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Little Girls and Facebook

Updated on November 14, 2012
My profile pic on Facebook - no bikini, no duck face...still okay!
My profile pic on Facebook - no bikini, no duck face...still okay!

The other night I set up a Facebook account for my oldest daughter. I have fought it and fought it but, alas, the social network won. I gave in because my daughter needed a fast efficient way to communicate with her friends back home. See, we just moved and my daughter is in that delicate stage where she is still very much a baby but she is also just on the brink of being a teenager. My daughter will be 12 soon and it has not been as easy for her to make new friends as it has been for her younger sisters. I felt so consumed with guilt over the fact that my daughter was lonely and missing her friends - and her Facebook was born.



Facebook, Kids, and Safety Rules

I have heard so many horror stories about Facebook stalkers and pervs trying to pick up young girls so the first thing I did was set up some very strict rules:

  1. NO adults - my daughter is not allowed to have me, her father, her father's friends, and her friend's parents on her Facebook. I think it just leaves the whole "friends of friends" option a little too open. My sister has 2,376 friends. Do I really need her "friends" having access to my daughter's pictures? Noooo - so instead of being picky and choosey over adults I made it simple...none at all.
  2. NO strangers - if my daughter doesnt know an individual in person she cannot friend him or her. This makes me feel safer that pervs arent registering under fake little girl names to friend young girls.
  3. I get the password and free access to ALL information on the account. My daughter understands I can, and I will, look at her private messages and comments made on other pages. Lucky for me she is a good girl and she doesnt mind having me look over her shoulder.
  4. Facebook time is limited each day. I cant stand the thought of my sweet little girl sitting behind a monitor all day and night instead of getting out to enjoy life. My daughter is fine with this - she just uses the telephone to set up "chat sessions" with her friends.

My daughter's Facebook profile pic - YES!  She followed all my rules.  She's such a good kid =)
My daughter's Facebook profile pic - YES! She followed all my rules. She's such a good kid =)

Facebook Pictures

When I got my daughter to agree to all the rules I set up her account and showed her how to look up things that interest her, how to search for friends, and how to comment / like. It didnt take long before we found some of my daughter's old friends. Then "suggested friends" started popping up and my daughter pointed out other kids - ahem KIDS - she knew. I couldnt believe it. I had to make the profile pics of these so-called kids bigger. One was posing in a bikini, another looked like an over made-up 30 year old woman, and several others were making sexy kissy faces (okay okay - duck faces) at the camera. This brought up a whole new set of rules....what pictures may be posted and which ones are best suited for our eyes only.

5. NO duck face photos! I wont tolerate a kissy-face duck looking photo of my daughter on Facebook. Also NO bikini shots. Seriously - this IS an issue with little girls in the 10-12 age bracket? I never knew...and I think I was much happier NOT knowing. It breaks my heart to see young girls growing up too fast.

6. NO pictures of friends and family unless you get permission from those people. The last thing I need is a picture of me sleeping and drooling getting circulated on Facebook as a joke...


If you have kids let me know what your take is on Facebook. This age group is all new territory to me so Im always open to suggestions and ideas. Tell me: Do you stick to the 14 and up rule? Do your kids have Facebook? Do you check it regularly if they do? Am I too strict with my rules? Have you had any bad experiences with kids on Facebook?

Thanks for taking the time to read. I know Facebook is an old, tired subject but I am shocked that parents let their kids post bikini and/or kissy face photos online. We read the awful stories on the news all the time: Little Girl Lured Out of Home by Man on Facebook - Found Dead Two States Over.


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    • torrilynn profile image

      torrilynn 4 years ago

      I enjoyed reading your hub. I think that setting up strict rules on what she can and can not put or do on Facebook is a good idea. She is very young and still in the process of becoming a teenager. Constantly checking her messages and seeing who her friends are and making sure that she is following your rules on a regular basis is a good way to make sure that she is being mature about the situation. It lets your daughter know that she has freedom but only to a certain extent. Nice hub and very interesting. Voted up.

