Moving certainly impacted my friends list. The cool thing about living in this era is technology. While I don’t get to see my Utah friends often, I do get to keep up with them virtually. Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, Marco Polo and Duo have made it easy to send messages back and forth. These messages have saved my sanity.
Watching T try to navigate making friends has been heartbreaking. At one point he broke down at dinner and begged me to find him friends. So, I did what all moms everywhere are doing. I turned to my social media groups and asked for help. The weird thing this time is I had to reach out to strangers and have faith that I wasn’t inviting unwanted predator’s into my home.
I was overwhelmed by the response I got from other home schooling moms. We are all in this “virtual make a friend” world now. They offered up solutions and their children’s gamer tags so my T could meet people. He now has kids he plays with daily all over Colorado. We may never meet them face to face but with YouTube, MessengerKids, and Discord they are able to see and speak to each other.
This is not my world, nor is it my older son’s world. T has ventured out into a new world all his own and all the adults with him have to adapt. There may be scary predators out there we have to guard against, in some ways it seems easier to notice them when he is playing online in the living room. Here are some safety tips we use to keep him safe:
- I have to have a conversation with the mom. If she seems off we politely decline playing with the child.
- He plays in an area we can see and hear what is going on. Honestly, it’s annoying as all get out to listen to the weird conversations these kids have but it keeps him honest and safe. So I’ll be annoyed.
- He has to use positive language and play nicely.
Moving and Covid have changed our lives forever. We have new friends to help us have fun. Someday we will have friends in the neighborhood, until then we will enjoy the virtual friendships we have.
This momma is grateful to the other momma’s who trust me with their children. We all have a huge responsibility to keep this virtual world safe. Stay vigilant friends. We have another long winter to get through!