Is social media and technology affecting your family?

“Come down for tea” I hollar cheerfully up the stairs….. a minute or so goes by….

“boys, come on sweeties, it’s on the table….” more time passes and not a peep can be heard.

It’s now on the table and I’m getting a bit irritated….”Boys!!”

I’m starting to boil now…. “Right I’m going to count to 3!”

Eventually they appear, not in the least bit aware of the effect of my shouting up the stairs. I’ve now got to get myself out of the self induced strop that I’m in because day after day my voice is just not having the effect I think it should. My little boys are getting into a world of their own and that world is inhabited by the likes of YouTube stars and watching people carry out the silliest of pranks on shows they and their friends find online.

Now, I love to blog, my youngest loves to vlog for my blog and I have brought them the gadgets to watch this stuff on so really the blame lands firmly with me, I realise that but it’s all starting to get on my wick a bit.

Me and the OH do chat about the gadgets in our house and the boys use of them. We are pretty good in a few areas, we don’t have any devices at the meal table, homework is done straight away and they both do classes after school. It’s still amazes me though how they can get so into the zone watching these things on YouTube. I push for things like newsround and deadly 60 to throw in a bit of knowledge based learning but even Steve Backshaw has a bit of competition with the YouTube elite of Spencer et al.

Looking at the stats you can find for facebook, snapchat, instagram and all the other little cousins of the social media world you can see the millions of daily users and how year on year these are increasing to meet the demand of our younger generation hopping onto this online juggernaut.

I find myself dreaming of giving it all up and living on a farm away from the bustle of modern life. I see the huge pitfalls too of making this leap; money, contacts, work, school to name but a few of the basics. It’s still so tempting!

I was watching a film the other night about a family shunning the modern way of living and relying more on natural skills and intellectual educational learning and I kept thinking the same thing; there was something missing. The more I thought about it the easier it was to see, the missing link was ‘balance‘.

Technology can have so many great benefits to us and our family life, we can instantly communicate with friends and relatives on the other side of the world and keep our links with these people alive and current. On the other hand are our children’s social skills being permanently adversely affected? Are we protecting their well-being by letting them be in their rooms on social media apps that distort their communication methods into abbreviated text junk?

So, back to my thoughts about balance and what can I do to instil some balance in the way that we live our lives. We can take a moment to stop and think what we are filling our days with. We can discuss together whether this is the direction we want to continue in. Do we need to get back to basics. Not one of those political slogans but something that is right for our own families. Sitting and talking as a family, eating together at least once a day, spending time without phones, iPads or any form of devise. I’m willing to give this a go and put my other solution of wellington boots and the countryside to one side at the moment. I want us to connect.

Has technology affected the way that you and your family communicate with each other and have you seen this trend slowly change or were there certain triggers?

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35 thoughts on “Is social media and technology affecting your family?”

  1. You bring up some really important points. I, too, have thought about completely giving up on technology to spend time outdoors and read truly great literature by truly talented authors (on actual books with paper pages). But — I think we are beyond the time where anyone can completely drop off the grid without encountering difficulties. So, you idea about achieving balance is quite crucial.
    Carol (“Mimi”) recently posted…How to Choose Exterior Paint ColorsMy Profile

  2. Since finishing my taxes, I’ve been very tempted to take a break from the computer. Even though I’m a blogger and I use the computer for daily tasks like paying bills and keeping informed, I began to realize how out of balance my computer time has been. I’ve been neglecting important parts of my life and sometimes my husband as I shut myself in my office. I am in the process of getting my life more in balance now. I’m glad there weren’t any cell phones and mobile devices when my children were growing up. For that matter, I wonder who I would be today if they’d been around when I was growing up. Until I catch up on some other important things in my life, I will be limiting my computer and blogging time.

    1. You’ve hit on a very good point there and it’s looking at my own blogging time. It’s time intensive and can lead to long periods on the computer.

  3. We have a horrid time with social media. My two are mid teens, and social media takes over their lives. We do go out, they spend a lot of time away from gadgets, but the problem is they can’t have a break from the constant feed. Yes we turn the internet off, yes we reduce the time on gadgets etc. But it is so hard to stop them getting involved. I find blogging a real therapy for me, and find it really supportive. My blog today talks about how social media affects us. Be kind to one another. Keep in mid if you do read my blog, my children have been affected by severe trauma in their early childhood. They respond differently to things. They need the constant support.

    1. Thank you so much for your comments, I’m heading straight to your blog now to read your story. Mainy

  4. Social media, phones, tablets, iPods, and more. They are everywhere. I get a tinge of sadness every time I see a 2-year-old captured by the light of the screen.

    The word balance is a great way to see it all. Some people have no devices on the weekends or like you, no devices at the dinner table.

