I know, I know, I’m old as dirt. Over the hill. Practically ancient when it comes to you and your hip ways. Tweens and teens everywhere snicker madly when the old people offer advice because what the hell would we know about actual life.
More than you will ever know, baby. More.than.you.will.ever.know.
Crackle, crackle, crunch crunch.
Hear that? Those are the eggshells scattered all over our floor these days.
We’re navigating tempestuous waters here. Some days it’s smooth sailing, others the sea is gray and choppy with a tornado warning to boot, but BrightSide and I are in this for the long haul. You take what life throws at you and keep on swimming.
Wasn’t it just yesterday these kids were all skinned knees and fighting over whose turn it is? Wait, that was yesterday. But you know what I mean. We’re swimming with the sharks these days.
But to survive the sharks, all you need is a plan.
As we inch closer and closer to T-man’s 13th birthday – and since he’s begun to dip his toe into the Instagram world – I’ve been grateful to find resources with some parenting advice. Something a little more concrete than buckle up and hold on tight.
“[After studying social media posts what] these researchers found was largely consistent with recent reports from the Pew Foundation, which suggested that most teenagers 13 to 17 were generally happy with their connected lives online, and believed that hanging out virtually strengthened their offline relationships.
‘Being 13’ provides an asterisk of sorts to that rosy outlook: These teenagers, at the youngest end of the spectrum, valued their online connectedness but also described in more detail the ways the specific online interactions affected them…social media had great power to affect their day-to-day emotions in ways a parent might regard with suspicion. One child said she took 100 to 200 pictures of herself to get a good selfie; another regularly posted images on Instagram seeking specific forms of approval only to receive silence in return. Many spent hours scrolling through the images of their peers’ lives online…
Here’s how to guide, help and monitor your child as she joins social media.”
Seven Ways Parents Can Help 13-Year-Olds Start Their Social Media Lives Right – The New York Times