Dear mom on the iPhone: Let me tell you what you don’t see

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  • Habib Assi Salt Lake City, Utah
    April 6, 2015 1:53 p.m.

    Except for phones in traffic--I couldn't disagree more with these comments. Talk about helicoptering! Don't buy into the guilt trip! Not only do parents have to take their kids to the park, they have to give them their undivided attention and stare at them every second! No wonder we are raising a new generation of narcissistic brats. Let them play--talk on your phone-look at Facebook. Kids know that you are there if needed.

    I had the best mom ever and she sent me out the door to play--but I knew she was home and was there if I needed her. Don't buy the premise of this article--it's silly!

  • MsStanley Sewell/USA, NJ
    April 2, 2015 5:59 a.m.

    I have sometimes been the Mom on the iPhone at the park. First, it was while my oldest was a toddler, and I was going through a tough divorce. I wanted her to able to play and smile while I was having to do a lot of difficult communicating with my lawyer. Being with her while I pushed her on the swing or helped her up the ladder helped me stay positive as I waited for the next unhappy email or text. But when those messages came, I'm sure I appeared "unattentive" as I read them and thoughtfully worded my replies. No, the communication wasn't unimportant, or something I could have put off. Years later, I was again that Mom while my husband served two separate year long tours with the military. This time, I took tons of pictures to send to Daddy. Also, his availability to chat sometimes happened to align with our park visits. Was it wrong for me to spend my time chatting with him? I agree, that electronics shouldn't be the lens through which we view life...but I would advise against judging the Moms we see on their phones.

  • Danny Chipman Lehi, UT
    March 31, 2015 11:54 p.m.

    Why is a two-year-old article being run again? Thought it looked familiar....

  • Mona Beaverton, OR
    March 31, 2015 6:30 p.m.

    I'm all for phone addicts putting down their devices and paying attention once in a while. And I'm also for children learning to play on their own without a parent being 100% involved. When my children were young (in the 70s and 80s) I brought a book to read at the park or talked to other moms. I kept an eye on my children of course, but it is healthy for them to know there are times when mom is just in the background and not one of their playmates.

    I'm sure there are parents who are on their phones way too much. The worst thing to me is when a parent interrupts a conversation with a child to answer their phone. We have caller ID people. Call them back later.

  • PhoenixAZ phoenix, AZ
    March 31, 2015 4:16 p.m.


  • CheNZ NZ, 00
    May 9, 2014 3:56 p.m.

    It's nice to get both sides of the situation. Here is a great response to this article, I couldn't have said it better myself. Sometimes it's better not to judge because you have no idea what a parent you are observing is truly like:
    Dear Mom Telling Me To Get Off My Phone

  • homesteading mom mountains, CO
    May 21, 2013 8:46 p.m.

    Oh, and a followup to my comment. My children are grown, but I managed to spend time with each of them today; the eldest because she lives so close and we were able to have several conversations while dinner was made, while chickens were tended, outside inthe yard in the sunshine. I spoke with my other child through - gasp! - Facebook chat and then on the phone, because he does not live close, being a Marine.

    He spoke to me via an - gasp! - iPhone. Yep - evil technology that lets me keep abreast of what my children do, even though they are grown. Now I know what was up with my kid's days - will you be able to say the same when yours are grown?

  • homesteading mom mountains, CO
    May 21, 2013 8:34 p.m.

    Since this article is addressing all moms - When I was a child, there were no cell phones. My mother's and grandmother's time was taken up with cooking, cleaning, dusting, laundry, gardening, ironing, sewing - things that it was expected of them to do. When I grew up, and my children were young, I had to do all of that, plus grade papers and make lesson plans. We didn't get to pay attention to the kids EVERY time they called us to come look. Does that make all three of us bad mothers? No. Because those are the things society says we should do.

    Now the cell phone allows us to conduct business outside of the house, to go anywhere. You think you know all there is to know about that mom. That iPhone time could be paying for the groceries and gas to get to the park Her kids are outside, in the sun, playing, rather than inside. Nice job being judgmental without facts.

  • Natmom Wheaton, IL
    March 19, 2013 12:33 p.m.

    When you point that finger, remember there are THREE pointing back at YOU. As a stay at home mom, I don't get as much as a bathroom break by myself. I'm on top of pretty much EVERYTHING when it comes to my children. You can bank on that!!!
    Now, I can't take them to the park without being judged.
    People need to mind their own business.

  • Miri Orem, UT
    March 15, 2013 5:08 p.m.

