My 9 year old daughter is addicted to her phone, won’t give me the password and will throw a fit if I try to take it away from her. What should I do?
Before I start, I want you to know that I'm 17.
I'm coming at this from a teen's perspective, not a parent's.
My parents waited pretty late to give me electronics.
I got a kindle when I was 11.
All my friends had the IPhone4.
I got a phone at 13 and thats only because I was going to be walking to the bus stop in the morning and a latchkey kid in the afternoon.
We had had a family laptop for years.
After I got the sex talk when I was 10, I was curious.
My mom always slept in late and let me on the laptop before she was awake.
My brother was also usually sleeping and my dad was at work.
I had about an hour of unsupervised computer usage sometimes and at 10 years old, I discovered porn.
The first time, I saw what I now know to be a blowjob and felt sick.
It grossed me out and I exited the screen.
But I got more and more curious and eventually started learning terminology.
We had a troubled teen girl living with us and whenever mom found porn in the search history, she always blamed the girl.
When I got my kindle, it led to a whole new avenue of internet freedom.
In 5th grade on kik I got an internet boyfriend named Juan who was 16 at the time.
He asked for pictures and called me pretty.
He said he wanted to have sex with me like I'd seen in porn.
He wanted videos of me.
Luckily, my kindle wasn't capable of recording on kik, or I didn't know how to at least.
I sent pictures of my prepubescent boobs and a lot of pictures of my legs spread for the camera.
Only one picture ever had my face in it.
I liked the attention and other accounts added me and I created a fake persona.
I said I was Harper Joy and that I was 16.
Nobody questioned that I was clearly 11.
I don't know what happened to any of the pictures.
I used to google my name scared that they'd pop up, but they never did.
I was lucky.
My situation didn't become an Amanda Todd situation, but I've heard so many that have.
Paired with this and a situation with my cousin that I've talked about on my profile before, I struggled a lot as a middleschooler.
I didn't trust men.
I only dated girls for awhile and was repeatedly taken advantage of and nobody believed me.
I'm in a much much better place now, I'm dating a really great guy and I've learned to let things live in the past.
My mental health and my self esteem is much better but it took a long time.
Now I'm in no way insinuating that your 9 year old is on porn sites or sending nudes, but that's what happened to me at 10–11.
I always discourage parents from searching their child's devices because it betrays trust, but there's nothing wrong in enabling child mode.
Parental controls on websites and apps are a great idea.
You can even set up a usage timer.
All in all, you're the parent.
She's a 9 year old child.
She has no say here whether she likes it or not.
You've let her feel entitled and in control and you need to break that habit.
Take the phone away.
Don't search it.
But do NOT give it back if she throws a tantrum.
Give it back after a civil conversation about what you expect from her in terms of the responsibility and rules that comes with having a phone.
Password sharing is up to your discretion.
[My parents know mine more because I’ve needed them to open an app or something than because they’ve demanded it.
] She will say she hates you, and she'll act a lot more like a PMS-ing 14 year old than your sweet 9 year old, but she'll understand someday when she's older and she'll appreciate that you cared.
Especially if you let her read this when she's older.
Before I gave my (now 9 year old) daughter access to any electronics, rules were very clearly spelled out.
Her electronic device was actually mine, as I both bought it and paid for her to have access to the world at her fingertips.
Life happened, and my strict overseeing of her use fell to the wayside.
She followed the rules relatively well.
I try to stay involved and aware of what she is accessing and how, so anything she wanted to download had to come through me first, and I would periodically check her website history.
There weren’t really any problems, but she was becoming reliant on her device to keep her entertained.
One day, she threw a fit over not being able to use her device for something the moment she wanted to.
You see, at 9, she is never NOT with someone who has access to a phone for emergency services.
She is never NOT completely connected in one way or another.
So her screaming at me that she had to check her messages because there might be an emergency fell on deaf ears.
She immediately lost open access on any and all devices.
Hers was gone for an undetermined amount of time.
The answer to “mom, can I play a game on your phone” turned from “sure” to “no, you don’t need to”.
