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Mobile phone for a five year old

(60 Posts)
user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 20:43:55

My boyfriend wants to give his daughter a mobile phone. She is 5. I think this is highly inappropriate. Would welcome your reflections on this.
Not that I think it is relevant but she stays with her mother every other weekend at her grandparents house. When I asked him why he thought it was a good idea he said so she could contact him if she wanted to.

FirstworldprobIems Fri 21-Oct-16 20:47:34

Wtaf?! No way.

VivienneWestwoodsKnickers Fri 21-Oct-16 20:47:46

Just no. Ridiculous.

witsender Fri 21-Oct-16 20:48:10

Hahaha haha!

Smartleatherbag Fri 21-Oct-16 20:48:19

Too young. Ridiculous.

yesterdaysunshine Fri 21-Oct-16 20:48:46

Don't see a massive problem but I think I might be a lone voice

Wolfiefan Fri 21-Oct-16 20:49:59

Can't you have phones that only call or text one number? Or have I imagined that?! Has he reason to suspect the mother would deny the child the chance to talk to her father if she wanted?

SisterViktorine Fri 21-Oct-16 20:51:01

Does he have concerns about whether she is OK when she is away from him?

BlancheBlue Fri 21-Oct-16 20:51:02


FlouncingIntoAutumn Fri 21-Oct-16 20:51:45

I think a tablet with child friendly settings and something like skype locked to just family contacts would be more appropriate.

janethegirl2 Fri 21-Oct-16 20:51:56

He's nuts.

user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 20:57:02

The other parent and the MIL are not very good at being parents/role models but there are no serious concerns as to safety or anything like that.
My thoughts were that it would lead to loss of innocence, an early adoption of something unnecessary which would soon become seen as necessary, "over-communication", fostering dependence as opposed to independence, an early adoption of calling Daddy over every "tiny" issue. TO be honest the list is endless. Not to mention possible radiation/health issues. These are serious concerns of mine about how she is being brought up. I know one should move with the times to an extent but I think it is wrong full stop. A 10 year old, maybe. Not a 5 year old.

redskytonight Fri 21-Oct-16 21:01:14

Depends if he thinks her mum/grandparents would stop her calling him if she wanted to. If he thinks they would, and she gets a basic call only phone that is set up to only allow her to call him, then I can see a reason. For a 5 year old in general - no.

Sweets101 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:02:19

DD got one from her Dad for her 6th birthday for that reason, so she can contact him between contact. She can spell well so she tends to text or call him on WhatsApp. She messages her grandparents on that side too and aunts and uncles.
I can't see the big issue, it works well for us.

user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:03:15

No they would not stop her calling father if she wanted to. I'm not sure she ever has wanted to, to be honest. She is fairly happy there, if a little bored.

Sweets101 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:03:44

"fostering dependence as opposed to independence"
In a 5 yr old?? confused

RiverTam Fri 21-Oct-16 21:04:19

Well, his reason is interesting, it suggests that he is concerned about his DD when she is in the care of her mother, I would assume from something his DD has said. The phone itself is a bit of a red herring. Has his DD been frightened at her mother's? You say the mum and MIL are not good parents or role models. It could be something minor, it could be major but if his DD is scared it needs to be taken very seriously.

user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:09:32

No she isn't scared at all. The worst that can be said is that the mother is disinterested and self absorbed and the MIL distant and emotionally disabled but they mean well insofar as they are able. As I said, there are no serious issues at their house barring some disfunctionality. My boyfriend is not "over" protective either. He encourages her to do all sorts of things, push her boundaries. She is an active, intelligent and confident child, but unfortunately is learning to manipulate as he gives in to her too easily which is compounded by the complete laissez-faire attitude at the other house. Hence tantrums when she doesn't get her own way etc.

WaitrosePigeon Fri 21-Oct-16 21:10:10


user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:12:04

I don't think the phone is a red herring at all. Tbh I think it indicates a lack of understanding as to how precious a child's innocence is and how it should be prolonged as long as possible, especially in today's society. You can't cut children off from peer pressure after all. They have to learn to rub along with what society is as they grow and learn.

RiverTam Fri 21-Oct-16 21:12:38

Well - that sounds like a pretty shitty environment for a small child! I would be rather concerned that she is being neglected, and could be endangered by that (eg wandering off and no-one noticing).

I think I would monitor closely for the time being but if he still feels it necessary give her a very basic phone with his number stored in it.

But it sounds pretty crappy to me. Is her mother her main carer, I can't work that out.

user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:14:40

"fostering dependence as opposed to independence"

Sorry if I wasn't clear Sweets. I meant that when any tiny thing doesn't go her way, she can call her father "to find a solution for her" as opposed to learning and growing and learning how to cope with difficulties and challenges. Isn't that what parenting is about?

crispandcheesesanwichplease Fri 21-Oct-16 21:19:48

Way too young and unnecessary at that age. If she needs to talk to him when she's away and the adults caring for her support this then why would she need her own phone?!

I think it's a slippery slope on the buying gadgets, electronic goods for your children. The 'needing' to have stuff 'just because it exists to be bought' mentality is ridiculous.

Mine got her first mobile at 11 when she started walking to school on her own (3 minute walk from our front door!) but it made her feel safer and more 'grown up' when many of her peers had already had mobiles for years). And that phone was, and still is, a basic calls and texting phone. No camera/video/music or internet access.

When my DD was 5 I had a casual conversation with another dad from school about what we were getting our daughters for christmas. Mine was getting a fireman sam fire engine and such like, his was getting an ipod shuffle and a new computer monitor for her bedroom - ffs!!!

user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:20:49

I thought it seemed clear RiverTam? She is in a safe environment, albeit perhaps with people who are emotionally stunted at worst. This isn't really the issue. They are what they are, and they are her family for better or worse and they aren't THAT bad. How would you persuade him that the idea of a phone is not a good one? I know in forums you can't paint a whole picture, but the idea of giving ANY 5yo a phone, when there is no pressing need just seems very negative to me (for reasons stated above)

user1477078716 Fri 21-Oct-16 21:22:22


These are my thoughts. Do many others agree?

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