    Leave it to the internet to judge a mom who's taken two seconds of time for herself, and to dismiss anyone who doesn't like it as "overly sensitive" or having a "guilty conscience." I am right there with the author about feeling like we need to step away from the electronics sometimes. But you know what? I'm pretty sure I only have the right to make that judgment about myself, because I don't KNOW what anyone else has been doing with their time.

    The entire premise of this article is faulty, anyway—that a mother should let "everything else fall away" and focus entirely on her kids. What happens in twenty years when those children are gone and Mommy has no idea who she is without all the "wonderful, noisy, sticky-fingered glory" to define her? Guess what: Mommy is still a human being, even when her babies are twirling in their pretty dresses. And if her children know that she thinks about other things in addition to them, that is capital-letter Okay.

  • silversprinmom silver spring, MD
    March 15, 2013 8:21 a.m.

    I thought this article was silly, sanctimonious, and overly sentimental. And I have to ask, where are her kids when she is blogging? What about all the things she misses while they are at school, or sports, or other activities?

  • joeyslowey Orem, UT
    March 10, 2013 12:08 p.m.

    To the mom looking at the mom on the iphone: What were you missing while judging mom on the iphone and planning a blog post about it?

    Is it important to be fully present with your kids? Absolutely.
    Will the time of life with young kids be over all too quickly. Yes.
    Do people spend more time that necessary on electronic devices. Probably.

    But I think most mom's already know that. Most everyone is just trying to do the best job they can, and one of the most difficult things about being a mom of small kids is the endless criticism and guilt inducing comments from other people.

    Everyone faces challenges, everyone has room for improvement, BUT WE'RE ALL TRYING!
    Society needs a little more love, a little more understanding, a little more friendship, a little less judging, a little less criticism.

    Maybe next time snap a quick shot of the twirling princess and text it to mom on the iPhone so she can see what you noticed that she missed. I'm sure she'll love it. And you might make a new friend.

  • John Coctosten Frostbite Falls, MN
    March 7, 2013 4:31 p.m.

    If you raise children to believe that they're the center of YOUR universe, they're likely to grow up to think they're the center of THE Universe.

  • phatpinkyz mississauga/canada, 00
    March 7, 2013 8:12 a.m.

    while i understand the sentiment behind this article, i feel it is quite judgemental. as women and mothers we need to support each other not constantly pick each other apart. you dont know the story behind the woman on her phone so dont judge. by judging you are infact telling your children, your DAUGHTER, this is how we treat each other ... i sak you this, why wasnt the article written for the Dad on his iPhone?

  • eightisenough Provo, UT
    March 7, 2013 12:06 a.m.

    I know your heart mommy, and I know that isn't true.

    But your kids can't protect their privacy, Mommy. Your need for validation and self-esteem is overriding their needs for a childhood secure from the prying eyes of strangers.

    May our narcissism learn boundaries and may we never assume we know the failings or thoughts of others. Let us learn to get the beam out of our own eye, instead of the mote out of our neighbors. Let us learn how to live life without spreading our most intimate moments far and wide for strangers to read...and enjoy the quiet, lovely, wholeness of it all!

  • eightisenough Provo, UT
    March 6, 2013 11:50 p.m.

    Why spend your days in front of a computer screen when you could be playing Candyland, or talking to your school child about his day? And maybe, just maybe, you could stop worrying about taking pictures for your "beautiful blog" long enough to enjoy a moment, totally aware, with those adorable angels of yours (without thinking how the moment will translate into a blog post).
    Excuse me for mixing my metaphors, but sometimes mommies in glass houses shouldn't cast the first stone.
    Because I'm omniscient, I know in your heart that you love your children and wouldn't want to compromise them through blogging.
    I know that's not true mommy.
    And I know you wouldn't want to make blanket generalizations and cast aspersions on strangers.

  • eightisenough Provo, UT
    March 6, 2013 11:34 p.m.

    Dear Mom on the laptop,
    I see you there at the desk, hunched over, frantically uploading yet another picture of the "perfect" looking kids/crafts/recipes/boutique decorated lifestyle. Hear your kids yelling at each other in the background? What's that? Your face scowls as another child interrupts your posting. Why so impatient? Why the urgency to spread your opinions and family pictures far and wide? Why aren't you really living your life with your kids-- instead of publishing and idealized version for the whole world to read?

    Mommy, I hope you don't take this the wrong way. And, if I sound condescending and judgmental, I hope you realize that isn't the intention of my post.

  • Singlemomof2 Portland, OR
    March 6, 2013 8:24 p.m.