She learned to love to read again.
She started playing outside again.
She started using her imagination again.
By unplugging her, I unplugged myself.
I became the #1 judge of trampoline tricks.
We started playing board games before dinner.
Impromptu singing/dancing parties became a thing.
We connected in person again.
Her “punishment” lasted almost 6 months (there were other behaviors she needed to fix as well before earning this privilege back).
She had to earn my trust again.
Because she’s 9, the very first day she tested the boundary and broke my trust by sneaking her device to school.
Imagine her surprise when I met her on the way to her classroom to confiscate the ill-advised contraband.
This just lead to a new rule.
She now has to earn her access to electronic devices each week.
If she is honest, respectful, cleans up after herself, helps with chores, etc.
, each Friday her device is waiting for her after school.
If she’s not, she needs to find a different way to entertain herself, and earn back the access the following weekend.
We’ve been doing this several months now, and it’s worked really well.
She recently earned a conditional extra day during the week by going above expectations and completing extra chores without being asked.
The first few days of her “punishment” were difficult and I was the meanest, worst mom in history.
Eventually she calmed down and accepted what she needed to change.
I was hoping to change her behavior.
I never imagined it would bring us even closer than we were.
I hope this gives you some ideas for handling your situation! Strong-willed girls require some out of the box parenting techniques sometimes!
Best of luck!
FIRSTLY LET ME ASSURE YOU THAT YOU'RE NOT THE ONLY PERSON GOING THROUGH THIS SCENARIO.
It's a matter of pity that parents nowadays give their children mobile phones at such early age Just to get a bit of comfort from the child's daily chaos which indeed is important for its overall growth.
As, if you give a child, an adult or an elder person a mobile phone, it has all the qualities to engage them and keep them engaged, rather addicted to it.
So firstly I'd like to point out that it is your mistake so kindly accept this.
Now coming to the solution.
I see many people are giving strictness as solution but I have seen children give up food and go violent and throw tantrums over issues as such as these because it is nothing less than an addiction, so you may handle it properly and decently.
By this I mean you shall go slowly and decrease the usage time gradually.
You ask her to play in the garden or do some outdoor activity that interests her and motivate her to do this and don't let her use the phone at that time.
Although, it is not proven but we all personally feel that slowly, mobile phones are taking a toll on our health' be it eye sight, migraine problem etc.
There is adequate amount of radiation in it to make anyone sick.
So care for her health and just do what's necessary.
Don't be afraid of her tantrums and drama.
Just go slow.
First, take it away for half an hour and increase the time slowly.
Take the phone and give it only on the condition that it will not be locked further.
( This needs to be done strictly).
Also access and enable parent control because your daughter is a child and any visual or other sour activity that she accidentally see's on her phone can scar her life forever.
Ask her friends to come over and engage her in chit chat but don't let her use the phone.
Getting social is a great way of getting rid of mobile phones.
Make her a time table and don't let her use the phone except on the allowed hours which shall not exceed 2–4 depending on the amount of resistance.
(Give her the phone for half hour after every two hours kind of).
I don't usually answer such questions but it is related to your little girl and I'm very fond of children and I completely understand your trouble.
Don't be too late in taking actions.
Take her phone away smartly.
It's for her own benefit.
(Just don't do anything suddenly strict or she'll get annoyed more).
I have 3 girls, ages 20, 19, and 14.
Rule in my house is as long as you live at home we have rules.
First rule with the phone is you’re expected to act mature enough to have a phone (each age has different levels of maturity).
Second rule of the phone is that I, as the parent have ALL the passwords.
Please understand that just because I have passwords that doesn’t mean I’m searching the phone.
I explain to my children that I need to be able to trust them and they should trust me but my main reason for passwords is safety.
If something happens to any of my kids I want to know right away where to look.
My youngest started getting an attitude, especially with her phone, so I took it and looked at the site I figured was the problem and I was correct.
She was grounded for two weeks and we discussed (again) what was expected before she got it back.
