I have a 16 yr old daughter, Lindsey, who lives with me and hubby in Georgia and a 14 yr old daughter, Sarah, who lives in Arkansas with their dad. (Someday, I will share the story behind this.)
Sarah’s dad took her cell phone away for several weeks because she had gone over her limit in minutes and text messages. This was my only way to contact her, other than snail mail, which I’ve used but she hasn’t. During the time she was without a phone, I was able to talk with her a few times when Lindsey would call their dad and ask to speak to Sarah. He finally gave her phone back last weekend, but he has restricted her use of it. She can only use it before 9 pm. This makes no sense to me whatsoever, because after 9, the minutes are free! I asked her why, and she has no idea either.
I’m a rational woman, for the most part, and I always try to see both sides before jumping to conclusions. I have tried see the logic here, but it’s beyond me. I thought, ok, maybe he’s trying to get her to be more responsible with her phone, maybe being aware that any time spent on the phone eats into her available minutes will cause her to use it less. That does make sense, doesn’t it? But what happens if she still exceeds her minutes? She’s a teenager, and it’s bound to happen. I mean, the problem wasn’t the after 9 usage when the minutes are unlimited, the problem was the before 9 usage. I certainly am not insisting that she should be allowed to talk on the phone whenever she wants, and I agree wholeheartedly that there should be limits. So why am I upset over this?
This morning on my way to work, I called and left her a message. As soon as I disconnected, a sudden realization hit me. Aversion therapy! In order to check her messages, she’ll have to use her minutes. Every time I call her, it uses her minutes. Every time she calls me (which is already rare enough) will use her minutes. She will be even more reluctant to call me now, since she doesn’t want to lose her phone again. I hope I’m wrong, and I know there’s nothing I can do about it either way, but my gut tells me I’m right.
I’m praying that his plan will backfire, and that limited access to her mother will fuel in her a desire for more. Please pray for my prodigal and her parents.