    Guys, come on. You know what else isn't good for kids? Having them think they are the center of the universe. So this mom took five minutes out of her day for some adult time. Huge sweeping generalization ensues about ignoring your kids. I think one thing we moms can do is give each other a break. Sometimes in life we wait for others attention, and sometimes we don't get that attention, and it's okay to know that you're still lived and the world won't crash down around you. Read "nurture shock". It's pretty interesting.

  • spleentime Australia, VI
    March 6, 2013 8:11 p.m.

    Thank you for telling us mothers that we don't watch our children enough. Over the years I have endeavoured to attend every concert, performance, sporting game, school assembly, music lessons and any other activities that my 5 children have been involved in. Mobile phone weren't around then, nor were they allowed once they became an added extra. Now, when I go out with my kids, they spend their time on their phones. I can twirl in my new dress till I fall over dizzy, I can call out their names to come watch what I'm doing and their phones are their priorities. So, it's gone full circle! I wish my kids as young adults would give me the same attention that I've given them over the years of them growing up because they are missing my slipping into old age and possibly dementia, and they aren't interested enough to help me remember.
    So take that sanctamonious drivel and put it in a rubbish bin where it belongs.

  • Violinwidow Hartwick, NY
    March 5, 2013 4:26 p.m.

    Dear Mom judging the mom on her Iphone, what were YOU missing while you were busy giving the stinkeye to the other moms at the park? What were YOUR kids doing while you were casting judgment at every other woman's parenting? How do you know that she didn't just spend 6 hours playing with her children and took them to the park to get 2 minutes to think her own thoughts? How do you know she wasn't calling to make a Dr's appt for her child, arranging babysitting, getting results of a blood test, calling about the job interview she had yesterday, making a playdate, or any of the millions of things a mom has to take care of? Were you listening to her phone conversation? I can believe that, a busybody like you probably wouldn't think twice about eavesdropping. Here's my suggestion: watch your own kids play and stop eyeballing every other mom in your vicinity so you can feel some misguided sense of superiority about your own parenting.

  • Oatmeal Woods Cross, UT
    Feb. 23, 2013 11:13 a.m.

    A great many ovelry sensitive people repsonded to this well-written and sensitive article. We ALL need to mindful of how technology is diminishing family time, creating distance between people while providing an illusion of communication and closeness, making us less responsive to others and creating an environment that is less sensitive to the people we love.

  • AlphaSmith LINDON, UT
    Feb. 20, 2013 10:55 a.m.

    I don't mind people being judgmental, it's how we make decisions. But this judgment is simply lacking in basic facts. How in the world do you know that the mother who is inattentive for the ten minutes you stalked her at the park is actually generally inattentive?

    I have six kids and I homeschool them (three are now in college, three at home). I dare say that even if I attached my face to my iPad for an hour a day at the park, I'd still have more quality and quantity kid time than 99% of parents on the planet.

    The fact that this mother took a few minutes of personal time while the kids were at the park doesn't mean anything. When you shower and use the bathroom, you lose opportunities to watch your kids twirl, too. And if you send them to school, you'll miss 7 hours per day, 180 days per year, for 11 years. But I bet you're not going to give up that iPhone time, are you?

  • Paul in MD Montgomery Village, MD
    Feb. 20, 2013 10:52 a.m.

    Wow, look how many people completely missed the point.

    I seriously doubt the author actually took one moment's observation and assumed so much about one person. The author took many observations, probably her own and those she's heard about, and personified and illustrated them with this one brief description and picture.

    I think her point was to get readers to examine how we each spend our time with our kids. I don't believe she's saying if you use a cell phone in front of your kids you are a bad parent. But how important will your kids think they are to you if the cell phone gets more of your time than they do?

    You have to determine your own priorities and balance. The author was just illustrating what you COULD miss, and what you COULD be teaching your kids, if one inanimate object gets most of your attention.

  • Thornberry Way Pleasant Grove/Utah, UT
    Feb. 19, 2013 2:38 p.m.

    This is so true!!! Whoever is on that call can wait! How many times have you even turned the TV off to listen to your kids? The most important person is the one in front of you, not on the phone, not on the TV. Children go from "little", to "big", to "gone", before you know it!

  • hoping Holladay, UT
    Feb. 19, 2013 2:33 p.m.

    Ouch! I lot of guilty consciences responding, say what!

  • hoping Holladay, UT
    Feb. 19, 2013 2:24 p.m.