That was about 9 months ago and there have been no problems since then.
I personally would take her phone away for the fit throwing and explain that she is not acting appropriate enough to have a phone.
Set an amount of time before she can earn it back, and explain that you giving her a phone is a privilege and not a right.
She does not have the right until she is an adult and provides it for herself.
Also explain that all the passwords will be changed to passwords that you both know and if she changes it then she loses the phone.
I do not go throw my kids phone daily, weekly, or even monthly, however I do random phone checks.
I just out of the blue tell them to hand over the phone.
If they hand it over right away with no problem, i normally just make sure the lock screen password is still the same then give it back.
If they argue with me then I normally dig a little deeper.
In the end, you are the parent and it is your job to keep your kid safe.
You make the rules, don’t let your child take that from you.
It’s okay to make your kids mad at you.
Be a parent first, and a friend when they need it.
I will tell you my own experience with my kids.
When my son was 3 years old, not to blame him, I myself created attraction for phone.
I used to give him phone, show him games and used to feel proud at his quick learning.
I would show others with excited face, see my child can unlock the phone and move the screen.
Gradually he learned how to use play store and download the games.
Then, I bought him a tab because I couldn’t spare my phone.
Meanwhile, I became very occupied with my work and couldn’t pay attention to his burning addiction for phones.
He became so fixed in downloading and playing games that he left eating properly, he began to weaken and his sleep was entirely disturbed.
Impatiently changing and trying new games became his solid habit.
Every phone and tablet was his target.
A minute inattention, and he would grab the phone, and no power in world could take it back from him.
Finally I took it seriously.
I realized that these small gadgets were proving destructive.
So what I did?
Taking gadgets back at once was not the solution.
I began taking my kid twice a week for outdoor activities in fun-lands, parks etc.
I bought him a bicycle to ride in a nearby small park.
And I made it a routine to take him to the grocery store to buy 1 candy per day.
This way, I increased his interest in the physical activities and broke his continuous use of gadgets by introducing gaps.
Then I stopped my kid from using mobile phone in car.
The reason was, I wanted him to talk with us and take interest in looking outside while traveling.
Initially it was difficult but gradually we became successful in implementing this ban.
Then I turned his interest to drawings and making creative things through YouTube videos.
Initially I had to spend enormous time in collaborating with him, but later he himself began making cardboard houses, cars, aeroplanes, colorful slimes, guns etc.
Then I bought a Play-station game for him.
Play-station game is played on a big screen.
You know what your kid is playing.
He moves, thinks, make strategies, and play a game instead of just switching between various games.
Again I had to collaborate with my son to play the games.
Now I have put a complete ban on using mobile phones and tabs.
So from my own experience my best suggestion for you is to spare time for your 9 year old daughter.
Take her out for fun, let her make new friends and enjoy with them, tell her how to collaborate with others, talk with her often, sit with her, involve her in some creative things in which she finds interest, and assist her in doing her homework.
This way gradually supply her healthy, useful and exciting alternates to phone.
Can I, as a 19 year old, say that I wouldn’t even approve of my kid having their own electronics at that age?
My parents always taught me that if I wanted something, I’d have to save up for it myself.
So when I was 5 and me and my brother wanted a Playstation 2, we had to save up our pocketmoney (which was about 0.
50 eurocents a week for me an 1 euro a week for my brother).
In the end I bought it myself 2 years later, because my brother wanted LEGO rather than the playstation.
We had a family computer, which we were allowed to use only 30 minutes a day when we were around the age of 8 (I can remember it being 20 minutes when we were even younger).
We had this time limit until we were about 14 or 15 years old, though around this time we were allowed a little longer and my parents had no problem if I was playing a fun game, that I’d play 10–15 minutes more.
Then a phone, I used my parents’ old mobile phone when I was 12, but I could only use it when I was going to friends, so I could call if something was wrong, or if I was coming home again.
It was an old Samsung, no touchscreen etc.
No WhatsApp, no nothing.
At the age of 13 I bought my own phone, yes I did.
