Social Media Safety for the Holidays – Check Your Child’s Phone and Digital Devices for Family Safety

Social Media Safety for the Holidays – Check Your Child’s Phone
and Digital Devices for Family Safety

The holidays are upon us and remember to monitor your children’s
and grandchildren’s social media content. When talking to youth,
teens and young adults about what they are doing watch body
language, eye tracking, language they use and how their behavior
changes as you speak with them not yelling or accusing them of
anything but reminding them of the safety of themselves and
their family.

Don’t threaten, accuse, assume, blame or interrogate. Talk with love, caring and patience. Smartphones in some cases help with mental health, emotional support and community connections.
Our children live in a digital age and need support not confrontation or threats of taking away devices.
Don’t be overly aggressive, but nurturing and conversational.

Check their phone with them to comfort them. This is not the time for you to be aggressive, but to build and maintain a trusting relationship between you and your child. Check their tablet, check their watches, check their laptop and check other digital/electronic devices for their and your family safety. Yes it may be difficult, but the potentials for engagement with law enforcements makes this necessary.

If there is resistance be calm and call your service provider and they can tell you how to check content through your phone or computer if you are paying on the account.
The holidays are times when family members should not be posting photos or video of what is in the home, what is under the tree, what is hidden in homes. Cash should not be displayed on social media and other items that could be considered to be stolen.
As a teacher of 33 years in elementary, middle, and higher education I want to provide some insights and suggestions to help manage digital devices for the holidays and into the New Year.
Teaching at a middle school I have been attacked, threatened, and stalked on social media by students and parents.

Fortunately I was able to resolve these situations through conversation, blocking and the help of administration at the schools I have taught at.
There is an increase of fights, threats, violence, stalking, bullying, and other aggressive things that children from elementary to higher education are experiencing. Many times, youth, teens, young adults will not go to parents, but talk to their friends or lash out for physical, mental and emotional safety.
So called “Good Kids” are increasingly hurt because they are fearful for their lives and the only way they see to protect themselves is to carry knives, guns or other things. This is why conversation and documentation are important. If there are threats document and contact administration and law enforcement quickly and document each incident. Do not confront other parents or students or those in the community.
When you provide your children a phone you are ultimately accountable for behavior issues. If law enforcement is involved and there is violence, threats, sexting, stalking, etc, electronic devices will either be confiscated or tracked with search warrants.

Make sure you are in communication with your Smartphone,
Cell Phone providers to monitor digital engagements.
Cell phone companies will help monitor digital activities and
even have digital tools to monitor online activities of those under 18.
Parents, please strongly attempt to communicate with your children
or grandchildren. Do not use fear, threats, violence and other
punishments. This will create distrust, lying, damaging behaviors
and other things that create unhealthy relationships in the family.

As a step-parent it is very challenging for step-parents.
Communication between parents is important and trusting each
other to be fair, to each other’s concerns. I have experienced
behaviors and rely on my wife to monitor cell phone, television
and other concerns that happen in our home.
Collaboration, Cooperation, Coordination, Concern and Prayer,
being on One Accord is important and needed.

Finally common sense, a common interest for a peaceful home,
prayer, praise, love and patience are needed as more digital tools
are used in homes and sometimes create conflicts between parents,
parenting, and raising children.

We live in digital times, digital connections and sometimes this creates tensions, misunderstanding in the home, schools and communities.

Show patience, love and peace.
William Jackson, M.Ed.
CEO of MetaverseWP & My Quest To Teach
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