    Wonderful advice. Now will someone be kind enough to tell me how I can arrange to have my daughter-in-law read it without knowing who sent it to her? She really needs to read it. She even texts while sitting on the sofa "talking" with family. Thanks

  • SLC gal Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 19, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    I get it. We're all more involved with our phones. But it seems to me, the commentors are divided into two camps. The judgers, and the "thou shalt not" judgers. As someone who's trying to juggle caring for TWO elderly parents, my toddler, and a husband in the bishopric, not to mention trying to transition from an office job to a job where I can be at home, any one of you is welcome to guess which side of the camp I fall into.

    Phones can be an issue - if we let them. Social networking can be an issue - if we let it. But when was the last time you judged a carpenter for picking up a hammer, or a plumber for using a wrench.

    It's important to pay attention to your children as well, but like ALL things, its a balancing act.

  • Richie_J21 Farmington, UT
    Feb. 19, 2013 9:05 a.m.

    One of the best days I had with my kids was when I accidentally left my cell phone at home. I didn't have anything else to distract me, and we had an absolutely fantastic day. It was slightly inconvenient, but so worth it! My kids entertained me much more than checking Facebook and playing Temple Run 2 ever could.

  • MsNavyWife Tooele, UT
    Feb. 18, 2013 10:34 p.m.

    I'm so very glad that the moments I snuck on my phone enjoying a few precious lines of an email or too few quick exchanges via Facebook messages with my husband while he was deployed serving our country, and that my time spent in the military can give others the freedoms to write such harshly judgmental blog posts. So, yes I have absolutely ignored or put aside other important things to mess with my iPhone in order to take the time to talk to my dear, sweet husband while he was away serving our country. It may have just looked like me fiddling on my phone, but it was a precious bastion of sanity and love during a hellish time.

  • bradleyc Layton, UT
    Feb. 17, 2013 6:37 p.m.

    I get what she is saying but maybe take the iPhone, open the camera and catch the twirling right then and there. The iphone is a wonderful device that allows us to do all these things and can actually create a more rich experience with our families all depending upon how it is being used.

  • sanpaco Sandy, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:34 p.m.

    I wish people would worry about themselves more and not criticize others for stupid stuff like being on their cell phone at the park.

  • A.B. Sandy, OR
    Feb. 16, 2013 4:46 p.m.

    So I am assuming you wrote this article in the middle of the night so that you wouldn't loose any time with your children. I recommend getting off your high horse and coming back to the reality of motherhood. It is hard enough trying to keep things together and then you read an article like this that is chastising you for taking a moment to yourself. Maybe the mommy on the iphone is talking to a friend of hers for moral support because she is at the end of her rope with her kids that day. Or better yet, she is talking to a dear friend who just found out her husband is cheating on her (you know how that is)...

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 4:33 p.m.

    This blog post was highly judgmental. The blogger has no idea, as others have said, about this other mother. If the blogger is a mother herself she would have done herself a favor by directing some attention to herself, ie. commenting about time that she herself has not spent with her own children. Or maybe even talking about mothers balancing time for all the things they do, and trying to find a second or two for themselves.

    But as the blog is written it does come across as very judgemental and even condescending. Oh, and incredibly passive aggressive. If this blog is any indication the blogger needs to spend a touch more time on introspection.

    Feb. 16, 2013 4:03 p.m.

    Toddlers favorite toy today is their mothers phone not the car keys. This might be because they always see their mom with the phone. Maybe the phone will eventually replace the mom, the phone or some other electronic device.
    Good article, many good commentss.

  • Nita Harris Saratoga Springs, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 3:41 p.m.

    The article is not judging people, just reminding those who need it, to ponder.

  • LDSwifeandmom Summerville, SC
    Feb. 16, 2013 3:36 p.m.

    I don't have a fancy phone. What I do have is 3 young children whom I homeschool and am with every minute of every day. This is my response to this author.

    I may appear like an unattached parent right now, but what you didn't see was me at home simultaneously teaching multiplication tables and chemistry followed by 5 rounds of candy land and helping my 8 year old finish a crossword. Then we built a model of the human heart and that didn't go very well because the glue was messy and now my kitchen is a wreck and I am suppose to serve the missionaries dinner and really I just need a breath. But my kid sister locked this Ipod touch up she thinks I know how to fix it. I do however see you judging me, and I can't help but wonder what you are missing in the lives of your children just so you can take a breath, or have a career as the author of this article.

  • Semw Draper, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 3:31 p.m.

    I understand that technology pulls too many people away from the real life that is going on around them. Everyone should cut back on these things. We should also cherish the beautiful moments that happen with family. However, I felt that his blog post was a little manipulative.

