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Myspace angst -- DS 13 says "everyone" has a Myspace account....


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and he wants one.

 

I personally hate Myspace. Why is it so appealing??

 

DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

Sidenote: He is always w/ friends from youth group -- who unfortunately ALL have Myspace accounts.

 

UGGGGGGG!!!!!

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it's fun. You can make it a private account where only her friends can see her page. Then make it a rule that she can only accept friends that she knows in real life...no one else. Also, make it a rule that you are allowed on there once a week, you must know the password...to make sure she is safe. Under those conditions I have let my son have one...I did have to say he was 14 though...that's the youngest they'll let you have it. Since then he's canceled and gotten a facebook, because he knew more people with facebook than myspace.

I have a myspace to keep in touch with my dh's family and friends from high school. I have it private and never have had any issues. HTH :001_smile:

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If you hate it, then I would just say, "Sorry, I know you want one, but it is a NO." I have not yet got to that stage, but I will probably say no to that. I have a MySpace account because I wanted to see my students pages and there is a lot of yucky stuff out there. There are lots of good kids too, but unless you want to moniter it fairly closely, I would just say No.

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We don't have any MS, but I have FB to keep up with college son's pictures. If the kids want to see them, they see them through mine.

 

My niece and nephew both have a FB. Their pages curl my hair.

 

My kids all have their own blogs, protected and only open to certain people. They aren't interested in FB or MS, so it's easy for me to tell you to tell your child no, but tell them "No" I would most certainly. And if you do say yes, you check it everyday.

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DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

 

 

I haven't read all the replies. I feel connection with friends is a very poor reason to develop an online presence. Internet "buddies" are a shallow alternative for true relationships (no matter how much I love you all!) It is very easy to hide online and escape into an unhealthy artificial reality. I have done it myself. If you do not want your child to participate I can completely understand. I would certainly keep a close watch on my own kids to make sure they have plenty of healthy "real life" relationships.

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Beth, the best way for you to decide this issue is to get on Myspace yourself and look up some of these friends from youth group who don't have private accounts. Don't be surprised if you find out that some are not quite what they seem. We're in the same boat so I did a little research. I was dumbfounded by the sexual content, the language, the gossip, and the narcissism there. Most of these kids were from church. I teach a junior high Sunday School at church and have since made it my mission in life to try to get them to represent themselves in a way that won't bite them in years to come. Of course, there were some kids who had great pages with no inappropriate content.

Because my daughter wanted to keep up with friends across the country that she sees at summer music camps, we decided to let her have a Facebook. It's more private (IMO) and a bit safer. There are still pop-up ads for underwear, etc, but it's better than Myspace. WE HAVE THE PASSWORD. WE MONITER IT FREQUENTLY. Just a few weeks ago, one of her friends sent a friend recommendation to my daughter that she add her father on. I'd met the man at camp and noticed that he seemed overly interested in all of the teen girl activities. Of course, we denied the request and there's been no more contact. (Mom instincts are usually right on, aren't they?) The thing I tried to impress upon my daughter is that it was probably him using his daughter's account. Just like me, he has his daughter's password. See the problem?

Good luck with your decision. There are also books at the library about the subject that may help your family make an informed decision.

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and he wants one.

 

I personally hate Myspace. Why is it so appealing??

 

DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

Sidenote: He is always w/ friends from youth group -- who unfortunately ALL have Myspace accounts.

 

UGGGGGGG!!!!!

 

I'm going through this with my son right now. He just brought it up the other day. Apparently, his two best friends have one.

 

The daughter of a friend of mine has one and I asked her what the attraction is -- what do they DO there? She said it's just kids doing what kids do -- acting stupid. I pulled up her daughter's account and boy -- was she right. I couldn't believe some of the comments -- the nasty things they say to each other, followed by a "j/k" to make it all better. And, a personal pet peeve with me, not a one of them can type!

 

I don't so much have a problem with what they're saying to each other. I think I'd be a little naive to think that there isn't a lot that goes on with those boys when they're hanging out that I don't know about -- or want to know about.

 

My issue is a little different. I still have an ex stalking me -- yes, after all these years. He's nothing if not dedicated. My son's name is rare, and when you do a search on MySpace.com for that name, only six others come up. It wouldn't be beyond my ex to create an account to get information from him. And he wouldn't even have to do that. You can't sign up without giving your full name, and your age and location are displayed, as well -- there are no privacy controls to change that. Yes, you can sign up with bogus information, but that opens up a whole can of worms when his friends want to know why.

