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I probably should ask this, but Facebook for kids?


PeterPan
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My ds9, almost 10, with ASD2 (autism, significant support) has asked for a FB account. It wasn't a really hard push, and when I asked WHY he wants it I think he just viewed it as something funny people do, where jokes come into your feed and it's entertaining. I think he might actually be able to get a couple friends with it (people we know). He can read but doesn't choose to read, so it would actually be really good in that sense. 

But how do I let him on and keep him SAFE?? I mean, if there were ever a target, a gifted kid with ASD2 is probably it. He's gonna have no clue what he's clicking if something nasty pops up. 

I told him that I had let his sister have a FB account at 18 and that we would see. I explained that there are yucky things out there and that I needed to figure out how to help him do it without accidentally clicking the yucky things. This is where he is. He's several years behind developmentally. And fwiw the reason I kept dd off was so she wouldn't make stupid posts that would haunt her later when trying to get a job. Now she's fine, but that was my logic. Ds isn't going to make stupid posts because he's not socially motivated enough to care to. And it wouldn't be an issue if he did, because he's himself. 

So anyways, is there a way for me to let him on and set him up with curious or entertaining feeds and keep him SAFE? I use things like Disconnect and Ad Blocker, so that blocks some of the ads but not the ones embedded in the feeds. He'd be on a mac, and I could set it so the browser doesn't go anywhere else. It's sort of a pandora's box though, because once he's on there he's going to want to google for pictures of things he wants to build with legos, that kind of thing. And that's really GOOD if he wants that! That's independence, that's motivation to type, that's good! But how in the world do I keep a boy who really isn't going to be able to discriminate stuff out of stuff we don't want him in?? 

Did y'all just hold of to a certain age? Use some kind of filter software? Something else?

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Mine are nt kids and I wouldn’t have them on Facebook yet.  Have you considered something like always ice cream/clever dragons where it’s a paid for and moderated forum they can chat to other kids on? It’s not cheap but maybe worth the money if it’s something he’s really looking for. 

That said in years to come it can be a fantastic way for these kids to connect they just need to be able to do it safely first.

another option could be just to set up an email and find a couple of email friends that will forward funnies on and chat occasionally.

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Wow, thanks! I didn't realize FB had a minimum user age!! Makes sense. 

52 minutes ago, Ausmumof3 said:

Mine are nt kids and I wouldn’t have them on Facebook yet.  Have you considered something like always ice cream/clever dragons where it’s a paid for and moderated forum they can chat to other kids on? It’s not cheap but maybe worth the money if it’s something he’s really looking for. 

Interesting, thanks! I didn't know about that, so I'll check it out. 

 

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I too tell my kids 13 is the minimum, and THEN they still have to prove to me that they are responsible.  Also I need to be their "friend" and I have to have their password so I can check what is going on whenever I want.

I have seen parents start pages for their kids, but it is the parent's page, the parents have all the rights etc.

I have also seen some people let their kids have pages before 13, but I don't see the point.  It is against the rules.  It's easier to blame FB and keep them off until they are a little more mature.

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