Today kids are taking millions of pictures of themselves and each other. They grow up with family members capturing each moment on bytes and files in phones and for social media. They grow accustom to this behavior and parents must remain vigilant in helping them maneuver properly through picture etiquette and safety.
Photo Sharing: It is important to talk to your tween & teen about image sharing. A picture is worth 1000 words for sure and in the digital era it pretty much lasts in eternity in cyberspace. Controlling your image is a key component to securing a confident and successful future. Helping them understand would be as simple as comparing their future to building a strong house on a strong foundation:
Each brick has it's own characteristic and story but each brick is a huge part in building a stable and respectable structure. Their actions are like bricks, seemingly small and insignificant but in all actuality very important in establishing a complete personal image.
Child Pornography, Nakedness and Sexy Images: From early on, parents are snapping photos of their kids, capturing images to share on phones and on social media sites. It is important to express to your child what proper photo etiquette and conduct are. Going beyond physical and emotional abuse, I've made my kids aware that taking naked photos of yourself, each other, other kids or adults is inappropriate and against the law. Also allowing anyone to take naked photos of you is inappropriate and just as severe as molestation or sexual abuse.
In conclusion, it is important to equip your child with the ability, confidence and awareness to say NO to an adult or older kid when they feel uncomfortable. Having a relationship of open dialogue is the key to protecting children. Communicating clearly your family's expectations and safety precautions consistently and regularly will not be the only safeguard for your child, but it is a step in the right direction.
I'm a former teacher and former college athlete, currently working to make life more equitable for all people. My mission is to get parents to partner with their child's teacher.