By: Amanda Craig, PhD, LMFT
The biggest question I hear from parents of tween is: how do parents monitor screen time? I will say, when parents micromanage the amount of screen time and the content only, the relationship suffers. Tweens are frustrated with what feels like constant under attack while parents are fearful of the content and time spent and frustrated with the tweens inability to control their screen usage. It’s a recipe for disaster.
Instead, I encourage parents to follow these four tips which lead to less screen time, better parental control and honors the relationship between parent and tween.
Ultimately screens don’t have to be the enemy our gut says they are. Look at them as just the “invention” vying for the current generation of kids attention. Like the TV was for our parents, like MTV was for us growing up. Rather than micromanaging the screens join them in their moments-be it on TikTok, playing in the backyard or watching a movie or a show together on the big screen. Let go of the times when they are using screens as downtime in a busy life and avoid getting caught in the screens against parents battle. Because we know who wins that war in the end!