As the title says, my 10 year old daughter watches Youtube shorts all day - and not things you can learn stuff from. She also constantly says she's tired. When I ask her to help with anything, she either does it quickly and goes back to her phone or she makes all kinds of excuses not to do it. She also doesn't put away her dishes or so after supper.
Simple, you are the parent and she is the child.
You should set boundaries and responsibilities for her.
Limit her screen time by putting away her phone/tablet/PC (she doesn't have to have it while at home). 2 hours a day is already more than enough (Or alternatively kick her of the Wi-Fi and not give her the password until her chores are done for the day).
Don't allow her to leave the table unless she puts her dishes in the sink, reward her (with praise or maybe a small thing like a dessert) when she obeys.
I have 4 little cousins i babysit frequently, in their home their mother gives them to much freedom. They don't listen or respect her and do whatever they want and give tantrums when my aunt calls them on their behavior, to which she just gives up disciplining them and lets them do whatever again.
When they are at my house they are well behaved, say thanks and please, clean up after themselves and do healthy (nature hikes with me and my dog) and creative (drawing/reading/arts and crafts) activities.
As a parent (or parental figure) you are not supposed to be just their friend, but also their teacher.
These kinds of posts kill me. Seriously... you're the parent... act like one. Take away the phone. It's literally not rocket science. She can't watch youtube shorts on her phone if she doesn't have a phone to watch them on!
Doing chores and cleaning up after herself should not be optional, they should be expectations and failing to fulfill them should have consequences.
If you don't get a handle on your 10 year old now, you'll be in serious trouble when she becomes a teenager.
Your lack of parental guidance isn't just frustrating for you, it is detrimental to her future. She must learn responsibility and consequences while she's young, or the real-world is going to eat her alive. And it will be your fault. She'll ultimately pay the price, but you'll have been the one to set her on the wrong track.
I have a stepson of a similar age with similar tendencies. He was given a smartphone at the age of 9 by his biological father, so that he could call him on it. At first he used it to watch Youtube well into the night. The solution was to take the 'phone away at night.
Similar things happened in the daytime with the 'phone and the Playstation: given the chance he'd watch/play all day, which affected his moods and behaviour. We encouraged him to limit his screen time, but he wasn't mature enough to control it on his own. He would often say he only wanted to look something up or play for a short time, then try to stay on for hours.
The solution was enforced limits, by parental controls on the 'phone and reminding him when the time was up on the Playstation. (The PS has some parental controls but we chose not to rely on them.) He also has to do certain things to earn the time.
Each time, he grumbled and tried to sneak around the limits for a while, but ended up accepting them. The main thing is he's less tired and more interested in social and physical activities. He's also learning to ration his time in case he "needs" to use his 'phone in the evening. Interestingly, he often doesn't use all his allowed time on the 'phone, even though it's less than he used to use before we introduced the limit.
In case anyone wants a countercultural perspective on this -
I tend to disagree with the solutions that start with "you're the parent." Believe it or not, you can destroy your relationships with your kids if you choose to live like it's 1955. Conversely, you can also ruin your relationships if you take the whole child led concepts too literally.
One fun nugget to chew on - kids are extremely receptive to psychology, and can be turned away from the things that we believe are ruining their minds, if we take the time to employ tactics that are not as deceptive as they may seem. The most important thing to understand in this approach is that it absolutely and unequivocally requires you to be present, attentive, and willing to forego your own interests in order to redirect your child's.
Look at your own habits and pastimes. At 10, she is most likely able to operate on her own, and has granted you time to resume things you did before being a parent in this era. Even if we don't notice it, we all do things like that. We go from tending to everything they do, so slowly realizing they don't need us for every little thing. It can make us just as lazy as they appear when they are watching youtube all day. So to say, it is not inconceivable that this habit was picked up because we seemed too busy to do things that she actually wanted to do, so she learned to do this instead.
Every kid has interests, especially at 10. The "you're the parent" phrase works best for me in this capacity - you can make the call that you have to go somewhere, and they are used to this by now. Kids go along. Leave the house and take her with you. Not just things that cost money per say, but anything that is an excursion that weaves physical actions back into the mix with you. Joke. Point things out in the weird world around you, and develop your own delights in the things she comes up with in these conversations and queries.
Tired has nothing to do with it. We all get tired when we fester. Force activity through clever manipulation, and you can break that rut. I don't mean hands off things like trying to force them into a sports program or something. That is no better than snatching their phones and telling them they are banned from the internet. Unless it is something they are truly interested in, it may end up filed in the memory vault with all the reasons why their parents are tyrants.
But kids want to play. Unearthing the mysteries of their delights and interests can be a challenge in itself, but not asking, and not trying are positively going to ensure this youtube habit continues forever. Don't get me wrong. I am not implying that you yourself don't try. It is, however, pretty common for parents to perceive their own time as maximized and insist they cannot do what I am suggesting. So I have to call it out. That we all often take up habits and routines that we say are necessary for our own sanity without realizing that this absence of focus and attention is the very thing that converted watching a few videos while dinner is being made into the default go-to when it doesn't seem like there's anything else to do. A conclusion that may not have been reached if random adventures were ever present.
