Social media has become an integral part of our everyday lives. Parents use it, just like their children. However, on average, teenagers are the ones who spend the most time on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and similar platforms.
This leaves many parents worried. Some are afraid that this habit will grow into an addiction, while others are concerned about cyberbullying, over-sharing, and an “all-about-attention” attitude.
I often wonder, “How different would people act if they couldn’t show off on social media? Would they still do it?”
If our children were to be born in more innocent times, without social media, would they be any different?
This topic is complicated, and there are no simple answers. However, if you ask your child about the time they spend on social media, you might be surprised at how willing they are to talk about it.
When you speak with them about their emotions and challenges, and address potential issues in self-esteem, you may find that social media won’t pose such a threat to them.
Even so, you may still be wondering how you can safely explore your child’s secret life on social media.
2. Ask about the apps. Ask your child which apps they spend the most time on. Is it Instagram, Facebook, or perhaps Snapchat? Once you find out, install those apps on your phone, too, and figure out how they work.
4. Talk about sexting. Parents find the infamous conversation about “The Birds and the Bees” just as awkward as children do.
However, now you have another level to deal with sexting.
6. Care about their emotions. Teenagers want their opinions to be heard. This especially goes for the things they’re passionate or angry about. Social media offers instant feedback to their posts, which makes kids feel listened to, validated, and acknowledged.
When your child asks you for the first time if they can open a social media account, avoid judging them or jumping to conclusions. Accept their need to engage in such community-based way of communication, talk about it, and help them build a safe profile.
Teach them how to protect themselves and what to expect.
You’ll never have all the information about their activity, but if you’re interested and understanding, you might get just the right amount.
As the saying goes, there’s no better time than the present to bring change in your life and outlook. Find your happier and download my Top 10 Anxiety Busters to Boost Your Self Confidence Cheat Sheet!
Loretta Holmes, M.A. CMHWC is an ADHD Coach & Anxiety Coach at Bella Coaching Services. Prior to pursuing a career in coaching, Loretta worked as a special education teacher. Today, she combines her skills in teaching, psychology, and coaching to help women break free from their pain without pain of lengthy coaching. Connect with Loretta at firstname.lastname@example.org