This year we are sharing occasional Friday posts focused on Family Tips ~ topics that have more to do with family than home organization and often with a peek into my own journey as a busy Mom. For today’s post, I had planned to shoot a video but after watching AT&T’s Texting and Driving ~ It Can Wait, there is nothing more powerful I can offer than this perspective. As I type, my house is full of 6 teenagers, stuck here until tomorrow because we are in the midst of an ice storm that makes it unsafe for anyone to drive home. There are 3 extra cars in my driveway all belonging to 16 and 17 year olds, responsible drivers but novice as well. Before they arrived thanks to an early release I made sure they all had permission from their parents to come with the understanding that I wouldn’t let them leave if the roads were unsafe and that meant sleeping over. After 4 pounds of chili, a pack of hot dogs, 1/2 a pan of brownies, and countless chips, we’ve made it through the first of 3 meals that will surely render my fridge empty, and I couldn’t be more blessed.
My sons have chosen friends that we love and welcome in our home. They are thoughtful, friendly, fun, all hard working, athletes, some juggling part time jobs, and typical teens. Lots of XBox and goofing off, razzing, and most importantly they are just good kids. Even our elementary aged daughter loves when they are over. So as I sat down to write this post, I asked them what has had the biggest influence in teaching them how important it is to not text and drive. Here is what they said:
- Having a friend die in an accident because the driver was texting.
- Simple common sense that when it come’s to your phone, it can wait. (Totally unprompted, no knowledge of the campaign, and not an AT&T customer. I’d say the name is well chosen.)
- Because I don’t want to wake up in the hospital and not know how I got there.
- Being exposed to videos that teach us about how likely it is that you will crash and what happens when you do.
- Getting my concussion in a car accident caused by another teenager.
I was struck with the value of community awareness campaigns as a teaching tool and saddened by the first hand knowledge that has touched their lives. So then I asked them that with all this knowledge, how do they resist the temptation.
- I turn my phone on silent and put it in the console where I can’t get it easily anyway.
- Just turn your phone off. No temptation, no distractions.
To a child that was the answer ~ its simple ~ just don’t make your phone accessible and make sure it is disabled so it can’t distract you. Enter AT&T. You may have seen my Samsung Rugby Smart Review last Fall where I mentioned the It Can Wait Drive Mode App. For kids who choose to leave their phone on, the Drive Mode App will automatically send a text back to any communication letting the sender know that you are unavailable until you get to the destination. You can preset up to 5 numbers to ring through even when the app is on with the understanding that it is just in case of emergency and 911 is always enabled no matter if you have the Drive Mode app on or not.
While 97% of teens say that they have heard the message about don’t text and drive, 43& admit to it and 75% say they know friends who do as well. As parents, we have to lead by example, offering family tips that teach them right from wrong. And lets be honest ~ we all know that can be easier said and done. But no different than when these teens were toddlers, they see all we do and like it or not, will often do the same. This time, you’ve got a chance to model a choice that will save their lives because without a shadow of a doubt, truly, it can wait.
Thanks to the generous team at AT&T, I’ve got an incentive to help you lead by example. Check out our GO MOM!® ATT It Can Wait Giveaway!
So what’s in it for you?
- 1 Samsung Galaxy SIII ~ SWEET!
- It Can Wait t-shirt
- It Can Wait phone case
- It Can Wait car sticker
All of these gifts make sure that when you need it most, you are a visible reminder to your kids about making the right choice every time they step into the car. Here is how to enter:
1. Leave us a comment below answer this question: How do you teach your teens about safe mobile habits like not texting and driving?
2. Tweet about this post: “What does texting and driving look like to your phone when you crash? #ItCanWait @ATT @MyGOMOM”
3. Post here in the comments with a validating link to your tweet.
The contest runs Friday January 25th to Friday February 1st. The winner will be drawn automatically by “And the Winner Is” and notified within 48 hours. As the mother of 2 teen drivers, this issue is close to my heart. Please enter our giveaway and help share the message with parents and teens alike that when it comes to texting and driving, it can wait.
Thanks so much for stopping by ~
Disclosure: special thanks to AT&T for reaching out to me to share this incredibly valuable information. I received the same gift pack as pictured above. I am honored to share this giveaway with the hopes that we can all raise awareness and continue to teach our teens (and their parents) that It Can Wait.