Not my parents, I again had to save up for my BlackBerry Curve 8520.
But because my parents taught me to not be on electronics that much, I didn’t use it a lot.
Most of my free time I spent on playing outside with neighbors or going to friends’ houses.
I am SO grateful that my parents taught me how to use my money wisely from a young age and I am really grateful that I didn’t spend all of my childhood on a phone.
I love the experiences I have, like making huts or climbing trees.
Doing so much outside was the best time of my life and, because me and my neighbors are all older now so we don’t play anymore, to this day I still miss playing outside and just enjoy a game of football in the streets really (and it even made me stronger and gave me a lot of creativity, like when we would build huts or make our own choreographies).
So I don’t really have an answer to your question, since I am only 19 and I don’t have a child yet.
But I want you to know that taking all devices from your kids won’t do them no harm and doing fun things like going outside with friends or even alone will be really good to them.
I really hope more parents learn from this and that more and more children will get to hear from their parents how amazing it is to go outside, instead of wasting time on some stupid ass game.
I’m answering this because I see a lot of answers telling you what to do but not WHY this is happening.
So I’m going to tell you.
Your daughter isn’t throwing a fit because you’re taking her phone away.
She’s probably mad because you’ve suddenly decided to be overbearing for no reason.
She’s not addicted.
If she were she wouldn’t be able to eat or sleep.
If you thought she was spending too much time on her phone why didn’t you tell her to cut back?
Because you’re exactly like my father.
You just make up rules for the sake of making up rules.
You’re not interested in helping her.
You just want to be in control.
If you ARE interested in helping her then sit her down and express your concerns.
Ask her WHY she won’t give you the password.
My guess? You let her have one so she thinks you’re being invasive by asking for it.
I’ve heard a lot of people recommending to take the phone, but there’s a much simpler answer: take the password off.
Tell her that since she won’t give it to you she won’t get one.
Then tell her that you won’t look unless it necessary.
It’s just for safety purposes.
And in the future bring up issues WHEN they’re issues.
Don’t sit on it for 6 months and then suddenly spring it on her out of nowhere.
Oh and I agree a nine year olds shouldn’t have a phone.
There’s no reason.
I know that everyone has an opinion on this so I'll keep my answer short.
I have six children ages 7, 11, 15, 19, 21 and 23 so we have had our fair share of experience with “kids and electronics”.
However, that by no means makes me an expert.
I'm just giving my opinion.
The first thing that comes to my mind is; why does a nine-year-old need a cell phone? There may be a legitimate answer to that question however I highly doubt that any child under the age of 12 NEEDS a cell phone.
( I'm also not insinuating that 12 is the right age for a cell phone either.
) But my opinion is that children's minds (this includes teenagers minds) are still in development and are not prepared to have access to digital entertainment 24/7.
To be clear, I'm not saying that my children have not had access to phones…but it wasn't until we felt they could be reasonably responsible with them (12-13yrs old).
Then we set rules, which we slacked on occasionally.
But having done this 4 previous times and nowcoming up on our 5th…there are things we'd do differently.
My 11 year old is wishing he was our first child not the fifth as the rules are more stick.
If it was me, the 9 test old would loose the privilege of the phone indefinitely.
Immediately! You're going to have to deal with the “detox” period…but you can help dramatically by spending time playing games that require their brains and hands to be engaged.
Go outside and ride bikes! Kids want to be active…but if their brains are entertained with electronics, then that's all they'll want to do.
Be the parent! Tough love.
(Did I say this was going to be short?)
I generally use caution in telling other parents what to do (note: I have 2 daughters), but I’m going to give you blunt advice here (especially since you’ve asked): based on the situation you’ve described here, TAKE IT AWAY FROM HER!
My daughters are now 20 and almost 18.
I wish I had taken their phones away more, in hindsight.
Especially with a 9-year old and the behavior she’s exhibiting…at the very least you really need to significantly limit her time with it.
With parenting, children need to learn that there are consequences to unhealthy behavior.
She needs to learn that for her the phone is a privilege, not a right.
