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Eveningstargazer, Family Counselor
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 155
Experience:  Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)
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i foundout yesterday that my 13 year old girl accidentally

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i foundout yesterday that my 13 year old girl accidentally sent a picture of her friend(also 13) in her g-string underwear , to a boy who in turn sent it to some of his friends.while all pictures have been deleted, we hope,i am very worried about how unaware the girls seem to be of the possable consequences of this.i have taken my daughters phone and said that i would seek advice. i feel the girls three altogether(who were on a sleepover) are too immature to realise the dangers of social websites .They all three have i phones.Should i just give her a simple phone so that she cannot access social networks.I am afraid of loosing her as she doesnt tell me about her life really.I am also afraid that she will feel very isolated.i got her the phone to be able to contact her but she never has credit and is constantly on snapchat.I am a working psychotherapist but find myself doing the exact opposite of what is recommended when parenting teenagers.I constantly critisise her and this recent event has sent me into overdrive.She is a great kid ,what should i do.
Hello and thank you for your question today. This is certainly a difficult situation. It sounds like she doesn't really grasp the severity of what transpired. You did the correct thing in having an open and honest conversation with her in which you shared your concerns and told her that this was a serious situation. Confiscating the phone was a fitting consequence for her actions. I would not recommend going the route replacing her phone -- yet (especially if you are concerned that the two of you are not as close as you could be). I would recommend telling her that once she gets her phone back, if something like this happens again, it will be replaced with a basic phone with no internet access. This will help to convey just how serious the situation is, and how serious you are, and will set up a known consequence that will make her at least think twice before doing something like this again.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
THANKYOU for your reply. I still have concerns about the antisocial nature of her phone use . How long would you recommend confiscating the phone.
I would say a week would be appropriate for a transgression such as this. Unfortunately this antisocial behavior with phones that you are seeing is becoming more and more common these days both in adults and in children/teens, but even more pronounced in teens. There are some steps you can take as a parent, but again, it could be at the cost of causing some harm to your relationship, so only use if necessary:
You can put child locks on your phone using various software. Some of these will restrict and/or limit internet access. One such example would be MMGuardian, which allows you to lock the phone at specific times (such as late night, during school). It will still allow her to call specific numbers that you specify while it is locked. There are other apps that turn off the phone's data service so that they can't access the internet, again at specific time frames you specify, or after a given amount of data is used. Also, depending on your service provider, you can call them up and restrict access to specific apps. There is also an app called Screen Time Parental Control. This app allows you to monitor everything she does on the phone. A little intrusive, but some parents feel that in the digital age we live in, it is a good option.
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