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What age are they responsible enough to have their own mobile phone?

(28 Posts)
marne2 Tue 19-Aug-14 22:05:14

Maybe I should have posted in 'teens' or 'pre teens'.

At what age do you let your d&c have a mobile phone?

I have told dd she can have one once she is at high school, mainly becuase she might have to wait a while for me to pick her up as dd2 will be at primary school finishing at roughly the same time, dd1's high school will be a 10 minute drive away so she will have wait for me, I would rather she has a phone on her.

She's not starting high school until next year. Spoke to her friends mum about it today and she said 'no way would she buy her ds a phone at that age', so is 11 too young for a phone?

MrsWinnibago Wed 20-Aug-14 00:08:23

My Dd has had one since 9 blush She is in the minority and in my defence, DD is freakishly responsible.

She only takes it out when she goes to the local shops or park alone or on a sleepover. She plays games on it. She never uses social media as she's not allowed. Only about 3 of her mates have phones though. I don't think 11 is too young.

Fanjango Wed 20-Aug-14 00:20:28

Depends on the child. My eldest had one at the age of 9 as he was allowed to go out with his friends and was sensible enough to be trusted. We have since moved and not so much ability to let them roam so dd(9) does not need one and her twin ds is no way responsible enough grin
Having seen the bills some produce definitely go for pay as you go to reduce chances of misuse and get then a cheapo one first to test it out. If they lose or break them swiftly then forget it, I've seen kids put phones on a roundabout and spun it to see who's comes off last shock

ElephantsNeverForgive Wed 20-Aug-14 00:31:28

DD1 was Y6, bought because she was once dropped off at dancing (no easy parking) and the teacher was trying to leave early and had canceled her group.

DD2 Y7, they have crap buses.

Bluecarrot Wed 20-Aug-14 00:36:43

Dd had a crap one with no colours or camera and oy "snake" to keep her occupied, when she was 9 and starting to go to her dads ( a plane journey away) without me. The deal was that if she was sensible with it she would get a fancier one for high school. She rarely used it tbh, it was for emergencies.

She has just got her fancier one in prep for high school next week. Its a payg sim with a data lock on it. I'm nervous about giving her that freedom ( access to social media etc) however, we have regular chats about it and I just have to hope I have taught her well enough....)

marne2 Wed 20-Aug-14 08:21:39

Thank you, it will be a pay as you go and not I iPhone ( which dd was hoping for ), will see what deals are around at the time but will probably stick to something cheap and basic smile.

Springcleanish Wed 20-Aug-14 08:26:52

My dd has had one since she was 10, but I had to charge it, remind her to take it. She's just going into year 7 now and beginning to use it regularly and charge it herself etc. she's got an old family smartphone, on a tesco £7.50 a month capped contract, as we kept forgetting to top up PAYG phones. I can monitor her usage through this also. Most of her friends now have phones.

FiveGoMadInDorset Wed 20-Aug-14 08:34:55

Have tad both DC's not until Y7 and they get a bus to school

DeWee Wed 20-Aug-14 13:25:06

Our rule is their own Christmas in year 5. that way they get used to using it, and they are happy for you to check the messages etc. before secondary.

However ds (age 7yo) has just started going off round the back to play football with friends. I've been giving him my very cheap old pay as you go. It's working well mostly, he has dropped it once, but I use it to set an alarm to tell him when to come home or phone to say come back now, and occasionally he phones. He did (with a friend) play spies one time which involved them phoning each other from round the block, but I have said it's not generally to be used for that.

murphy36 Thu 21-Aug-14 07:16:17


AppleAndMelon Thu 21-Aug-14 10:11:36

We usually start in Yr 5 - and only a brick £9 Nokia. So far each son has lost/broken at least one, so I don't want them having expensive ones or to be able to use the internet when we are not around.

AppleAndMelon Thu 21-Aug-14 10:13:05

Lots of DS1's friends have smart phones though, and some of his year look at porn on their phones at school in Yr 8!

