(MyFoxBoston.com) – A 13-year-old Cape Cod boy got an iPhone for Christmas, but not without some strings attached.
"I was probably the last one of my friends to get a phone and they're like, 'Yeah! You got a phone!,'" said Greg Hofmann, whose mom got him an iPhone for Christmas. "But I was like, 'Yeah, but there's a contract.'"
Hofmann isn't talking about the typical one- or two-year deal that comes with most cell phones. This contract is between he and his mom.
"He was basically going to have the world at his fingertips without my constant supervision, which is part of growing up," said Janell Hofmann. "I was totally comfortable with that but I felt like I need to get it all on paper."
Thus came an 18-point contract between mother and son. The list dictates when and how the teen can use the smartphone. The first rule reads: "It is my phone. I bought it. I pay for it. I am loaning it to you. Aren't I the greatest?"
"It's just like her to put together all these rules, but not being like one of those strict parents," said Greg. "She's preventing me from dangers of getting myself into too much trouble that I couldn't handle."
"We're the first group of parents that are ever parenting this kind of technology and there are no guidelines," said Janell. "We're relying on our common sense, our instincts. So I compiled things I always want him to know -- some rules, some structure around such a large gift."
The rules, some serious, some not, include things like don't "use it to lie, fool or deceive another human being." and "No porn." Greg also has to turn the phone in at 7:30 p.m. on school nights.
Others are more life lessons than rules. Such as: "Listen to the birds." and "Wonder without Googling."
"There's part of me that was really trying to preserve his boyhood," said Janell. "In that final rule about being, "eyes up, wonder, stare out a window" I really mean that. I mean that without the iPhone. Just don't always be plugged in."
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