“It’s quality, not quantity. That’s the main gist,” Davidson says. “It’s the quality of interaction with kids that’s fundamental, especially when they become teenagers. You want to have your friendship time, but it’s very important that [teenagers] share problems or accomplishments so that [they] can develop [their] self-confidence for the future.”
Nonetheless, counselors, parents and children alike recognize that family members spend less time together as the children grow older and become more involved in activities outside of the family.
According to a 2010 study by the Kaiser Family Foundation, children spend an average of 54.6 hours per week on their electronic devices. Compared to another study by the A.C. Nielsen international polling firm, however, they only spend about 38.5 minutes per week in meaningful conversations with their parents.
Although the general trend may be that children are spending less time with their families, Torrey Pines High School sophomore Cori Tate allots her time differently. Between school, basketball practices and church, she still finds 12 to 13 hours per week to spend with her family.
“We try to have family movie night and go out to eat every Sunday,” Tate says. “My favorite part is all the memories that we make. We crack jokes at each other; it’s fun.”
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