 

But to get back to YOU -- His argument about interacting with other kids wouldn't win me over, either. :D

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and he wants one.

 

I personally hate Myspace. Why is it so appealing??

 

DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

Sidenote: He is always w/ friends from youth group -- who unfortunately ALL have Myspace accounts.

 

UGGGGGGG!!!!!

 

You can tell him that not everyone has one--my 13 yo ds doesn't :)

 

My Space is simply not an option in our house. It is forbidden.

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I ditto what everyone else has been saying. Also, I think his comments reveal that he is already peer-focused. Why would you want to let him do something else that will make him even MORE peer-focused? I think the book Hold On To Your Kids is great in addressing this area--too much peer focus is not healthy.

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I have MySpace and Facebook profiles. I have a lot of fun there promoting my books and talking with other authors. I've also made new friends there, some of whom I've since met offline. But I'm also constantly getting friend requests from people selling adult products, MLM schemes, and all sorts of other nonsense. I can only assume that my kids would be inundated with the same sort of requests if they had profiles. We're pretty free with internet access at my house -- the kids each have their own computer with internet access, play several online games, and are allowed to IM and e-mail with friends. But MySpace and Facebook take things to a whole other level, and I won't let my kids have profiles there. Fortunately, they're not overly interested yet and most of their friends are under the same constraints.

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and he wants one.

 

I personally hate Myspace. Why is it so appealing??

 

DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

Sidenote: He is always w/ friends from youth group -- who unfortunately ALL have Myspace accounts.

 

UGGGGGGG!!!!!

 

I allowed my teens to set up a Myspace account to communicate with their friends and acquaintances.

 

I, too, set one up so I could communicate with the mothers in our circle who had accounts. Although I no longer use my account, the teens still regularly use their accounts.

 

IMO, Myspace is appealing to young people because of the ease of communicating with a group. Unlike email loops, your Myspace page can reflect who you are. User can select background, add photos, theme music, and a profile.

 

One's account can be set to private, so that only people they approve for friendship can view their account content.

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One's account can be set to private, so that only people they approve for friendship can view their account content.

 

But how do you know who you are approving? How do you know it's someone that you would want to approve before you do it? And, after you approve someone, if you find you've made a mistake, can you "unapprove" them?

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I have a 14 yo dd and she was brought to tears last week when we told not just no, but hell no. And I don't feel a bit bad about it. She's with her friends almost everyday this summer. When she's not with them, she's texting them. I just don't think it's safe.

 

I don't get this - why do they text each other when they're not together? Insecurity? Afraid they're missing out on something?

 

Do you think they feel "safer" in a technology world than in person? Enlighten me. :)

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Word on the street around here is that MySpace is pretty "skanky" and "ghetto" and that anybody who is anybody has a FaceBook account... We allow FaceBook at our house, but not MySpace, because of the skank factor. Just a thought.

 

I don't see what the difference is except FB is the latest and greatest. I think it will reach the skank level soon too.

 

To the OP, I would stick to your guns. You only have a few more years to exert any real influence and control over your child's life....don't give in to begging.

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This response will come in 3 parts....

 

Part 1: I don't see this situation as much different to any number of situations that parents of teens have dealt with since the dawn of time.....usually with one of two responses....sometimes both...

"Because I said so"

and

"So, if your friends wanted to jump off a bridge....would you do THAT too???"

 

Neither of these responses ever go over well....but that is O.K. because you're the Mom and you don't have to accommodate his sensibilities...LOL

 

Part 2: My personal opinion of MS and FB use by teens..... it can get pretty ugly...but I think that is only one more symptom of a society where we have free range teens....no boundaries....no rules....no supervision....equals a recipe for disaster.

 

Part 3: All that said....if you are teetering on the fence....and you're wondering if you are being to harsh in this instance...you *could* agree to a trial basis...with conditions...here is some info that might help you make that decision...and list of conditions...

a) you can set your account to private and then people have to request to be added before they can access your account.

 

b) There is NO reason that he has to have ANY information on there that could be used to identify him...not even in the set up phase....this is simple, you just set up a junk email account on yahoo or gmail (or the like) and use a fake name...address....etc.

 

c) YOU can also set up an account so that you can check his page whenever you feel like it. He simply has to add you.

