Parenting is NOT for sissy’s
I have not received one, nor two but four distressed calls from parents in the last two months – they found their teenage kids sexting.
As most parents so easily do, they blamed themselves for being bad parents. They felt overwhelmed, profoundly concerned and mightily challenged by their discoveries.
Many parents of almost teens might not even know what sexting is.
Wikipedia’s explanation: Sexting is sending, receiving, or forwarding sexually explicit messages, photographs, or images, primarily between mobile phones, of oneself to others. It may also include the use of a computer or any digital device.
Teens are sending more sexually explicit text messages, photos and videos — known as sexting — than ever before, according to a new report. The majority of teenagers under 18 are keeping it clean, but 15 per cent of teens say they’ve sent texts and 27 per cent say they have received them.
After finding your teen is sexting, what’s the first thing you should do?
Have a conversation with your child without freaking out or accusing your child of being the worst child ever. Try to get to understand what the reason is your child is doing sexting. Is it a longing to fit in? Is your teen perhaps battling with self-esteem issues and this is an attempt to be cool? Is your child aware of the consequences of sexting and if the information is shared and goes viral?
Realise your teen is from the digital generation and the way they connect and interact is digital. But keep in mind your teen doesn’t always developmentally put together what they are doing. Teens tend to have magical thinking – “nothing can go wrong with me”.
Use this challenge as a teachable moment to empower and equip your teen with insights, life skills and knowledge. DON”T PREACH. Be conversational. Listen to your teen’s side of his or her story as well. Be caring and listen with open ears. Listen to what message is possibly behind your teen’s behaviour.
Then set boundaries – not taking their phone away for a lifetime. Set limits that will neither push your child away in fits of resentment, bitterness and anger nor let your child feel you are okay with their behaviour. Think what boundaries you want to set. Inform your teen you are going to do spot checks on their phone, and you need their pin. The spot checks are not a form of punishment, rather a responsible parents duty.
Here’s a list of 50 common sexting and texting terms every parent should know:
- 8 – it means ate, can also refer to oral sex
- 9 – Parent watching
- 99 – Parent gone
- 1337 – Elite, leet or L337
- 143 – I love you
- 1174 – the meeting place, meet at
- 420 – Marijuana
- 459 – I love you
- 53X – Sex
- ADR – Address
- AEAP – As Early As Possible
- ALAP – As Late As Possible
- ASL – Age/Sex/Location
- BROKEN – hungover from alcohol
- CD9 – Code 9 (parents are around)
- C-P – Sleepy
- F2F – Face-to-Face
- GNOC – Get Naked On Cam
- GYPO – Get Your Pants Off
- HAK – Hugs And Kisses
- ILU – I Love You
- IWSN – I Want Sex Now
- KOTL – Kiss On The Lips
- KFY or K4Y – Kiss For You
- KPC – Keeping Parents Clueless
- LMIRL – Let’s Meet In Real Life
- MOOS – Member Of The Opposite Sex
- MOSS – Member Of The Same Sex
- MorF – Male or Female
- MOS – Mom Over Shoulder
- MPFB – My Personal F*** Buddy
- NALOPKT – Not A Lot Of People Know That
- NIFOC – Nude In Front Of The Computer
- NMU – Not Much, You?
- P911 – Parent Alert
- PAL – Parents Are Listening -or- Peace And Love
- PAW – Parents Are Watching
- PIR – Parent In Room
- POS – Parent Over Shoulder or Piece Of Sh**
- pron – Porn
- Q2C – Quick To Cum
- RU/18 – Are You Over 18?
- RUMORF – Are You Male OR Female?
- RUH – Are You Horny?
- S2R – Send To Receive
- SorG – Straight or Gay
- TDTM – Talk Dirty To Me
- WUF – Where You From
- WYCM – Will You Call Me?
- WYRN – What’s Your Real Name?
(Source: Beth Dalbey, Patch National Staff from patch.com)
Remember to be your teens’ parent, not their best buddy. They need you to give direction, keep them safe and show the way in a loving, caring way.
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It’s your privilege as a parent to educate your children about the birds and the bees, otherwise their friends will.