As we have been having more No Price Tag Conferences, the number one topic that parents are curious, but clueless, about is their teenager's phone. Cellphones have become a nuisance and a frustration to many parents, as it should be. You are paying more money than you want for a device that you have no control over and you don't even realize this device can be the portal to images and predators that can destroy your teen's life. You should be concerned. You should be a worry wart. This is your business.
Once you buy your teen a phone, they sit in silence moving their fingers at breakneck speed talking to everyone but you. You don't know who they are talking to or what they are even doing on that phone. You want to know, but you don't want to start a fight. You don't want to intrude on their privacy.
Stop right there.
Who is paying for this phone? Who owns this phone? Hmmm...not the 12 year old. You are! You are the parent-not them! You pay for the phone therefore you have rights to the phone. Until they are 18 and pay for the phone themselves it is your business what is happening on that device. "They won't let me see it," is the typical response from parents. Then mom, dad, pick up your phone and call the phone company and disconnect the phone. Put the phone in timeout. Lock it up. Turn off the internet in your home. You are in control here. You have the right to lead your child because they don't know what dangers lurk behind the apps on that phone.
Since most of you are not going to turn off their phones, I have good news that leads us to some wonderful tools that are located on every phone that most parents do not know about. Both Android phones and iPhones have settings that allow you to block all internet. Or you can limit sites on the internet. They also have settings to block the content of music, videos, apps, etc that are downloaded onto a phone. Below are the links to walk you through these simple steps that will save you a lot of worry about what is allowed on your teen's phone.
Android Phones: http://www.geeksquad.co.uk/articles/set-up-parental-controls-android
Apple Phones: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201304
Here is a link from Hongkiat.com to Android apps that allow you to monitor your child's phone activity:
Here is a link from the Huffington Post on how to track your child's cell phone use:
Rachel Johnson is the founder of No Price Tag. She loves teen girls!! Rachel wrote her book, God's Girl, after she realized that teen girls were actually listening and choosing purity!! Rachel wants all girls to know they don't have to sell out to the world-they can live for God in purity and still have an amazing life!! Rachel graduated from North Central University in 1996 has been in full-time ministry ever since. She is married to Pastor Jeremiah Johnson and has four children including two teenagers and toddler twin boys!