Let her throw a fit.
Reward her good behavior, let her know there are consequences for unhealthy or bad behavior.
Let her choose between good/healthy behavior, yielding more time with her phone, and poor/unhealthy behavior and the consequences that are the result.
I think the worst thing you can do as a parent in this situation is to give in to her when she expresses a fit by handing the phone back to her.
If she were my daughter and said to me “I hate you for taking my phone away” or “That’s not fair to me at all”, I’d reply back by saying something like, “I’m sorry to hear that; I hope you get over it.
I want you to know that I love you very much!”
Oh, by the way, you must have the password, too! If she refuses to give you the password then she gets no phone—period! That’s a “no-brainer”!
9 years old? Let me ask you, who is supposed to be in charge? If you have no control over a 9 year old girl, who will she become by age 16? A 9 year old does not need a phone anyway unless away from home for emergencies and contact with parents.
TAKE IT AWAY.
Go to a cell phone store and have them access it (if they can do this).
Usually a person doesnt hide things unless they feel they need to hide things.
GET THAT PHONE OPENED UP AND CHECK IT THOROUGHLY.
I wouldnt allow any more locks on it.
You should have total access.
She needs to know this.
This is a PRIVILEGE not a right…like food and clothing.
When she is home, the phone is NOT IN HER HANDS.
IT IS OFF AND PUT UP.
When she is away from home if she doesnt answer when you call, take it away.
You are headed for a future where your daughter runs the house, comes and goes as pleases and reeks constant havok 24/7.
Put your foot down and be a parent.
She doesnt have to like you or it but you need to put her in her place.
And she needs to respectfully stay there.
Ypu are the parent, not a friend.
You are not out to be popular with your child, you are preparing her for life.
I have read all the posts.
In my opinion the phone is the least of the problems here.
The 9 year old is addicted to her phone.
How many studies do you have to read to understand the learning issues, sleep cycle problems and social media dangers that are associated with excessive phone use?
She won’t give you the password.
She is secretive, defiant and utterly disrespectful to you.
She is exercising control that she is unprepared to use properly and this is a result of years of your unwillingness to challenge her tantrums and demands.
She throws a fit when you try to take her phone away.
Again, you are intimidated by a 9 year old! Let her throw a fit.
Who cares? She is a bully in training and you are her stooge.
The ownership of the phone isn’t even an issue.
You pay for the ongoing use.
Disconnect it and have it disabled.
She can keep it and make a nice paperweight out of it.
And contrary to all the teens out there who feel that phones are a right and a necessity.
They are a convenience, but often have a lot of downside to them.
Of course, we can’t roll back the clock, but 9 year olds just should not be wielding the sort of control this child has over her parent.
I can’t imagine what a nightmare she will be at 15.
Two important and different points here.
If my manager tried to lower my wage to the level I was at two years ago I would quit, and if they removed the coffee machine people would work work substantially less for weeks in protest.
Now, I would have happily worked here for my two years ago salary if it wasn't raised.
However, I am even happier that they did raise it and feel more loyalty because of it.
The coffee drinkers could have bought coffee in the cafeteria at a larger extent, or brought in coffee machines of their own.
But now we are used to this.
These things have become rights, because we were given them to show that we earned them.
Giving a phone and then taking it away is in this day and age a mix between both taking away a teddy bear and grounding someone without friend visit or phone privileges.
Hell, I am 34 and 3/4 of my social life is through the phone I am typing this on.
It is just the times.
For younger people they communicate a lot more with each other than we did, but with these tools.
A diary, or private communications, are private.
People have been sentenced for violating their childrens privacy by against the childs will reading their private writings.
Yes, parental guidance is important.
So is also building trust, avoiding destroying trust, and avoiding violating ones child.
More than being illegal and disrespectful it is also something that leads to deep trust issues that one can reap in much bigger issues five or ten years down the line when the person needs to talk to you about serious things but will not.
Talk to your child more, openly and compassionately, and try not to force her into giving up her privacy to you.
