After completing a workshop for parents and their children on the importance of weekly Fun Family Activities, I asked the audience if there were any questions. A 10 year-old-boy sitting next to his mother raised his hand and said, 'What am I supposed to do when my Mom gets busy and forgets to do the Fun Family Activity?' Good question--and a common one I hear in my counseling practice from children.
Another time, I had a family show up telling me that their four-year old son (not my client) wanted to speak to me alone. I was counseling his older sister concerning her feeling left out of the 'group' at school and girl gossip. I wondered what this child had to say as he had only met me in the waiting room while I talked to his sister. He came into my office and sat in the big chair with his feet dangling and swinging in the air. He had a serious look on his face and when I asked him how I could help him, he said, 'My parents didn't do the Fun Family Activity this week!' He knew that had been an assignment from me and that they had been doing this, but had missed a week'and he didn't like it one bit!
So, just a reminder that this counselor continues to see how technology is dividing and separating families. Parents, in the evenings, please get off the phone and the computer and interact with your family. Your company doesn't need you 24/7. Get out from in front of the television (and NEVER have dinner watching it). And don't put a phone and computer and TV in your child's room as, at a certain age, they will never come out.
Don't be home, but tuned out. Tune in to your family, laugh, play a game, walk the dog, read a book together, throw a football, eat together, talk, etc. Manage the technology and your family will be better off for it.
Copyright 2007, Sharon Scott. Excerpted in part from Sharon's classic parent guide,Peer Pressure Reversal No reproduction without written permission from author.