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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Kid's Cell Phones

Have any of you seen those new commercials for the Disney cell phone that is for 10-15 year olds (here is the website)? When I did, I was a little shocked. I was thinking, why would a 10 year old need a cell phone??? Why let them have something to call all their friends when the house phone is available...and cheaper? I understand that you can use the phone to track your kids and you can limit when they are allowed to call as well as determine how many minutes they are allowed to use, but again, why would a 10 year old need a cell phone? And one that starts at $60 a month??!!

Am I just behind on the times? Should kids have cell phones today? Are we, as parents, having that much trouble keeping track of our children? Or is it okay for kids have a phone just for emergencies (cause they wouldn't abuse the luxury, right?!)?

After getting my drivers license, as well as a job, my parents gave me a pager. I was the only one at my school or at my work to have one, but my dad got them free through his job. So when my parents needed/worried about me around my scheduled work time, all they had to do was send me a page. I would immediately call them to let them know what I was up to at the time. They would also send messages by using certain numbers that when turned up side down made letters...remember doing that? (For example: 17-31707-1=I love U)

Now I can understand giving a driving 16 year old a cell phone. If we can afford it, my hubby and I plan on doing this with our children...after they get a job of course. We want to be able to get a hold of them whenever we need them. And I also want them to have a phone in case of emergencies on the road. But the phone will be a luxury, and again, only something our kids will have after getting themselves a job.

What do you think? Are you all for letting 10-15 year olds have their own cell phones? When are you too young to need/have your own phone? Am I behind the times in thinking that any child 15 and under is too young to have a phone?

Blogger Oh great One said...

I have a ten year old and she's never somewhere I don't know about. There has been controversy about schools banning cell phone use during school hours. The PARENTS were upset! I think it's a sad commentary on the world we live in when we are too busy to have face time with our children and need to use a phone to see what they are up to.

August 22, 2006 9:09 AM

Blogger Jennboree said...

I'm not sure how I'll feel about it when Bella is 10. I do think there are some good concepts out there, like the ones that parents pre-program with Mom, Dad and grandparent's numbers only. The kid can't dial any other number. I could imagine scenarios where I'd want Bella to feel she could contact me in an instant if she was with friends.

Then again, she's 2. We'll see what's evolved in 8 years!

August 22, 2006 10:01 AM

Blogger Jana said...

I only got my own cell phone a year ago, LOL! My son is 10 and I don't see any reason for him to need a phone. He uses mine to call my parents and grandmother for free, but other than that he doesn't have anyone to call, and he's always with an adult, so he doesn't need one away from home either. Maybe if he were in public school I'd want to be able to get ahold of him, but I doubt it. I do like the idea of him having an emergency only line if he's somewhere alone, but again, when would that be?

August 22, 2006 11:05 AM

Blogger Jill said...

Ok, I was raised in the stone age back in the 50's and 60's. I had a princess phone in my room when I was 16. I survived with out a cell. When my kids were in high school pagers were the rage. When they got jobs we bought the pagers but they had to pay their monthly bill. I don't think a 10 year old has any business with a cell phone. Are they really responsible enough at that age? No. Especially when you have to pay the bill. It's just another marketing gimick which preys on the parents fears. We must be able to know where our kids are at all times! It used to be clothes that the kids had to have the right brand, now it is cell phones. If a parent needs to get a message to a kid, why not call the school?

August 22, 2006 11:11 AM

Blogger Becky said...

In this day and age, I can somewhat understand it when the kid is walking home from school because the phone can be a tracking device and you just never know... (I was one of those kids that had a guy pull over and ask if he could give me a ride, so it really freaked me out to walk by myself). However, it seems ridiculous to have it available in the house and regular calls -- I would just have it for emergency uses only to parents.

August 22, 2006 1:07 PM

Blogger TC said...

I had the same reaction when i saw the commercial. I just don't think so. But I may be hopelessly behind.

August 22, 2006 1:15 PM

Blogger Jen said...

I have a 10 year old, and the days are still far off where she might be somewhere that A)I don't know where she is or B) she's not with us or an adult friend of the family who would of course have their own phones...

Maybe when they're driving?

August 22, 2006 1:27 PM

Blogger deputyswife said...

I am not sure about a 10 year old having a cell either. My step-daughter has had a cell since she was 13. At first, we were against it, but her mother went ahead and got it anyway. (That's a whole other story.) She is involved with a lot of school activities and these activities run past the appointed ending time. Now, she is able to call us without having us sit in the parking lot for an hour. She also uses it to call her friends, but does not abuse the minutes. Her mother was able to get an add on to her plan, so Jess' phone is only an additional $15 a month.

I suppose it depends on the circumstances. If my 10 year old was walking home from school, I think I would let them have a cell phone. God forbid, if anything happened, we would be able to track him through the cell phone.

August 22, 2006 2:35 PM

Blogger DayByDay4-2Day said...

first off I never let my ten year old out of my sight long enough that I would have to call them.

THey are 13 16 18 now and still no phones!

August 22, 2006 7:41 PM

Blogger Living Life in South Carolina said...

I have a 13 year old and a 10 year old. We have not bought cell phones for either. If they need to use the phone to talk to their friends, they can call from home. We MAY get a cell phone once my oldest enters high school, but it won't be HIS, it will be a family cell phone. He will NOT be taking it to school, only to functions or events he may be attending where a phone may not be available.

MY SIL bought both her 11 year old boys cell phones (pre-paid) & one of them used up his minutes calling various 900 numbers. Needless to say, she took his phone from him. Her other son still has his to call his dad. I still think he could call just as easily from his mom's cell or the home phone! It would be much easier to keep an eye on your child and know who they are talking to by being involved and providing them with a phone that can only be used at home.

August 22, 2006 9:38 PM

Blogger Leslie said...

I had to comment on the upside down numbers....I am one of the few people I know who can spell their name with quite proud of it too! :)

Kids and cell phones...nah.

August 22, 2006 10:49 PM

Blogger Trinity13 said...

I see most of us are in agreement then...a 10 year old does not need a cell phone. But I am curious, just as Jennboree is, about how what our world will be like in 10 years-maybe all kids will have cell phones by then.

But it does make sense for our kids to have something in case of emergencies...but I don't think a cell is the way to go.

August 23, 2006 11:48 AM


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