    • profile image

      Justsilvie 4 years ago

      Interesting Hub! And you set just the right rules for a child. Voted up and sahring.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 4 years ago from South Africa

      We have to accept the fact that Facebook is THE social site in cyberspace for people to stay connected. This is the way of the century and children have to learn the necessary skills, rules and etiquette.

      Ardie, your rules are realistic and fair, and your daughter is a star.

    • LadyFiddler profile image

      Joanna Chandler 4 years ago from On planet Earth

      Hi Ardie interesting hub and you sound like a GOOD parent and your daughter is very beautiful and it's good she has a wonderful spirit of trusting you with her info. Many girls her age are very womanish and rebelious.

      I agree with all your rules and if i was a parent i would think along those same lines. You still must be careful though because some of these perverts shade under a young profile picture and they can share email addresses or telephone number. I have seen and heard of it time and time again.

      Keep your eyes and ears out as much as possible. The devil always have a way of beating you to your game.

      Thanks for sharing

      Pleasant evening to you ;)

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Ardie,

      I must say that I am so glad I am over this stage! Idon't envy you. I think your rules are very fair and apparantly so does your daughter! My general rule of thumb....err in the way of caution. I would much rather have my kids angry with me than have them in danger Great hub, great rules!

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Jim, Ima kick your arse man. Or should I say "Man" like everyone else calls you. Too bad they will come and they will go - oh that reminds me! I heard a song today that reminds me of you. I will email it to ya! Now be good.

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hi Joseph, you're right about the password. That's one area where I slipped up - I made the password easy so she would be able to remember it...she and I will change it together when she gets home. Thanks for the advice. You can never be too careful - you know that :)

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      (check the paws)

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      I can't believe it. This "so, so" PTA thing is getting hits! Oh well, I'm just the piano player in a whore house. Whado I know?!

      Just kidding Poop. This hub SHOULD be out here to remind folks. Gave ya another up and awesome. :) PS quit ... never mind. Tell you in a bit.

      ~ jim

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 4 years ago

      Magnificent rules. Another way to increase security is to get an alphanumeric password. You did wonderful with your rules and I think your daughter is already grown up, that's what they think though; soon she will be 13 going on 30. So, I agree with your rules and her obedience. Is all Mark Zuckerber's fault!

    • Ardie profile image
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      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Aaw thanks Rosemay! I just hope it all works out like I have in mind ;) You know what they say about the best laid plans.

    • Rosemay50 profile image

      Rosemary Sadler 4 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

      A great hub Ardie. As well as protecting your own girls this is great advice for other parents. It is good that you had the foresight to lay down the ground rules beforehand rather than picking up on something later on which might cause a problem.

      This just shows what a good Mom you are.

    • Ardie profile image
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      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      oh Jim...you made a Lucy reference! Hahah

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      soak, soak, soak Lucy???

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Dot dot dot? Or Spot Spot Spot hahah

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      Dot, dot, dot. :/

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Thanks Deb, these girls are worth it in every little way. They're superstars in my mind =)

      Hi Jim, thanks. Sometimes they dont feel so lucky (like when I tell them no to going out late or no to staying over at a friends house where the supervision isnt the best) but I know they will understand later if they have kids of their own.

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      You are the best Mom there is, Red. Nobody does it as good as you and the girls are lucky to have such a great Mommy. You really ARE special . :)

      ~ jim

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Ardie you just keep doing what you are doing . you sound like a great mom . I know its hard but I know you know it is worth it. keep protecting those children . blessings. to you . deb

    • Ardie profile image
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      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hi Anil and Honey :] I DO love where I live...its home. As for Facebook, I will make it work. I have to. Thanks for reading

    • Anil and Honey profile image

      Anil 4 years ago from Kerala

      Firstly about your profile note 'Beautiful USA' nice and lovely word.Through this word you can show your love to your mother land. nice hub . I think face book more comfortable than other social medias

    • Ardie profile image
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      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hi Debbie! Young children and the Internet IS scary mainly because I know what kind of people IVE met online and how creepy they can be. Thanks for the prayers and the blessing - goodness knows I need them right now as I try to find a happy medium between not enough supervision and being too protective of my kids.

