On the “Raising Adults: Future Focused Parenting” podcast, hosts Kira Dorrian and Deana Thayer chat with our company co-founder, Bill Brady, about raising adults and starting with the end in mind in terms of introducing children to technology gradually and safely.
As a father of five, Bill is currently navigating through the complexities of how to keep his kids safe from all of the potential dangers out there, including those presented digitally. Recognizing this is an issue many parents are also facing, Troomi Wireless was born to nurture the idea that if parents can help their children learn the skills necessary to safely navigate social media, app use, email, messaging, etc., those children can be empowered now and enjoy limitless potential in the future.
The Troomi Wireless mission or philosophy is that kids have the potential to learn, do, and become anything. So just how do Troomi devices help parents introduce technology to their children with the end in mind? Bill believes a relationship of trust, knowing what red flags to look for, and a flexible device that can grow with your kid(s) are key.
Establish a Foundation of Trust
First, it’s vitally important to establish a healthy relationship with your children based on trust. This requires discovering the right balance between monitoring and independence. How do you monitor in a healthy way, without infringing on your child’s right to privacy? In Bill’s opinion:
“Kids thrive and can build confidence when they’re trusted, so we don’t want to send the message we don’t trust and have to review everything. It’s got to be a constructive, productive, respectful relationship where parents and kids can talk openly about potential dangers or concerns, and talk with no fear about the challenges they are dealing with. They have to feel trusted in order to have those conversations.”
Additionally, kids like to feel a part of the decisions, rather than just being dictated to at every turn. Bill suggests working together to build a plan with your child to protect them from potential issues. Show your child you trust them to be responsible, but that they need to work together with you to continually assess the dangers that exist.
Look For Red Flags
There are numerous issues to be watching out for as your children begin to explore the digital universe—some more urgent than others. It’s important for the parent to be constantly aware of what platforms and risks exist so they can understand what their children are engaging in.
Bill emphasizes it’s not just your teenagers you need to worry about. If your kids are online, you should be monitoring. We need to be active and involved in teaching our kids about the danger before they are faced with it, and that age is becoming younger and younger. With the proliferation of technology, it’s not 2 or 3 influences parents have to watch out for like it was when we were young—it’s coming at our kids from every direction all the time. We as parents have got to be aware of what our children are engaging in.
How Can Troomi Help?
Bill has made it his life work to find a solution to the issues listed above. He has worked to build Troomi into a solution where parents can have a trusting relationship with their kids while also providing kids with a solution that is safe and empowering. Troomi Wireless devices help children prepare for the future and enable them to become great adults.
Rather than an ‘all or nothing’ approach, where your child either has an unlocked/fully-loaded phone or a very safe but very limited phone, Troomi has taken the approach of flexibility.
Bill states, “Troomi phones are a way to give kids a safe, locked down phone, while providing parents the opportunity to graduate kids into additional levels of functionality as their kids grow and mature and their needs change and they have the ability to take on more responsibilities. Because really, that needs to happen if we’re going to have them leave the house ready to be great adults. They will have to have learned discipline and self control and how to use technology wisely.”
Deana agreed. “What I like is the gradual and yet consistent up-leveling, so it’s not just going to plateau out—too bad so sad. Because [kids] do need to learn how to engage with this stuff. We can offer technology in the appropriate chunks at the appropriate time and when they are demonstrating appropriate maturity, instead of sitting them down to a buffet to eat any entree they want.”
Troomi has created an OS to do just that. A high quality device that is affordable and starts with a completely locked down experience (basic talk and text), but gives parents the opportunity to control a few critical things, including safelisting contacts, increasing levels of privilege as they demonstrate increasing responsibilities.
There are a lot of families dealing with these issues and Troomi is excited to be part of the solution for them. In the words of Deana and Kira, “Let’s stop raising kids and start raising adults!”
Listen to the full podcast episode here.