/05/2012

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I suggest that you have certain times to text while you have your child/children with you unless it's an emergency. Depending on the age of the child,it could be dangerous, I see it the same as driving while texting. You aren't given your child your undivided attention and it coûld make them feel less important. If you choose times for it and inform friends and family of the times they would respect it. I've seen a few avoidable situations occur when Moms have been talking and texting on phones involving children. I feltl sorry for the children. Please pay attention Moms, Sorry doesn't help certain situations.

Patricia - posted on 11/02/2012

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I have been known to tell my kids to wait a minute while I finish a text, but I don't think that I choose texting over them. I will wait to read a text if we're busy talking to each other or having play time.

Charlene - posted on 11/02/2012

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i dont see anything wrong with texting if you have a baby or kids! just as long asthey are being taken care of than there shudnt be a issue

Katherine - posted on 10/11/2012

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Wow, just came to this thread and saw that there is some disagreement going on? Anything I can help with?

Liz - posted on 10/09/2012

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Seriously, everyone judges everyone else. It's just a part of life. I do plenty of things as a parent that other people don't like, as well as they do things I don't like. And really, texting while parenting is definitely not the worst thing you could do...

Melissa - posted on 10/09/2012

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I also gave my opinion, I love how you say you don't want to argue but continue to argue. The fact is that you did judge another mom that is not my opinion, that is fact whether you acknowledge that or not. Rather then getting defensive you should take this as a learning opportunity, if you in fact intended to not be judgmental then the appropriate action would be to look over what was said and see how what you said could be taken as judgmental. When you describe what another person was doing and state "That's not right." that statement was passing judgment on someone else's action. If your intent wasn't to judge their actions but to give your opinion of what you would do a more appropriate response would be something along the lines of "I would never do something like that, it's not right for me." Again in the situation the fact still remains you did not know what that mom was going through, what the situation was, or why she was texting to be able to pass a judgment saying it wasn't right. I respect that you have a different opinion on parenting and choose to parent a different way but I will not respect you passing judgment on other people.

Something people need to realize is that texting is not just a "social thing" my brother is the VP at his company and spends a good portion of his day texting, texting employees, texting potential clients, texting with his boss, it can often be much more efficient form of communication. When I worked in management at a day spa we texted all the time, I would often get text from the receptions regarding an issue or question, etc about a client who was currently in the spa, in these case the owner wanted us to text rather then call because speech can be over heard whereas a text cannot. When my husband was in a car accident and totaled our car as soon as I heard I texted all my brothers to see who was available to either pick him up or drive me to the hospital if he ended up in the ER, if I were to receive a similar text from my brothers while playing with my kids at the park I would immediately respond not wait until several hours later after they had gone to bed. So again going back to the lady at the park it is entirely possible that her text weren't just simple "shooting the breeze" or whatever with a friend, maybe she was dealing with a family emergency, or maybe she owns her own business and was dealing with a situation with her employees, maybe it was just general business related, maybe she tried to get this work done at home but her kid was getting to stir crazy for her to concentrate and it was better to get him out of the house where he could get some fresh air and use up some energy while she had time to herself and her own thoughts to get necessary work done.

You have the right to parent your kid how you think best and you have to right to share your opinion on you would parent your kid, you do however do not have the right to pass judgment on another human being. That's all I'm asking is for you to recognize that you did judge another person and asking you to be careful to avoid doing that in the future as it is not your place.

Liz - posted on 10/04/2012

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I feel guilty if I spend more than about 10 or 15 minutes on my phone or on the computer when my kids are up. I get frustrated a lot easier, too, because I just want to finish what I am doing before someone needs their nose wiped or a diaper changed or help getting unstuck from under the dining room table! So I have learned that I need to avoid those things while my kids are awake :) It really bugs me, though, when I see parents take their kids to the park or something and the parent just sits and plays on their phone, not paying any attention to their kids. It makes me think that's what they do at home as well. I'm probably wrong, but that's the message that is sent. I went out to eat once and a woman and her son sat in front of us and the woman spent the ENTIRE time on her phone. Her poor kid.

Amanda - posted on 10/04/2012

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I think it is if it either takes away from your play time with the child (continuous texting, not just one or two), or if you're not watching your child's interations with others. There are so many times I used to feel like "why aren't they watching their kids?!" when another child slighted mine, but I've eased up a lot as my children get older and become better at interacting with children their own age.

Bekah - posted on 10/04/2012

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If you aren't watching the kids then that is the problem not the texting. I text all the time but I am always watching my kids. I also play on my phone, check email, use Facebook, etc. I spend lots of quality time with all four of my kids and I would never jeopardize their health or safety while using any technological device but I am still watching then even whilst texting.

Katherine - posted on 10/02/2012

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LOL, I'm always checking my e-mail too. I mean it's a DISEASE!

Amy - posted on 10/02/2012

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I don't text a lot but I feel like I'm constantly checking my e-mail. Don't get me wrong I love my kids but I go from work to being home and I don't have any "me" time so I don't feel too guilty if I check my e-mail once an a while or respond to a text message from my friend.

Elfrieda - posted on 10/02/2012

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Yes, I think so. When you're with the kids, you should be WITH them. And then of course have times when you do your thing and they do theirs, and that's nothing to feel guilty about. I don't text much, but I love to read, and if I'm trying to catch a page here and there from my book while feeding my son or while I'm on the floor "playing" with him, I will just get snappy and resentful and absentminded and it's not good for him to feel like I'm not paying attention to him. Same with the computer. I do those things either on purpose (setting the alarm for a certain number of minutes and saying "Mommy's busy until the timer goes bing bing") or while he sleeps.

September - posted on 10/02/2012

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Yes. If you're spending more time texting then you are with your child/children that’s something you should defiantly feel guilty about.

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