Should You Friend Your Teen Online?

Aug 13, 2013

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Damira and Mandie

A new study reveals that teens who are friends with their parents on social networks feel closer to them in real life.

It may not be as simple as “establish an online friendship and watch your real-life connection grow” though. It’s more likely that teens who already have good relationships with their parents will friend them on a social network. But even for those relationships that aren’t so great, an online friendship can potentially improve the situation by providing parents insight into their teen’s life.

Before you can try to friend your teen online, however, you need to know what social networks he likes. Lead study author Sarah Coyne says, “I think it’s important for parents to be media savvy and to know where their kids are. A lot of teenagers are on Twitter and not a lot of parents are on that. If you really want to stay involved with your kid, you can’t be afraid to learn new technology, to learn new web sites and to know where your teen is.”

We agree and commend parents for working hard to stay on top of their kids’ online activities with tools like social media monitoring software. Don’t be disheartened if you haven’t figured everything out quite yet. We know parenting is a process. But whether you are brand new or a seasoned veteran, Net Nanny is a great parental controls tool that’s always available to make sure you can have at least some peace of mind when your kids go online.

Oh, and if you are friends with your teen online, remember to be careful and not overstep digital boundaries. Just like in real life, your interactions and relationship with her online should be respectful and conscious of your audience.

I work for Net Nanny and all opinions are my own.