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Should I know my teenage daughters social media passwords?

4
Suzanne
I've read on various websites that parents should make sure that they know their teenagers passwords to their social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter and Ask.fm. I've got a couple of problems with this, firstly it feels as though I'm distrusting of my teenage children and not respecting their privacy and secondly I think that if they have anything to hide surely they will just set up another account that I don't know about? I'd like to hear from everybody so I can hear varying opinions if possible.
3
GamerGirl
It's a tough one Suzanne because you want to respect your children's privacy but also want to protect them....on top of that we can't keep all teenagers wrapped up in cotton wool, it's healthier and probably safer long term to accept how much foul abuse there is in the real world now and prepare your teens for it! I think under 14 years of age and the parent should probably have the passwords for their social media and apps but after 14 I'd say as tough as it's going to be, you're going to have to take the stabilisers off and let her go online alone : ( Just make sure she knows she can come to you with any problem without being judged or disciplined with loss of internet privileges and you should be fine. Also make sure she knows Cybersmile exists!
1
CybersmileTeam
Great topic Suzanne and a really good reply GamerGirl thank you. It is difficult to balance good parenting with the freedom for our children to grow and develop online, which is becoming increasingly important for social development. It's worth having a look through our various support sections to get more opinions and ideas for this particular problem. You should find this link useful www.cybersmile.org/advice-help As GamerGirl said - make sure your daughter knows we exist and if nothing else, make sure she knows this email - [email protected] for 24 hour support and allocated cyberbullying advisors. Good luck!
2
kitty
You should know them just in case but never post anything on it because he/she might get embarrassed
2
Frank
If your daughter wants privacy then it is really a matter of trust. Her trusting you to be there for her if anything goes wrong is better than her thinking you don't trust her to do the right thing.
2
Adam
Very difficult. I don't think any teenager would let a parent know their passwords, communication is probably a better way to go. I think it is easier to do with younger children but teens are looking independence and may see this as too intrusive.
2
Emelia
My personal opinion is this:
Unless you have valid reason to suspect your children are up to something that can harm them or someone else online, and you need to make sure they are protected, there is no need for you to ask for their passwords. Like you mentioned, teenagers can be sneaky and could just create other accounts you don't know about. They could see it as not only an invasion of their own privacy, but also of friends that are sending them confidential messages online, for example. If you're worried, try setting up some parental locks and privacy settings to restrict some websites or times they are allowed online a day.

Hope that is of any help =)
1
CybersmileTeam

In reply to Emelia

Great comment Emelia, I think respecting teenagers privacy is vital in building a healthy, trusting relationship with them.
1
TheJudge
No you shouldn't know your children's social media passwords, how will they ever be prepared for what life holds both on and offline if they are kept in the dark about the realities?
1
SamS
Surely, this issue is a trust thing and again an education thing. If the parent is comfortable with knowing that they've educated their child to the dangers of the online world, should they then let their child explore this platform with freedom (with appropriate boundaries). If the child feels as though their parent doesn't trust them then it may be very difficult for the child to engage in concerns with the parent in the future :)
0
nicobico
Hello, new to this community. Anyways, I think as many people are saying it is really a matter of trust. But more than that its also about respect, if your child wants to give you their passwords then gladly take them but don't post anything unless ABSOLUTELY necessary. I have friends who struggle with their parents being a little insane about being on their phones and such. This just leads them to lying to their parents very frequently about almost everything.
1
dolphintiger12
Hello. I may be young but I know quite alot of things with teens. Yes respect your teens privacy but if you get to worried about whats going on ask her! Or use your account or make a account to see whats shes posting and that way she does not know and will their for feel safer and private when your helping her to stay safe. I don't know if that's good advice but hope It helps!
2
LILYZ
Hello,I just tell you about my opinion.Once I argued with my mom because she looked my diary and texts,and I felt my private space was been watched.After that I covered and locked my diary and mobile phone,and till now nobody can open it again.So in my opinion,it maybe not a good choice to know your daughter's password.And as you guess,if she does want to hide something,you'll take long time to find.
I totally understand your feeling,and maybe you could pay more attention on her daily behaviors?Or who she communicate more with?Or try to get on well with her friends?Maybe it could be better.
1
Suzanne

In reply to LILYZ

Thanks LILYZ, some great advice in there. She is actually being cyberbullied now so I've started a new topic looking for help if you or anybody else can help?
1
chloenicholas
Hi Suzanne,

As a teenager, my mother has all access to my social media's. To me, I think it makes her feel a lot more safe to know what I'm up to online. In my opinion, I think it is great to have your child's passwords, just to make sure they're safe.

At first I was worried to give her my passwords because she would see that I have made several friends online, but she was actually quite happy.

If you want your child's passwords, I think you should ask them. Having access to their accounts and knowing if things are okay or not is such a relief to you as a parent.

Hope this helps a bit (:
1
LILYZ

In reply to Suzanne

I'm glad can make a little help :)
Of course yes,I'm checking new topic now!
3
Sweats_wine
I'm on the fence. If you think your daughter has been bullied or is a bully then yes. You would want to be there for her as a parent. And then there's the side of me that says no. You want your kids to be respectful of others. Trusting your child is doing the right thing online is a form of respect. And teenagers also want their privacy. Parents invade our rooms and try to read our diaries.
2
Buffy101
That's tough. How to help your children without invading their privacy. The truth is that it's a very thin line and hard to see until you've crossed it. I, personally, would speak to my children one-on-one. To get a child to open up, you must open up first. Be the person they can say anything to without judgment or repercussion. If you were bullied, tell them about it and how you handled it. Talk to them about sharing their passwords. See how they feel. Respect their decision and remain open to them. The truth as I'm seeing it is that you'd much rather them open their door to you rather than allow you to look through their window.
2
LadyGrayse
I'm the mom of 2 teen boys and I know their passwords. I only have 1 on social media (the other thinks it's 'stupid') & while I do monitor what they're doing online, I don't post. They know I'm always there when they want/need to talk. I'm fairly open-minded & thankfully they feel comfortable coming to me with stuff. They trust me & I trust them.
1
mom2dkj
I would like to apologize in advance for my directness. I've been told it can be off-putting, but it's a very honest answer....

Of course you should know your kid's passwords, but this communication starts when they're babies. I have completely open communication with my kids (ages 26, 23, 15) to the point they tell me more than I want to know. Keep in mind that until the age of 18, your child is a CHILD and YOU are responsible for their actions. They are allowed privacy to a certain point, but you should also be comfortable walking into their room and saying "hey, what's happening?" Starting open communication with a 14YO? Good luck. Be strong. You're the mom. She's the kid.