If you are discussing parenting expectations and responsibilities in the context of a parenting plan, the topic of technology can and should be part of that discussion.
Device purchase and management
Cellphones, tablets and computers can be expensive. There may also be monthly bills, in-app purchases and repair expenses to consider.
As such, discussing the financial responsibilities regarding your child’s technological needs and use can head off any disputes that might arise in the future.
Acceptable monitoring and tracking tools
Parental views on whether and to what extent they should monitor kids’ online activity or screen time vary widely. For instance, will you utilize tracking programs or parental control software on a child’s devices?
Talking about this can ensure you are on the same page or at least know where the boundaries are.
Restrictions on use
Each parent may have rules regarding allowable use of technology, but ensuring these views are healthy and consistent can be essential for families in a co-parenting arrangement.
For instance, your plan might specify things like:
- When a child should have their own devices
- How much time they can spend online
- What age a child must be to have a social media account
- Types of allowable content
- Penalties for misuse
Discussing these areas in a parenting plan can create a valuable, solid framework.
Are you a parent who expects to read your child’s text messages? Do you want to have access to their social media passwords? Will you supervise screen time? Your answers to these types of privacy-related issues can differ from the other parent – and they can change as your child ages.
However, making it a point to discuss and come to an agreement on privacy and your child’s use of technology can help you and your child make respectful healthy decisions.
Communicating with parents
Children with divorced or separated parents can benefit from being able to communicate readily with each parent. However, communication could become a distraction or even a weapon without some boundaries.
To protect kids and their connections with each parent, you can set rules for when and how often a child may communicate with one parent during the other parent’s time. You can also establish protocols for whom a child should contact in specific situations.
Discussing these areas can help parents avoid tech-related conflicts and promote a child’s well-being as they navigate life as co-parents.