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      CC :) you're so sweet and funny! I dig the kind words from you cuz you know you're one of my favoritest people. It really is amazing what kids have access to now-a-days. I wish there were parental controls on the smart phones like there are on computers. My oldest has a smart phone now and I worry endlessly about texts and Internet...

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Ardie what a great. subject .. as old as I am I.have. been. stalked ..lol but young children is a scary subject ... I would be worried. just. like you are .. you are. doing everything right . blessing and prayers coming your way .

      Debbie

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

      My husband and I were talking about the very issue of safety on the internet for kids. We don't have kiddos as you know, but I think about all the crazy stuff that parents deal with now that they didn't before. I mean to stay "ahead" kids have to have computers at a young age - or at least regular access to them. Now, you can't buy dumbphones (I still have one, though) so little ones are running around with them. Seriously? Oh man...all the security issues. Well, good luck but know this: you have to be the sweetest, coolest and awesomesauce mama around. :)

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      Get back to your room!

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Sheesh Jim – you sure shut down the comments on this Hub fast! As for the 100 thing - its purely by accident. I couldnt even begin to tell you how it happens. And look! Im not even "elite" anymore or whatever they're called now. So who knows...maybe I DO rock it! No matter that this wasnt your favorite Hub, you're just bitter I wrote it instead of talking to you. It will be okay :)

    • Ardie profile image
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      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Cardisa, you have the little ‘a’ too! I love it and congrats :) Im sorry to hear you’ve had so much trouble with your FB, I don’t blame you for staying out of the main area and just playing the games. Maybe I should ask my daughter about making her profile picture something other than her…like a kitty or something like that.

      Weestro! I was just trying to leave a comment on your Thanksgiving Surprise Hub the other day and it wouldn’t go through :) I will head back over. Times HAVE changed…I remember being gone from home from dawn to dusk when I was little. I hiked the woods, rode my bike all over town, and went swimming without any supervision….never in a million years today.

      Hi Kelly yah yah I do know that (I forgot hahah)! Ugh – she’s only 13 and eew…I hate pervs :( I guess I get the thing about the talk on the bus being worse than it is on FB. Thing 1 has told me some of the stuff the kids talk about in her grade and I cannot believe it! I had been getting a little lenient with the FB thing with my daughter because she has been acting responsible and how I would like her to act. But your problems with the 13 year old remind me to constantly watch out for others – not just my daughter’s behavior. Man oh man…what did I do?! :P

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hi Susan! I love your little 'a' and Im slightly jealous of it ;) Thanks for reading and commenting AND passing on to anyone who might need the rules :)

      sgbrown, thanks - I need all the luck I can get. Im venturing into unknown territory and Im scared to death. I know how awful I was as a teenager *shudder* I agree with you though - one can never be too careful when it comes to our babies.

      Hi xstatic, your daughter is a smart girl. I really should do away with my FB too - but Im already addicted so its too late for me!

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image

      TheManWithNoPants 4 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      You got a freaking 100 again. What up? I've got a 99 a few times and you know how a puppy dog has a little accident sometimes when they're happy to see you? You guessed it. I'd probably poop myself it I got a 100. You get these 100's all the time. Why not me? Could it have anything to do with me being a crappy writer and you being a good one? I gotta look into this ... :/

      This was a fairly good hub. Not what I'd expect from a 100 rated hubber, but pretty good none the less. I've come to expect excellence from you, so fly the next one by me before you publish the next time. I'll go over it.

      Speaking of Face Book. You have broken some of my rules on both the Hub and Face Book. Not only are you limited to 15 minutes a day on FB, and 15 on the Hub Pages, and have to fix the pictures, but there will be no cheese for a week, young lady. You're breaking out and I know what's best. Now go to your room and think about what you've done. I'll be in there with my belt in a few minutes.

      ~ jim

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Hey Ardie! Ok you know my two daughters have FB - they are 11 and 13, I have zero issues with 11 year old...she rarely goes on. With the older one...wow. I have had times where I was FREAKING out due to another person (grown man) asking her for pictures!

      So no matter how hard I try to watch everything...some stuff gets through. My daughter KNOWS she has to block those kind of people and tell me immediately. My older daughter who is 24 also watches her activity and pounces if she sees anything off color.

