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Technology Addiction

My baby has a tantrum if I don't let her use my iPhone or iPad

If your baby has a tantrum when you take the phone or tablet away, just use your normal consequences. It shouldn't be any different with devices. A lot of parents worry that a tantrum means baby has developed an unhealthy attachment to the phone or tablet, but that's very unlikely. If handing over the phone has become a habit, it'll take some time to curb her outbursts. Babies also don't typically understand the "five-minute countdown" (i.e., that they have only five more minutes with the device before they have to give it up.) Babies are very much in the moment -- they want what they want when they want it. Here are some ways that may cut down on tantrums over devices.

  • Transition into using the phone or tablet together -- such as showing her photos of herself or watching short videos together -- so she'll get used to it being a shared experience.
  • Begin to show her how you use the phone as a tool, such as to make calls -- not a treat that she gets from being "good." 
  • As with everything else she wants and can't have, she'll develop the ability to self-soothe with your help.

What's your strategy for avoiding tantrums when you take the phone away from baby?

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Kid, 11 years old

Parents, you need to accept that the iPad is no longer the new baby sitter. Don't spoil your child with devices, and actually pay attention to them. If you're on a road trip with with your family, give your young kids books, or show them educational videos on important subjects and facts. I would understand if you're busy with things, but if you're one of those busy parents and reading this, then you're just lying to yourself. If they play video games, play with them. Watch them, and read with them. Don't just focus on work or sleep all day. Actually pay attention.
Teen, 15 years old written by Common sense LST

a baby shouldn't really use an electronic device unless it is for a lot of educational videos. like baby Einstein, for example. just eventually wean your baby off of the devices, and only show your educational videos on the devices. or you can also use it for videochatting with other relatives. and give your baby other ways of TLC.
Adult written by mswise

A baby has no reason to be taught to spend time with an iPhone. You're the adult; you set the boundaries. If you're clear within yourself that this is not an appropriate play toy, you'll be able to respond with clarity and continuity. And with consistent boundaries, the baby will learn quickly. Find some kind of alternative special toy or item to offer the baby when you, the adult, need to use your phone. At the same time, be conscious of how you use your phone in the presence of the child. If she/he senses that your attention is more invested in the little screen, that can certainly be upsetting for a little one and they will act in such a way as to get your attention.
Teen, 13 years old written by BallerTy97

Say no to your kid. If you just give her what she wants whenever she wants it, she'll eventually catch on. She'll realize, "Hey, when I cry, mommy/daddy gives me whatever I want!" Don't let your kid get spoiled. You need to teach them that they won't always get what they want.