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My whole family shares their location with each other. As an admitted worrier, I don't check it often.

Jennifer Cannon   

My whole family shares their location with each other. As an admitted worrier, I don't check it often.
  • I can see my husband and two daughter's location at all times.
  • My husband knows not to call if I'm at a certain coffee shop because it means I'm working.

From the time we all had phones, my husband, our two college-aged daughters, and I have mutually shared our location via the "Find My" app. Surprisingly, and as an admitted worrier, I use it the least.

My husband is an airline pilot who travels a lot. In our 22 years together, we've always been communicative. He sometimes checks to see where I am before calling in case it looks like I'm busy. For example, if my location is a certain coffee place, he knows I'm working.

When the kids were younger, if my husband was away and I didn't feel like cooking, we'd often enjoy a drive-thru dinner. He once texted, jokingly, "I see you guys are at Chick-fil-A." "Not Dad, stalking us." the girls snarked.

I don't want to know everything my kids are doing

I've met parents who unabashedly admit to watching their teens' every move, contacting them to question even the slightest deviation in planned whereabouts. We're all free to parent as we choose. However, sometimes space and a splash of autonomy can inspire growth.

This depends on the kid of course. My retired Navy husband says, "Trust, but verify."

We didn't go down the Life360 route with our daughters, but we kept a watchful virtual eye through the high school years. Are they really at so-and-so's house like they said they'd be? A friend of my daughter's once went to a sleepover, stayed a while, then purposely left her phone and got picked up by her boyfriend. Classic teen-operative-stealth move. Could my kids have done the same? Absolutely.

Personally, I've never needed or wanted to know everything they're doing.

It gives me peace of mind knowing where they are sometimes

Both of our daughters' extracurricular activities in high school involved regular road trips spanning a good portion of the eastern US seaboard. Some of those included driving a big diesel truck with a horse and trailer in tow. Lots of nerve-racking fun made a little less worrisome, knowing my husband could follow our travels remotely.

Occasionally, I'll wake up at 3:30 a.m., knowing my husband should've been home hours earlier. It's always been because of a delayed flight, and I do sometimes check his location instead of calling. I worry more about his two-hour drive to and from the airport than him flying an airplane.

My older son's job has restricted areas where there are no phones allowed and he is rarely looking at his during a workday. Location sharing is helpful to my daughter-in-law when she's trying to time dinner. While juggling her own job, along with a toddler and baby, she can quickly check to see if he's still at the office or on his way home.

We were talking recently about how in the dark ages, also known as the 1980s, if you made plans to meet a friend and they didn't show up, there was no way to know what happened until you got home and checked the answering machine. We didn't have a Snapchat map or Find My to see their location.

Scammers are savvier than ever, and in the case of Business Insider's own Conz Preti's father, who almost got scammed to pay fake kidnap ransom, the ability to check her location might have resolved the situation quickly.

At the end of the day, the positives far outweigh the negatives for location-sharing when it comes to our family.

Jennifer is a New Jersey based writer who has contributed previously to Business Insider and TODAY.


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