      I struggle with feeling over FB and my kids. I guess the bottom line is...they behave appropriately and notify me of weird stuff. I totally agree with the no adult rule. I only tried to allow my family to friend her...it didn't work. Then some were offended "why not me?" So it's like opening the gates of hell.

      Now - having said all that...being so worried about FB...oh sheesh the talk on their school bus is MUCH MORE out of control. I suppose I can't hide all the stuff I'd like to so I am now looking at is as "reality" that I can't hide and must deal with. Ugh! Good luck sounds like you have good rules so let me know how it works out!

    • weestro profile image

      Pete Fanning 4 years ago from Virginia

      Great rules Ardie, wow times have changed since I was twelve!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 4 years ago from Jamaica

      As an adult I have been stalked twice and have been the recipient of romantic photos and gestures, so I know that FB can be a scary place to be. I spend 99 percent of my time on FB playing games so as to be out of the mainstream. I guess I do that because I am still scared. I only accept friends that I know or from HP and recently I have been verifying the HP people. I don't do the suggest a friend thing either. I am still shaken by my experience so keep a keen eye on your daughter and if there is a way not to use her real photo (she is so pretty) then don't. My two stalkers first conversation with me was how pretty or beautiful I was. I changed my photo for a while but reset it after blocking some people and resetting my privacy settings.

      On a lighter note I swear I saw that photo of you drooling away the pillow....lol

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Sounds like some very good rules to me. My daughter is 24 now, and has left social media behind, in part becuase employers are demanding passwords to look at their FB accounts. It seems to be a growing trend. Invasion of privacy? Certainly. But, do you want the job? Tough choices. Good to have rules like yours going in!

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      You have some really great rules for your daughter and her Face Book page! My daughter was already grown and gone when FB came around. You can never be too careful when it comes to your children and the internet! I was told I was over protective many times, but that was ok. I would rather know I was doing all I could to protect her. You sound like a great mom and she sounds like a really good daughter. Hang tough and good luck with those up coming teen-age years! Voting up and interesting! :)

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Great rules Ardie. I'll pass this onto people I know that are still sitting on the fence as to whether to let their children have a FB account or not.

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Mr Hatter, good to see you here :) I agree that youth protection is SO important. Sometimes I worry I'm too protective.

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hi Bill :) I bet you DO have lots of stories. Probably too many considering your career path. I'm glad you approve since you are much more aware of the harsh realities. And you hit the nail on the head "better to err on the side of caution"!

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Great ideas, to put it lightly. Youth protection is sad but a harsh reality of life. We cannot be too careful. Thank you

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I think I just erased my message to you.....anyway, if this is duplicated I'm sorry. I think you are doing exactly what you should be doing. I could tell you horror stories about my former students and their Facebook experiences. If you have to error on the side of being too strict that is much better than letting your guard down.

    • Ardie profile image
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      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hiya Chewy Mommy (love that name by the way!), Im so glad to hear positive feedback about my rules. I did actually think about just friending my daughter - but I want to know if she chats with not-so-good people or friends them. Im actually very pleased with her behavior online so far...but its still new!

    • profile image

      Chewy Mommy 4 years ago

      I think your rules were fair and realistic. I like that you are monitoring her Facebook page by logging onto her actual page. Some parents only monitor by friending their child, and we all know there are ways kids can prevent parents from seeing what they don't want them to.

    • Ardie profile image
      Author

      Sondra 4 years ago from Neverland

      Hi Julie, congrats on your show!! =)Im glad you agree with my rules. I know sometimes I can be too over protective.

      Hi Thundermama =) Best of luck to you. It wasnt so long ago that I was dead set against getting my daughter Facebook. I just hope I did right!

    • Thundermama profile image

      Catherine Taylor 4 years ago from Canada

      Great hub, this is battle I expect soon in my house of pre-teen madness. I am going to hold out as LNG as humanly possible, but when I can't any longer I will be using this helpful rules you laid out.

    • Julie DeNeen profile image

      Blurter of Indiscretions 4 years ago from Clinton CT

      Sounds like some fantastic rules!