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Teenage Problems/I don't understand...


Hello Mr.Taylor ! My name is Bianca, I am currently a senior in high school and lately I've been asking my mom to switch me off her phone plan, so I can get my own plan, and pay for my own phone.

It seems like every time I turn around my mom is complaining about phones, and how people spend too much money on them, or how much money she's spending on our phone plan.

Currently I have a job that I have had for the past 4 months. The one I want is a smartphone, and my mom doesn't really 'believe' in them. She feels that a phone should be used as it was originally made for: Talking. When I tried to explain to her that if she let me pay my own bill it would take the financial burden off of her. I even pointed out to her that: A)I'd be paying for it. B)I have been bringing home good grades. C)Out of all of my friends, I'm the only one that would be truly 'earning' it. and D)Furloughs are coming up.

So my question is this: Why is she complaining so much about phones, but when I try to pay for it myself, it's an issue? What kind of logic is she thinking?

I know you're busy with your own life, so thank you for taking the time out to answer my question.

Hi there Bianca,

Thank you for taking the time to write to me and I hope that I can help.

Technology that is available today and that will be available in the near future must seem Alien to anybody born before the 1990's as everything was designed to be functional and serve a single purpose. Along came e-mail and Internet in the late 1990's and everything has changed from being single purpose and face to face, to people making million dollar deals on a tablet or a phone from the other side of the World. Chances are, your mom will not 'believe' in smartphones because her argument will be that a phone is for talking to people and not for anything else and this comes from that fact that when she was younger, mobile cell phones were either not around or in their infancy. Your mom will not probably understand the importance of social media in young people's lives and that it is probably the most used form of communication between peers than anything else. Your mom's argument will be that it is a lot of money to pay for when you do not need it, but if she understood that having a smartphone could mean that you keep your grades up because it means that you never miss deadlines at school and have constant access to your e-mail and Internet for homework use, she may begin to change her attitude. She may never be convinced because she does not understand the importance of it but if you can show her the features it has and what it enables you to do (including being able to find your way home if you got lost with SatNav), again this strengthens your case.

If you can save up enough money to pay for it and prove that you can meet the costs of a monthly plan, your mom may disagree but she will not be able to stop you because you will have saved the money and proved that you can look after yourself financially.

I hope that helps.  

Teenage Problems

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Daryl Taylor, BSc (Hons) Psychology, PGDip (pending certification)


My expertise covers everything and anything to do with growing up, being a teenager or a young adult or being the parent of one of the pre-described. I can cover issues on identity, sexuality, love, relationships, families, drug/alcohol abuse and anything and everything in between.


I have volunteered for for over ten years now, but even before that I was trying to use my experience to help others by working with, and even Lycos and Ask Jeeves. My experience comes from being a teenager primarily but this lead me to work with young people from the age of 13. I have worked front line, face to face and over the telephone, e-mail and webchat for a government department called Connexions UK (aimed at young people aged 13-19); as well as being student counselor in New York, a Peer Mentor, a student teacher and working for my school, college and University to help raise the aspirations of young people. My life has not been easy and I have been through my fair share of issues; so there is little that I haven't been through in reality opposed to just reading it from a book or from my academic studies. I have been featured as a case study as achieving through adversity for a number of magazines and I have featured in a couple of books on both sides of the Atlantic; even though I am UK based.

The Albert Kennedy Trust

Relationships: Cathy Senker, 2012, Raintree The Dean and Chapter Positive Nation GTEN Television Aim Higher

BSc(Hons) Psychology Post Graduate Diploma in Multidisciplinary Design Innovation Basic Counselling Skills Effective Listening Skills Mental Health First Aid

Awards and Honors
Outstanding Student achievement Adult learner's Award

Past/Present Clients Connexions Direct

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