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How much privacy do we give our kids? - Page 3

post #41 of 66

We are pretty strict about social media.  Our older children are 11 and 13.  They are not allowed to be on FB until they are 16.  They will friend me, we will read the websites they go to, etc.  At this point we have a verbal discussion about where they go on the Internet:  "Mom, can I go on DIsney.com to play games?" or  "Mom, I need to research echidnas for my science class.  Can I do a Google search?"

 

We consider online stuff to be public.  They will be taught it is public.  Internet and computer use is a privilege, not a right.  We do not listen in on their phone conversations, we knock before we go in their rooms, we don't read their personal writings, we don't go through their drawers.  Internet is something else.  Our kids do not have phones and text.  They will be allowed those privileges as they get older.  We have an extra family phone they are allowed to use if they go somewhere without parents and want to be able to contact us.

My parents gave us lots of privacy, even in a family with 9 kids.  BUT there was only 1 phone in the main area, and we shared rooms, etc.  If we wanted to be alone, we were allowed to go for a walk out across the sagebrush.  Not much there but jackalopes.

 

post #42 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekka View Post

They are not allowed to be on FB until they are 16.  They will friend me, we will read the websites they go to, etc.&nbsp.

 


Wow, at 16? You are going to monitor their private facebook interactions two years before they are able to move out of your house? Im not sure how old you are, but to most 16 year olds, facebook is like passing notes in class. Kids facebook back and forth all day long, basically chatting. The internet might not be private, but notes back and forth between friends shouldnt be read by parents, IMO. You arent going to get to choose who a 16 year old will and wont be friends with and what they will and wont say at 2 years anyway, so why start then?

IDK, to me that is exactly the type of privacy invasion that causes lying. Id just set up a different facebook account at my friends house and use a name that you wouldnt know, but tell my friends what it was. Then, everytime I was near a friend with a cell phone, Id check it or post, just like my SIL did for 4 years without ever being caught. Even me and DH knew and didnt say a word because we thought her mom was being totally ridiculous. The girl could drive, was picking out colleges, had a job and for the most part acted like a kid getting ready to go to college. I guess it all depends on how mature a kid is...
post #43 of 66
My kids get a lot of privacy UNLESS they are acting up somehow. I've only had to do this once per kid and I told them why I did it.

I don't do the FBoob. My teens both have accounts and my hubby checks on them but they don't use them much. Too much drama and hate for teens on the Fbook.
post #44 of 66
Thread Starter 
Being forbidden to do things doesn't always lead to kids doing those things behind their parents back. However it's good to try to figure out why sometimes we feel we need that much control over them.
post #45 of 66

I wouldn't want my kids on FBoob. *giggles*

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by philomom View Post

My kids get a lot of privacy UNLESS they are acting up somehow. I've only had to do this once per kid and I told them why I did it.

I don't do the FBoob. My teens both have accounts and my hubby checks on them but they don't use them much. Too much drama and hate for teens on the Fbook.


 

post #46 of 66

I respect my DS's privacy. I knock on his door when its shut etc etc etc

!

He has no desire to be on FB, hasn't mentioned it, nor does he have an e-mail, he meets with his friends and hangs out with them and that is the only way he socializes. I personally don't want him to have an FB, not because I don't trust him, but I just feel that FB is a way for kids to become sucked into the computer and not socialize face to face, FB becomes their only way of socializing and that I don't want!

 

He sends written notes, old skool style to his friends. How do I know? He writes them here in the living room and tells me about it!

 

We are an open book, you can talk to us about anything and so we have no secrets!

I know that he would never keep anything from us, because from when he was tiny we have always had open communication!

He talks to us about everything, nothing is taboe!

 

So, I have no reason to go through his stuff, snoop around, listen to his phone calls!

 

 

post #47 of 66
My kids are now 13 & 15

Have you ever read their diary?

- No, not unless asked. One time my DD showed me something in her diary.

Listened in on a phone call?
- Not intentionally, if the kids are speaking loudly in the living room, sometimes I can't help hearing it.


Asked their friends questions about them they wouldn't answer?

- No.

Would you follow them?

Never say never, but up til now, only when we told them. For example, when DD started to go to secondary school on the public bus, DH took her there for the first week. Then, to make sure she knew the way, for another few days he told he would follow to make sure she was OK knew the route, etc.). He did it & that reassured her.

Have you gone through their personal things, like a purse, back pack, wallet?

