After my initial post, I spent some time looking at apps and blogs that are out there sucking our kids in. I was immediately overwhelmed with information.
What is it that is SO appealing to kids, and why is there a need, not want, but NEED for the attention they get through these social mediums?
After going through this, and ultimately seeking the advice of a medical professional (I’ll get to that later), I discovered that some of the appeal to these sites and apps are that there’s an open ear to vent to. Someone they find who is “going through the same” issues. They can express how they are feeling and in a sense, have a friend who understands and is there for them. While that idea is fine and great for most cases, how are our kids suppose to know that who they are talking to is REALLY who they say they are, and not some adult preying on kids, and using their insecurities to lure them in? Our kids shouldn’t have to worry about that stuff, but the world we live in demands a lack of trust in who we talk to, even in those we know at times.
So, in an effort to compromise, I allowed facebook only. I removed all other apps and blocked the ability to web search any or download new apps without permission. This has helped quite a bit.
I also downloaded an app called Friendly. It allows me to be logged on to her facebook directly, so all private messages I see. There use to be one called Buddy, and it allowed access to different social networks, but it doesn’t seem to be around anymore.
So there’s my update about how I’ve handled our social networking issues. I hope it’s helped someone.