What is a good age to let your child have a Facebook account?

It seems like everybody nowadays has a Facebook account? At what age would you let your child get their own? What restrictions, if any, would you put on their Facebook use?

40  Answers

240 8

I let my daughter have a "myspace" account around age 12. It was when she first asked for one. I told her she could have one as long as I had her password and username. I told her I would randomly go on her account and check to see what she had on it. I also told her that if I found any accounts for sites that I didn't have username and passwords for, she would lose her computer privileges. ( The computer has a username and password that only I have access to so she was only allowed on when I would sign her on.)

I told her if she posted a picture, it would be wise to imagine me in the same pose/clothes or lack of clothes that she is wearing. If the image made her nauseated or embarrassed.... then it would be wise to NOT post the picture of her dressed/posed like that. Once I even told her if she kept a picture up that I wasn't pleased with, I would go take a picture of myself in the same pose/clothing choice and post it for all her friends to see.... she took the photo down.

The other rule was that she is not allowed to add people that she doesn't know personally as friends. I did find a few people that I didn't know and realized were from out of town and I wrote to them and explained that she was not to make friends online and then I deleted t hem. I then told my daughter that I removed them. Often she wasn't happy about it but my job is to keep her safe.

As with most things when raising a child, it mostly about education, Communication, and supervision more than what exact age a child should be.

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1 8

I like your idea about the pictures!!! I will have to borrow that! Thank you.

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3 24

Let's all remember....Facebook's beginnings were for college students.

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11 0

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11 0

I let my children have one at 14 but as with all internet usuage I know all passwords
And continiously check as well as am their friend on facebook. They clearly know the rules and know the privelage can and will be taken away if misused.

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2 36

Facebook policy is to wait until 13. My daughter got one at that age. I had to be able to "friend" her so I could see what she was posting and doing on het account. I also had her only log on to her account when I was at home at first. Also, be sure to set your child's privacy settings to your liking.

You have to talk about rules of being on the Internet. All children need to know that no matter what website they are on they should not give out any personal information. This is our job as parents.

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14 0

13 or 7th grade is not a terrible time. Truth is that FB wants them to be in High School. My teens have to friend me, but also some key adults in their lives - church Sunday School teachers and small group leaders. With several of us monitoring, it is part of the community. They don't really know who their friends are or understand what they are broadcasting about themselves and they need guidance. If I run across teen who has posted something that is not reflective of the person he or she is, I will first privately message the teen and if it isn't removed, then I contact the parent. I have not been defriended as a result because the kids know that I am looking out for their best interest.

9 0

According to facebook.com, age is restricted to anyone over 13 years so that's first and foremost. I am not going to lie and say my daughter is one age when she's not, because we don't know honestly who is looking at our kids' pages. My daughter will be 10 and she will not have a facebook page anytime soon. I just don't see the necessity. She has an e-mail address and her friends (the ones she chooses to give it to) have it.

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5 1

I think at the age of 18. When they're college-bound or HS grads they should have one but no time sooner. Facebook is not kid-friendly. Just because they're not on someone's friends list doesn't mean they won't be exposed to the wrong things.

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2 9

Thanks for sharing..it so good..

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0 20

This makes me laugh. My son got a facebook account when he was 7. He just wanted to play games. He never puts a status or anything. And like another mom mentioned it lost its appeal fast. Parents that make a huge deal about everything are usually the parents that have kids sneaking around doing stuff. My main is rule is be honest and show respect.

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4 1

That's the reason my son wanted a fb. Actually, I made it for him b/c he was always getting on my acct. He's 12 now and rarely gets on. He can't even remember his username and pw, lol!

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3 23

I am divorced and certain members of my ex hubands family kept taking everything I posted about my personal life and twisted it all wrong into reasons to yell at me. *ARGH* Plus I didn't feel like reading the drama his girlfriend of the week was posting on his page but he's military and rarely around but wants to see pictures and hear updates about what our daughter is up to. So I make an account for my 7 year old that only I have the login and password for. She doesn't know it, he doesn't know it. I only have family and friends on there that we know personally, and I let her type in her own updates to help her practice her typing and spelling skills. But I am monitoring 10% of everything she does on there. It's also nice because family that refuses to talk to me because of lies he spread, still keep in contact with her on facebook and write her friendly notes and encouragement. And don't forget that you can set the privacy settings so that only those on your friends list can see the page.. not everyone can see the page if you set everything to Friends Only, so yes you CAN have control over who sees your kids page.

11
0 4

Why are you only monitoring 10% of a 7 year olds postings? My son is 7 and i wouldn't let him have an account if his dad and i were divorced. There is a thing called the phone, skype....etc...i don't find it necessary for kids so young to be consumed with the internet and social networks.....there is more to their young lives like playing with their friends, sports...etc...

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0 20

Let us not forget that kids sneakingly create "secret" accounts that you aren't aware of. They also get online via their ipods and game consoles. Key is to be sneakier than they think they are!

