I started to tell you last time that I had my daughter “sign her life away” to get her cell phone. Here are most of the terms and conditions we put in the agreement, in case it would be helpful to any of you.

  • I, (child’s name), understand that my phone is a privilege given to me by my parents. I will respect my parents’ decisions about the use of the phone. I understand that they may take the phone away (temporarily or for longer) as a consequence for any inappropriate behavior of mine. I also understand that they may reward me when I am using the phone responsibly.
  • I understand that for now, my parents will put some time and contacts restrictions on the phone. As I get older and I show that I use the phone responsibly, my parents will lighten the restrictions and update this agreement.
  • I understand that while I am learning to use the phone responsibly, my parents will pay for the basic monthly service. When I am given more freedom with the phone, my parents may ask me to to contribute to the cost of the service, especially if/when I want to add features.
  • I understand that for my safety, my parents will sometimes be checking my text messages.
  • I will tell my parents if someone is texting inappropriate messages to my phone because this behavior could put me or my family in danger.
  • I will not bring my phone into my bedroom when I go to sleep at night.
  • During the school day or while I am focused on studying or an after-school activity, I will not use my phone.
  • I will follow other rules of cell phone etiquette as discussed by my family, for example no texting during family meals, or no texting while with friends who are not on their phones, etc.

Can you think of anything I left out?

Mama J is a writer, parent, and stepparent in Northern Colorado. She enjoys discussing family dynamics, relationships, and issues.

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1 Comment on The Cell Phone Agreement

  1. Heidi says:

    The contract is very clear–what a great way for her to understand the expectations! My parents used similar contracts.

    A few questions that might create additional clauses:

    What about allowing her friends to use the phone? Are there any restrictions on that?

    What happens if the phone is lost or damaged?

    Is she allowed to give her phone number to anyone?

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