Print this list of 50 texts your kid will love and put an end to the silent treatment. They may not thank you, but you’ll build a bridge.
Sharon Standifird was on to something. She’s the Houston mom who created the “Ignore No More” app.
Standifird got tired of outfitting her teens with a cell phone, only to have them ignore her check-ins. The app disables all features on the phone, except for emergency assistance, unless the child returns a parent’s text.
Tired of the Silent Treatment?
Our kids’ generation was the first to have childhood access to cell phones. In many ways we, as parents, are writing the rules as we go along.
…95% have a smartphone. And, 25% had a smartphone before the age of 10! Being connected 24/7 is their norm.The Center for Generational Kinetics, 2018 Study
In the name of safety, we parents were persuaded to give our children a phone. We set usage rules and limits that, in reality, we couldn’t enforce. We had no idea the influence this pocket-sized device would have on our families and our world.
If you want to get to get a group of parents talking, mention the frustration of getting teens to respond to texts and calls.
Print this list of 50 simple texts your kid will love.
Perhaps this conflict, more than any other, sums up the disconnect between our generation and theirs. For a little more insight, let’s figure out what’s happening in each of our worlds.
Why They Don’t Answer
Make no mistake, they are reading our texts. Their phone hasn’t landed in the bottom of a swimming pool, been stolen by terrorists, or been abducted by aliens. As painful as it is to accept, they are looking at the screen, reading our message, and choosing to ignore it. But why?
According to Newton’s third law, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. That means, the harder we push our kids to talk, they equally, if not more so, will shut down.Sunshine and Hurricanes
For context, let me tell you a story that might sound familiar. I remember coming home from college and attending church with my mom. This was long before social media, when tweets were only heard from a nest in a tree outside your bedroom window.
I knew what was coming as soon as the message ended. One by one, mom made the rounds of her friends. I dutifully trudged next to her, a smile plastered on my face. It was the dreaded question and answer session she’d been looking forward to all school year.
She gleamed with pride as I reported my grades, activities and accomplishments. I wanted to sink into the earth-tone, shag carpet.
The Answer Is Simple
Although cell phone technology is somewhat new, a decades-old principle hasn’t changed. Kids are embarrassed of their parents. Yes, your kids. Are embarassed. Of you.
Think of it as a developmental process which must happen in order to keep them from living in your basement with their cat when they are 39.
When our kids receive a text from us, there’s a pretty good chance their emotional response isn’t neutral. Especially if they check the text in public.
They know we are keeping tabs on them. In our minds, that’s a sign of love. But, even if they like the idea of someone caring about their whereabouts, they’ll never let on.
Again, it’s their job to become independent. The “silly details” of who pays the phone bill won’t change that fact. Some kids even claim their parents’ texting style makes them anxious. (#CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!!!????)
It’s part of growing up; it’s also linked to developmental changes in the brain that will eventually help them become analytical adults.WebMD
50 Simple Texts
As parents, the deck seems forever stacked against us. We are tired, broke, and trying to lose 5 pounds. But the burden of communicating effectively with our teen is still our responsibility. And, with a few simple tips, it’s not so hard.
This list of 50 Texts to Send Your Teen will use their preferred method of communication to your advantage.
It’s true that the theory of ignoring someone has been around for a long time but the term ghosting was coined from the online dating culture we have today.The Sun
Most of the 50 simple texts on the list aren’t questions and don’t even require a response. Why? Because, if we only text our kids when we want something, they will quickly tune us out.
Does that seem so hard to understand? Not really. I know I avoid people who only talk to me when they want something. I would much prefer they talk to me just to have a conversation and learn a bit about my life. Our kids are no different.
Of the questions on the list, most are silly or nonsensical. Remember-your kid is already embarrassed of you. You have nothing to lose! You may be surprised at the responses you receive.
Why They’ll Love It
In the end, what’s really important is building a bridge with your teen. Even if they roll their eyes and scoff at one of these 50 simple texts, they’ll know you’re making an effort to enter their world.
This morning, I had a quick phone call with one of my kids. He admitted he doesn’t always know what to text me back, but he does read my messages. I told him to think of my texts as a care package. Just open and enjoy.
I missed the boat on the “Ignore No More” app, but I’m kind of glad I did.
Just maybe, with a bit of effort on my part, I can use texting as another way to show my kid I love them and I care, instead of a question and answer session. And kids, if you’re reading this, please text and let me know you’re ok.