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My daughter is selling photos of herself

(35 Posts)
WorriedMumJo Tue 11-Feb-14 10:43:24

Please can anyone help? I believe my 18 year old daughter is selling photos of herself online. She suffers from social anxiety and struggles to go out .. so uses the internet a lot. She opened a PayPal account 10 days ago and has received several payments from men .. up to £20 each. Some payments have messages attached saying thanks for video and pics ... thanks sexy .. etc. I can also see that she has signed up for Myfreecams ... when I looked at the website I was absolutely horrified. I have no idea what to do as I can't approach her about it. I've tried to find the pictures on the internet but don't really know where to look. As background, she is studying for A levels and is predicted to get A grades so is intelligent. Has anyone else had this problem? I'm scared to tell her Dad .. he would be so upset and I think would want to confront her so I am feeling very alone and scared.

whattodoforthebest2 Tue 11-Feb-14 10:52:15

You need to talk to her urgently OP. She's putting herself in danger. Ok, so she's 18 and can do what she likes, but you need to talk to her about self-respect, privacy etc. I think in your position I'd be trying to control internet access for a start, but she needs to realise those pictures/videos are now on the net for anyone to see and they could have serious consequences for her in future.

PeterParkerSays Tue 11-Feb-14 10:59:02

I know you don't want to hear this, but your DD is 18 and therefore an adult. She can do this if she wants to.

I would start by saying that she can't create images of herself like this in your house and work from there to help her get out and meet real people more.

Do you think she's doing this as a self esteem issue or because of a shortage of money?

WorriedMumJo Tue 11-Feb-14 11:01:55

She's just bought a laptop and so has it in her room .. so it's difficult to control access. If I talk to her she will know I've seen her accounts .. so will not trust me at all and that would not help our relationship. I feel completely helpless .. after googling, I see there are so many sites offering these kind of photo selling opportunities as if it's a really good way to make money. I really don't believe she can be doing this .. she doesn't flaunt her body at all .. is always well covered and doesn't approve of crop tops or exposed bodies .. it just doesn't make sense to me.

NeoFaust Tue 11-Feb-14 11:09:15

You're already spying on her, so you're treating her privacy with complete disrespect. If you're already prepared to treat her so poorly, why worry about how talking about it will affect your relationship? Just bite the bullet, forbid an adult from expressing themselves in privacy and let her know just how little you respect you have for her personal agency.

WorriedMumJo Tue 11-Feb-14 11:09:42

I don't know why she would be doing this .. I guess to make money as she is too anxious to get a part time job .. she had one for a while but gave it up as she struggled so much to go in. We've tried counselling .. but she rejected it .. thinks social anxiety can't be cured or helped. She plays fantasy type games on the PC so I think this is about being somebody she can't be in reality .. she's also just started using the App Whisper .. I don't know much about it but wonder if the suggestion of photos came from someone she talks to on there.

WorriedMumJo Tue 11-Feb-14 11:12:07

Neofaust .. I'm just a very worried Mum trying to protect her very un street wise daughter. I don't imagine I'm the only parent who has glanced at a teenagers email account when worried.

MissMilbanke Tue 11-Feb-14 11:13:45

She's 18, so legally an adult.

However you need to have that discussion about keeping safe and consequences. The sooner the better.

A very difficult situation, but one you can't brush under the carpet.

whattodoforthebest2 Tue 11-Feb-14 11:14:45

I can imagine what a shock this must be but tbh there's not a lot you can do, especially if you don't want her to know you know..

In terms of social anxiety, self esteem issues, I would encourage her to invite friends over to yours if that's possible. I like to have my DC's mates over fairly often, partly so I know where they are and so that I can see who they're mixing with, encourage their social life etc. Perhaps that way she will get some input from friends as to what is acceptable/unacceptable behaviour online?

WorriedMumJo Tue 11-Feb-14 11:18:50

She doesn't mix with other people at all .. only in her lessons at college .. won't invite people home or go to theirs. I know that is what she needs .. but I can't persuade her to try. Maybe I need to find something on the internet talking about the issues and leave it on the screen for her to see .. unsubtle but maybe an option.

NeoFaust Tue 11-Feb-14 11:24:00

WorriedMumJo And now you can see what a bad idea it is. You're either going to have to tell her you don't trust or respect her, but nevertheless have judged her behaviour or you're going to have to raise the point VERY VERY subtly.

Good opportunity: article on the Daily Mail website about kids' sexts being sold to paedophiles. Talk to her about it about how it makes OTHER PEOPLE (her) unsafe, how THEY (she) can never retract permission for the photographs to be displayed once sold and how they will be around for ever. Say you worry about how those kids mums feel. If she asks if there's any specific reason, just mention how long she spends on the web.

Personally I see no problem with a little camming, but if you want to talk to her about the dangers without your daughter realising how you violated her privacy, then talking about something similar but disconnected might work.

brass Tue 11-Feb-14 11:26:10

legally being an age does not make someone an adult!

she needs to understand the future implications of the pictures, they are in the public domain FOREVER, to be copied, downloaded, shared at any random weirdo's will.

you may not be able to control the laptop but you can control the wifi! Switch it off, change the password, no wifi no internet.

justanuthermanicmumsday Tue 11-Feb-14 11:30:37

I think your husband should know it's his child too? I think it's stupid to blame OP parents should monitor their kids online. If they've got nothing to hide why the secrecy. If she is deemed to be an adult, then she should be in her own home then she can do as she pleases, with her own money.

as long as she is in your home lay down the rules. No internet access or access only in your presence or with restrictions on usage I.e ban programmes she is using for this destructive behaviour. Place her computer or gadget in the family room, so she can't engage in lewd behaviour online.

