Growing up, if I wanted to talk to my friends on the phone I had to use a landline. Then I entered high school and slowly, but surely, more and more people were purchasing mobile phones. Before I knew it my friends had Nokias and Motorolas, Blackberries and even the occasional iPhone. And now? Well, now everyone has smartphone... including children. But when should you give your child a smartphone? Or any phone, for that matter? To answer this question Romper reached out to a number of moms to share the when and why behind their decision to hand over a phone to their child.
As with any parenting decision, there are a number of reasons why giving a child a smartphone could be beneficial. From keeping track of your children, to being able to stay in constant contact with them (especially in the wake of so many devastating school shootings), to simply assuaging your fears as a parent who has sent their child out into the world, there's something to be said for the comforts this technology can provide.
There are, of course, downsides, too. Experts warn against too much screen time, online predators and bullying is very much a thing, and it's possible for kids to accidentally (or purposefully) find age-inappropriate content via the internet. But for better or worse, deciding whether or not you're going to allow your child to have a smartphone is a reality us parents have to face when raising children in the digital era. So with that in mind, here's when, and why, some parents decided to take the digital plunge: