Updated: Nov 30, 2022
In this ever increasing digital age, parents are in danger of losing parental power and control. Social Media continually pushes kids to connect with and stay connected with peers, as much as possible. Kids (depending on age), often have not developed the understanding and self-control required to disengage from technology, so there is time to focus on their relationship with parents. Left on their own and uninterrupted, there are kids of all ages who will just stay on their devices - so, who they are connected to, begin to take on increasing importance and therefore increasing power over these youth. They become more interested in what peers have to say about their struggles than what their parents have to say - attachment to parents weaken and attachment to peers strengthens.
Parents really need to try and remain focused on the importance of a positive and healthy relationship with their kids of all ages - focus on the relationship more than the behaviour. Continuously spend time with them to enjoy (playing) and time to teach, every day. Clear and consistent limits and consequences keeps children on the right path, sharing values, beliefs and what parents appreciate about their children, teaches and reinforces healthy development and maintains parents in the role of primary importance in children's lives. Parents love their children no matter what, peers do not - parents are dependable and offer healthy guidance, peers do not. Parents need to be aware of their children's closest friends and serve as a guide for what healthy peer relationships are and are not!