Explain to her about self worth and dignity, and really encourage her to take counselling. I think she needs a psychiatrist or similar therapist to help with her anxiety issues. If she persists with the behaviour and refuses to take professional help I'd tell her she needs to leave,especially if you have other children who will be effected by her behaviour. It's not just about her and her feelings it effects the family unit.

You are right to be worried OP I know parents who have got rid of internet completely because of their kids being addicted p, refusing to do house chores, refusing to socialise with friends because they'd rather socialise on twitter. I'd do the same, the internet has it's dark side too it needs to be controlled or simply cut off permanently.

EasterHoliday Tue 11-Feb-14 11:32:50

you've picked a good time to do this subtly - today is official "Safer Internet Day"
that makes it easier for you to introduce it.
I'd say that you are perfectly entitled to make this difficult for her while she's under your roof / protection - you pay the wifi bill and control password access to the router I presume?

Ubik1 Tue 11-Feb-14 11:38:32

I would cut Internet access, 18 or not. She's your daughter living in your house. She cannot go it under your roof. You need to let her know how dangerous this is, these photos will never be wiped they will be around forever.

Frankly if it was a friend I would have same conversations.

whattodoforthebest2 Tue 11-Feb-14 11:54:32

Do you do things with her OP? Go shopping? Meal? Cinema? I find those are often good opportunities to discuss things in a relaxed manner. Perhaps you can find a relevant film to take her to and have a discussion afterwards about the issues raised? <trying to think of a suitable film to suggest>

specialsubject Tue 11-Feb-14 11:57:53

you can control access, just change the router password and lock her out.

tell her in no uncertain terms how stupid this is. And how come her social anxiety allows her to sell porn pictures of herself?

bunjies Tue 11-Feb-14 12:00:39

I would definitely raise it with her but in a non-judgmental way. You're going to have to admit to how you found out but you don't have to make her feel bad about it. It may be worth pointing out that it may affect her future prospects - work etc - someone may recognise her from a picture. Unlikely but not impossible.

Sunflower49 Tue 11-Feb-14 15:21:48

Cutting the internet off may be promlematic if it is her only entertainment/socialisation/interaction.

With anxiety issues It's not so likely that it will cause her to just leave home and do picture selling/camming elsewhere, but it could. She's already surprised you and could do again. She may have just found her way of making money and feeling better about herself, (however you and others feel about it) and then if It's gone, it may not have the desired effect on her nor her relationship with you and the outside world.

Couple of points regarding photos sold on most of the sites of that nature, people who buy them do not 'get them'.

They get access to them. They cannot right click and copy, they just pay to view them for a while. I'm sure there are means around it for the computer savvy,but as a rule.

And paypal do not accept 'adult' transactions. If she is actually selling pictures using paypal paypal are very good at finding out and they will put a stop to her account. Also she could be reported if anybody finds out (hint?) smile
Anyway, personally I don't think a legal adult should be subject to somebody (parent or not!) going through their private email account or data online, but as you have-I would subtly 'findout' and if you're not comforable with her doing this under your roof then of course you're entitled to insist that she doesn't continue it .

I wouldn't admit I'd been through her private things but then I feel strongly about things like that, others may not-just one opinion.

Starballbunny Tue 11-Feb-14 15:33:33

Neo There is no way I would stand by and let my DD sell pictures like that in two years time using our house internet connection.

Your responsibility to look out for and advise your DCs doesn't vaporize in their 18th birthday. They may have the right to move out and ignore you, but you don't stop having a moral obligation to do the best for the life you bought into this world, just because of a arbitory date.

NeoFaust Tue 11-Feb-14 15:46:49

Starballbunny but you don't have a moral obligation to enforce patriarchal standards of sexuality either. While there are undoubted dangers to her behaviour that the OP should check her daughter is aware of, she has no right to try and invade a space her daughter has claimed for herself; For that matter, the space the OP offered her by providing a room and a personal computer. It all looks very slut-shaming to me.

NaggingNellie Tue 11-Feb-14 15:50:25

I can imagine this is very difficult op she is 18 an adult, but still you're child.
Plus you're house isn't a brothel or porn studio and your DD needs to respect that too , your house and all that...

I would have a word with her about possible employers of the future seeing these and the possibility of these haunting her in later life.

TheVictorian Tue 11-Feb-14 15:50:26

Wikipedia has some basic information about what the website is about.

Ubik1 Tue 11-Feb-14 16:50:52

Slut shaming ? Do you have children Neo?

Minifingers Tue 11-Feb-14 17:41:38

Neo is probably a 23 year old.

Teenagers generally turn into adults (with normal jobs where looking like an unstable flake isn't considered edgy or cool) who don't want naked images of themselves floating around the internet. Christ, the thought of having to worry that colleagues, friends, pupils and clients, might see pictures of my clunge online.....

OP you can't stop your dd selling pictures of herself, but on principal you can block her internet so you're not facilitating her yo do it.

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