Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Texting is dumbing us down...

Texting is great - for the quick, "WRU?" (where are you) or "TY" (thank you) or "PMURN!" (pick me up right now - yes, I made that up.) But, really, it's a good brief communication tool. It lets you pause, send a message (pls p/u dinner) and keep moving. And you don't have to respond right away - unlike the phone where you have to keep talking until the conversation is over, what a drag. (ha ha)

I see three major texting abuse problems on the rise (besides the obvious illegalities of sexting and TWD - texting while driving):
1) LIVE COMMUNICATION SKILLS ARE AT RISK - Young people are not learning how to communicate face to face (or speak on the phone). They even text each other standing side by side! Some pre teens I know think they have boyfriends or girlfriends but their whole relationship, from "r u my gf?" to "im brkng up w/u" is all via text (which isn't necessarily a bad thing at that age - safe distance). They won't figure out how to overcome their shyness this way. Face the awkwardness!

2) ENGLISH IS NOW HISTORY - Texting is finding the shortest way to say something, inventive abbreviation. Letter writing lessons are becoming obsolete, punctuation is for making creative faces, and spelling? there's an app for that...

3) ONE MORE LINK TO "RISKY BEHAVIOR" - I just read an article that discussed results from a teen survey linking "hyper texting" (120 + texts/day) with "risky behaviors" - sex, drugs and alcohol. Apparently the same parents who are not monitoring or setting limits on texting aren't monitoring or setting limits in the other parts of their lives. Makes sense to me. PARENTS NEED TO BE THE BAD GUYS! It's only temporary and they need boundaries! Your relationship will be awesome when they grow up if you do it right. Deal with it!

There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.

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