|Me when I was younger
Nowadays more children than ever are using social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. I remember the good old days of MSN and MySpace. Although these may not be as popular now as they were when I was growing up, it brings me to the all-important question of your child’s online safety and indeed how much privacy should you give your child. When I was a teenager I had a diary and I would write everything in it. From what I was watching on TV to who I fancied at school. One day my parents found and read my diary, much to my horror. From that point onward I found myself becoming more and more secretive in what I was doing. My parents had no qualms in confiscating my mobile phone from me or grounding me. Even stopping me from using the computer was a common occurrence.
As I knew my parents were prone to confiscating my phone I always made sure I deleted certain text messages almost immediately after reading and replying to them. I never wrote a diary again and my whereabouts were kept hidden when I went out with my mates, just in case mum and/or dad decided to turn up. Whilst all my friends were having sleep overs and going to parties, my sister and I were bound by strict curfews. This led me to be a bit rebellious in my teenage years and now as a mother myself I wonder how I will broach this subject with my own children.
I know under no uncertain circumstances that if my daughters decide to keep a diary, I will never ever touch it, let alone read the contents of it. To me a diary is a personal thing and something that parents should steer clear of. This also means never snooping on their phone or social networking profiles. I guess it all amounts to trust and I think it would be interesting to see if I still feel the same about this in 15 years’ time as I do now.
Of course I will want to know where my children are, but that doesn’t mean I would stop them from doing things. Instead if one of my children wanted to go to a sleep over at a friend’s house, that would be fine with me just so long as I could phone their parents beforehand to confirm this and if one of my daughters was ever going to be late coming home, I would want them to send me a text or call me to let me know.
Would you read your child’s diary? Would you snoop in their mobile phone, personal belongings even or social networking profiles? I would love to hear what you think!