March 30, 2017 – The Guilty Secret of Distracted Parenting
Your phone can seem to call to you in an especially seductive way when you are a parent on playground duty. And one reason is, let’s face it, that playground duty can get old long before your children do.
At a recent pediatric meeting where we discussed the new recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics on screen time for children, the talk inevitably turned to parents, and the hazards of so-called “distracted parenting.”
“I think the term distracted is so loaded,” said Dr. Jenny Radesky, a developmental behavioral pediatrician and assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, who is one of the authors of the American Academy of Pediatrics new policy statement on media use for children from birth to age 5. Yes, she said, there are plenty of nonelectronic distractions out there. But the problem is, interactive technology and social media are designed to be emotionally absorbing and habit forming.