    Mothers work so hard. It is a 24/7 job. Every mom needs a break now and then.

    Have I spent some time on Facebook this week? Yes. However, I also read books to my sons. I made Valentines with them to give to relatives. I made them 3 meals a day. I did laundry so they have clean clothes to wear. I cleaned the house and did dishes. I played with my boys: trains, cars, etc. I also worked over 20 hours this week at my work-from-home job (I only work during nap time and when they are in bed at night).

    I am not the only mom out there who has had a week like this.

    Every mom needs a break once in awhile. The question you should ask yourself is, "Am I using technology too much?" If not, don't beat yourself up when you take a break.

  • danaslc Kearns, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 3:22 p.m.

    Bravo Tony Furuson. Thank you for putting it all into perspective. How will those children treat their kids if no one is teaching them how to parent?

  • Nita Harris Saratoga Springs, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 1:47 p.m.

    This article was not addressing one particular mother the author was supposedly watching, but to all mothers out there who know who they are. Nothing judgmental here.

  • Leesha Kearns, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 1:17 p.m.

    I nice article with a timely reminder. I think we all see people who are on their cell phones way too much. Oblivious to their kids, the traffic they are driving in, all the things happening around them. This seems to be the point of the article, not the mom taking 2 minutes for herself after a busy day or a life's calamity. This article isn't judging a specific person or incident it is commenting on a problem in society as a whole, and as such it is a point well taken. Off to see what my kids are up too.

  • musicalmommyof7 Monroe, GA
    Feb. 16, 2013 12:04 p.m.

    While I see the writer's point to this and yes, some times mother's may not be spending quality time with their kids, but I also don't think there is anything wrong with a mother taking a moment out for herself either. this mother was taking her kid to the park, and was spending time with her. sure maybe not every breathing second was spent in undivided attention to her child but she was doing more than some mom's would. taking her to the park to play. Maybe she also just spent quality time taking a walk with her too.. but I don't think it is your right to judge another mother. She could be talking to her mother who is dying of cancer. Or simply need a 5minute break. you just don't know. Easy to judge another when you aren't in their shoes.

  • dmmoser PAYSON, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 11:43 a.m.

    Cancelled the phones to pay for a missionary. While there have been some frustrations when I have felt I really needed to contact someone (usually DH) I have spent a lot more time talking to the 2 yr old and 9 mth old. Kids really do say the darndest things if you are LISTENING. Thanks for the reminder Tonya. When the kids are gone are we going to regret the texts we didn't read or the funny video we missed?! Think about it.

  • Frozen artist Palmer, AK
    Feb. 16, 2013 11:29 a.m.

    First: electronics are addicting & these days people need to put them down A LOT. But to say that a mom taking time for her self is robbing her kids seems harsh. Moms judge other moms way to harshly. We already weight ourselves down with guilt. Having other moms giving stink eyes to each other isn't helpful. We have no idea people's situation. If that mom was just making cookies with her kids, did she still deserve judgment? Does she get credit that she didnt plop them in front of the tv instead? If she was reading a book on her phone still bad? On the phone talking, doing her calling bad? I get this article is trying to state the people are sucked into their phones too much & it's true, but please don't paint a picture that a bad/ selfish mom is one at the park not glowing over every park moment, because she is not. She's with her kids, right? She brought them to the park, right? They are fed & happy, right? Then I say that is good mom that is trying... Perfect? No. But trying & that is what is important.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 11:21 a.m.

    You gotta be kidding, someone that writes a blog complaining about the time others spend on tech. This blog entry just came across as nasty.

  • Stormz murray, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 11:03 a.m.

    As a mom, grandma & foster mom, I agree that kids grow & change too much,far too fast. It's a fact that soon we find ourselves way down the list of their priorities. However, as every child is unique, so too is every life situation. One cannot judge another's situation at a glance. Are u not taking time from your family to blog in judgement of another?

  • Katie L. Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 10:22 a.m.

    Huh. I actually make it a point to let my daughter (soon to be daughterS) know that they are NOT the center of my life. I love them, care for them, spend time with them, snuggle them, play with them, read to them...but I also work, read, think, write, exercise, and socialize such that they understand that I have my own thoughts, my own world, my own personhood to attend to.

    They know they're loved, safe, and wanted. They also know that it is up to them to make their life something special -- no one's gonna do it for them -- because a) I couldn't anyway, even if I tried, and b) that's what they see Mommy do. I think this whole, "YOU DON'T WANT TO MISS A SECOND" theme has merits, but it can actually create helicopter parenting and become overbearing for children. All things in moderation, even the attention we lavish on our kids.

