It’s no surprise that families are using technology more than ever before to keep in touch with each other. In fact, according to CBS news, statistics show that married couples with kids have the highest rates of Internet and cell phone usage. Here are the results of the Pew Internet & American Life Project - a nonprofit organization that provides information on the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the nation, and the world:
- 58% of “married-with-children” households own two or more computers.
- Almost 90% own multiples cell phones
- 57% of children between ages 7 and 17 have their own cell phone.
If you’re worried that all that technology is pulling people apart, the truth is actually quite the opposite. The survey found that couples use their phones to connect and to coordinate their lives. They each go their separate ways during the day but they remain connected by cell phones and email. The survey did find that families with multiple computers and cell phones were somewhat less likely to eat dinner together, but most people felt that despite this, families today are closer than ever before, thanks to the use of these gadgets. Also, email, instant messaging, and social networking helps people stay in touch for years to come. Meaning that technology should help today’s young people maintain longer and stronger relationships than previous generations were able to. It used to be harder to stay in touch because long-distance phone calls were expensive, and there weren’t any other options besides the phone, and old-fashioned letter writing. Now, a lot of people still enjoy writing letters – it’s a much more personal way to connect – but corresponding that way can take days. Whereas technology has made instant communication easy and cheap.
So, the bottom line is – it’s easier now to keep in touch with loved ones over the course of the day. What about those family dinners? We’ve told you before, it’s important to make them a priority, even if it’s not every night. Eating together helps families connect, and helps kids get better grades and stay out of trouble.