Excerpts from the declaration:
article 16 (right to privacy)
Every child has the right to privacy.
article 13 (freedom of expression) Every child must be free to express their thoughts and opinions and to access all kinds of information, as long as it is within the law.
article 15 (freedom of association) Every child has the right to meet with other children and to join groups and organisations, as long as this does not stop other people from enjoying their rights.
Let's cut to the chase here….
WHY does a 9yo have her own phone?
Please don't be offended by what I'm about to say.
It sounds to me, like you're not being a good pack leader.
EVERY pack needs a strong and effective leader.
It seems you're concern is being her friend.
She doesn't need a friend.
She needs a parent/a leader.
You don't ASK a 9yo for her passcode.
You TELL her.
It's Saturday at 10an, and it's time for me to review your phone, so I can review what you've been up to.
If she gets smart with you, it's a clear indication that she's not mature enough to accept the responsibility of a phone.
Do not argue with this little girl.
You tell, you don't ask.
I'll take care of the phone until you can handle the responsibility.
At this point, I'm going to ask that you attend a class that is available almost everywhere, at a minimal cost.
It's called, “Parenting with Love and Logic".
You seriously need to atten d it.
Check local churches and social services to see when it's being taught.
Lastly, let her throw whatever fit she wants, and make it clear she has to clean up after herself.
She'll have to replace anything she breaks, including windows, furniture, etc.
WHAT??? But, I don't even have a job.
Bummer for you, honey.
The neighbors lawn is looking shabby.
Maybe should ask them if you can mow it for $10.
9 yrs old.
Wake up mom.
The toast is burning.
Throwing a fit is unacceptable behavior.
If you need to, tell her you'll make an appointment with a family counselor who will help you (the adult) learn how to effectively parent the child (your daughter).
There are no reasonable excuses, and no matter how convenient or inconvenient it is for you – you must not be permissive.
She does not NEED this phone.
I understand that you want her to have it because it makes it easier to be in touch with her for various reasons, but she is beyond that if she's addicted, like you say.
Many parents just want to be their child's friend.
If that's the case here, then let me ask who is being your childs parent? That is YOUR job, not anyone else's.
She has friends.
They're in school, down the street, next door, etc.
But you are the only one who is expected to be her parent.
SHE is depending on YOU.
She throws a fit because she is begging you to stop being a doormat and be the person in charge.
She needs you, mom! Don't take her parent away from her.
Don't deny her that.
Don't neglect her that way.
Who is paying the bill? Don't you realize cell phones don't work so great when they don't have service? And if she just uses wifi, then change your network password! Tell her she'll have full access when she can treat the service with respect.
So NO to abuse, because unless you take charge, she will find new ways to abuse you.
You're already teaching her how to start, by giving in when she pitches a fit.
Okay so I am not an adult yet and I am definetly just like your daughter.
Your daughter and me would probably be great friends because I am exactly the same as her.
I’m like this all the time.
As kids get older they obviously hide more things and y’know you have to give them some privacy and not make them feel humiliated.
Theres literally nothing you can do
First of all, don’t try to take it frequently.
This is a huge mistake my mom makes all of the time.
It makes me so angry and I really want to tell back at her then there’s just a huge fight and we don’t talk for the whole week.
Understand that you can’t know everything
It you need to take it away from her just ask her to turn it off before you take it and definetly don’t force her to show you what’s on there.
It made me feel so scared and nervous when my parents forced me to give them my password.
I grew to have trust issues toward them.
Get her outside more and spend a lot more time with her! This is very important! It will take time for her to start getting fresh air more but don’t be yelling all of the time then she won’t have the best relationship with you and others.
Make sure she feels wanted.
You only need more outside time and more time spent with family and friends.
The deal with our son was that his phone was our phone.
We paid for it and it was a *privilege* for him to have it and use it.
At any time we could take it back or ask to see everything on it.
We agreed that we wouldn’t do so without a reason, but that he was to assume that if we asked, we had a reason.
We never in fact asked to see what’s on his phone, although I did inadvertently see some texts a few times (ill-advised messages, but nothing scary) and we had a discussion.