 

d) You could require that he give you the password to his account so that you can read all private messages...though, if you do not do this with his email...I wouldn't know why you would want to here....but, you COULD....is the point...LOL

 

 

Hope that helps!

 

Cat (who's not looking forward to dealing with these things in a few years...LOL)

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Nah, not common practice 'round these parts. I doubt my 13 yo has even heard of it, and as far as I know, no guys his age are into it. If my son wants to be with peers more, that translates into getting together and playing sports or something along those lines.

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Not common around here either.

 

Ds(16) says a lot of kids have Facebook, but he considers it a security risk. This is the kid who has designed three websites from code and thinks the sun rises and sets on his computer. He's not even tempted.

 

Dd(14) and dd(11) don't have it either. They wouldn't have had email yet either, if dd(14) hadn't spent last year on the other side of the world.

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Myspace angst -- DS 13 says "everyone" has a Myspace account....

 

and he wants one.

 

I personally hate Myspace. Why is it so appealing??

 

DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

Sidenote: He is always w/ friends from youth group -- who unfortunately ALL have Myspace accounts.

 

UGGGGGGG!!!!!

 

Our dc (of which two are 13) have never asked to have either Myspace or Facebook accounts, but if they did, the answer would be no.

 

They get together with friends frequently enough that on-line interaction isn't necessary in-between times. And if they reeeeally need to interact, there is that seemingly forgotten old stand-by: the telephone. :D

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my kids need real friendships, not cyber-friendships.

 

Not too long ago, a 13-year-old girl in St. Louis committed suicide after she opened a MySpace account. I may be fuzzy on the details, but apparently she and another girl had some difficulties in their relationship. The mother of the other girl assumed an identity as a guy who was interested in the first girl, and then later "dumped" her. Sometime after that she took her own life.

 

After this situation, we expressly said, "No, it won't ever happen here." So far, the girls haven't pressured us about the issue.

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Okaaaaay....I'll be a dissenting voice I guess.

 

My sons (16 and 13) both have Facebook accounts, as do I. I have passwords for both and check them regularly. Kids use these to communicate with real-life friends just like I spent hours on the phone as a teenager talking friends I saw all day at school (or whatever). My sons use it to share photos, and it's become a replacement for email. One of them takes Japanese and his class has a Facebook page to share resources and upcoming events. I get to see pics of my all my European nieces and nephews...it reminds me of birthdays, I share book lists, and belong to environmental groups there. My kids stay in touch with their friends in Atlanta from our five years there.

 

Yes, there is cr#p on Facebook. They ignore it, just as they would if they heard it in the street. They don't talk smack, don't post rude stuff, and enjoy this mode of self-expression.

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Yes, there is cr#p on Facebook. They ignore it, just as they would if they heard it in the street. They don't talk smack, don't post rude stuff, and enjoy this mode of self-expression.

 

 

I think Janet makes a good point also. At some point our children will have to learn to use the internet responsibly. I don't think this mandates a "MySpace" account, but it is something to keep in mind. They won't learn if they are kept completely sheltered.

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But how do you know who you are approving? How do you know it's someone that you would want to approve before you do it? And, after you approve someone, if you find you've made a mistake, can you "unapprove" them?

 

 

My girls only approve their real life friends and acquaintances. Yes, you can delete a friend at any time.

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A

child psychologist who spoke to a parents meeting at my old church said that alllll of his patients have MySpace accounts. He said, mournfully, that is part of his job security. His own children do not have the accounts. He said that there is so much hurt that comes to his patients and not very much good that it not a good trade-off. FWIW.

 

This is skewed information, frankly.

 

It's like every other under supervised interaction of minor kids - it can get out of control.

 

If "you", as a parent, have decided "no" on a Myspace Account, assert your "no", don't let your child play the "homeschooled/not socialized card" and consider the topic closed.

 

Personally, I don't buy into the anxiety and hysteria wrapped around online communication, activities and community that some others do. *Age appropriately* supervised online activity can be one way for a kid to safely and appropriately be a kid in 2008.

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A

 

This is skewed information, frankly.

 

It's like every other under supervised interaction of minor kids - it can get out of control.

 

Personally, I don't buy into the anxiety and hysteria wrapped around online communication, activities and community that some others do. *Age appropriately* supervised online activity can be one way for a kid to safely and appropriately be a kid in 2008.

