Phones and Loneliness

Nearly half of today’s teenagers say that they are on their phones and online almost constantly. The Pew Research Center surveyed a cohort of teens, ages thirteen to seventeen, along with parents, back in the fall of last year. The findings are interesting and helpful as we consider how to best help our kids live to God’s glory on the digital frontier. You might be surprised to learn that seventy-two percent of our teens say that they often or sometimes feel peaceful and/or happy when they have de-tethered and disconnected from their smartphone. That’s a good thing, and it reminds us that we should encourage and even require time limits for our kids. But many kids also say that disconnecting makes them feel anxious, upset, or lonely. Take time to talk to your kids about how they feel when they detach, and encourage them to use their time wisely and to God’s glory. Build your relationship with your kids so that time spent with you is valued, time that will be a positive alternative to screentime!