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Sextexting! Texting! & TEENS!
Keeping The Lines of Communication Open
Sextexting & TEENS
Do you have teens?
Living in this audacious, adventurous 21st century with all its technological advances has its advantages. You can keep the lines of communication open or stay in constant contact with anyone at anytime, just about anywhere in the world. You can call, talk, track or text message when you have the right, GPS system, computer, cell phone, I pod, TV, Smart TV blue tooth ear piece, Nintendo DSI, mobile devices or some other...
How often do you get a text?
On the other hand it is hard for some to just “be” in the moment, because they are always texting and calling someone else while in your presence. Their attention is divided between you and somewhere or some else? The quality of time spent is usually minimized. They have a hard time just being in the moment or giving their undivided attention to what’s going on “right now.” It is important in this day & age to remain aware of what is going on around you when you are out and about. Having the capability to be accessible is great. But I believe it is really getting out of hand. Perhaps there should be some “rules of etiquette ” honored and accountability exercised when alone or while in public or in the presence of others? And what about the teens?
It is difficult being a teenager! You are too young to be a child and not old enough to be an adult! This time will shape the course of your life. Think hard and long before you make choices that will result in lifelong consequences. Wherever you are in life you can begin to choose to be responsible! Know that you are unique and special. You cannot undo anything that has happened. But you can go forward growing in grace, knowledge and wisdom. Enjoy this time and begin to seriously think about what you want to do with the rest of your life! You have the advantage of many technological devices and inventions use them responsibly and wisely. Check out the links at the end of this article as well!
Here are some examples to keep in mind and ponder...
Reina Hardesty is a 13 year old teen, from Southern California, who is an amazing, creative, prolific texter. How she ever managed to get anything else done? She actually sent approximately 500 texts daily that totaled 14,528 text in one month. It is a good thing that her father had unlimited texting. Otherwise, at 20 cents per text his bill would have been somewhere around a whopping $2,900 !!!
I wonder what this does as far as their overall health is concerned? How much time for homework or anything else for that matter? Is texting addicting? At what point is it considered so...
Wait there's more! Emilee Cox, another witty, vivacious, energetic, teen texter of 14 years, has smashed Reina's record. At 74 text per each hour she was awake, she texted over 35,000 text in one month according to Mirror.com News.
Miley Cyrus favorite hobby was going shopping. When she was a teen she also really liked Chinese Food and watching "High School Musical with her sisters. But apparently the once famous teen idol enjoyed texting as well! When she was younger Miley Cyrus and her then older boyfriend Justin were caught texting during Church service. They thought they were being discreet "They were not only busted but..." They both were scolded by her family's pastor.
Update! Miley Cyrus is really changing she is now in her twenties and has moved on to a new beau and another beau... But I think she has went a bit too far in one of her videos what a switch from Hanna Montana? She even grabbed Robin Thicke's crotch area on stage. Hmm not really at all appropriate is it? I wonder how his wife that was in the audience felt? OH MY! This is why boundaries are so important. Hmm after Miley's "twerking" episode at the VMA's she and her fiancé called off the engagement. She has moved on to someone else... I think this nice girl needs a behavior check intervention real soon!
A while back Hope Witsell, A young Florida middle schooler at the young age of thirteen hung herself after sending nude photos through sexting! It is alleged she sent the photo in hope to impress a boy. The photo was intercepted by a classmate who shared it with many of her school mates as well as neighboring schools. Hope was surrounded in the hallway and underwent gawking from students at school.
Hope's mother said that she had talked to Hope about proper internet conduct. She set rules and boundaries and restricted her, talked with her and continued to love her! However the peer pressure to be accepted was greater. Hope was dismissed as a school advisor and suspended as well. Hope hung herself in her bedroom. This is one on many unfortunate results due to sexting!
These are just a few examples there are many more! It is important to stress responsibility to your teens when they are allowed to have a cell phone or any other high tech gadget! Remind them that it is a privilege not a necessity. The internet and various media resources can be excellent vehicles to help educate when used constructively.
