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How We Can Better Ensure That Our Children Are Using Social Media Safely

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Let’s do our best to protect our children with their online behaviors.

Today, it’s nearly impossible to avoid the influence of social media.  As parents, there will come a time when our children will want to make their own accounts.  While the idea of our kids on social media can be terrifying, it’s not something that we can put off indefinitely.  To ensure help that our kids are safe and responsible online, here are some suggestions.

  • Discuss the Dangers

The main danger of social media and the internet as a whole is that it is anonymous. Someone can easily pretend to be someone else, concealing their true identity and intentions.  This is especially dangerous when it comes to predators who assume fake identities to lure children into connecting with them. To avoid this chilling scenario, we need to have a serious talk with our children about the dangers of befriending people online.  It’s suggested that we stress the importance of never accepting friend requests from strangers and explain the risks of posting too much personal information online.  By candidly discussing the threats of the online world, we will hopefully reduce the chances of our kids being exploited.

  • Understand Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying occurs when people are bullied online.  Bullying in any form can have severe psychological, emotional, and even physical consequences for the victim.  This is why it’s so important to discuss this risk with our children.  Not only is it important that we discourage any bullying behavior from our children, but we can also help them make an action plan for what they need to do if they are a victim of cyberbullying.  By keeping an eye on our children’s social media use and experience, we may be able to prevent any child from being hurt from cruel online bullying.

  • Establish Guidelines

Using social media requires a certain level of maturity and responsibility.  This is why we need to think about our children objectively to determine if they are ready.  If we feel that they are mature enough to start using social media, then we need to make sure that we lay down guidelines before letting them set up an account.  One of the important things to discuss with our family is their online reputation.  Many children have trouble understanding that once something is on the internet, it is there forever.  This is why it’s so important to avoid posting inappropriate photos or potentially damaging things online.  Because a thoughtless post now could haunt our children forever, we need to make sure that our kids fully understand the risks of posting online.

We at The Maria Sanchez Show hope you will try out these suggestions to keep your kids safe online.  Don’t forget to check out our latest program, Shadow Politics with Senator Michael D. Brown.   Tune in on Sundays at 4:00 p.m. PST/7:00 p.m. EST.

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