My daughter, not since she was in primary school and I was looking for notes or things to sign from the school. My DS, I still sometimes look in his back-pack for things that he "forgets" - also last year, lunch box. This year he and his sister are both better about cleaning out their lunch box.

Have you looked through their room?

Yes, but usually with their knowledge, like when I'm looking for a book that DD borrowed from me and I tell her I'm looking for it. Or "Mama, I can't find my XYZ, help!!" and I start looking for the lost homework assignment, hockey socks, etc.

DS is more of a slob and from time to time I will go into his wardrobe to tidy things, but most of the time if I think his room needs to be sorted out, I have him go through stuff with me, and find out what things to keep or throw away.

How much privacy do you give your kids and how often do you feel you invade their privacy?

I think they have an adequate amount of privacy. They can talk to their friends when they want on the phone or via email. They have independence to come and go where they want by public transportation. On school nights I expect them home in time for supper (~ 7pm). If they go over to spend the night w/ a friend, I do insist that I speak to the parent-in-charge about it & if my kids want a friend to sleep over, I call the other parents to make sure they know the plan and double-check on what time they expect their child back.

They have never really complained about it.
post #48 of 66

My teenager: I sometimes read her public deviantart account, but she knows this. I'm also on facebook with her. We have an email address that we both get, and she has other email addresses that are private and I don't snoop those. (the shared address is useful and she uses it for purchases and stuff that she wants me to see).

 

The only time I've insisted on being in her space when she didn't want me there was when she was actively lying to me about schoolwork and there was a major issue about it. It happened exactly once, where she was hiding out in her room and I insisted that she let me in, and had to threaten to take the door off the hinges if she didn't. Aside from that one, very notable incident, she's earned my trust, and I stay out of her "stuff" unless something pressing warrants it. And now, at age 18, as long as she doesn't start bringing illegal drugs home (which she wouldn't, but it's the one thing I'd likely violate her privacy for), she's an adult and it's her business and as long as she is legally competent to manage her own affairs, I'm going to let her do so. (And by competent, I mean that if she had a mental breakdown where she was nonfunctional, that's another story, otherwise she gets to make her mistakes like any other 18 year old.)

 

We established very early that trust is earned, and 99% of her childhood since age 4 1/2, she's worked very hard to earn and keep that trust, and in exchange, she earned a lot of freedom from a young age.

 

And it really depends on the kid. My other daughter will likely never be competent to manage her own affairs, and will have much less privacy, because a) it woudlnt' be appropriate given her level of disability and b) she is not capable of earning the trust and responsibility at this point, and may never be. She also doesn't care about privacy. At all. (At age six, she'll still strip spontaneously in public.)

post #49 of 66

 

"You are going to monitor their private facebook interactions two years before they are able to move out of your house?"

 

There is NO SUCH THING as a "private Facebook interaction." It's a digital communication linked directly to your IRL identity that can be easily forwarded to a large group of your friends and family (a list of whom are conveniently provided by the application!). 

 

While I don't intend to snoop my kids' Facebook for jollies, I'm certainly going to keystroke-log it so if something goes wrong, I can retrace their public communications as part of figuring out what the problem is and how to address it. 

post #50 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post

 

"You are going to monitor their private facebook interactions two years before they are able to move out of your house?"

 

There is NO SUCH THING as a "private Facebook interaction." It's a digital communication linked directly to your IRL identity that can be easily forwarded to a large group of your friends and family (a list of whom are conveniently provided by the application!). 

 

While I don't intend to snoop my kids' Facebook for jollies, I'm certainly going to keystroke-log it so if something goes wrong, I can retrace their public communications as part of figuring out what the problem is and how to address it. 


If my son sends a private message via facebook to a friend, that is a "private FB interaction" isnt it? If the only way i can access it is to log in under his acct info?
post #51 of 66
Thread Starter 

I think it's actually pretty normal for kids to hide things.  Even if your relationship with them is good and what they're hiding isn't even bad.  It's the feeling of protecting what is all theirs and their need to have something they don't have to share.  DD1 finally told me about her crush at school.  However I was told I can't tell DH or DD2.  Apparently she needs to know I'm not going to tell anyone her secret and I won't.  But that doesn't mean she'll always tell me everything and keep me in the loop.  She will hide things from me and I will be ok with that as long as she's healthy safe and happy.

post #52 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post

There is NO SUCH THING as a "private Facebook interaction." It's a digital communication linked directly to your IRL identity that can be easily forwarded to a large group of your friends and family (a list of whom are conveniently provided by the application!). 

 


using that logic, all hand written notes can be passed around, too. It's the same thing.

