When strangers friend your kids: A parent's view
Friday, February 19, 2010
I happened to be sitting in a Starbucks on Tuesday, waiting for my scheduled meeting party to arrive. There was a woman and a man sitting about five feet away from me. The woman must not have minded my presence because she was not making any attempt to keep her conversation private. (Good for me because I got a parent’s take on Facebook and my meeting was 30 minutes late.)
So this Mom is talking to this guy. They were both in their 40’s. She was talking about her 15-year olds Facebook. The Mom was also a Facebook user. The mother had accepted a random 50-year old man’s friend request. She didn’t really know the guy but said she was open to meeting new people and they had been chatting and emailing.
The next thing she knew, the man had befriended her daughter. “What is a 50-year old man befriending my daughter for? He doesn’t know her. That is creepy and weird. My daughter must have thought that was okay because he was one of my friends. She must have thought I knew him from my work circle or something.”
The mom went on to say that this man had requested to be friends with many of her friends. She seemed creeped out enough by this that she told her daughter to take him off as her friend and she did the same.
Facebook is a great social network but there are some creepy folks out there that may find adults to friend, then friend their children. If you’ve never thought about getting a Facebook account yourself, perhaps it may be a good idea. That way, you can see who your kid’s friends are. Between monitoring from an outside perspective and using McGruff Safeguard, you can rest assured that we can see if there is any behavior that is out of the ordinary, then alert you.
It was good to see that this mother was on top of what was going on in her teen’s social media realm. It was also nice to see that she recognized a potential danger and put a stop to it. What are some of your experiences as parents? Has anything like this happened in your world? Are you a member of a social network? We’d love to hear from you.
Labels: Facebook, friending, McGruff Safeguard, parents, strangers
posted by Lindsay Manfredi at 5:58 AM Link to this Article