Theas18 Thu 21-Aug-14 10:24:16

Why do they need to " be responsible enough to have their own phone"?

Until using public transport alone regularly ( aged 11/11/10 here) surely what they need is the use of a phone when they need it? So old phone in kitchen drawer - going to your mates for the afternoon - take it with you. ...

For a child under about year 8 - age 12-13, I personally think a smartphone and internet access are unnecessary and a source of trouble. They bring opportunities for bullying into your home and bedroom where you should be safe.

I do wish phone manufacturers would make a cheapish easy use basic phone without a camera (the troubles related to photos / video being posted on the net are huge - eg the stuff you see on here " my child sent her boob photo yo her boyfriend, they split and he's posted it on Facebook " - yes inderage Tweens or " she fell asleep on a school trip and snored and the video is on the web and she won't go into school )

Think what does the child NEED the phone vs want it for? After all Facebook/ Instagram etc they are actually not supposed to be under 14....

Theas18 Thu 21-Aug-14 10:24:28

Sorry typo 13

AppleAndMelon Thu 21-Aug-14 10:29:28

Theas - I'm confused by your post. My two with phones both have 'a cheapish easy use basic phone without a camera'. I think they are easily found in most phone shops.

Kim82 Thu 21-Aug-14 11:16:38

Ds (aged 13) has had a phone since he started high school. I refuse to buy him an expensive one as he loses them all the bloody time!

He did have one that enabled him to go on the internet but after he proved himself far too irresponsible with things he was looking at this was swiftly taken off him and he has had basic phones since.

He doesn't have a phone at the moment as he lost his (yet again) at the park last week and as I refuse to replace it he is debating whether to use his birthday money to buy another.

quietlysuggests Thu 21-Aug-14 11:24:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsWinnibago Thu 21-Aug-14 11:43:34

Quietly you can put child settings on there....and check up on what they're on and not let them on social media.

PacificDogwood Thu 21-Aug-14 11:45:37

Some adults don't seem to manage… wink

Mine will not have any kind of phone until they go to Secondary School.
They have iPods with child settings in place.
Seems to work ok so far.

GalaxyInMyPants Thu 21-Aug-14 11:46:45

Dd had one at the beginning of year six. £100 handset on payg. She's never lost it, three years on. She only got a £100 handset as a reward for passing her 11plus.

A friends 15yo ds frequently loses contract iPhones.

I think it depends on the kid. Start with a cheap one and on payg. See how responsible they are.

exexpat Thu 21-Aug-14 11:48:04

Both mine have had phones from age 10.

DD (now aged 11) has had a smartphone from the start, but set up so that she can only access the internet via wifi not mobile internet - so no issue with looking at porn while at school (not that I think she'd want to - videos of sloths and cup-cake tutorials are more her thing).

LadyIsabellaWrotham Thu 21-Aug-14 19:52:07

I'd say that a 6 year old who needs it (eg splitting their time between two parents) is perfecly old enough to have a ten quid Nokia with a fiver's worth of Giff Gaff credit.

murphy36 Thu 21-Aug-14 20:08:45

Bit worried Quietly if you think the first thing your kid will do with internet access is search for violent pornography.

When I do give my DS a smart phone or some uncontrolled internet access I'm going to make sure I have a horribly painful and awkward conversation about porn and the dangers of the internet/social media and data permanency.

However, if he's anything like me or my partner he just won't be interested in that stuff anyway.

AppleAndMelon Thu 21-Aug-14 20:47:32

I disagree with quietly that a child will automatically have a smartphone two years after having a brick phone (unless child is in charge, not parent), but I do agree with her comment that it exposes them to violent pornography - not that they will necessarily search for it, but that it will be there. I think I'm right in saying that you can't put child controls on YouTube for instance and they can easily type in something innocent.

DeWee Fri 22-Aug-14 12:40:49

I would disagree with the definitely watching violent pornography. DD1's had a phone for 4 years now and has never come across it-we have a programme where we get a list of what she's been on, and the worst thing she's watched on it is The Apprentice, and I don't think you can rate that as porn?

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