Tips For Parents

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Welcome to all the parents of the new world.

If you are in your mid or late 40’s then you are part of the long forgotten generation X. We are the ones who started it all; the information super highway, the World Wide Web, Netscape, Napster, the first social networks, and of course the iPhone. All of this, with the only purpose to open a new world to better communicate between each other. If we look back to those days everybody thought that these great and amazing technologies were even capable of saving the world but… did we miss something?

There are a thousand and one good reasons why my teenage son or daughter should NOT get a mobile phone but for each good reason there are a hundred bad excuses to prove you wrong. Excuses like: My 14 years old daughter needs a cell phone in case she get kidnapped once she step out of the house, or My 15 years old boy needs a cell phone so I can better control his whereabouts. This is a good one: My daughter/son needs a cell phone so that she/he is not affected psychologically for being the only kid in the world that doesn’t have one.

As long as I remember when my sister and I were teenagers there weren’t any cell phones around and no one got kidnapped or injured, my father didn’t know about my whereabouts more than I know about my son’s today and nobody was affected by the “cell phone syndrome”. Let me tell you what was my iPhone/iPad in those days: for entertainment: a soccer ball, for communication: a bicycle so I could travel faster to the nearest phone both in case of an emergency and finally for homework: a paper notebook and a pen. Talking about homework, in those days it took at least one hour for a kid to finish his homework before she/he was allowed to go outside and play for 2 hours before supper. Today you will freeze in disbelieve when your teenage daughter comes back to you after 5 minutes replaying: Daddy I already finished my “homework”. Guys, homework is what we call today copy-paste. What you don’t know is that she was able to do this while browsing her Facebook, watching YouTube videos and TEXTING with three of her friends at the same time. TEXTING? … What is TEXTING? You might ask… Well…

Ding dong ring ring klam bam bam ding dong! the whole day long. Does that sound familiar to you? Well those are some of the sounds produced by TEXTING. This annoying sound is so unbearable that after a couple of hour you will think that this is a secret project created for some government to torture the whole old world population. It is more annoying than the noise that comes out of a cowbell from a crazy cow running loose down the mountains of Switzerland. If you still don’t get it you could experience TEXTING in its full glory just by hanging around a teenager for no more than 2 minutes.

Let’s face it my dear friends. We already lost the battle against this modern society that we’ve create ourselves and our lovely teenager will get no matter what her/his long expected cell phone, but don’t give up just yet. Let’s use our generation X prodigy brains and make this deal as less painful possible for our wallets… shall we?

First, you will need a smartphone or tablet capable to connect to the internet through Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G. Get a used one from previous contracts or buy a 5 inches beautiful generic Chinese unlock mobile phone for less than 200$ US (cow included). Using the latest Android OS, these machines are capable of doing and performing as good as most high end mobile phones from Samsung, LG, HTC, or Motorola. No kid will tell the difference. Then choose the most convenient communication plan for you (After all you are the one who will end up paying the bills). Take a look at our “How to save money on your mobile communication” post.

Second, you will need to download and install those applications that will allow your girl/boy to place and receive from the telephone network over Wi-Fi free calls and free TEXTING. What?…TEXTING?? Wow! Do not worry. Our kid’s weird mutation gives them the strength to keep TEXTING 24/7 with no harm at all. You will find a detailed list of these applications in our “Best Communication Apps” post.

Third and last, get the most beautiful wrapping paper that you can find and rap the whole thing up. Then think about a backup plan; something that could replace this beautiful gadget in case it gets rejected. What could that be?… Humm!

Well the time has come! Your 15 years old boy is anxious to open his gift guessing in advance not what it could but should be inside. It took him a fraction of a millisecond to reach the deepest corners of the gently ripped of box. Then, to everybody in the room, it seems that your boy’s face started shifting in different colors and shapes reaching to a braking point, when suddenly a pretty loud voice broke the silence in that room: DAD I’VE ALREADY TOLD YOU THAT NOTHING ELSE WILL DO BUT AN iPHONE!!!. Knowing how smart generation X people are, you will at that moment, execute your backup plan: OK buddy. Since you didn’t like this gorgeous telephone I think I should keep it for myself and if you change your mind I will give it back to you. In the meantime you will get as a present the same thing that my father gave me when I was your age….here… a SOCCER BALL. That my friend is good parenting. That my friend is control… Either you like it or not.

Until next time,
Happy texting!

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