The examples used throughout this article are documented published illustrations that have been publicly shared. The intent here is not to gossip. But to present entertainers and private and public figures that have been in the news for relatable examples to help deter our youth. Many of our youth are daily bombarded with a multiplicity of pressures to conform likewise. There are always exceptions that are able to hold firm and continue to grow and increase in personal discipline.
It is also very important that we keep the lines of communication open with our teenagers. Peer pressure is real. It is becoming increasingly difficult to adhere to a chaste lifestyle or platonic relationship. Abstinence is a safe, dwindling alternative. It is becoming somewhat fashionable to just give in to their sexual urges. Many teens experience acute adolescent anxiety, localized alopecia, acne, anorexia, drug addiction, alcohol, low self esteem, venereal diseases, abuse and panic attacks are on the rise. Therefore Teens are under enormous peer pressure to engage in premarital sexual relationships as well. Resulting in much stress as well as the possible prospect of becoming teenage parents. There is always something lurking to pull them off track. Having a cell phone for emergencies is fantastic! We need to keep the lines of communication open! Yes, we should be concerned! They need constant moments of patience & guidance. The ability to stay in contact is a plus. But here too we also need some “rules of etiquette. ” These 21st century teens have taken texting to a whole new level.
*I KNOW what it is like when your children are away attending the University! I had three attending at one time.. I am very thankful that they remained responsible... Make sure you stay in regular contact. Ask them to check in with you as well! This keeps them connected and in tune with their family values!
Remind them that not everyone they meet on line is who they say they are... Many irresponsible untrustworthy adults are taking advantage of children and teens on line. BE SURE to WARN them about SEXUAL PREDATORS! They seek to interrupt healthy family relationships. It is important that they NOT meet anyone they meet on line in person. If they ever do make sure that they are accompanied by a good friend in a public place. It is wise that they take some type of self defense class. You do not have to make them paranoid; just make sure that you do all you can to make them confident in who they are! In this day and age it is ALWAYS wise to be safe!
Here are a few more stats,
*Texting of this nature is nothing new. According to a 2008 Nielsen study, teenagers between the ages of 13 to 17 “text more than any other demographic group” clocking up an average of 1,742 texts a month.
Sextexting has also become a growing trend among teens. Sextexting is when revealing photos or messages are sent across a cell phone. It is actually flirting with danger. You do not always know how large or who your audience really is. PLEASE DO NOT DO THIS! NOT A GOOD IDEA!!! Teens that are caught could possibly be prosecuted as sex offenders. Unknowingly they send pictures or messages with improper content that once they have been published they cannot be retrieved. it is just not a good idea to get so personal anyway. It is far better to leave some things for the imagination.... On many occasions they have sent messages to a friend, who sent it to a friend and that friend sent it to … Right now this is even being pursued by some prosecutors to possibly be considered as “child pornography.” So it is important to have a serious chat with them about being careful in this area. Nothing more than "G" rated texting allowed!
Remember to check their phones regularly. This is about keeping them safe from temptations!
Taylor Sauer unfortunately was another teen who lost her life due to texting! Taylor Sauer, was a bright, bubbly, fun, delightful, intelligent witty, young lady who graduated with a 3.9 grade average! She was the salutatorian for her graduating class as well as a National Merit Scholar! No doubt that she had a bright future ahead of her! But time would not permit! Her final day came much too soon!
She crashed into a tanker truck while she was texting while going approximately 80 mph! She died instantly! Her cell phone records show that she was texting about every 90 seconds! Her last text was to a friend on face book... She leaves her grieving parents, friends, and love ones to mourn and wonder what could have been! GONE TOO SOON! Her devoted, loving parents are now fighting to help save others...
There are far TOO many teens involved in this...
Please adamantly tell your children, friends and love ones NO TEXTING while driving! Many seem to still think that nothing will happen to them! Too many lives are being lost too many senseless accidents! There is NO EXCUSE! If you are too tired pull over to the side of the road! Then CALL someone for Help!
