Managing Facebook with Teens

Welcome! Welcome!

Facebook. I have a love/hate relationship with this awesome piece of technology.

Almost four years ago, my husband changed careers, and that meant that we would be doing a little bit of moving around. The first move wasn’t too bad. My oldest was nearly thirteen and he adjusted pretty well. We had been homeschooling until that point and decided this was a good time, for many reasons, to put them in school.

However, a little over a year later we were asked to change locations. By this time my second had turned thirteen and my oldest was fourteen and a half. This move was horrible. They were not adjusting. They missed their friends. A social life is extremely important at their age, and they were devastated. So, we decided to let them open up Facebook accounts in order to keep in touch with the people they dearly missed.

Facebook has been a good way for them to keep up with their friends and we had to move again over Christmas break.

We had and still have a couple of really strict rules. They are to use Facebook in our presence. We are to have the password to their accounts, and yes, we are occasionally on their page, checking things out. The kids, amazingly, agreed to this without any arguments.

Over the past two and a half years, we have had to ask them to unfriend or unfollow some of their Facebook friends. Luckily it has never been anyone they were particularly attached to. They have also done some unfriending on their own.

Facebook has helped my kids stay in touch. On the other hand, there are so many people who don’t have the same morals that we try to uphold in our home. These people post some pretty heinous things and think that it’s okay. Forget that they have children as “friends.” There are times when I want to boot Facebook out of our house, completely.

Many people may disagree with our strict rules, and that’s okay. We each parent in our own way. I hope that I am raising children who, when they become adults, have a firm knowledge of right and wrong and can stand up for what they know to be right. That is one of my biggest goals in the choices I make regarding my children.

How do you keep your children safe and manage social media? I would love your input. Thanks for reading!

6 thoughts on “Managing Facebook with Teens

  1. It isn’t just kids who post very inappropriate things and I am often amazed at the people who post some of these awful things! I am glad that I never had to make this difficult decision! Good for you and I see nothing wrong with your rules. We have to protect our children the best way we can and sometimes that means making hard decisions. Good for you!

    • Thank you for your feedback and I agree with you. In fact, sometimes, it’s the adults who are the most infuriating. They should know better. I love my children and hope that they continue to make such great choices and I hope they understand that we only have their best interests at heart as well as their safety.

  2. How did you get then to agree to those terms? You really are the Queen of Home! I only have one soon old enough to be on Facebook but he had unfriended me 🙁 I love this idea. I’ll have to give it a try.

    • Thank you for your comment and I apologize for taking so long to get back to you. I thought I set up my blog so that I would get an email anytime someone commented. The learning curve for me has been pretty steep!

      I think my boys felt obligated to agree to those terms because that was the only way they were allowed to get a Facebook account. They have been awesome. If they unfriended us, they would be done with Facebook for awhile. Our kids only use Facebook on our phones or computer, which makes it easier to monitor what they are doing.

      Good luck. I would love to hear how it goes.

      jenn

  3. We’ve been in and out of (and now back in) Facebook with our oldest. The times we’ve had trouble were the times we slacked off on supervision. Especially with the Messenger app. But we feel we need to let them learn to make good choices while they’re here under our guidance, so we keep at it.

    • You are doing awesome. I feel the same way. Often the natural consequences work way better than anything I could come up with. We monitor the Messenger app as well. My kids, so far, are making great choices and we haven’t had any problems. They sometimes hate being policed, but we can usually talk out their concerns.

      Thanks so much for your support. You have always been a wonderful friend.

      jenn

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