Mom Gives Daughter $300 for Facebook Fast

Filed under: In The News

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Is it time for your kid to go on a social media diet? Credit: Dan Kitwood, Getty Images

It's a parenting strategy for the social media age.

A mom in South Carolina offered her college-age daughter $300 to abstain from Facebook for one month, and pour the hours she would have spent online into studying, instead.

According to the Charlotte Observer, Melynda Rushing of Rock Hill, S.C., offered her daughter, Alyssa, 20, the cold, hard cash to get the student to detox from the popular website. Alyssa Rushing tells the Observer she was spending between three and four hours a day on Facebook.

Alyssa, a student at the University of South Carolina, tells the newspaper she has about 900 Facebook friends and logs on to the site whenever she has a break in her day. She says she also spends time reading status updates, chatting and sending instant messages at night.

Mom Melynda is also a Facebook user, but only as a means to communicate and keep up with what her kids are doing online. She tells the Observer the idea for the 30-day Facebook cleanse came from her own history with that antiquated medium, the television.

She says she once swore off TV, and was "amazed' by what she could get done in the hours she normally would have been watching the boob tube. Melynda adds that she knows first-hand how distracting Facebook can be.

"Something simple that should take three minutes, you get off on rabbit trails and before you know it 40 minutes have gone," she tells the Observer.

Alyssa, who reports that her grades were just fine prior to the challenge, made it through the entire 30 days with a little help from her offline friends. Her roommates changed her account password and refused to share it with her, and she swears that she never cheated.

That's not to say that the challenge was simple; about halfway through the challenge, Alyssa jokingly said she missed the social network so much she was going through "Facebook detox."

So, what did she get done in those 30 days? She turned in several papers before they were due, but her mom reports that Alyssa was primed to get back online on Oct. 19, the day her challenge ended.

"She made it to the end but was very anxious" to get back on Facebook, Melynda tells the Observer.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.