Be Smart About Your Child’s Smart Phone
Parents, I feel that I have landed upon the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
iPhone, iPad, iPod users
Settings > General > Restrictions
Who knew that was ever there? I sure didn’t! You set your own password and they cannot get into restrictions to change without your password. There are specific categories Allow, Allowed Content, Privacy, Allow Changes, and Game Center.
Allow: Safari – This is something that you can turn completely off. No web searching at all. This takes the Safari icon completely off their phone. This is a good idea for those parents who want their children to have phones, but don’t want their children to have the “smart” part of the phone. As you know, you can search ANYTHING on the internet. The other day Abortion was being spoken about at our church, because of that I was asked “How do you even kill babies?” When I said you need to ask your parents about that, their response was I will just google it. That’s a scary thought. Your children are learning more from google than you know.
Other “Allow” options include Camera, FaceTime, iTunes Store, iBooks store. You can turn off the iTunes Store or iBooks store if your children are downloading music/books without your permission. Another way to also control this is to not give them the Apple ID password or share iTunes/iCloud accounts with them to monitor their music.
Music is very important. The more they listen to explicit lyrics and all the filth that can be found in music today the more they will begin to think that way. Their minds can be found in the gutter and those words they thought they would never say start to be the ones that come to mind when they are angry or frustrated. Music is very influential, more than our children realize. It is very important to care about the music they are filling their minds with. Today’s music is complete trash. Care about what they are hearing because eventually they will be thinking that way and speaking that way.
Installing Apps -Deleting Apps –
I love this option. Possibly the most! I know girls that install apps when they leave their parents and delete them before they go home. Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, YikYak, Whisper, etc. whatever they’re not allowed to have. Don’t be fooled that just because they’re not on their phone when you check it at 8:00 every night means that they don’t it at all. If I were a parent I would disable deleting apps but leave installing. That way you can catch them ;-P You can also turn off in-app purchases (more having to do with just spending more money)
If you check your children’s phones at night, try checking them at different times each night. Don’t check them at the same time every night.
Music & Podcasts – This BLEW my mind! You go to this setting and it is set on every phone as “Explicit.” It says “Allow playback of Music, Music Videos and Podcasts containing Explicit Content.” I know that this means all music can be played but it just made me sad. You can turn off Explicit and it changes your music setting to Clean. I turned mine off and made it clean. Not because I download bad music but just because I don’t want to heat it at all. Explicit language makes me cringe and I just don’t want to hear it. It makes me sad when middle school girls get in my car, plug in their phones to charge and turn it off their phone music so it doesn’t play throughout the car. Go ahead, turn your children’s playback off of Explicit and turn yours off while you’re at it.
Movies- TV Shows-
Do know how many ways there are to watch movies and tv shows these days? Just like music, movies and tv shows are filth. PG-13 movies are what R rated movies were when I was in middle school. R rated movies are terrible. I’m not completely innocent of watching all G rated movies, and I am not saying that is all you should watch. But at the critical age of where your children are, they need to be monitored. I’m not saying to shelter your children, but you need to be aware of the world they live in and you need to care. Don’t let the temptations of this world just fall into their hands. You are their parents, use what is given to you and help them not fall. Stop worrying about sheltering them too much, and teach them to live for Christ.
Books- Allow Books Rates Every phone is set on – Explicit Sexual Content ON Allow sampling, downloading, and reading of Books with Explicit Sexual Content
Just like listening and seeing, reading can be very damaging. Sometimes even more because you can imagine anything you want. Reading can send your mind in all different directions. Be smart with this one. I have looked through the iBooks lists, it’s pretty alarming!
Apps- Controls the age limit on the apps you are allowed to download 4+ 9+ 12+ 17+ Allow All Apps
There are many apps that children have that are 17+. It warns you before you download the app, but you can dismiss that and continue the download. Vine is one of those apps that is popular among teens. I deleted Vine because I could not go one video without hearing the F word or having some type of sexual innuendo.
Websites- Allowed Websites All Websites Limit Adult Content Specific Websites Only Limit access to many adult websites automatically. Specific allowed and restricted websites can be added.
You’ll be surprised what little boys will look up on Google and I know girls are not innocent. I have just seen the Google search history on boys’ iPods. It is alarming! If you limit the allowed websites, a message will come up when your child tries to access an adult content website, they will need a password to continue.
It’s not being nosy or overbearing. It’s not sheltering and keeping your children out of the world. It’s caring and it’s parenting. I am a high approver of checking your children’s phones- iMessages, instagram, twitter, Facebook, whatever they might have. I think the fact that you can get iMessages from your children’s iPhones, iPods and iPads to your MacBook is amazing and should be used. Not even because you are worried about what they are doing but because of their safety. Children are very bold in what they say over text messages. You should be aware that cyberbullying is a very real issue and it can be prevented. If you check your children’s phone every night, I would be aware that they know and they will do what they can to clean up their phone.
Have you ever heard “You are in the world, not of the world?” The Bible says
“The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.” John 15:19
As Christians, God chose us to come out the world. Just because it’s there doesn’t mean we need to partake in it. Just because you hand your child a phone doesn’t mean they need to have everything that is available on it. I am 20 years old and I have used a lot of these restrictions on my phone, not because I look up bad things or listen to bad music. But I don’t even want the possibility of something being on my phone like that or the temptation. Satan is prowling around like a lion, ready to pounce at any moment. He sneaks in through movies and music. He makes you think it’s okay to listen to bad music because the beat is good. It’s fine to let them watch the PG-13 movies they know not to talk like that, not to act like that. And all their friends are, they will miss out if they don’t. I missed a 17 year old birthday party my junior year of high school because they were going to an R rated movie that I had heard was very over the top. You can’t unseen or unhear something. It is easy to be in the world and see all the chaos we have created through sin. The world is going crazy, bonkers, absolutely insane but God has never left His throne! God has this! He gives us ways to protect our children, He gives us brains to use to help them become the men and women we need to raise the world.