  • BigdaddyJMC Lehi, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 9:55 a.m.

    @ kcs studio -

    Struck a nerve huh?? I love how you are just as quick to judge Tonya's intentions. Yea, sure there is a .5% chance that the mother is finding a cure for cancer while her kids play at the park, but in today's society, there is an extremely much higher likelihood that she is just chatting and Facebooking. Let's be honest. The whole point is . . . . put down the technology and be invested in the moment. Jeesh!

  • Krisjhn Bountiful, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 9:35 a.m.

    This is a silly article. Alternate titles could be:

    - Dear mom sitting with your friend: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom sitting with your book: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom petting your dog: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom talking to her husband: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom talking to her mom: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom daydreaming: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom writing in your journal: Let me tell you what you don't see.
    - Dear mom talking with your eldest child: Let me tell you what you don't see.

  • willow Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 9:00 a.m.

    I really don't think this write is trying to be judgemental of other writers, but observing a trend happening in society today. I see it as we go to restaurants, parents on their phones and not even having a real conversations with their kids. I do it myself as I'm on my phone or computer when the kids get home from school and I miss that window of time where they will have a conversation with me. Technology will take over if we let it!

    This article has inspired me to deactivate my Facebook account as this is my biggest time sucker and sometimes other people's comments and status updates take precedence over my kids and husband and that is wrong.

    Maybe we all need to take an inventory of the time we are spending online/on the phone etc and see if it is impeding on our most important relationships!

  • Joshj Ogden, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:41 a.m.

    Perhaps she convinced her boss that she could telecommute - so now she can write emails AND spend time with her kids rather than leave them with a sitter. Perhaps she was up all night with the youngest of her kids, and she needs to decompress with Angry Birds. Perhaps she's writing her husband who is serving in Afghanistan, and this was her only free moment to do so today. Perhaps she has a dying relative and this is the moment she had time to make arrangements with her family.

    The point is: why are you avoiding your children to stare at this other mom. Mind your own business. You don't know her because you glanced at her on an adjacent park bend and made a quick assumption, and now you're encouraging your audience to feel righteous doing the same.

  • Danny Chipman Lehi, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:33 a.m.

    Moderation in all things.

  • SillyRabbit Layton, 00
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:27 a.m.

    If something were more important than your children, you are aware that you can wait to have kids? Or even not have kids?

    Reimagine this article to be about any other adult relationship and, while there are always critics, I would wager that there were less people feeling guilty, after all, a relationship with anyone else can afford to know that your world doesn't revolve around them.

    But when you start having kids, I believe that they need the foundational love that an appropriately involved parent can give.

    It's a shame that the unchallenged retort is that the poster is being judgmental. Of course she is, just as you were, just as I am of you. Get over it.

    I think that what steams people the most about being "judged" is that it questions their commitment to their decisions. Having kids is and should be a life commitment. I don't need to feel guilty for something I'm giving 100% toward, so the poster doesn't need me tearing her down.

    And plus, nobody else really cares about your kids. Nor can they, at least not as much as you should.

  • zzz6valvoline salt lake city, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:11 a.m.

    I am very sorry to hear so much judgment passed, with only a brief encounter as the basis of judgment. Motherhood is hard and exhausting. Although the author may have good intentions, she comes off as judgmental and ignorant. I hope compassion will be considered before her next encounter with a mother.

  • Proud Ute ,
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:11 a.m.

    And please don't talk while you're driving your little ones around.

  • A_wyatt Granite city, IL
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:12 a.m.

    Wow, this mom must be perfect! Nice generalization of all moms on iPhones. I for one just recently left a corporate job where I worked 5 days a week and didn't get to see my daughter much at all during the week. I now work part-time from home and yes, a lot of my business is run from (you guessed it) and iPhone! Does this make me a Mom who is missing out on more if I could never take my daughter to the park before because I was stuck in an office? Yes, I pick up my iPhone now and then, even at times when we are playing, but please, you don't know what we have been doing all day long and please, if you are going to generalize other moms you better be perfect yourself! Sure, I will put my iPhone down when I feel it is most important, but if I ever pick it up for a few minutes, please don't assume I am playing games, playing on Facebook or something similar. I am working to support my family and guess what...sometimes I can do that from the park!

  • J-TX Allen, TX
    Feb. 16, 2013 8:05 a.m.