 

Me neither, but I'm not interested in promoting much computer use yet. I don't see a need for it at 13 & younger as a general rule, and my kids really don't want or need it yet. But even if they were demanding a Facebook account, I don't think I'd allow it yet. Perhaps at 15, or 17, I don't know yet, but by the time they're ready to leave home, they'll have had enough experience to know how to use it wisely. They're not driving yet, either, and even though legally there's a difference, I equate both with needing a more well-rounded maturity than my dc have demonstrated so far.

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Of course not, but delaying it to when she is mature enough to handle the decision to have something like FaceBook, Much more secure, in my opinion, may help her out a little to grow and realize you really do have her best interest at heart. She is still young and needs her parents guidance.. You are a good parent.. You are making decisions for her for her protection, I'm sure. It does not feel good when they get older, and you have to say no, but I'm sure you'll be appreciated in her 40's.... :)

Just thoughts from a mom, who has been appreciating all my mom did for me, although I didn't appreciate it when 13 :)

Lacy;)

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Facebook

 

Facebook is very different from My Space. You can search and see almost anyone or anything on MS, but Facebook is protected. Someone can search my name and only a thumbnail picture would come up of me and my city if I allowed that to show. I accept "Friends" on FB. It is very different and (IMHO) much more "safe" (if anything on the net is safe-LOL) than MS.

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Everyone may indeed have a MySpace account. My 14 year old tells me they do.

 

And when my 14 year old snuck behind my back and created a MySpace account after asking permission and being explicity told no, and why we said no, she was banned from using the computer ... indefinitely. Four months and counting.

 

In my opinion, young teens are not mature enough to handle something like MySpace. Too many kids use them to harass others and post wildly inappropriate content. MySpace is a cesspool, and my kid is staying out of it.

 

Tara

 

Ps. Why is it so appealing? Probably because it's a parent-free zone with low social inhibitions.

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If my 13 year old wanted one the answer would be "No, not yet".

 

But my 17 year old has a Facebook and a Myspace. I don't have her passwords. But she has never given me one hint of a reason not to trust her completely.

 

I hear so many parents holding up the idea of closely monitoring all minors when it comes to internet usage, but, honestly I could not do that. Unless she gives me a reason to distrust her she is going to have her own computer in her room with unfiltered internet access and the freedom to make her own choices after lots of warnings and cautionary tales from me. I am not sure I buy into the thought that every teen has to be watched and monitored.

 

My oldest kid had to be watched and monitored online. So when he was living here we had a keystroke logger on the only computer in the house that had internet.

 

So my opinion is, it's a case by case decision.

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I am surprised at the number of people who say that their kids have MySpace accounts and that they monitor them. I feel I have enough to do as it is without having to read my kid's MySpace account to make sure that nothing inappropriate is going on.

 

Maybe I am a big meanie, but I feel like, if my kid wants to do something completely frivolous that inconveniences me that much, my answer is no.

 

Aside from the fact that, as I stated before, I feel that MySpace is inappropriate for a child that young.

 

Tara

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we told not just no, but hell no.

:iagree:. If it makes your kid feel any better, I don't have one either, so your ds is not alone. And I'm older, I should get first dibbs :D.

 

I haven't read all the responses, just some so far (will read the rest as I find this very interesting), but I can honestly say I feel kids benefit from "real" interaction, not "cyber" interaction. Give a friend a call. That's not too old fashioned, is it?

 

And, its just not safe. Not at all. There's no way. JMO

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I am surprised at the number of people who say that their kids have MySpace accounts and that they monitor them. I feel I have enough to do as it is without having to read my kid's MySpace account to make sure that nothing inappropriate is going on.

 

Maybe I am a big meanie, but I feel like, if my kid wants to do something completely frivolous that inconveniences me that much, my answer is no.

 

Aside from the fact that, as I stated before, I feel that MySpace is inappropriate for a child that young.

 

Tara

 

 

I agree. Until the child is mature enough to handle it without my constant supervision, I think we will decline to participate.

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She does have her own e-mail account, which she uses to keep up with her real-life friends she doesn't see often enough in person. For example, she has a friend she met at camp last summer who lives a few states away. The girl has relatives in our area and visits now and then. So, they keep in touch mostly by e-mail and make arrangements to meet when the other girl is here.

 

She also uses e-mail to chat with her local friends while she is away at school during the year.

 

Needless to say, we have her login information and could check her e-mail any time we wanted to do so. She is fully aware of this.

