Growing up Social Giveaway with Arelene Pellicane

I’m so excited to have my friend, Arlene Pellicane back doing a guest blog post. She is sharing about her new book, Growing up Social: raising relational kids in a screen-driven world, that she co-wrote with Dr. Gary Chapman.  Be sure to leave a comment on today’s post for a chance to win one of two books.

Now meet Arlene and Dr. Gary.

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Arlene is a speaker and author of 31 Days to a Happy Husband and 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife. Before becoming a stay-at-home mom, Arlene worked as the Associate Producer for Turning Point Television. She earned her BA from Biola University and her Masters in Journalism from Regent University. Arlene lives in the San Diego area with her husband James and their three young children.

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Dr. Gary Chapman is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling The 5 Love Languages. With over 30 years of counseling experience, he has the uncanny ability to hold a mirror up to human behavior, showing readers not just where they are wrong, but how to grow and move forward.

It was a beautiful day.

My family was headed to the beach with friends. Our family was in one minivan and their family was in another. Both of the vans were close together as we drove down the highway.  Suddenly from behind us, three motorcycles sped up and passed us. Right before our eyes, one of them popped a wheelie. The other motorcycle which had two riders took the challenge and did the same. We felt like we were watching a daredevil show from the comfort of our own minivan. Interstate 805 had never been so exciting!

It was certainly nothing we would ever want our children to do (drive recklessly on the freeway) but boy was it fun to watch! We followed those motorcycles for miles, hoping to see more of the show. We weren’t disappointed as they popped more wheelies and finally zoomed off the exit ramp with great fanfare.  When we reached the beach, we excitedly said to our friends, “Wow, that was amazing! Could you believe those motorcycles?”  The kids stared blankly at us.  They had missed the whole thing. They were watching a DVD from the backseat and hadn’t even noticed the motorcycles.

Another time, my family went on a whale watching cruise. When that whale fin finally appeared out of the water, we caught it. But dozens of children missed it. They were playing with their electronic devices inside the cabin.  There is so much in life to be missed when you are glued to a screen. It’s not just about those special moments like seeing a whale’s fin or watching motorcycles pop wheelies.

It’s about the everyday moments and chances to catch your child’s eye and smile. Emotions have to do with relationships. They are the responses to the things that happen in our lives, both pleasant and unpleasant. Children must learn how to process emotions, and none of that is learned in front of a screen. All of that is learned by interacting with parents, siblings, and other people in real time.  Face to face. A world that is dominated by screens is a false, controlled world that revolves around pleasing your child. If your child doesn’t like something on a device, he can just move onto the next thing until he finds something of interest. Kids don’t have to learn how to wait because gratification is instant.

What does that teach your child? Real life certainly isn’t characterized by endless options, drop down menus, and constant pleasure.  There is much to be missed as a parent as well. Too much screen time robs you of many teachable moments with your child, building family memories, and bonding with your child.  It may be easier to allow your child to have hours of screen time but have you considered the personal growth you may be missing out on as a parent?  Be brave. Flip off the remote and take a look outside the window. Who knows? You might just see some motorcycles flying by.

In Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World parents are reminded that they, not technology, are still responsible for educating their children about having healthy and fulfilling relationships. Although parents are not able to monitor every minute of their child’s screen time, they can guide their children to make positive choices, by example. Growing Up Social offers practical guidance on:

• Parenting Your Child Through Their Screen Life

• Screen Time and the Brain

• Screen Time and the Love Languages

• Screen Time and Parental Authority 

• Screen Time and Destructive Lifestyle Patterns

Now for the giveaway. Arlene's book

Two fabulous people will win a copy of Arlene and Gary’s book Growing up Social: Raising Kids in a Screen-Driven World.  Leave a comment on why this book would be helpful for you or share some hints that have helped your family reconnect face time interaction.

48 Comments

  1. so tough to know how to guide kids in this. I can set time limits but know that I need to get them to understand it so that they will set healthy habits when they are on their own.

  2. I have 3 kids and my oldest won’t go anywhere without her phone. She has to be constantly connected and I really struggle with how to set limits. She is 17…it’s tough! Help me do it right with the younger ones!

  3. This may provide some helpful insight in the ongoing struggle between two teenagers and the sheer quantity of time spent with their faces “in” their phones.

  4. We have a constant battle at our house with my teenagers and their screens. Oftentimes, I find myself very frustrated and upset because of my kids inability to disconnect from their screens. I would like to read the book to know how to set some healthy limits and help them establish some self-control in this area. Thanks for the chance to win!

