Advertisement

How should I talk to my child about online issues?

Michele Borba
Psychology
The crux of safety is communication, so if there is a problem -- online or off -- your child will be more likely to talk to you about it. Today's kids prefer texting over talking which can cut into parent-kid communication: 11 to 14 year olds now spend an average of 73 minutes a day texting; older teens' texting habits are closer to two hours.

What the research says: A national study found that the more kids report it hard to talk to their parents about online issues, the greater the disagreement over technology, rules and online monitoring.

What parents can do: Fifty years of child development research shows, while there are no guarantees, the best way to reduce risky kid behavior is the strength of our relationship with our kids.

Use the 5-to-1 listening to talk ratio: Talk one minute and listen for five.
Don't just text: talk. Insist that your kids actually talk to them rather than just text.
Set up unplugged family zones (kitchen and dining room) to enhance family communication

Parents are their kids' best firewall so use your influence by monitoring your child both online and off! Do know that there are no guarantees, but tips such as these can reduce your child's risky Internet behaviors.
The Big Book of Parenting Solutions: 101 Answers to Your Everyday Challenges and Wildest Worries

More About this Book

The Big Book of Parenting Solutions: 101 Answers to Your Everyday Challenges and Wildest Worries

Today show's Michele Borba's cures for difficult childhood behaviors In this down-to-earth guide, parenting expert Michele Borba offers advice for dealing with children's difficult behavior and hot...

Continue Learning about Safety & Preparedness

Backyard Pools: How to Keep Your Kids Safe
Backyard Pools: How to Keep Your Kids Safe
In June of 2019, country music star Granger Smith posted a devastating announcement on Instagram. Doctors had been unable to revive his three-year-old...
Read More
Why is it important for children to sit in the back seat of a car?
Eastern Idaho Regional Medical CenterEastern Idaho Regional Medical Center
It is important for children to sit in the back seat of a car rather than the front seat because air...
More Answers
What devices can help older people get in and out of a vehicle?
Mercy HealthMercy Health
When it comes to the turning motion needed to get in and out of a vehicle, there are several devices...
More Answers
What Human Medications Are Harmful to My Pets?
What Human Medications Are Harmful to My Pets?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.