It was surely a gift from heaven! That 8-foot-long phone cord that allowed us to take the only phone in the house out of its cradle and talk privately from the confines of our laundry room. Many hours of the evening passed with that cord stretched out and one or another teen sequestered behind the laundry room door!
Why were we there? Simple! It was private!
I know that our parents would have sat us down for a strong talk had they known some of the subjects we discussed over that telephone. In the same way, I know they didn't approve of some of the movies I watched or the music I listened to.
On the other hand, I didn't grow up in a place where a vast number of kids have cell phones before they reach high school. Texting would have been pure science fiction back then. The first video games we played were simple, in arcades, and had to be paid for -- every.single.game.
We live in a different world now. More than ever, we need parents who will take seriously the role of "Personal Information Manager" for their kids. What are they watching and listening to? Who are they communicating with and about what? What is the content of the games that they are playing?
By the way, we thought of our conversations on the end of that long phone cord as private. But we knew that our parents wouldn't approved of everything going on. Even if we complained about their involvement, we knew!
With kids today...I'm not so sure they know.
What do you think? And what are you doing to manage information in your family?