Internet

Avoiding Drama In Online Parenting Groups

online parenting groups

Sometimes it feels like it’s impossible to avoid drama on online parenting groups. There’s always misunderstandings, disagreements, and other problems that blow up quickly into feuds and bullying. But online parenting groups on social media sites are known for being unusually filled with drama and bad feelings. Maybe it’s a lot of sleep-deprived cranky people trying to interact. The good news is that you don’t have to participate in the drama. You can choose to not get involved when people are attacking each other or just being mean to other parents. Follow these tips you can manage to build good relationships in parenting groups. Don’t run the risk of becoming a target for drama and bullying. And definitely, don’t start hacking Facebook messages from the other person.    Refrain From Posting Sometimes I know you’re laughing at that one because parents are always tired. Always. But when you haven’t slept well or haven’t slept enough you’re going to be crankier than usual. You might misinterpret a post in the group and be snide or snarky remark. When the original poster never meant to cause offense. The best way to prevent unknowingly starting drama and attacking other parents unnecessarily is to not post when you’re tired. Turn off your phone until you get a nap or at least shut your eyes at your desk.  Compose Your Thoughts Carefully It’s incredibly easy to misunderstand the tone of a post online. On the Internet, there are no verbal or visual cues to let people know that you meant. If your post is a joke or you’re trying to be sarcastic. That means that people can misread your intention and may get offended when you were only trying to be funny or thoughtful. That’s why you should always write out your post then take a beat and think about it. Read it again and edit it before you post it to make sure that your intention is clear. Don’t just fire off a message without looking at it twice. Walk Away One of the best things about online social media parenting groups is that you can put your phone down. Or turn it off and walk away when the drama starts. You don’t have to get involved. So if you do end up on the receiving end of some anger or hurt feelings don’t respond right away. Responding will just enrage the other person more. Instead turn your phone off and walk away for awhile. Come back to the conversation after you have had a chance to think of a rational response. Apologize No one likes being wrong, but everyone is wrong sometimes. When you are wrong in an online social media group to admit it right away. Don’t try to talk your way out of a mistake. If you were a jerk own up to it and apologize. The other group members will respect your honesty. And they may return the apology when and if they make a mistake. If you enjoyed this, let us know what you think of the post. Check out more articles online from Healing Reflexions. 

Internet

5 Rules To Keep Your Children Safe On Social Media

social media

5 Rules Parents Need To Follow To Keep Kids Safe On Social Media This Summer It’s summertime and that means that your kids are going to spend the next few months social media free. For all that could end up hurting them. In the summer kids tend to get lax about obeying social media rules. They want to post photos and videos and enjoy chatting with friends. But parents need to set some good ground rules for kids using social media during the summer. Especially for teens who spend the summer practically glued to their phones and tablets… While there are many alternatives out there to make sure your kid is safer on the internet such as cell phone spy apps, automated computer locks, etc. Here are 5 best rules that parents should be using to keep their kids safe on social media this summer: No Unapproved Photos Summertime is a time when it’s easy for kids to forget the rules about what is considered an appropriate photo and what isn’t. And with summer clothing styles getting skimpier every year your teens may end up posting selfies or photos that they will later regret. So for the summer, a good rule for parents to enforce is that a parent has to approve all photos before they can be posted on social media. Sometimes that cooling off period between when the child takes the photo and when a parent approves it can make a big difference. Be sure to check all the photos on your child’s phone too in order to be sure there are no inappropriate photos on there. No Location Tagging Kids love to tag themselves at the pool, at the local ice cream hang out, and other fun places. But your kids should never be publicly tagging their location on social media. Doing this makes them too easy for anyone to find. Make sure that you turn off the geolocating setting on your child’s phone. And let them know they should never be tagging their location in any social media post. Limit Time Online It’s summertime. Kids shouldn’t be on their phones all day. Institute 2 or 3 hours with no phone time so kids, force them to do something else offline. When there are family outings planned make a rule that cell phones need to be turned off. So that the family can spend time together. Check Privacy Settings Parents should be periodically checking the privacy settings on their child’s phone or tablet. To be sure that the kids aren’t visiting inappropriate websites or content. This will lock down their profiles and make it harder to find. Kids can sometimes change those privacy settings without parents knowing so parents, check those privacy settings. Even though your child will probably get annoyed. As a part of this, it is also important to identify what Facebook knows about you & your children. TheGrapeVineGossip wrote a great blog post about that.  Block Block Block Your child will probably get a lot of new friend requests and messages during the summer. When kids are out of school and have a lot of free time. Don’t be afraid to use those block features on social media and block any user that looks sketchy. That sends an inappropriate message or seems a little off. If you liked this blog post, you should check out our blog post: The Dangers Of Youtube For Kids

Internet

Social Media Fandoms Help Fight Depression

Do a reverse phone lookup on your online friends to stay safe.

