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How do your teens use Instagram? Share with us for the chance to win a £300 voucher!

250 replies

EmmaMumsnet · 10/12/2018 14:39

Instagram is now a huge part of our culture and is a staple for many teens (and adults alike!) whether they use it to share moments with their friends, run an account for your family pet, or simply to browse memes. We would like to find out how your teens use Instagram and what accounts you’d recommend for teenagers to follow?

Do your teenagers follow foodie, beauty, or music accounts for inspiration? Are they creative and use Instagram to share their own art or photography? Perhaps they are keen activists and use the platform to spread awareness and gain support for good causes?

Instagram have also pulled together this handy guide which explains all about the safety features you and your teens can use to make sure they are getting the best experience on Instagram.

Everyone who posts below will be entered into a prize draw to win a £300 voucher of their choice (from a list).



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How do your teens use Instagram? Share with us for the chance to win a £300 voucher!
OP posts:
SilverDoe · 11/12/2018 06:39

I’m not a mother if teenagers but my niece and nephew use it extensively and unfortunately it’s sole use seems to be a social media platform to chat with their local friends and upload selfies!

HannahLI · 11/12/2018 21:01

We talk a lot about instagram and whats sensible to post and what not, I encourage them to think about what message they are sending and who they want to see it. There are lots of their friends who post pictures that are innocent enough but theres an underlying tone that isn't quite right - too much bikini or they are really posed and false. They worry about how many hearts they have and if their friends really do like their pics, and compare stats. They follow lots of different people including celebs, crafts blogs etc but we do talk about whats appropriate and what isn't. I don;t like bloggers who use bad language and they know that, so try and pick carefully.

kateandme · 12/12/2018 17:47

id like them not to to be like to ban them for as much good as I think they can bring.i think the bad that can all of sudden unline everything with is just too greater risk.i think its made them too self contious and too grown up.and self criticle.
but...they do use it so...we talk all the time of safety.a good question is for every picture think what would they think if they were seeing a.someone they don't know posting the same.two a good friend of family.what would they think and what would they say about that person an the photo and therefore should they too post it?
never critisie is usually what we say about no matter what they are thinking it never come right in type usualy and you never no hwo much the receiver has had before yo uor what they are going through.
remember airbrushing and time and money of their idles mean all phoots and "goals" are fake and never to feel lesser than
one very sensitive dn is very good on it.uses it for art
she follow illo_advent this time of year.
and re posts and post mental health awareness stuff and body posiivte things.
the rule is we wont.but we can and would look at anytime.
and go through it on privacy etc etc.
never post body parts.
don't post things that you would enver want to be shared or seen by absolutely anyone because as private as you can be shit happens.
but I am starting to see my dn accounts and I actually often despair at them :( but I really worry.i really really worry

UpOnDown · 12/12/2018 19:47

they share selfies!

grannybiker · 12/12/2018 23:48

I don't really see the virtues of Instagram TBH. It seems to be a platform for showing off, and not always honestly!
That said, eldest seems to love it! Fortunately she's gone past the stage where her happiness seemed to depend on how many likes her picture got and she's fully aware of the unreality (Is that even a word? Sorry, am tired!) of most pictures.
The younger 2 don't have any social media as they're too young.

grannybiker · 12/12/2018 23:51

P.S. Am bookmarking that guide to read when my brain is more accepting!

FoggyNelson · 13/12/2018 00:00

The teens I know seem to rarely post anything on their main account (despite having an inexplicably large number of followers), and prefer to post on 'finstas', which are private and they only accept close friends. Apparently, the quality control of posts on finstas is much less stringent, and mostly consists of selfies of them making ridiculous faces, or screenshots of playlists they're listening to.

Their 'main' account is a very carefully curated set of photos of themselves that all have a 'theme'. It's also used for liking videos of people applying makeup (that honestly all look the same to me, but apparently they're all VERY different looks).

My sister also runs an account on behalf of her hamster, which is admittedly quite cute.

BristolMum96 · 13/12/2018 15:39

Just as social media to share and chat with friends

sharond101 · 13/12/2018 18:53

My kids are too young but I Hooper to show them how I use it and give them direction.

buize · 13/12/2018 21:50

My daughter uses Instagram to communicate with her friends. She has private groups.

She follows music artists and actors from programmes she likes to watch. I don’t think she posts much.