We only took it away a couple times early on as it was a very effective consequence for misbehavior (not phone misbehavior, actually — but rather not complying with other important family rules/expectations).
We were able to trust him because over the years (starting when he was very young), he had opportunities to demonstrate responsibility, reliability, and integrity.
To answer your question specifically:
Normally I avoid commenting on questions like this one because I do not like telling a parent how they should approach their child's technology usage…but I feel this question is different.
The bottom line is this, Technology is a dangerous thing and when used incorrectly can ruin a persons life.
Your main job as a parent is to protect your child from the dangers of this world.
This will often put you in conflict with your child.
Don't run from this conflict because your inaction has consequences!
Your Have two choices here.
Take the phone and get the password.
However, this entails you raising your child and putting up with her temper tantrums.
The other choice is to not bother monitoring your daughter's internet usage and allow her to control the situation.
However, by choosing this option you are allowing the internet to raise your child.
That is a scary option to say the least.
For the record, I am a single father with a 23 year old daughter and a 20 year old son.
As I was self-employed in the tech field so both my children had cell phones at an early age.
I told both of them when I handed them the phones for the first time that I am to have all passwords and the phone is my property and can be taken away at my whim.
I promised both my children I would respect their privacy as long as they didn't give me a reason to invade their privacy.
For the record, I never had to.
Of course along the way I maintained a two way conversation with both my children about many of the dangers they could face on the internet.
Please understand, your nine-year-old is not “addicted” to her phone the way a person can be addicted to a drug like tobacco or alcohol.
She is simply accustomed to having her own way, a condition you created probably years ago, but can begin to alleviate if you act now.
If you’re having difficulty with her at the age of nine, what do you think she’ll be like at the age of fourteen?
You say she’ll throw a fit if you try to take it away from her? You ask what you should do?
I say you should get that phone out of her hands and into yours, but an even better place would be in a locked box she can’t access.
I say you should let her throw a fit.
Let her threaten whatever she wants, like to go live with someone else, to call the police, the children's’ aid, whatever.
There are likely very few other places she’d be welcome, considering the way she treats you; the police wouldn’t likely force you to give her back her phone if you bought it and pay the bill for it; and children's’ aid workers have bigger issues to worry about than a nine-year-old who’s pissed off at her mom.
So, let her scream and cry and call you names.
Let her call you a bad parent, an evil mother.
Let her refuse to eat, refuse to come out of her room, refuse to talk to you.
Sure, it’ll hurt your feelings to listen to all the abuse she’ll heap on you.
Yes, you might think she’ll starve herself and die.
She may even threaten suicide, but my maternal instincts and longtime experience tell me a kid who can express her rage to the point that you’re afraid to unleash it by taking her phone away is not one of those repressed, sad children who sneak away and harm themselves.
She has a strong enough personality to have become a demanding, self-involved, little termigant.
If you can sneak that phone away from her, then I suggest you do it, and soon.
It contains stuff she’s keeping secret from you because she knows you wouldn’t want her to have it.
That means you have few options but to physically wrest that phone out of her spoiled little hands and destroy it.
It’s your duty as a parent to protect her from herself as well as the world out there that can take a child and destroy her without her even suspecting she’s in danger.
Children don’t have the capacity of perspective like adults.
Their dopamine levels rise and fall quickly with the stimulus that playing computer games creates.
This becomes addictive.
Children’s mental health is affected when they’re constantly chasing the high that they’re used to getting off their computer games.
Smart phones are very powerful tools.
All my children ultimately have them.
I monitor my two youngest’ use of them.
Young children don’t need a smart phone.
They don’t actually need to have a gateway to the world at their fingertips.
If they need to be contactable, then a basic ‘Nokia brick’ will do that.
Unfortunately it because about status and peer pressure.
When you get in to those realms you’re really out of control because god knows what children encourage or dare each other to do: (children are children and their patterns of behavior will always be the same irrespective of what tools they have access too).
You’re the parent.