Some people believe that if you make friends on social media, they aren’t “real friends” because you can only communicate with them through platforms like Facebook or Twitter. It’s also a good idea to run a reverse phone lookup to learn more about them, even if you don’t plan to meet them in real life. For members of fandoms, though, these friendships can be meaningful. In fact, social media fandoms are not only changing lives, but even saving them too. How Are Online Fandoms Fighting Depression? Some fandoms for popular shows are bringing people together. In addition, they’re even helping fans with depression and other mental health challenges, such as anxiety. They make it easier for them to get the help they need so they can lead better lives. One fandom, for the TV show Supernatural, has even set up a peer-to-peer counseling network. This lets fans who suffer from depression, suicidal thoughts, or anxiety reach out to a volunteer who’s been trained in dealing with these kind of mental health issues. They’ll be able to discuss the show and from there, they can talk about those mental health issues. As a result, the person suffering from mental health problems won’t feel so alone, and they can access free resources that will aid them in their situation. More Information About This Unique Network First, the volunteers have to complete an online training course that’s taught by a mental health professional. They may even be subject to a reverse phone lookup to confirm their identities. From there, they receive lists of resources that they can give to people who are suffering from depression, anxiety, or other problems, making it easy for them to get the help they need. This peer-to-peer counseling network was actually spearheaded by two of the main stars on Supernatural. When they posted on social media looking for volunteers to sign up as counselors, more than 5,000 people responded in the first 24 hours alone. Because there were so many volunteers, they had to set up a second training session! Why Social Media Is So Important Social media has changed the landscape of how people relate to each other. These days, online friends can be every bit as significant to a person as the friends that they see in real life. With FaceTime and other apps for video chat, people are making new friends through social media every day. Plus, there have been many cases where social media friends help each other out in real world situations. Whether it’s with a reverse phone lookup or just a friendly conversation, they can be there for one another. So even though you’ve met someone on social media who might be on the other side of the world, you can still bond with them. Chances are, you have a mutual love for a TV show, movie, or other particular interest. This gives you the chance to talk with someone who cares about the same interests as you. If that’s not real friendship, I don’t know what is. Plus, if you live in a rural area, the Internet gives you more ways to meet new people. This means you can be more social and connected to the outside world. Just be sure to run a reverse phone lookup to learn more about someone before you meet them in real life. In my opinion, social media friendships can be every bit as real and meaningful as other, “traditional” friendships. The digital age makes it easy to talk to like-minded people and form new bonds.

Internet

The Dangers Of YouTube For Kids

YouTube's parental controls haven't been very effective.

Sometimes I think the world can’t get any darker. Then I’m proven wrong, again and again. I’m not a parent, but I can empathize with people who are just trying to shield their kids from danger. Unfortunately, YouTube has failed them until recently. For some time, some sick people out there were uploading videos that imitated popular children’s cartoons, with violent and lewd twists. A lot of these videos somehow made it past parental controls. What is it about these videos that’s so disturbing, and what is YouTube now doing about them? The Content Of These Videos I’m not really much of an Internet person, so I don’t go on YouTube much myself. Actually, my friend was the one who told me about what was happening on YouTube. Her 7-year-old daughter had been using the YouTube Kids app to look up clips from the Disney movie Frozen. Instead, she came across a disturbing, fake video where Elsa’s arm was broken by Spiderman. The bloody clip upset her so much that she started crying and called her mom over. Naturally, my friend was horrified. She always took parental controls seriously – how was her daughter able to access something like this? These inappropriate YouTube videos have become somewhat of an epidemic. Kids can stumble on fake videos of Peppa Pig, Doc McStuffins, and the Cookie Monster that depict them in horrific, violent situations. Sometimes it’s impossible to tell that they’re fake until it’s too late. I still can’t understand why adults would make these videos and target them to children. For their own perverse amusement? What YouTube Is Doing About It As far as I know, this has been a major issue on YouTube for the past six months or so. These tasteless videos, which can be found on YouTube Kids, were somehow able to get past the site’s algorithms and parental controls. But YouTube didn’t respond until recently. Before, they stressed that these sinister videos were the exception rather than the norm, and would review them as needed. They barely adjusted their algorithm to block kids from seeing these cartoons. Now, any time a video is uploaded to the main part of YouTube, it takes a few days until it shows up on YouTube Kids (if it’s appropriate). This slight delay should help weed out some of this awful content. What do you think about kids having access to these types of videos? Do you believe it could impact their mental health? And is YouTube doing enough to crack down on it? Send me a message – we can chat about it.