You can feel cut off from the world if you lost your cell phone or do not have a cell phone at all. It is even worse if all your friends have one, and you don't. As long as you have access to a device, you can talk, text, and video chat just like you have a cell phone. If you are a teenager, you can try to convince your parents to get you a cell phone. No matter what your situation is, occupy your time with other activities so you aren't constantly thinking about your phone.

Method 1
Method 1 of 3:

Using Other Methods to Communicate

  1. Try Google Voice. Google Voice is a free service that allows you to have your own phone number that you can use for voice calls and text messages. If you do not already have a Google account, you must create one before you can get a number. Once you have a Google account, click on the link that says “Get a Voice number” to get started. Follow all of the directions to set up your number up.[1]
    • Once you have a number, you can call, text, and receive voice mails through the Google Voice website.
    • You can also link your Google Voice number to a Google Hangouts account to use emoji and video chat.[2]
  2. Facebook allows you to call, text, email, and make video and voice calls. You can do all of this from a computer. Log in to your Facebook account and turn on your chat. Select one of your friends that you want to talk to. Click the phone icon to start talking. friends.
    • If you are doing a video call, you will need to use Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, or Opera as your browser.[3]
    • If you want to video chat, click the video icon instead of the phone icon.
  3. Sign up for a free email account so that you can send and receive text messages from your friends. If you want to send a text message to someone’s cell phone, you will need to know their 10 digit phone number and their phone carrier. Here are some examples for the most popular phone carriers:[4]
    • AT&T- 10 digit phone (
    • Alltel – 10 digit phone (
    • Boost Mobile- 10 digit phone (
    • Sprint – 10 digit phone (
    • T-Mobile – 10 digit phone (
    • Verizon – 10 digit phone (
    • Virgin Mobile USA 10 digit phone (
    • US Cellular- 10 digit phone (
  4. If your house still has a landline, you can use it to make phone calls. You could then use your email address for text messages. When using a landline, be sure to check your caller ID for missed calls and voicemail messages.
    • Everyone in your house will be able to hear the landline when it rings, and you will have less privacy. Try to call your friends first or always volunteer to answer the phone.
    • If you give out your house phone number, make sure the person who is getting the number knows what phone they're calling so they don't freak and think they have the wrong number.
    • If you are out, you can also use public phones at restaurants, stores, or offices. There may even be a pay phone nearby that you can use.
  5. If you have a friend that you spend a lot of time with, ask to use their phone. Do not give out your friend’s number without getting their permission first. If you give the number to someone else, let them know that it is not your phone and to always ask for you before they start talking.
    • You can also use your friend’s phone to check your email while you are out.
    • Try not to go crazy when you are borrowing someone else’s phone. You do not want to get on the nerves or use their phone more than they do.
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Method 2
Method 2 of 3:

Asking Your Parents for a Phone

  1. Choose a time when your parents are not busy and are in a good mood. This will increase your chances of getting what you want. A long car ride, sitting at the dinner table, or going for a walk are all good times to approach your parents.[5]
    • You can say, “Hey do you have a minute? I wanted to talk to you about something?” or “Let me know when you have some time. I wanted to talk to you about something.”
  2. Plainly tell your parents that you would like to have a cell phone and the reasons that you want a cell phone. If you are nervous about talking to them, write a letter that explains your reasons.
    • You could say, “I really would like a cell phone, and I wanted to tell you why this is a good idea.”
    • You could also say, “I would love to have a cell phone. What do you think about that?”
  3. Try to make the cell phone appealing to your parents. Talk about all of the positive things about having a phone. Some benefits you can highlight are:[6]
    • A phone is good in case there is an emergency when your parents are not around.
    • It will help you keep in touch with your family that lives out of town, or they will always be able to reach you when you are not at home.
    • Having a cell phone can teach you to be responsible.
    • Never tell your parents that you want a cell phone because all of your friends have one.
  4. Remember that your goal is to have a cell phone. It may not be the exact phone that you want, or you may not be able to talk and text as much as you would like. At the end of the day, having any cell phone is better than not having a phone at all. Some compromises you can suggest are:[7]
    • To help pay for the phone.
    • Get a flip phone instead of a smartphone.
    • Get a prepaid phone instead of a phone with a contract.
    • Agree to any rules or limitations your parents have.
  5. Be respectful of any answer that your parents give you. Don't whine, beg, yell, or have a bad attitude if they say no. Show your parents how mature you are by the way you handle their response. If you get upset because your parents said no, they will not want to get you a phone.
    • Ask your parents about getting a phone again in a couple of months. In the meantime, do all of your chores, do well in school, and show how responsible you are.
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Method 3
Method 3 of 3:

Occupying Your Time

  1. Find some hobbies that occupy your mind and that you find fun. Reading, drawing, writing, listening to music, cooking, or watching movies. Activities that require you to think or use your hands are best. Your mind will be occupied, and you will not miss having a phone.
    • You may join an after school club or some sort of extracurricular activity such as roller skating that you find fun. This is a great way to socialize with other people who have your same interests.
  2. Volunteering is a good way to show your parents that you are responsible and reliable. This is also an opportunity to give back to your community and help other people. Try to find volunteer opportunities that match with your interests.[8]
    • For example, if you enjoy reading, you may volunteer at a local library. If you were interested in health care, you could volunteer at a local hospital or nursing home.
  3. Cell phones often get in the way of making connections with other people. You can be so wrapped up in your phone that you spend less time developing relationships with the important people in your life. Instead of worrying about getting a phone, spend time with your family and friends.
    • When you are spending time with people, tell them that it is a no phone zone. This will keep everybody engaged, and you will not feel left out because you are the only one without a phone.
  4. Get outside and explore nature. You will have a more positive attitude and feel less stressed. Go for a walk, a hike, or exercise outside. Sit at the park and read or hang out with a friend. Take the time to really absorb the sights and sounds of nature while you are out there.[9]
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Expert Interview

Thanks for reading our article! If you’d like to learn more about human behavior, check out our in-depth interview with Rebecca Tenzer, MAT, MA, LCSW, CCTP, CGCS, CCATP, CCFP.

About This Article

Co-authored by:
Clinical Therapist & Adjunct Professor
This article was co-authored by Rebecca Tenzer, MAT, MA, LCSW, CCTP, CGCS, CCATP, CCFP. Rebecca Tenzer is the owner and head clinician at Astute Counseling Services, a private counseling practice in Chicago, Illinois. With over 18 years of clinical and educational experience in the field of mental health, Rebecca specializes in the treatment of depression, anxiety, panic, trauma, grief, interpersonal relationships using a combination of Cognitive Behavioral therapy, Psychodynamic therapy, and other evidence-based practices. Rebecca holds a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Sociology and Anthropology from DePauw University, a Master in Teaching (MAT) from Dominican University, and a Master of Social Work (MSW) from the University of Chicago. Rebecca has served as a member of the AmeriCorps and is also a Professor of Psychology at the collegiate level. Rebecca is trained as a Cognitive Behavioral Therapist (CBT), a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional (CCTP), a Certified Grief Counseling Specialist (CGCS), a Clinical Anxiety Treatment Professional (CCATP), and a Certified Compassion Fatigue Professional (CCFP). Rebecca is also a member of the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Society of America and The National Association of Social Workers. This article has been viewed 63,392 times.
4 votes - 30%
Co-authors: 29
Updated: January 11, 2024
Views: 63,392
Categories: Youth