You pay for the phone.
This isn’t about privacy and respect it’s about basic protection.
You wouldn’t throw your child the keys to a powerful car and expect them to be able to drive it without lessons.
yet parents assume their kids can just work it all out on their phones/tablets.
Ahh yes they can but at what cost?
Children at 9 shouldn’t be ‘addicted’ to anything.
They shouldn’t be chasing highs as if it’s digital heroin.
Take the phone away.
Tell her she can have it at certain times of the day, for certain things.
Encourage a broader range of interests/hobbies.
Do things with her.
Talk to her, engage with your child on a human to human level.
Invest in her ‘real’ not online social skills.
No 9 year old ‘needs’ a smart phone.
So make it become just a tiny part of her life.
If she refuses take it away completely.
You have that authority.
You pay for it, you supply the electric to charge it.
Protect your child from the things she wants, let alone the stuff she has access to through her fingertips.
You’re the adult with that responsibility, she’s the child.
Asa mother of a 14 year old daughter, i feel your pain!
First you tell her you must have the password or no phone.
It’s that simple.
Stop this feeling of entitlement now before she’s a teenager- it only gets worse! I think she should still have her privacy and you shouldn’t check her phone every day, but perhaps she will be more conscious of her behavior with social media and pictures if she knows you may see it.
I’ve rarely gone through my daughters phone but when i did i was most surprised by the Snapchat’s and private Instagram messages that i had to search for, rather than just looking at her texts.
Kids rarely text.
It’s Snapchat and instagram you need to see.
By looking at my daughters messages when she was a tween i helped her navigate problems with friends and exposure to memes/sayings she really didn’t understand.
Most of the times i didn’t tell her i read about a situation in her messages but rather worked in the topic to our discussions and then she’d open up and tell me what was happening at school.
The second part of your post regards taking the phone away.
I’d love to say that I’ve parented my child so well that she listens to me when i say “give me the phone”…but she doesn’t.
She actually goes into complete fight mode and acts like a heroin addict needing a fix.
Instead of physically prying the phone out of my daughters hands and ending up more angry than i want to be, i decided to use technology.
I control the WiFi in my house with Disney Circle via an app and control cellular with the Verizon app.
I use the apps for both to suspend and resume service anytime i want.
So while my daughter may physically have her phone she has no connection to the outside world.
If you do this be aware- my daughter has an old iPhone and old iPad that i didn’t have linked to the Circle modem controller.
She was able to use those devices to create a hot spot for her phone i had suspended.
It’s so nice to say “you still haven’t folded your clothes- your phone is off until i see it done”…then you hit resume service on the app.
You really need the service provider app for cellular and the WiFi control or else they use whichever one you don’t shut off.
I hear you!
You should sometimes listen to yourself .
My daughter is obsessed with her smartphone.
Listen- you are the parent right?
In the English language, My is called a possessive pronoun.
So you acknowledge that your daughter belongs to you.
Yet she – your property- dictates to you!
Isnt that an oxymoron?
Lets take this a step further.
Where did she get this mobile from?
I mean, offcourse you bought it for her right?
A simple jewellery set or Teddy bear couldnt cut it for her.
9 years old!
What is this world coming to?
I bet she by now has…
Her own room with latch and key.
Her private laptop .
A seperate set of housekeys.
Her own cable connection and uncapped Wifi access.
Which you pay for!
It seems as if you are setting up your Little Princess to fail.
She is becoming exactly what you Have Not Been wishing for.
But all is not lost!
Take back your Parent powers.
No more phone!
At least no more Smartphone.
Restrict the cable and Wifi.
Get out more.
Both of you!
Smell the fresh air.
Plant some trees.
Be spontaneous and silly together.
Dont try to kill your daughter with “kindness”.
Because this Dead technology is not kindness at all.
I should know.
Our children have become enslaved and entrapped.
They cannot function normally anymore.
Its bloody Facebook, Snapchat and Twitter All the time.
They are becoming walking, talking , living Dolls.
Dont let this happen.
We still have time to fix things.