The Absentee Parent as a Result of Technology

My husband and I went to the park with our son and pointed to about 9 different moms just around us who were either talking on their phones or playing with it, while they were supposed to be spending a little time out with their kids. Personally, I think he points these things out just to let me know I’m doing it. Reverse psychology?

After about 30 minutes at the park, we heard a mom calling out for her son. “James!” The call started getting louder and louder. Soon others started walking around the park to look for him. When 20 minutes passed, this mom started pacing, moving around faster, desperate to find him. Then … we heard someone call, “found him!”

James had climbed a tree and was afraid to call out for help, because he had done something he wasn’t supposed to. My husband, being so tall and really the only man around, had him climb on his shoulders so he can get down. His mom cried and hugged him, while everyone looked around and was probably thinking the same thing I was, “whew!” I sure did not want to be a witness to a lost child! MY heart would break even if he wasn’t mine.

Prior to figuring out he had been gone, this mom was sitting on a bench, texting or moving her fingers rapidly on her phone. I remember watching her and thinking, I wonder who belongs to this woman? She must be a friend of another mom.

I have to admit I’m pretty guilty when it comes to using my phone and looking out for emails while I’m out with my son. It’s not just a habit but when you’ve got a business, it’s a must that you start responding to your clients. Technology doesn’t allow for very many excuses. Still, as a mom, our most IMPORTANT job is to make sure our children are safe. I know when I’m out with my 3 year old, just 10 seconds out of my site is too long. I could never even imagine losing my child. I just feel no text message or email is ever worth it.

Are you guilty of ever being an absentee parent while out with your kid(s)?