    This applies to all of us. Fine that you directed it to Moms, but I intend to have the grandparents and kids read it too. It is a lesson that I, Dad, and my wife already know....

  • A.B. Sandy, OR
    Feb. 16, 2013 7:56 a.m.

    Maybe this mom is finally taking a moment to herself and calling a close girlfriend for some words of encouragement. Maybe her husband just cheated on her (sound familiar?) and she took her kids to the park to distract them while she made an important phone call. Shame on you for passing judgment on this mother. You have no idea what is in her heart.

  • supertbone Pleasant Grove, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 7:45 a.m.

    This is a heavenly judgmental article. Did the author follow the subject around all day to see how this mother was with her kids? No. She took one experience and extrapolated it.

  • AzTim Gilbert, AZ
    Feb. 16, 2013 7:31 a.m.

    Bravo! Well said!

    I am keenly aware of the stupefying lure of my combined electronics (iPhone, iPad, laptop etc), yet despite my wariness I still find I'm being sucked further and further into that black hole of zombie-like attachment. The frightening thing is I'm old enough that most of my life was spent in those quieter days of only 4 TV channels, reading and turning pages of real books, and having real conversations with family and friends. I remember what it was like to live totally and completely electronically free which helps to pull me back to that real life. But what about this generation that was never exposed to that electronics-free world around them? What new phobias, manias, disorders and disfunctions will result? I shudder the thought! Thanks for the well-written wake up call.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 7:28 a.m.

    The kids will be OK if they learn mom isn't an inexhaustible resource. And they'll be better off figuring out how to be independent sometimes.

  • Yorkshire City, Ut
    Feb. 16, 2013 7:26 a.m.

    kes studio and SFly both swerved into a lane in these comments that I had never noticed anywhere until I came to Utah.
    In LDS classes, anytime there was a subject mentioned where people could see maybe they needed to do some self introspection and examine their actions, feelings, motives etc etc there are always some (women always) who go the kes studio and SFly route--complaining about how others shouldn't be JUDGING.
    After hearing this 'they shouldn't JUDGE' theme several different times, once the instructor pointed out gently this is a deflective move, to try to deflect the focus from those who are feeling a little guilty -- and how they then are trying to make it all about those awful people who JUDGE.
    I guess I felt "judged" by some of what the author in this article wrote too, but could SO SEE the shoe fit.
    I have thought of it a lot and have done better since reading it yesterday.
    Thanks to the author- and to DesNews for printing it.

  • Ricardo Carvalho Provo, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 7:01 a.m.

    I like the thought here which is to spend more of our time with our children focused on our children. Leaving the message at that is quite healthy. Other issues regarding other habits that detract from focusing on our children, gender equity in the message, not judging others, etc... also have validity but they don't have to detract from me thinking about the main issue in my own life.

  • iron&clay RIVERTON, UT
    Feb. 16, 2013 6:16 a.m.

    I love this article.

    Back in the early 60's when I was young and wanting mom's attention, I noticed that sometimes she was having successive hour long conversations with phone friends who were less cognizant of her responsibilities towards her young children than they should be. I only thought it was the phone friend who was stealing mothers time. My young mind did not think that mom was derelict.

  • germanygator Apo, AE
    Feb. 16, 2013 1:43 a.m.

    When I worked in the Vegas casinos in the late 90s, I could always tell who the, ahem, escorts were because they were the people with phones to their ears. Eventually I learned they weren't talking to anyone. They were pretending. Seriously. It was like they were hiding from themselves. I came to the conclusion then that cell phones are adult pacifiers. Now we have smart phones and the pacifier label has never been more true. To be honest, the same could be said of the internet and web surfing.

    People like to entertain their lives away. Many think they need the latest iDevice. What they really want is a way to waste time and end up missing precious moments. Cellphones, while great for "emergencies", aren't really necessary. They actually promote worse communication. How often have you called your spouse because you forgot what to get at the store? Try communicating better rather than using the crutch that is the cellphone. Make a list, look at people in the eye when you're talking to them. You'll find you don't need a cellphone.

  • B ob Richmond, CA
    Feb. 15, 2013 11:16 p.m.

    When the kids are older and have more to show than a twirl or a trick - they'll have stopped calling her name long before. And that is a dangerous thing.

  • Aggielove Cache county, USA
    Feb. 15, 2013 11:15 p.m.

    Quality article from a decent paper.

  • SFly USA, UT
    Feb. 15, 2013 10:14 p.m.

