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How to know when its kids joking or starting to cross the line?

I monitor my child's facebook frequently. They have kept their word to me and only use it for games and the occassional comment all are comments I am okay if they went public.

The friends from school though are freighting. The one said lets start a gang. Then went on to say wear all red if you wanted to join. That is disturbing that an 11 year old knows about red gang colors. With facebook if privacy codes are not set it shows other people's comments. The one was a 13 year old with more swear words then the factory guys I work with. 

Do I assume it is harmless middle school kids not realizing facebook is so public or should I some how tell the parents and/or school? I say the school because these kids are doing this during school time.

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Asked by Anonymous at 9:06 AM on Feb. 3, 2011 in General Parenting

Answers (6)
  • Wow. Thats tough, I would address the children thru facebook. I had an incident with my sons cell phone that would be similar, he is not allowed to have a facebook acct. My rule is that I read every text in and out of his phone. He had one of his friends who had quite a potty mouth and was saying some disturbing things via text to my boy. I simply used my sons phone and called this friend, who didn't answer, so I texted her and asked her very nicely not to text my son anymore, as I did not appreciate the tone of the texts. You are the parent and can control certain things.

    Answer by parajumper3 at 9:11 AM on Feb. 3, 2011

  • You should tell the parent(s) and the school. The most gang related situations at at school. Sometimes its in our best good to talk to our kids about things like this.

    Answer by bunbun8201 at 9:13 AM on Feb. 3, 2011

  • You should talk to other parents and see if there are even real gangs in the schools. I know where we live they say they have a gang and they dont. Theyd probably poop their pants if a real gang member came around. Kids that age get into the whole idea of gangs and being that way for the shock value. Remember they think they can shock us all and we havent seen any of it before. I always told my kids everything you are doing, has been done. I would also tell mine if I saw them talk that way then theyd block that friend and not be able to hang around them.

    Answer by gemgem at 9:16 AM on Feb. 3, 2011

  • I ould definately tell the school, ESPECIALLY if they are allowed to do this during school time, on school premises. The school has to protect all the students. I would talk to your child about if there are any gangs, who's in them, and what they do. Just have an open conversation abou it. I would talk to the other parents IF you are freinds with them. Some parents may be offended and snap at you, and then your kid may feel the burn of the anger, you just don't want that. Me, personally, i am not the type of person who would be offended by another parent informing me of something, i would be appreciative of it. Hopefully, those are the types of parents you will deal with. But you need to say something. It may just be "talk", but if something bad were to happen and you could have spoke up, that would be sad.

    Answer by boobarandbell at 10:32 AM on Feb. 3, 2011

  • teacher here - WHY are they allowed on FB in school?? why?? and yes if they are swearing or doing bad stuff when they are allowed to do that (i guess as a reward) call the school and tell that teacher.

    Answer by AmaliaD at 2:34 PM on Feb. 3, 2011

  • Chances are that this "gang" is nothing more than what we old people call a "club" but any kind of group that has no structural intent can lead to problems. I know parents do things differently but I know if my Mom directly intervened with one of my friends I would be hiding in shame/fear on the playground for many weeks to come. I know this sounds obvious and you probably have already done this but have you talked to your own child about gangs and the intent of these other kids? I know that protecting your kids "street cred" is certainly less imperative than protecting him as a whole, but if a parent is not monitoring and allowing a teenage boy to be using vulgar language on Facebook do you think your intervention will improve the scenario? I would address this first with parents you trust and know and perhaps your child's teacher as a concern so that collectively you look for clues of signs of danger for now.

    Answer by hotelmom123 at 2:37 PM on Feb. 3, 2011

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