 

Honestly, I can't imagine why anyone would "need" a My Space account, especially a 13-year-old kid.

 

Oh, in the interest of full disclosure and fairness, I'll also say that my daughter has her own "channel" on YouTube. She uses it to post videos of her singing and doing little character-driven comedy bits. We have stressed to her the need to keep any personally-identifiable information out of her videos and comments. And, again, we know where the page is and check it regularly. In her case, she finds having the outlet both enjoyable and helpful, because she and her other performing arts buddies all watch each other's videos and comment and critique. I'm not entirely comfortable with her being "out there" even to that degree, but we're keeping an eye on it and haven't had any problems so far.

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DS says that since he's homeschooled and doesn't have interaction w/ a lot of kids -- that this is a way to stay connected to "friends".

 

Sidenote: He is always w/ friends from youth group -- who unfortunately ALL have Myspace accounts.

 

UGGGGGGG!!!!!

 

My older kids are 13 and 14, and I don't think any of their friends have MySpace pages. And these aren't kids that are wildly restricted.

 

They talk on the phone, and email, and that provides enough of a connection, I think. One of them has asked for an individual email account (they use mine, currently), but I'm hesitating on that.

 

So, no, not everyone has a MySpace account. :-)

 

Here's a thought...would you let him have a blog? Both of my older kids had blogs for about a second, a year or so ago (we had moved out of state), but lost interest after a while. If they were to pipe up with requests to be on My Face or Space Book, I'd point them in the blog direction again. You can control comments on a blog, you can get a service that will track the traffic (you can see where a problem person is coming from, if one pops up), and your teen has a place on the Internets for his friends to look at. (And a place where they can communicate with him, through the computer; I don't know that I'd want a young teen poking around My Space too much.) It might be the cyber equivalent of taking your Mom to the prom, for a hip teen, but hey...it's better than a poke in the eye, as I'm wont to tell folks. ;-)

 

But just to reiterate...I think the phone and email are fine ways to communicate, and while I do think I might suggest the blog to my kids, if it came up at our house, I might be just as likely to say, "The phone did me just fine, at your age, and you've got email as icing on the cake. Let's leave it at that."

 

Nothin' wrong with keeping it simple.

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My rambling thoughts...

 

I have two teens, a 15yods who is in PS (long story) and a 14yodd who is HSed.

 

I have sen both of my dc's and I recently created an acct and my dd and I are on each other's friends lists.

 

I thought it was "over the top" to force them to provide me their passwords when we started this whole thing, but what I have seen of my dd's, she speaks openly about Christ, usually has a cool Christian song on there, and has communication with her friends that does not in any way dishonor herself or Christ.

 

My ds' on the other hand.......:thumbdown: I am ashamed to say he is not acting in a Christlike way on there, ever, and neither are his friends.

 

He has some "Christian" friends (they go to our church, or they go to some other church, but I don't know much about them). Most don't seem to be Christian in any way, nor do they seem to have morals. But let's take that even further...most of the "Christians" shock me.

 

He deleted my sister from his list as soon as she suspected him of wrongdoing; he refuses to add my dd. When he went missing for a weekend, police detectives went into his acct for us and posted a message. Then I knew his password. Then I found out even more that would shock every good parent here.

 

Is it Myspace that is the problem??? No, I don't think so, but it proves that you can have two totally different children, and that it is all about their hearts. It is a powerful way to snoop on our kids, but what we do with what we find out...well, that can be tricky. My ds is acting terrible now that he knows I know all this stuff about him. He is acting more deceptive than ever and blaming me for being over the top in his business. He says he has a "right" to privacy.

 

I hate to admit this, but I liked my child better when he was homeschooled and more innocent. But adults who don't understand say "you can't shelter them forever!" and say that my dd who isn't anything like him should be in PS, too and that it would somehow be "good" for her.

 

I am eaten up with fears and doubts and dying dreams for my dc. My speace makes me feel sick, but only when I think of my ds. ANd I pray every day my dd's heart won't go astray the more she is exposed to the world.

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Needless to say, we have her login information and could check her e-mail any time we wanted to do so. She is fully aware of this.

 

Anything that goes in or out of my son's email account? A copy is sent to me. :D

 

And he is *not* aware of it. He thinks I will check it, but he doesn't know I get copies. So deleting anything would be futile. Once it's out in cyberspace, I know about it.

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