    As a mother of 5 young children, I know that there are many moments I'd just assume NOT be a part of: fighting, complaining, screaming, incessant questions and even some of the good moments where I am simply on kid overload. Not every moment needs clapping and admiring. As a matter of fact, a think its good for them to learn occasionally that their mom has and enjoys a life outside of them and that waiting patiently for their mom to finish something before they ask a question or need something is important. The thing that bothered me most about this article though was that moms are hard, and sometimes brutal on other mothers. You contributed to this. I could similarly unjustly assume that you were missing your daughter twirl as you were writing this article. The point is, you don't know why another mother is on her phone, and perhaps it is more important than watching her child's every move on the jungle gym. Maybe it's not, and she either is in need of a break or just needs to be free from judgement from the other mothers at the park that day.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Feb. 15, 2013 10:13 p.m.

    I found this a great reminder to spend more time with the kids. You know like right now as I read and post away the night.

  • Monty1 South Jordan, UT
    Feb. 15, 2013 9:55 p.m.

    I liked this. It applies with equal force to dads. Good article.

  • Nan BW ELder, CO
    Feb. 15, 2013 8:12 p.m.

    When our children were young, we only had a home 'phone, with a cord. I remember how annoyed my children would become when I was on the 'phone for an extended time. Often they were justified in this because all too often the conversation wasn't anything that needed to be so long. However, I am glad that when we were in the car, there was no 'phone, and when we were at the park, there was no phone. I agree with the sentiments in the article. Sure, it could have been somethine important, but most calls shouldn't take long, and children do get the message that they are being ignored. We have a lot of children in our midst who lack confidence, feel forgotten and need more assurance that they are cherished.

  • AZ_True_Blue Gilbert, AZ
    Feb. 15, 2013 7:21 p.m.

    So glad I got to read this at my son's basketball practice on my iPhone. Made sure I didn't miss a thing.

  • kcs studio Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 15, 2013 5:41 p.m.

    As a Mom, I get it. I get what Tonya is saying here, and I know time is fleeting. They grow up so fast, they do. And being there for your kids is a huge priority ....

    But, holy, holy .... enough with the guilt trip, lady. I mean, sure the Mom with the iphone might be goofing off with her friends, or looking for a new blouse, but she could also be researching nursing homes for her mother in another state, or trying to see what cancer drugs work on the diagnosis her brother just got .... the author has NO IDEA what the other Mom is doing other than what she sees and HOW SHE IS JUDGING HER.

    Maybe Tonya should quit being so hard on HERSELF, so she can quit being so hard on the women around her who are doing their best being the Moms that they are just .... being.

    Really, the guilt trips are so unhelpful. Relax, please. And enjoy the fact that you have a job (writing in your blog) that means something to you, and try to find something else to do with your critic -- maybe she can twirl in her dress.

  • PGVikingDad Pleasant Grove, UT
    Feb. 15, 2013 2:55 p.m.

    I'm a fairly tech-savvy guy who teaches online classes for a living, and I just received my first iPhone for Christmas, this December. And...I don't get it. What's the big deal? Yeah, my phone has some cool features, but what is so arresting about it to so many people? My wife and kids are astonished when I tell them that my battery lasts for an entire week, because I rarely have the thing on for more than a minute or two. But with that said, I have to agree with bald guy (I suspect he may be my father-in-law) that the article is a tad over-the-top. Ten years ago, this "neglectful" mom would've been just as absorbed in a book, which would likely have been interpreted as somehow more virtuous than a phone. It's not. She's doing a good job, and not everyone can be enraptured by their children every moment of the day.

  • bald man running ,
    Feb. 15, 2013 2:30 p.m.

    While I understand the sentiment, it seems a little melodramatic...

  • bikeboy Boise, ID
    Feb. 15, 2013 2:12 p.m.

    For 6000 years, people did just fine without the ubiquitous phone. Now there's a significant percentage of our society who can't live without it! At work, at play, driving, resting, worshiping... or going through those motions while devoting attention to that itty-bitty screen.

    All the "smart phone zombies" lurching about... makes me wonder how THEIR kids will behave.

  • GACougar Atlanta, GA
    Feb. 15, 2013 2:05 p.m.

    Started reading this thinking it was going to be something dumb. Not so. Very profound message. Thanks for sharing.

  • Yorkshire City, Ut
    Feb. 15, 2013 1:25 p.m.

    So sad. So true.
    Why are we so incredibly bored--that we think we NEED our phones--when we shouldn't be bored? When we should be enjoying life?
    I hate this fact about myself.

  • spudnut West Jordan, UT
    Feb. 15, 2013 1:25 p.m.