Should South Jersey Parents Allow Unsupervised Social Media Use Under Age 10?
The month of October is National Bullying Prevention Month.
In keeping with the theme, let's take a moment and think about how much that landscape has changed over the last thirty years or so. First of all, social media wasn't anything any of us 90s kids really had to navigate until we were in middle school. Once it became a part of our lives, the only platform any of us were really active on was Myspace.
Today, there are so many platforms kids actively post on that it can be hard to keep up with all of them. From the animals of Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok to Facebook and Snapchat, they're getting bombarded with keyboard warrior and trolls everywhere they turn. It's become such a staple in their lives that escaping from school bullies has become harder than ever.
There's no such thing as solace at home anymore. Kids can't come home to regroup and recharge without logging on to at least one social media platform a night. That's where most of the bullying seems to happen these days. In school, it's only a continuation of the drama that played out through DMs on Instagram the night before.
So, where do parents draw the line? Do parents even have a line? A new survey conducted by the University of Michigan shows that 33% of children between the ages of 7 to 9 years old are active on social media. Is that too young? What's even more shocking is that 40% of parents say that between all the different platforms their kids use, it's too time consuming to even track what they're doing.
At what point does it fall to parents to shield their kids from the drama? You're not going to keep your kids off social media indefinitely, but logic would suggest that if you prohibit the use of the platforms until they're a bit older, that's one less form of bullying children would be subjected to.
Something to keep in mind during National Bullying Prevention Month.