FOMO and parenting

Earlier this school year my kids came home complaining that they were the ONLY kids in their classrooms not allowed unfettered access to youtube videos.  From their perspective, EVERYONE but them has their own channel and watches all the funny viral videos.

First off - not so.  But that isn’t an effective argument for them for the same reason it wasn’t for me.  It’s about FOMO (fear of missing out), not about equality.  

So on to my second point - so what?  Lots of times there will be lots of people doing lots of things that you can’t.  I’m your mom and love you.  I will not helicopter parent you, but I also will not throw you in the deep in before you know how to swim.  

Turns out that is also not effective at treating FOMO.  

Once point 1 and 2 had been made, I moved to an action plan.  We love Jesus in this house and He tells us to be in the world and not of it (John 17:14-15).  The kids were citing a serious lack of “in the world-ness.”  Fair enough.  

I found a neat site run by Donald Miller called storylineblog.com.  On Saturday mornings a guy on his site loads up 3 or 4 of the best viral videos found during the week.  Lots of times they are silly, sometimes touching, occasionally quirky.  As they are largely on youtube I can log into an account I made and put all the videos in my cue for the kids to watch with me.  

It’s been a great solution here at the Smith house.  One morning I showed them a video about a cardboard arcade and they spent hours in the basement building games from boxes.  And they didn’t have the awful day where they were the ONLY one in the class who didn’t know what the fox says.  

Double win.    

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