Much has been written about teens, early teens, and social media over the years. I’m not a psychologist and have never experienced this firsthand, so I haven’t jumped into the fray.Social media wasn’t an issue until my kids were all grown up.
Then this happened. January 2021, answered questions from parents about issues between her daughter and school. I suggested she let her daughter and her school know to let them work things out between them.
A teacher emailed me to find out that I was making parents irresponsible and putting the responsibility of their teens on the school. This resulted in an email dialogue between us and the follow-up article.
The teacher was clearly angry, but her email was welcomed. She appreciates that she took her time and effort to reach out to me and was willing to give me the opportunity to clear up her misunderstandings.
Later, while writing a follow-up article, I came across the newspaper’s Facebook page and readers’ comments on the article. (Until then, I didn’t even know the newspaper had a Facebook page.) And what I read made me stagger.
Apparently there was a community of a dozen readers who banded together to express their fear and anger at what I had written. was. just about me No one contacted me directly to ask questions or share their thoughts.
It’s not that they were upset or opposed to me that made me very uneasy. The fact that there was a sort of behind-the-scenes discussion about me, one reader wrote before her comment, “Are you kidding me?” I felt awkward and ashamed.
I saved those comments and then decided never to go againMore The Post Facebook page again. And I never have why? Because if it’s really important to you, I can easily get in touch with you. My email is at the bottom of every column I write.
I reread those comments a few days ago and to be fair none of them were mean or nasty or vicious or cruel but I felt my face heat up again .
But this lesson was useful to me because it gave me a very personal understanding of what this should be like for our children and teens. If I, a woman, were upset by this, what would this be like for our children?
So how can we do better? Communicate clearly and directly with others. Don’t gossip. Do not engage in, condone or encourage exposing behavior on social media. Discuss this with your teens and let them observe how you behave so they don’t fall into the “safe” trap of being an online bully.
I saw a sign at a restaurant many years ago. tell your friends Unsatisfied with our service? tell me. “It may be a word for living.
Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me with comments, questions, rants, encouragement, and more! We are always happy to receive your kind words.
Want to know more about Choice Theory? Send an email to email@example.com. I will send you a PDF of the booklet. Who drives your car? Handout 6 Things: How to Create Healthy Boundaries.