 

I don't see a difference between reading a note one of my kids wrote a friend and reading their Facebook chats. It's all the same.

 

I think part of the reason I may feel differently about this issue *might* be because my kids are older. When they were little, it was hard to imagine them being mature and needing privacy and deserving the same respect I expect the family to treat me with.

 

But they are teens --- good, responsible, trust worthy teens. One of whom is learning to drive and about to start an internship on a research project at a university. I really don't need to monitor her chatting with her friends about what movie they want to see next -- even when they have those chats in digital formats.

 

post #53 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post

 

"You are going to monitor their private facebook interactions two years before they are able to move out of your house?"

 

There is NO SUCH THING as a "private Facebook interaction." It's a digital communication linked directly to your IRL identity that can be easily forwarded to a large group of your friends and family (a list of whom are conveniently provided by the application!). 

 

While I don't intend to snoop my kids' Facebook for jollies, I'm certainly going to keystroke-log it so if something goes wrong, I can retrace their public communications as part of figuring out what the problem is and how to address it. 


Back when kids mainly communicated through handwritten notes, parents would have seemed like monsters if they had but carbon paper behind every piece of paper their kid wrote on. Somehow, because its digital, its ok?
post #54 of 66
Thread Starter 

It's really all about control. Well if you feel you need to look through everything. And some people have different levels of trust. I've known people who feel they can't trust their kid whatsoever because were told to do something like unload the dishwasher and forgot to do it.  Now they can't trust them.  Seems a little over the top to me... but hey that's how they feel about it.

post #55 of 66

"Somehow, because its digital, its ok?"

 

Because it's digital, it's eternal and the information can easily go viral - and thus, it's a terrible medium for information that you would be deeply reluctant to share with your peer group. I send Facebook "private messages" to people, hoping and assuming that if I say something catty, they won't forward the note on to the 3rd party we're discussing - but I have to accept that it happen - and given the impulse-control issues and shifting loyalties of adolescents and how much they've come to rely on digital communication, it's more likely to happen in that cohort. 

 

We've kind of shifted topic here, though. I don't intend to read my kids' digital "notes" in attempt to force them to be discreet. I don't intend to read them at all, unless my mom-dar is telling me that something's seriously wrong. But I certainly DO intend to communicate a lot, with examples, about the utter idiocy of texting, emailing or messaging some sentiment (or some picture!!!) that one is not prepared to defend to one's entire school. 

post #56 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post
 But I certainly DO intend to communicate a lot, with examples, about the utter idiocy of texting, emailing or messaging some sentiment (or some picture!!!) that one is not prepared to defend to one's entire school. 


but the exact same thing is true of a hand written note. My DH's motto is "never put anything in writing you wouldn't want presented to you in court."

 

We've also taught the kids to be carefully about what they say in an area that isn't totally private. I volunteer at the school library, and kids go behind a book shelf and think its sound proof. These issues are not limited to digital communication.

 

But, I don't allow the possible of a particular type of communication going viral to change the way I treat my children. I think reading a child's texts is exactly the same morally as listening on the other phone line. Doing it habitually is the same as having a recorder put on your phone line so you can go through all their conversations.

 

 

 

post #57 of 66

My own mom was horrid about invading my privacy. I would wake at night to her sitting on my floor reading my diary or poetry! I lived for two yrs with family members as a teen an they taught me ALOT about respect. When they had a hunch their son was smoking, they waited til he got home from school, sat himdown and explained their worries and told him they were going to search his room. They wanted him there so he could see they were ONLY looking for cigarettes and would not be reading his personal stuff, etc....  I really think that was very respectful. I try to keep open honest communication with my kids, which I think is the first step.

post #58 of 66

I remember in highschool how my handwritten note to my friend about a boy I liked got passed around the entire classroom to humiliate me!

 

In my highschool people were actually writing on bathroom walls with markers, writing horrible messages about eachother.

 

 

Things are not that much different nowdays, only now they use social media! Same thing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #59 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by EuroMama View Post

I remember in highschool how my handwritten note to my friend about a boy I liked got passed around the entire classroom to humiliate me!


yeah, I remember being at a church camp as a teen and a very personal note that a girl had written her boyfriend was read aloud by an ADULT during a session as her "punishment" for writing notes when she wasn't supposed to be.
post #60 of 66

Oh how horrible! :(

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post


yeah, I remember being at a church camp as a teen and a very personal note that a girl had written her boyfriend was read aloud by an ADULT during a session as her "punishment" for writing notes when she wasn't supposed to be.


 

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