The three oldest kids in our home were issued cell phones in middle school for a variety of reasons, The number one reason being safety and the mom wanting to have the ability to contact them at anytime. If you have a tween or a teen and are considering making them a cell phone carrying teen we have a six tips for you.
1. Learn the foreign language of texting - teens use acronyms when texting to shorten their words however they also might be using them to keep adults from knowing what they are really texting about. Here is a list of of some common acronyms that your teem might use to keep you from really knowing what the conversation is about.
Text Messaging Acronyms
ADR — Address
AFK — Away from Keyboard
ASL — Age/Sex/Location
BRB — Be Right Back
GTG — Got to Go
GYPO — Get Your Pants off
IWSN — I Want Sex Now
JK — Just Kidding
KFY — Kiss for You
KPC — Keeping Parents Clueless
LMIRL — Let’s Meet in Real Life
LMAO—Laughing My Ass off
LOL — Laugh out Loud
MorF — Male or Female
NIFOC — Nude in Front Of Computer
P911 – Parent Alert
PAL — Parents Are Listening
PAW — Parents Are Watching
PIR — Parent in Room
POS — Parents over Shoulder
SorG — Straight or Gay
TDTM — Talk Dirty to Me
WYCM — Will You Call Me?
Talk to your kids about the dangers of sexting - Be in the know as to who your kids are texting. You can also check your bill to see what times of the day your kids are texting.
3. Family cell phone rules - Establish rules
- What time at night do they need to turn off their phones
- Where they are to keep their cell phones at night in or out of their bedrooms.
- Turn cell phones off at meal times
- Driving and cell use
- Cell phone etiquette ( when and where talking is allowed)
- Use at school
4. To answer or not answer - discuss with your kids that they are to only answer calls or view text messages from people they know just Like the Internet, cell phones are used not only for bullying, but also for sexual predators and for scams.
5. Pictures and video – Teach your kids about that privacy and ethics are important. And you or your teen may be liable if a privacy law is broken. Do not invade others privacy using your cell phone camera abilities.
6. The bill- Determine who will pay and what types of services you will purchase for their phones. Unlimited vs. limited, texting, internet etc.