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to be angry with DD (12) re secret social media account?

(103 Posts)
Mirabel105 Tue 30-Aug-16 17:17:39

DD like most girls her age lives for social media. I allowed her to have Instagram and Snapchat accounts on the basis that they were kept as private accounts and that I would follow her (but wouldn't embarrass her by commenting on pictures).

So she has her Insta and occasionally I look at her ipad and look at her Snapchat.

This week I've found out, entirely by chance, that she also has a second Instagram account. I couldn't follow her on it, as she'd blocked me. So I asked another friend to look and found out this second account is public and has about 400 followers, at least a couple of whom look to be older men whose interests are teenage girls (e.g. their pages are exclusively pictures of young-looking girls in bikinis).

Usually when I try to discuss the dangers of the internet I get (from both my kids) "I'm not STUPID, Mum!" and/or they say I am "overreacting". I want to teach her a lesson this time by demonstrating to her the reasons why I bang on about keeping accounts private and not engaging online with people she doesn't know IRL (as she'd say).

It's not just the worry of who is following her account, it's the very deliberate and considered LYING that makes me angry. AIBU?

Idliketobeabutterfly Tue 30-Aug-16 17:19:50

I'd fill in the form to report both accounts as belomging to someone under 13 and get both taken down.

anniroc Tue 30-Aug-16 17:21:15

I agree. I thought both were 13+

RJnomore1 Tue 30-Aug-16 17:24:02

Instagram doesn't have an age limit does it?

Hikernumberthousand Tue 30-Aug-16 17:24:04

At 12 the world of social networking is new and exciting- and you have taken sensible steps to ensure that her privacy remains within her group of relatives and friends. You need to have a serious discussion with her about the risks of open account posting-don't be afraid to be frank, if she says you're over reacting explain to her under no uncertain terms the risks involved. I had a similar situation with Dd, 12, and sometimes they do have to be scared to realise what they're doing is wrong. School will likely give her plenty of guidance on this. You are right to be angry, and should express your disappointment in her lack of maturity but also take into account that she is learning new things and mistakes along the way will happen.

Idliketobeabutterfly Tue 30-Aug-16 17:24:34

IG age is 13

Mirabel105 Tue 30-Aug-16 17:25:21

I actually don't know about age limits as she set up both accounts herself. Literally every single one of her schoolfriends is on both though so I wouldn't have a problem with her having accounts per se - it's the deceit in order to maintain a public account that I object to.

RJnomore1 Tue 30-Aug-16 17:25:33

Sorry none of those replies are helpful. Yanbu to be angry and I'd remove Internet privelwge altogether for a while to get the point across.

Buzzardbird Tue 30-Aug-16 17:28:58

I would be handing her a basic phone (if she really has to have one) until she learns that she is still a child and that you make the rules.
She is supposed to be 13 anyway, no matter what her friends parents allow.

honeysucklejasmine Tue 30-Aug-16 17:29:30

Yikes. I guess it depends slightly on what she'd been posting on it.

Personally I would talk to her, but I would also print off a few pictures from it and leave them laying around to show that she's busted. Not to embarrass her, but in a "isn't it lucky I'm just your mum? You're letting the whole world see these!" way, which I would aim to turn in to a constructive conversation about privacy.

paxillin Tue 30-Aug-16 17:29:54

I would certainly remove internet privileges. When reinstating her access I would block certain webpages. You can do this with most internet providers. We sometimes block selected sites. Skype for instance often stopped the teen from sleeping, so we turned it off at 10.

RebelRogue Tue 30-Aug-16 17:32:52

Two options
1.remove internet privileges,watch the nspcc video about online safety,basic phone etc until she gains your trust. And once she does full access to everything
2.scare her shitless

Trifleorbust Tue 30-Aug-16 17:33:10

Well, it is normal for a 12 year old to start pushing boundaries and hiding things. What is important isn't whether you are angry (I don't blame you for being angry) but that you reassert your own authority and the rules, and explain again why those rules are so important to her safety. YANBU.

AVY1 Tue 30-Aug-16 17:33:55

Instagram allow under 13s only if the account is managed and monitored by a parent.

YANBU. She should not have the other account and it is incredibly irresponsible and dishonest for her to have done that behind your back, especially after you had allowed her the original account.

ParadiseCity Tue 30-Aug-16 17:33:59

I would be tempted to print off A3 copies of everything you can find about her and blu tac them all over the lounge for her to walk in and think 'oh shit' then say how would she feel if that was pinned up at her school/the next door neighbours/some random she has never met.

Then make her sit and watch some CEOP videos with you.

Trifleorbust Tue 30-Aug-16 17:34:25

Oh and I would absolutely be removing internet privileges for a while.

