When teens were asked recently if they believe their parents know about what they do or say online (or even what social media apps and sites they use), more than a quarter of them agreed that they did.
But it seems they’re likely giving their parents a bit too much credit.
According to a report by The Washington Post, when parents were asked if they had ever used Snapchat, Musical.ly or Tbh, few - if any - even knew what these apps were.
So what are some of the secrets that teens - in the US, at least - keep from their parents?
You have more than one device in hand
- Access to smartphones and other smart gadgets has shifted communication for your generation of teens. One teenager who was surveyed said, "when you take away one device at night, you might not realise how many devices we still have with us."
- Teens feel that the fear of missing out (FOMO) can create an overwhelming desire to be connected. According to 2015 Pew Research, 94 per cent of teens go online daily - which isn’t surprising at all - and 24 per cent feel as though they are online constantly.
You often post under a pseudonym
For some teens, a finsta (“fake” Instagram) or a rinsta (“real” Instagram) might be where they feel they can share their raw, authentic feelings. “Many of us have a fake Instagram account," said one teenager.
In cases where parents have full control of and access to their child’s online interactions, children still might be hiding some of their online activities from their parents.
We voice our opinons on social media
- Teens want their opinions to be heard, declaring, “if we are passionate or angry about something, we take it to social media."
- Many tweens and teens find their online communities engaging, interactive and responsive. For example, a message or Snapchat sent to a friend can result in an instant reply, and something posted to a group chat or online profile can create the opportunity for community-level conversation and engagement.
- Responses from friends and followers make kids feel heard and listened to, which is often important for those who simply want acknowledgment and validation.