“Something is not right…”

Parents come equipped with radar. Or so some teenagers think. Much to their dismay, parental intuition tends to be accurate. If you are worried that something is going on with your child–that they might be up to no good online–by all means follow it up. Employ the arsenal of trustworthy adults in your child’s life–aunts, uncles, teachers, youth pastor–anyone to whom your teen might be willing to open up. Better safe than sorry.

You are the gatekeeper in your child’s life. It’s a tough gig in this day and age, but someone must do it.

Signs that your child might be engaging in unsafe or questionable practices online (e.g., cyberbullying, interacting with a “dodgy” or dangerous on-line acquaintance, etc.):

  • Highly secretive behaviour, irritability, excessive tiredness, unexplained money or expensive gifts, unexplained absences or trips, cleared history on browser, deleted call list on phone, unusual phone calls, etc

Signs and clues that your child is engaging in unsafe or questionable practices with their mobile phone (e.g., sexting, storing/exchanging pornography, cyberbullying):

  • Secretive behaviour, irritability, explosive anger, excessive tiredness, unwillingness to allow you to look at photos on their phone, empty recent call history