Sharing is NOT caring!

There’s no other way to say it, so it makes no sense trying to bite the bullet: parents need to do better when it comes to monitoring their children’s social media!

Better still, imbed in their minds that with the ownership of a cell phone, begets responsibility. Lots of it.

There seems to be spikes in controversy when it comes to social media scandals.

Gosh who remembers “Leak Week” when at least six videos of girls in various states of undress were making the rounds, both on and off Bermuda’s shores? People giggled and shared with no remorse. Others were appalled and still shared; no one really caring that these girls are somebody’s children.

In the wake of one particularly graphic video in 2016, I interviewed two men. They cried together and shared that they were the parents of two of the recent “stars” and they spoke of heartbreak, of loss and of course, embarrassment.

These men were devastated by what had happened, but the most bitter pill for them to swallow was acknowledging that their teens were willing participants and the video had been shared hundreds, if not thousands of times. It was one of the most uncomfortable conversations I’d had in a long time, but I applauded these men for not pointing the finger at each other’s child. A great example of accountability.

Something which is definitely lacking today.

As a mother of a teen and a preteen, I find myself preaching to them on a regular. I tell my daughter endless times, no matter how trustworthy your “friends” may seem do not put anything in cyber space that can return years later to haunt your character.  To my son, the lecture is slightly adjusted: Do not share scandalous pictures of females, no matter how entertaining you and your friends may think they are.

There seems to be no moral fibre in the cyber world, where everyone wants to be the ‘first’, and no one caring that people have families. But who cares right? ‘Cause the shares received their desired giggles…if only in the moment.

It is imperative that we talk to young people until we are blue in the face about the potential perils as a result of a reckless share.

Mete out consequences if you know they are doing this. Take away their phones! Stop paying the bill! Don’t ask them to send image or video to you! Is that realistic? If you think it isn’t then YOU are a part of the problem!

And no, it’s not only young people who do this. But their behaviour is getting way out of hand. And it must be stopped. As soon as possible. Mom, dad, it all starts with you.

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