  5. Screens are not going away. I think I must feel like our Grandmothers when TVs arrived in their era and they were afraid that the screen would turn their children’s brains to mush, make them go blind and so on. We can’t ignore the potential that these new devices have to impact our kids for good – it’s a matter of finding the balance. I am eager to learn anything I can about molding a child who is socially fit while able to enjoy a little screen time here and there.

  6. I have a stepson, who has rules at our house regarding screen time, yet has no rules at his mom’s house. So finding ways to let him know that limits should be set is difficult. Would love a chance to read the book!

  7. I have 6 children, ranging in age from 11 to 21 months. I feel like I am constantly monitoring “screen time”. We have firm limits on how much time our children spend zoning in front of a screen, but it is a struggle because they often question why friends are allowed much more freedom with technology. I would love to read this book–thanks for the chance to win!

  8. I’m all about intentionally being more interactive with my kids! And they’re both under two! I know I get a lot of slack and eye rolls from others, but as a former teacher, I know the importance of interaction with people and not screens. I’m definitely intrigued by this book!!!

  9. This book is so timely!!! I have a 3 and 1 year old and already, they LOVE spending time on my tablet and phone…to have help knowing how to guide them to create healthy habits in using this technology from the beginning would be amazing! Thanks for sharing this resource!

  10. With 3 teenagers I find myself in a continual battle to unplug and reconnect. I feel like my own children and their peers are under so much pressure to constantly be hooked in and caught up with social media. When they do get a (sometimes forced) chance to disconnect from the electronic world I often will eventually see a sense of relief once the initial panic wears off. I would love to read this book and gain insight on how to find more balance in this area.

  11. I would give this book to my daughter. She has children ages 11, 10, and 6. This is a CONSTANT battle for her with her boys. I think it would help her as she continues to try to purposely parent them. This inspired me to call her and do family pizza and game night this Friday night. Thanks!

  12. I am just as guilty of having too much screen time in my day as my 13yo daughter. I think this book will benefit me first. Kids do what they see modeled, so if I change what is modeled, she will (eventually) notice and change as well.

  13. I know that we all want to say that we do a good job of keeping our kids away from electronics, but we are all guilty. I am guilty, myself, of wanting to spend my evenings at home relaxing in front of the tv. I would love to get out of the habit of spending time in front of the screens and focusing more on the now with my daughter!

  14. I need this book because my 10 year old daughter has been spending too much time on her tablet. She bought it herself with her own money, and I know she uses our libraries reading app to read books on there, but I also know that’s not all she does on it. She has a cheap cell phone to call only (because she walks to and from school), but wants a nicer cell phone, so she can text and play games. I need to read this with her to help her connect outside of screen time and books.

  15. I shared this today on my Facebook page. I am guilty many times being glued to that screen as well. Would love to read this book and also share with my daughter/grandson.

  16. We have in our family a no electronic day; we read books, go outside and play, etc. It brings us back to basics that we need (adults and children both need!). Plus we have dinner around the table almost every night; one child’s friend asked if we did this just because she was there. She was shocked when she was told no, “We do this every night, and she asked if she could start having supper with us!!”

  17. Our first grandchild is 3 months old. I would love for my daughter and myself to have some christian guidelines on our screen driven world!

  18. I have done a good job at keeping my daughter from the pulls and draws of screen time. But it has been in a very hypocritical way. Both my husband and myself struggle with issue. We are constantly dealing with having the TV screen on or the iPad in our hands when we are home. I know I miss way too much of my daughters days because of it and my hubby misses too much of our evenings as parents and as a couple because of it. I know there is a problem and want to change it, my hubby not so much. Hoping this book will draw us both together on the same page so that we may be able to better hold each other accountable.

    1. Make incremental changes – nothing huge that you won’t be able to sustain. Maybe a certain time in the evening when you and your hubby have screen time, and then everything has to get turned off. Loser owes the other spouse a back rub!

  19. The book sounds great – all the information gathered for me (less screen time for me!). :) All our devices are exceedingly useful tools, but we do need to use moderation. With our grandchildren, we do have time limits, but because they respond well to being given information about why it’s best, this would be seriously helpful.

  20. I think we are losing communication skills and opportunities with family friends and people around us. It is a serious matier we need to start changing.

  21. This would be a great help raising a teenager who is being taught essentially on an ipad and who hates to even read a book!

  22. I have shared the importance of bonding and family interaction on my own personal website, A Mind “Full” Mom. I would love to read this book and do a review or just share what I learned to help my readers, put away the devices and connect. So important for strong families. Thanks for sharing!

  23. This book has important information that will help others to become aware of how much screen time changes our lives. Not always for the better. BALANCE and MODERATION in every little thing…we must.

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