Reside the point, the psychological aspect of this is that your own involvement and perceived interests in the adventures that prevent youtube from being an option may be what is necessary to ween her back into reality. It's not always what she wants to do, but perhaps even in her being a part of things you demonstrate an interest in. If you appear happy because of her involvement, she may be more interested in being involved. Some examples we use in our own household -
Miniatures. Think like model train sets and things like that. My daughter, about 10 at the time now that I think of it, is not into model trains and I am not either. But we both seemed to like the fascination of miniature displays when we saw them in a random hardware store. The little animals, and more or less the snapshot of life in the form of a small village or town. Because I am constantly asking them rhetorical questions about everything around, our brief glance over a model train table turned into an afternoon of questioning the scene, and became an interesting thing to do at home where we both make miniature buildings, animals, and whole towns out of various mediums. Sculpey, air dry clay, 3D printers and SLA printers. We hunt for rocks in the wash that look like boulders in the little village. This has clay work, painting, and inventive problem solving as well. Making the time to get her rolling on a new piece of the village is pretty easy, and often involves me making some on my own and showing her what I made, so as to illustrate that it is not just a combined activity, but also one we can surprise each other with. And wow have they made some amazing and hilarious things.
Tree climbing. It started out as a few trees in the wash and ended up being a requested activity to go to the rock climbing places, and bike rides to the good tree spots. But it began with us as parents trying to climb a pretty horizontal, low hanging tree ourselves, even if we are not as nimble as we once were. The kids gave their tries, and we engaged in it. As we drive about, we might point a tree out and ask them if they believe it's a good one to climb. Would it get you away from the zombie horde? Would it take too long? etc. Queries and actions. Tree climbing was just one aspect of the adventures. There were other things in the wash worth challenging, or examining, or building upon.
Chickens. We don't have land worth discussing, but we had enough space to build a coop. One day I brought some chicks home and blabbed on and on about the mighty chicken. The kids got into them, as most people tend to delight in little birds. But we needed help making them a home, figuring out their interests, etc. I would ask for help making the coop, and my wife would ask for help preparing them food and nesting boxes, etc. But the idea that we needed help kept them engaged and formed a relation with the birds that meant that even when we are not specifically tending to them, the kids will often be out there spending time with the chickens, who will actually play with the kids. Chickens have weird personalities that are hilarious when you figure out how to coexist with them. And of course, chickens are just an example. Not an option for everyone, I know. But the example is more like - an unconventional animal that requires hands on care, but is not auto-filed into one of those things only I do because others have lost interest. Animals like dogs are easy to fit that bill. But chickens are just odd enough where it is something new to find out what they are into today, what they have destroyed, and so on.
Even if none of these are options for you, the basic idea is that we are always observing and seeding what may be an interest vs an observation and knowing when to pounce on something that will broaden their experiences and memories beyond what such an impersonal tool like an ipad will do without specifically ruling the ipad out. We don't want to create interest via forbidding. We want to create interest within each other and ourselves by observing reactions, questioning the hows and whys of everything, and remaining open to the idea of trying something different, even something that you personally have no interest in. You may grow one you never knew you had just because you see how they delight in it.
Sometimes it takes psychology to break into this, and maintain it. But psychology doesn't have to be seen as a weapon or deceptive manipulation. Even if it sounds like trickery. In the end, using ourselves as the segue into numerous and varied interests has given us all plenty of activities to do as a family or solo that don't involve devices. And as a result, I see them using the ipad less and less by their own volition. Both have phones. Neither one of them is glued to the phone like the zombies you see in society today. But all of it came with an integration of ourselves in their interests. Almost like - the lack of confidence in knowing how to do something is what prevents anyone from doing anything. But when we do it together, that fades away and the attitude of "how hard can it be" starts to surface. That's the self guidance that was my goal as I pondered what I can do to prevent the zombie child from forming when I began my tour of parenting some 13 years ago.
Personally, I abhor traditions. We aren't stuck back in time. So while things move forward, I have to do so as well, or I risk losing touch with the new generation that I am raising. It is conventional to believe the typical rules society imparts as expectation are the baseline and generally unwavering. But I disagree. I don't know how much of tradition I adopt in my whack method of parental insanity, but I have some incredibly talented, intelligent, creative kids who are always top of their class and seem to have a decent grasp on the ethical treatment of everyone and everything around them. I have to assume that our integrations into their interests and refusal to do it the way it's always been done had something to do with that. Even if youtube and other online social interests are still present and continue to be unrestricted. We don't represent everyone, but we do serve as an example that balance is possible in the subject of addictive childhood pastimes in this era.
Taking away the phone is just cruel. Turst me I KNOW THAT Let's break it down...
Why she's watching so much?
How to talk to her?
How to limit it?
Ch 1 - Why she's watching so much?
This is obviously because she doesn't find her real life exciting. Even if it was, She is curious about other people. DO NOT take the phone away completely!! This will make her question what she did wrong and soon, get frustrated along with angry with her life. Who knows?? She might be doing something creative or her passion is in the digital media.Taking the phone away might make her a moody teenager from early on because she feels like she can't trust you.
Ch 2 - How to talk to her?
Oh boy this is the hard one! First, try and tell her your reasoning on why. Also tell her that too much screen time is bad for her. Definitely tell her that she still will have screentime but not so much!
Ch 3 - How to limit it?
Like I said before, DO NOT take it away! Instead, give her only 1hr - 1hr and 30 min! If she doesn’t listen, don't be too harsh. Try and trick her. Get her a sport she enjoys or an art project; even have playdates with her friends or go out to the mall. A sport should be good only for 30min - 1 hour because she's still really young!
Hope this helps!! :D