    My husband always says, Moderation in all things. I guess this means social media and devices as well. ^_^
    Sara recently posted…Writers Wednesday: Fulfilling Your Calling Through Serving OthersMy Profile

  5. My boys are too young to be fully engaged with any social media although the older two are aware of the internet and use it with supervision. They are also fully aware that myself and my husband check in on our phones or computers (too often in my opinion). What we try to do is have phone free hours during every day where we hide our devices away, completely out of sight, and totally focus and engage on our family time. It helps us a little to find that balance, and for our boys to know that they have our full attention at certain times whilst other times we might be multi-tasking. I’m not sure that we’ve found the perfect balance yet though! #blogstravaganza

  6. Great article. Without the right perspective it’s the worst thing to happen to this generation. She says on it! I think the key is being able to control it like any addiction. I worked for 7years with young people who had behavioural problems and the amount of time lack of sleep, violent behaviour, depression, suicide attempts, missing school, trouble learning could be linked back to technology was astounding. The amount of young people who don’t sleep because they’re on the internet and the computer games they played not to mention the distorted world view from the internet. #Blogstravaganza
    Mama Grace recently posted…Octopus ArmsMy Profile

  7. I think you raise such a valid point here, it’s so easy for technology to take over before we’ve even realised it has! We eat meals together when we can too and make sure our phones are left in another room, connecting with our loved ones instead of the internet is so important. Thanks so much for sharing with #Blogstravaganza xx

  8. Ive just started this blogging malarky and I’ve become a bit obsessed with social media….more than my kids! Its so addictive and theres the worry isnt it? Great post. #DreamTeam

    1. Thanks and it’s lovely that you’ve stopped by. You’re right, it’s very easy to get consumed, especially when you start a blog. Mainy x

  9. If technology is affecting their social skills, then at least it’s the entire generation that will be affected and maybe nobody will notice. I think what makes it hard at our house is the need to use techonology for work and be on call 24/7. I like for us to get out of the house and do something as a family as much as possible but sometimes something happens and one of us ends up with a phone in their hands. This doesn’t set a very good example but it’s almost unavoidable. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday

  10. I’ve had this inner battle with myself many a time. My boys LOVE playing Minecraft and all sorts on their tablets but I restrict their usage. BUT they see me on my laptop working or on my phone all the time so why should they be any different? You are completely right about having a balance though and we never allow use of any tech at the dinner table either. It is a tough one because tech is just the way of the modern world isn’t it? #KCACOLS
    Maria recently posted…National Super Hero Day: The Boys’ Top 4 Favourite Super HeroesMy Profile

    1. Yes, it is a pretty normal thing in a lot of households. I have to watch my own usage now do the boys don’t use it as their own ammunition when I tell them off. Quite right too!:)

  11. Oohhh I relate to this. Mr Button is very techie, so this naturally spills over into home life. We all love our gadgets, probably a little too much. I tend to counterbalance this with lots of days out at the weekend where there’s no chance of the phones/ipads coming out. Though… what’s your take on cameras 🙂 Thanks for sharing with the #DreamTeam – really thought provoking. x
    Annette, 3 Little Buttons recently posted…#DreamTeam Linky 53My Profile

    1. We had a big group of us away camping at the weekend and we said no gadgets for the kids. Cameras were allowed but only because it was a camera on its own, not one on a phone. I even kept away from mine, well nearly! I did post a picture of a pink inflatable flamingo bottle holder! How could I resist!! 😉

  12. Very interesting, I do find that sometimes that technology does get in the way, we have tablet and phone free times now! Thanks for linking up to the #bestandworst

  13. Balance is the key I believe. My girls would honestly sit and watch YouTube ALL day if I let them. At the moment I cap it at 1/2 an hour every second day. What I detest is the way is sucks them in to the extent that they are almost completely unaware of their surroundings. Scary.
    #familyfun

    1. Yes it can get me like that sometimes if I am totally into writing or watching something. It’s got like that very quickly. Thanks for your comments, Mainy

  14. Oh my word balance all the way. We have to accept that social media is not going to go away and we have to learn to adapt as parents and individuals to find that balance. Are you London based? Only that I’m holding an event in London on the 27th May with two counsellors to explore this very issue of social media and our children – would love for you to be there if possible? #FamilyFun
    justsayingmum recently posted…What Will Those Teen Boys Be Like?My Profile

  15. Oh I absolutely think technology and gadgets have taken over and I am no different. I don’t set a good example for my children. I certainly need to improve on that and I absolutely will. I don’t want my children growing up in a house where we’re all glued to our screens and not talking to each other. Great read lovey thanks for sharing at #familyfun

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