Thursday, March 20, 2008

10. Hook children with SMS

If you want to improve communication with your child, modern tools can be of great help. Children love gadgets like computers and mobiles, and parents can exploit this weakness to promote their not-so-hidden agenda. Start sharing thoughts and views with your child through e-mail and SMS and the chances are that he will respond enthusiastically.
Many parents have a habit of going on and on without giving their children any chance to retaliate. SMS will serve them well, as it puts a technological gag on their lecturing streak. It forces them to send short messages which may not necessarily be sweet. Children also benefit from the fact that parents are generally hand-to-mouth at handling gadgets. This forces them to keep the messages short irrespective of how much the technology permits.
Along with e-mail, SMS can be a good option where parents have already worked a lot to spoil their relationship with their children. Some parents have the potential to bring the situation to such a pass that any verbal communication between them and their children becomes impossible. In their cases, SMS and e-mail can help build bridges (which of course can be burnt again once they are built).
Parents have the time to edit and re-edit the messages to their heart's content and children have the time to read and re-read them – an option not available in verbal communication. Children may even discover in the messages some softness which parents never intended in the first place. If the child is still unhappy, he can bang his mobile against the wall and parents can keep waiting for a sweet reply to their well-crafted message. My feeling is that children do not mind receiving even not-so-cute messages as long as they continue to receive them. What is the use of keeping a mobile if there is no one to send messages to it ? The child feels good when in a group, suddenly a beep is heard without any one knowing that the message he has received is from his boring parents. And when you receive a response from your child, you may also endeavor to hide the identity of the sender and let your colleagues indulge in some naughty guessing.

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