Kids Reveal What Their Parents Don’t Know About Their Social Media Use and It’s Shocking TBH
Parenting in the digital age is tough, and something most of us didn’t have to deal with when we were growing up. If anyone wanted to talk to you after school they had to get past your mum answering the landline first. And good luck getting those nudes printed at the chemist.
It’s much different now. There are so many social media sites for teens to use to connect with each other, and they use them in ways that we may not even know about.
Teacher Skipper Coates asked her Year 9 students to finish the sentence, “What my parents don’t know about social media is …”. She shared what she learnt on Facebook, where her post has created a lot of conversation about what it means to be a teenager in the digital age.
“Working in a Junior High is really interesting. I see these little people in their most awkward and most emotional stage of life. I teach them science, but when I have time I try to squeeze in some life lessons and mentoring. But it doesn’t work if I’m not willing to really hear and understand their situations and problems. Lately, I’ve been really concerned about their mental health, bullying, and social media use.
“Today I asked three of my classes to finish this sentence: “What my parents don’t know about social media is…”
“You guys. The answers were SICKENING. Heartbreaking. Depressing.
“Parents of the world, WAKE. UP. Your kids are living in a world that you are not invited to be part of. And they know how to keep you out. Your teenager DOES NOT NEED a smartphone.
“I asked 85 ninth-graders (ages 14-15) to finish the sentence. FIVE said they don’t have social media accounts. Five. All 85 kids have an average academic grade of an “A”… by all accounts, they are “good kids.” Here are the common things confessed by the 80 kids with social media accounts.”
While these admissions are shocking, they are also eye-opening. This is the proof that we need to be more present in our teen’s lives. To plug in, to get involved more, to be engaged in our children’s lives. To check, monitor and control their social media use.
The answer is not to ban it entirely — they will find a way to connect with their social media accounts by logging in on their friend’s phones.
The key to keeping our kids safe and smart while using social media lies in trust, education, and communication. As much as social media has a dark side, it also makes teenagers feel less lonely, helps them express themselves emotionally and creatively, and teaches them about empathy.
We need to be open with kids about online safety, the dangers of risky behaviour, and the harm they can cause themselves and others. To teach them how to use social media appropriately and within reason.
What are your thoughts?
Source: Facebook/Skipper Coates