Saturday, January 2, 2010


It’s that time of year again. The time where you reflect on the past year and look to see what mistakes you’ve made and how you could do things differently from now on. Did you have any frustrations with your kids and their online behavior? Did anyone in your family a victim of cyber bullying? Did you feel like you had a sense of control only to realize things weren’t as they seemed? Parenting in the year 2010 will have its challenges, especially when it comes to monitoring the online behavior of your teens.

We want to give a couple of tips for making this year safe for your kids/teens online:


  • Consider installing McGruff Safeguard on all the computers in your house that your kids are on - McGruff Safeguard can help monitor conversations that are taking place online and will alert you if there is any suspicion of abusive behavior. Whether it is sneaking out, drugs, sexual abuse, or cyber bullying. If you are aware of what is going on in the lives of your kids, it opens up a door for discussion. With it being so difficult growing up and learning how to do things for yourself, kids often hold back any feelings of hurt or concern. If you know what is going on with them, knowing helps facilitate conversation.



  • Be open with your teens – Always remember that growing up is never easy. When you approach a subject out of love rather than judgment, people have a natural inclination to open up versus coming at them harsh and watching them shut down. I have so much personal experience in this area. My parents were very hard on me and very judgmental over what I did that was not up to their approval. Know that your teens are going to make mistakes and do stupid things. I believe that’s part of the growing process. However, boundaries are important. And explaining the “why’s” can help them to understand a little better.

  • Know who your kids are hanging out with – Sometimes the people who you think are a negative influence on your kids are the ones who you can make the biggest impact with. When you have McGruff Safeguard on your computers, at least you can see what they’re not always telling you. If you use a service like this for the good, everyone can benefit from various lessons learned.

  • Talk to your kids about online predators and cyber bullying– If you need to show them different stories of victims and people, do it. Be sure to let them know that that not everyone they come in contact with online is who they say they are. There have been multiple stories in the past year of this. It’s important for them to be safe with how much information they share on their online profiles and such.

If you have any questions about any of these things, we’re here to help. Please keep sending us your stories. We wish you a wonderful and safe New Years. Here’s to making a positive change this year.

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posted by Lindsay Manfredi at 11:47 AM Link to this Article

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