HomeEdRocks18 · 13/12/2018 22:15

My teenage son says most teenagers just look at posts they find entertaining and follow famous people. My son has an account but mainly uses Snapchat.

sjonlegs · 14/12/2018 11:19

I personally love instagram as a great way to share with friends- and a great history of experiences especially happy times. My 10 year old daughter has nagged on a couple of occasions (but in my mind she's way too young). My teenage son doesn't use it after a really horrible experience. Some bullies in his year stole his identity, set up a false account and posted lots of pictures they'd taken from his media profile (he's done some acting, modelling and PR work) and put some really hurtful comments online. Fortunately my IT proficient husband managed to trace the user, download screen prints and a timeline, and approached the school - who in turn involved the police, as their actions were indeed a criminal offence. It is such a shame that some 'children' feel the need to channel hate and abuse in this way. I still use Instagram - but always check with my children before posting anything. I do think it's one of the more lovely social media platforms- but we did learn the hard way how it can be abused. I wouldn't encourage my children to use any social media until they are mature enough to understand the pros and cons and handle it. However, it's been a great learning tool in helping my children understand the pitfalls and I impress upon them almost EVERY day how important it is to be nice and to always be your best self- as so much now is posted online and can potentially leave a footprint for the rest of our lives .... always bearing in mind prospective employers, partners, etc! #foodforthought #didntmeantobeapartypooper #MerryChristmas

llynnnn · 14/12/2018 14:05

My young teen mostly uses it for private messaging her friends on group chats. She follows a few accounts who post funny memes, posts the odd story if she's doing something fun with friends. not many filtered selfies though...yet...thank goodness!

advent12 · 14/12/2018 14:35

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Shesaysso · 14/12/2018 17:17

My teen uses it mainly for direct messaging her friends and group chat. She follows a few beauty bloggers, travel and fashion. Some of her friends use it to post pictures but from what I see most seem to use snap chat for posting pics. She also has a public Instagram account for her pet which she does post pictures on.

Iused2BanOptimist · 14/12/2018 17:23

Mine mostly subscribes to funny video sites and has lots of laughs.

ILovePierceBrosnan · 14/12/2018 17:25

I am not as proficient on Insta as I am on FB and struggle to monitor her use. She posts selfies and the usual teenagey disparaging comments under those selfies “look rubbish today” etc
I hate it’s use as a validation process as I think it actually works in exactly the opposite way.

Namedrama · 14/12/2018 18:38

My thirteen year old and her friends are all Insta obsessed, I insist in having her account on my phone too so I see exactly what they do and it’s awful.

  1. They post stories much more often than posting on their grids. Their stories show every after school meet etc and it makes it very clear all the time who is invited, who is left out etc as you can always see who is hanging out with who. They also often live broadcast so aren’t in contro, of what people see.

  1. Many have links to anonymous feedback sites in their bios. People ask them to rank girls, friends etc on those sites then they screen shot their answers and post to insta stories.

  1. They use the slide feature to ask friends to rate how much each friends thinks they like them. They then screen shot the answer and mark the true answer on top of what the person thought. So everyone can see if you thought a friend liked you more than they do.

4.They care about follower numbers so they often have non private accounts and always accept people they hardly know ie friends of friends of friends

  1. They all have multiple accounts. Their main account for shiny perfect pics, their priv accounts for funny ugly pics, their -ship accounts that they run with their best friend or boyfriend.

  1. They have anonymous school gossip accounts too. Nobody knows who runs these but they endlessly spread rumours.

  1. They share log in details with friends and keep logged in to their friends’ accounts on their phones. Then they see each other’s messages and all sorts of problems arise.

In summary I love Instagram as an adult but hate the impact it’s having on my daughter and her friends.
headfullofdreams · 14/12/2018 19:26

My eldest DS 15 is on Instagram but hardly uses it. He uses snapchat more.

mizu · 14/12/2018 20:42

2 DDs 12 & 14. They use but rarely post. Use it to view other peoples' posts.
I use it more than them and use it to keep in touch with a few friends as I'm not on any other social media.
I send them posts I think they'll find interesting Smile

Iused2BanOptimist · 14/12/2018 22:29

Wow Namedrama That sounds like a full time job and lots of features I had no idea were possible. I wouldn't be happy with that at all.

TheLittleDogLaughed · 15/12/2018 05:59

My 16-year-old has two accounts; one she calls her general account where she posts selfies, pictures of her art, pictures with friends. She’s picky about who sees this one. Then she has her spam account where she collects and shares memes and accepts anyone to follow her on it. She follows a few singers that she likes as well.

Jeffingandeffing · 15/12/2018 08:06

My 18 year old avoids social media due to the friendship and privacy issues it can cause.

overmydeadbody · 15/12/2018 08:15

My ds uses it to communicate with friends and mostly posts stories. His account is private and I follow him and he follows me.

Him and his friends seem to use it to share memes mostly.

ISdads · 15/12/2018 08:23

Selfies and filtered selfies
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