Normal. That is not always a good thing. Don’t believe me? Read Linchpin by Seth Godin. But when it comes down to children, they typically want to be normal. Look at the sheep in the picture. That’s what you call a herd. Kids want to be a part of a herd. They don’t want to stand out. They don’t want to be the only one in their herd not doing a particular thing, whatever that thing may be.
Your Kid Wants to Be Like You
You, undoubtedly, use social media. You may be a Twitterholic or a Facebook addict or maybe a LinkedIn lunatic, but I am sure you use social media in one form or another. But what about your kids? Have you hooked them yet? They see you having fun or at the least, being consumed by social media. You know they do or will soon want to get in on that action.
If they have friends who look or act anything similar to the sheep in the above picture, then you will soon hear your ten, eleven or twelve year old ask for a Facebook account. And why will they ask? Simple, because “all my friends are on Facebook.” It won’t be a nice plea. It will be one wrapped up in an obnoxious whining voice, especially after you deny them, time after time after time, their desire to be just like their friends.
But you will, eventually, give in. You may not let your daughter wear makeup yet. You may not let your ten year old boy play games rated M just yet. But when it comes to Facebook, you’ll give in because of one of the following reasons:
1) You can’t stand the whining
2) You don’t want your child to be an outcast among his or her herd
3) You don’t know ofthe dangers for pre-teens on Facebook
You may even explain to your ten, eleven or twelve year old child that the Facebook rules state no one under thirteen can register. Then you won’t have long to wait unitl you hear, “But my freinds’ parents let them say they’re thirteen.”
If you’re an “anti-Facebook for pre-teens” parent, you’ll want to read my next post on this subject. Feel free to share your thoughts on Facebook accounts for those under thirteen. I’d love to read them.