Idliketobeabutterfly Tue 30-Aug-16 17:36:39

You could also make her apple account passworded to download all apps and remove IG completely.

McPie Tue 30-Aug-16 17:46:05

My niece (now 16) wasn't stupid and was pretty street smart when her mother threw her out at 14 and had to move in with my parents. At 15 that didn't stop her being sucked in and groomed by a 38 year old pretending to be a 19 year old boy! She thought she was meeting the boy for the 1st time and ended up being beaten up and raped by the sorry excuse of a man!
These people know exactly what to say to impress young girls and encourage them to hide things, this guy had been contacting at least 100 underage girls and had gotten a 12 year old girl to sent indecent pictures.
He is now behind bars for quite some time thanks to my niece and the other girl but these monsters do exist and prey on young girls for kicks sad

Mirabel105 Tue 30-Aug-16 18:00:05

Oh my goodness McPie what an awful thing to happen. Your poor niece. I am sorry.

I will definitely be removing her iPad for a while - it's the only thing she really cares about. Not sure how long a ban is reasonable. A month?

The things she is actually posting on the secret account are - oddly - basically the same sort of anodyne things she posts on her permitted account. Nothing racy or in any way controversial. I think she just wants an open account in order to get more followers. I read an article a while ago about what it is like to be a 13 year old girl and it all seemed to be about getting as many likes for your posts as possible and how if you don't get at least 100 likes for every post, it's social death and you have to delete the whole post. I discussed this with her at the time and she confirmed that she shared the views of the girl in the article and so do all her friends.

It's a completely different world to when I was her age - I get that - but I find it so hard to navigate. On this occasion I know she's bang out of order but I'm not sure even a ban for a while will prevent her from doing something stupid like this again.

Idliketobeabutterfly Tue 30-Aug-16 18:03:03

yikes. don't think I've ever had that many likes

FarAwayHills Tue 30-Aug-16 18:03:05

Well despite your DDs claim that she is not stupid when it comes to online safety she clearly is. I agree with PPs her accounts should be reported and shutdown or at least the non private one with the creepy male followers.

I know some of DDs friends have set up secondary accounts unknown to their parents. I've let DD know that without hesitation she will loose all social media privileges and have her iPhone replaced with a Nokia brick if she ever does this.

I know there are kids in Y4&5 at DD2s school that have Instagram and I really really don't get how their parents can be happy with this. It is rated for a reason.

Idliketobeabutterfly Tue 30-Aug-16 18:04:08

I'd remov access until she is the age for these accounts.

cricketballs Tue 30-Aug-16 18:19:34

Agree with PPs with printing out some images for her to find - I did an assembly a few years ago when social media was just starting up (can't remember which one but it was one that teenagers used back then). For that assembly I had spent the previous night looking for their profiles and the ones that were open I made notes, e.g. a couple of lads were meeting up to play pool, some of the girls were chatting about the last party they had been to etc.

I started the assembly with the usual online safety talk and made it clear I was not on this network I then described their social life's....I have never known yr 11 so dumbstruck and actively listening so much before (of of the PE teachers who taught them P1 reported back that this was all they talked about the whole lesson)

The next evening I checked the previously open accounts and they were all locked down grin

Boogers Tue 30-Aug-16 18:23:21

Mirabel You are not being unreasonable.

We've had this problem with DS, who is almost 13. In January we found out that he had an Instagram account following something that happened at school. When I was made aware of this account I absolutely tore his phone and tablet to pieces, clicking every box, reading every conversation, scrutinising every photograph - I was furious that not only had he had an account for over a year (when he'd just turned 11!) he'd downright lied about having one when I asked him directly. That was the last time I trusted him to be truthful about his internet usage.

The result of that was no phone, no tablet and no xbox for a month, with only supervised access to our laptop, i.e. him sitting next to me or H whilst he was using it. I don't like him having any kind of social media, but the cat is out the bag now. So, DS can use it on condition that H follows him, which he does. DS set up another account a week ago, just an innocent football fanzine chat type thing, and H asked him about it, to which DS asked how H knew about it. H replied that DS had followed himself from his first account, doofus! I'm ok knowing that H knows his way around social media and will check up everything DS does. He also knows that I can and will check any of his gadgets at any time, and if I suspect anything untoward going on they will be taken off him. I think you need to lay these types of rules down with your daughter if she's to continue having internet access. For me, blocking me on the second account would be a deal breaker.

Assam Tue 30-Aug-16 18:25:34

I have a 12 yo I've told him anything he writes/posts on social media is akin to putting it on a billboard - forever.
He's also not allowed to accept follower requests from anyone he doesn't know.
A friend of his has hundreds of friends on musicaly, people she doesn't know in an effort to gain a 'following' I just think that's stupid & shallow

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