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Can I have opinions on checking phone messages / browsing history etc for young teenagers ?

(143 Posts)
rumgy Mon 13-Apr-15 20:37:21

My dd Is just 13.
She had a phone on the understanding that she does not have it at night. I check the messages / history etc but it is set up with restrictions / passwords so she can't access explicit stuff Or download stuff without me knowing
I feel I need to keep an eye but it feels kind of wrong and an invasion of privacy to look through the messages. Mostly harmless teenage stuff and lots and lots and lots of tedious messages. I have never seen anything to really worry about.
She hates me taking the phone at night time but I know she will be on it until the early hours otherwise.

What age do you still look at their phone ? What age can they be trusted to have privacy ? Do you look at their messages / Instagram etc ?

usualsuspect333 Mon 13-Apr-15 20:39:33

I wouldn't look through a 13 year olds messages.

rumgy Mon 13-Apr-15 20:50:24

Why not usual ?

Am I being over cautious in keeping an eye on what my dc does on her phone ? I have sat through a couple of internet safety sessions at school and feel I can't just let her get in with it without any monitoring but I don't want yo invade her privacy too much.

rumgy Mon 13-Apr-15 20:51:58

At 16 I will feel very different but not sure how to manage this with a just 13 yr old

AnyFucker Mon 13-Apr-15 20:53:29

if I had a very specific and serious reason to suspect something I would look

if not, I wouldn't do it as a matter of course

I followed this course when my dd was the same age and I am very glad I did

Bonkerz Mon 13-Apr-15 20:55:44

I don't religiously check my14 year olds. We have an agreement that do random checks. If he refuses to give phone and tablet unlocked then he loses them I also have the internet set up so it disconnects the Internet at 9:30 on his devices and can check his internet usage via the hub

dexter73 Mon 13-Apr-15 20:59:42

I never checked my dd's phone. Tbh if there is something on there she doesn't want you to read she will just delete it.

AnyFucker Mon 13-Apr-15 21:02:04

my dd didn't

her whole life is on her phone

rumgy Mon 13-Apr-15 21:06:12

We had a nasty friendship issue that dd was really upset about and I only got to the bottom of it by looking at some messages. I dont tell her if I look and I dont think she deletes much stuff.
Her phone is pinging away until almost midnight though most nights so I know she would be kept awake if I did not physically remove it from her.

AnyFucker Mon 13-Apr-15 21:11:15

I managed to stop some attempts at sexual grooming by looking at her messages

TheFairyCaravan Mon 13-Apr-15 21:16:03

I never looked at my DC's phones, tablets or laptops unless there was a specific need or worry I had. Checking them doesn't prove anything anyway, if they get a text or message they don't want you to see they'll delete it straight away. They aren't daft.

LikeABadSethRogenMovie Mon 13-Apr-15 21:23:48

I have looked at my (just turned) 14 yo's messages 3 times. Every time I was worried about him and he wasn't opening up. I'm glad I did and he doesn't know I did it, but it really helped me help him work through some issues he was having with a manipulative female friend. By the time he gets to late 14-15, I wouldn't.

usualsuspect333 Mon 13-Apr-15 21:29:39

I trusted my teenagers to tell me if anything dodgy was going on.

And they did.

If I had real concerns, I would have looked. But I wouldn't look as a matter of course.

I think teenagers need privacy.I think the fact she doesn't know you are looking at her private messages is wrong TBH.

dexter73 Mon 13-Apr-15 21:47:59

Messages or photos can be deleted from their phones but if they have backed them up on icloud, dropbox etc. they can be retrieved.

ElizabethHoover Mon 13-Apr-15 21:51:44


We had some interesting revelations that we were VERY glad we found

ElizabethHoover Mon 13-Apr-15 21:52:40

I used to think the privacy thing too.

till a mates daughter discovered online grooming by a family mate and I discovered things I wont go into here but you wouldnt want to go on...

do check. Not everyday. But occasionally

Heyho111 Mon 13-Apr-15 22:08:57

I never checked messages. Not sure what you're looking for. If they get wind your going to check messages they would delete them first anyway.
She wod come to you if there's an issue.

Flyonthewindscreen Mon 13-Apr-15 22:32:25

I have a 13 and an 11 yo DC and the deal is that they are not allowed to have any passwords I don't know and that I can check if I want to. I mean to check sporadically but usually only do if I'm suspicious that there is something going on that I'm uneasy about. The DC are ok about this. I don't know at what age it would become an unreasonable invasion of privacy, don't feel we are there yet though.

Alvah Mon 13-Apr-15 23:14:34

I believe it is okay to check. Not all DC speak/confide in parents about what goes on. I feel it is simply being a responsible parent.

I keep an eye on my 12 year old DS's online activity, both for his own safety as well as making sure he doesn't behave unacceptably towards others.

I've come across a few incidents of concern where I've been able to talk to him about issues and explain why they are not safe/okay.

My 14 year old DS though I don't. I would have to literally walk to hell and back to gain access to his phone/facebook account. I have been blocked by him so I can't see anything. The closest I get to keeping an eye is to look at his page through his brothers profile, because they are friends. I have to be careful though because if he cottoned on, he would soon block his brother too.

Sometimes I get tempted to check his phone when he is asleep or in the shower, but I don't.

I think you are doing all the right things and I believe you will know when the time is right to stop.

Lovewhereilive Mon 13-Apr-15 23:21:15

I am going through this too. My 12 year old DS acts like a crazed animal if I take his ipod/phone off of him.

How do you block the internet after a certain time? Can you do it for ipods?

Am such a techno dinosaur!

AnyFucker Mon 13-Apr-15 23:27:16

no need for that if you remove the device

ElizabethHoover Tue 14-Apr-15 06:46:19

I would advise all to look. For various reasons.

ItsAllKickingOffPru Tue 14-Apr-15 07:09:23

DS knows the option for us to look at his phone is always there (it won't be when he's older) and his FB account is used for various games so DH keeps an eye on that.

No internet upstairs and we reserve the right to swoop on his laptop and look instantly at any browsing history. Rarely do that, though.

ElizabethHoover Tue 14-Apr-15 07:20:22

HO HO ! With teenage boys I DEFINITELY would grin

ItsAllKickingOffPru Tue 14-Apr-15 07:30:25

I'd do the same if he were a girl tbh.

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