Oprah Winfrey dedicated a whole television show to the perils of America’s newest “OBSESSION” = texting while driving! Did you know that when you text or use a cell phone while driving you significantly increase the chances of having an accident? It is the equivalent of having 4 drinks while driving! You are driving with a decreased attention span. It is called “Distracted Driving! “ You are not only putting your life in jeopardy but the lives of many others as well! The show is inclusive of many who have experienced the consequences of someone using a cell phone while driving. The statistics of the many casualties are mesmerizing and alarming!
Ms Winfrey asks that everyone designate their car as a ‘”NO PHONE ZONE!” She goes so far to have a campaign asking you to sign a contract agreeing to do so. The contract is available on her website! During the show one mother is interviewed. Her story; As she approaches her home after a Dr.’s appointment she sees a little girl lying in the streets surrounded by a crowd! She sees a mangled bike… Much to her dismay the distraught mother realizes it is her little girl and the emergency crew are attempting to pull her clothes off ……. The little girl was “15 PEDALS “ FROM HER FRONT DOOR! The driver was on her cell phone! After intensive care in the hospital two days later her beautiful little girl dies… This is one of many. This show is a must see it will or might just save your life!
Texting while driving is also hazardous. No sneaking a text in because no one's watching. Watch the road! Another big, No! No! We need to be in contact but we also need to give them guidelines. I think that a simple contract might possibly be a viable solution. If they are old enough to have a cell phone they should be responsible enough to make a contract that is reviewed often and renegotiated when or if necessary. Limiting their calling by giving them a restricted calling plan? Knowing that you are going to randomly review their messages, Hmmm...This really is to let them know that you care enough to take the time to show that you are concerned and they matter. Of course they won't see it this way...
According to a study by a reporter from the SF Gate at least 15% of teens are sexting on their cell phones and the number is growing... According to the Pew report "8% of 17 year olds are sexting and 30% of teens receive them." They are often in a romantic relationship and do this in lieu of having sexual intercourse...
The statistics are climbing on incidences involving cell phones why driving for teens! Take their phone if necessary rather than allow an accident to hurt, maim or take their life!
Please have a deep thoughtful and meaningful conversation with your teens and tell them not to send any risque, nude or partial nude photos over the internet. Nor should they ever send any explicit texts! As a matter of fact I recommend telling them to not send anything that they do not want their mother or father to see. Once they do their message or photographs become a permanent part of cyberspace. Teens also “hook up” on line with strangers not always knowing who the other person really is; not good. It is important that we keep the lines of communication open. Peer pressure is real no matter what the age they still need love, guidance, love and support from their parents.
Even if it is imposing “tough love” support does not mean letting them just do as they please. It means being there for them and letting them know that you take your role as a parent seriously! You are their parent first, rather you should be. You are not their friend there is a difference. Yes you can be friendly. When they become grown adults you can be their friend. NOW, Do whatever it takes to keep them safe! Including randomly checking their photos and phone messages. This should be a requirement of having the privilege of having a cell phone! This is also how you help them to become more responsible and accountable!
In this high tech society it may be hard. But, keeping the lines of communication open is very important! PRAY with them and PRAY for your teens when they are away! Put them on what I call "GOD WATCH" when they are out of your presence let them know that they are never not in the presence of the LORD! It is crucial and beneficial to make sure that you take the time to spend quality time with them without a television, computer, cell phone, I pod, CD player, blue tooth ear piece or some other distraction… Just maybe they won’t feel the need to take up sextexting?
- Texting While Driving Dangerous for Teens
Driving while text messaging or fiddling with an MP3 player is dangerous -- even more hazardous than talking on a cell phone, a new study shows.
- Parents of teen who died texting and driving: 'Kids think they're invincible' - TODAY People - TODAY
- Teenage Files - A to Z Teen Guide
A Teen Guide for living as a Teenager. 2009
- Teenage Files - Lets Talk about Sex
Teenage Pregnancy issues and how to tackle them.