I bought my sixth grader a cell phone a couple of months ago. She is a very good student, on the A-B honor roll every year, so I figured buying her a cell phone (adding her to my plan) was a good reward for her passing all of her Texas-mandated Taks tests this past year.
I also bought it in case of emergency. With a cell phone, she can always contact me or my wife at work, or one of her many aunts and uncles, should something come up.
Finally, she had been asking me for one. Her friends have cell phones. I gave in.
I sat her down and told her that with a cell phone comes responsibility. Not all kids are mature enough to handle it, but I believed my daughter could manage the responsibility with ease. I'm sure many of you parents have had the same talk with your daughters, at least giving them some of the basics: Don't answer calls from unknown numbers. Texting boys is not allowed. Always answer when a parent calls, and always reply when a parent sends a text or email. After all, if you give your children cell phones, they had better promptly reply when you contact them.
As it turns out, these kids are setting the world on fire with texting. For the first month my daughter racked up over 6,000 texts. Is that possible? I have not even come close to 6,000 texts in all the time I've had a cell phone, and I don't think I ever will. I started asking myself: who is she texting? What can they be texting about?
I want to believe that middle school kids are mostly texting about harmless things: the latest Twilight or Harry Potter movie, TV shows like Hannah Montana, or the latest Jonas Brothers song. But I'm not sure. I have witnessed my two older daughters texting each other while in the same room! They can't talk? They have to text each other? I have not received my cell phone bill this month but I expect my daughter will top 7,000 texts for the month of July.