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0 13

My 2 know better, I am always talking to them about what is happening in the real world. I monitor everything that my kids do. Heather you are right about being sneakier than them. I just tell them that the things that they even think about doing is something that I did when I was growing up, so don't even try me. Their response was wow really?

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22 15

My daughter has one. I have her username and password. I told her from the start that I HAD TO BE one of her friends. I will and do periodically log into her account just to see what is going on. I am friends with every one on her friends list. She must ask my permission before friend-ing anyone. She is friends with her grandparents, and other extended family members, and church members. I live by the motto it takes a village.... if anyone sees anything that is not appropriate or is questionable in any way they private message me about it so I can take care of it. She also has to ask my permission before posting anything. She knows that FB is a priveledge not a right. She must treat it with respect.

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16 6

I believe the rules state you must be at least 13, so any younger would be wrong. And I would state you must be their friend so you can keep an eye on their posts and have their password. Once they prove their mature enough to handle it, then maybe unfriend them so they can have a bit of privacy. Trust is earned, not a given.

7
0 0

I just can't believe what I'm reading here...you are way too naive if you think the only access to a computer your young children have is at your side, under your supervision. Facebook is no place for children who are sweet and innocent and have no idea what a child predator is capable of or their means for eliciting information from your children or the ways in which they can extrapolate information from your children's account. Did you know that even if you have your child's privacy settings extremely secure that if one of their friends don't, that anyone can see that friend's pics/info and find your child anyhow??!! Why would you risk your child's safety for a family/friend connection that can easily be facilitated on the phone or with a private email???

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2 12

This entire comment is a rehash of the mass hysteria that one bad incident causes or a few journalistic attempts to frighten the masses. There are settings called Friends Only. Which means that those things do NOT show up on friends of friends, etc. In today's day and age unless you live in a town by yourself your child shouldn't be so sweet and innocent they don't know a few safety rules. They should know about predators when they become school age and are standing at a bus stop or walking to a friend's house down the street because that is where the bigger danger is. Right in their neighborhoods...even small towns aren't so closeted that nothing bad EVER happens in them.

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14 12

My son was allowed to have a fb account at 13. The rules being that I am his friend on fb, I have his username and password and can and will access it anytime and remove things if I don't think they should be there. His privacy settings are set so that only friends can see photos, comments etc. He is also only allowed to add people that he knows - not friends of friends of friends etc......We have a large extended family that we are close to so he is friends with a lot of them on fb and if there is anything inappropriate or any bullying etc on there they are quick to let me know. I think the age limit really depends on the maturity of your child. I know kids my sons age that have had accounts for a few years and have handled it very well and yet I know others that should have theirs accounts closed because of the inappropriate comments, photos, constant bullying other people etc. Just keep an eye on it, make sure they understand all the rules you decide to put into place and follow up with the consequences and you will find that all should be fine.

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10 3

18.

Anything less and you're stuck policing them and the internet to make sure she's not advertising private information to everyone (owing to FB's rather ridiculous privacy policies and constant changes). Not worth the hassle.

A really mature child with relatives that are mostly long distance would benefit from an earlier introduction though. Say around 15ish. You just need to make sure that while they are under 18 you have complete access to everything on their FB. If they won't, yank it.

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5 5

I agree!!! Our 16 year old son refuses to give us his password so that may need to happen.

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0 7

I have six kids and my oldest child, my daughter, is 11 years old. She's allowed to hop onto my facebook but that's about it. Why does she need her facebook when she's only hopping on to play games, look at pictures and check on events that may be happening that are only posted on FB.
I agree with the individual who commented that facebook was originally for 'college students' and the other stating maybe 'after age 18'. My thought is there's nothing wrong with waiting to have a facebook account later on in life. Heck, I know most of us parents didn't grow up with a facebook/myspace/bebo account, let alone cell phones, etc, etc. What happened to good old playing outdoors, reading books, finding something to imagine up to do. Life has a lot more in store, and granted so much more is found on the web, but if anyone can post whatever on the web/facebook and we're trying to shield our children from strange and offensive things, why would we chose to let our children to get exposed to such things. Anyhow that's my thought on it.

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7 36

My daughter wante a facebook account at the age of 9 years, so I gave her one. All she wants is to play games & her way of keeping in contact her family & friends & some of them live far away. She only goes on weekends & someone is always with her when she goes on. I check her account same as he hotmail, everyday. I do the same with her brother which is 13 years old. My kids are not alloud to have friends that I do not know & my kids know the rules & follow them. I let my children know how dangerous the internet can be.

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2 0

Well...I happen to know a few that are under 13, but my thought is that if your parents have access to your acct (and they should!!!) and they are mature enough to understand then ok. My general thought on the social networking is that "don't they do enough 'social networking' in school?" But I know that it's a good way for extended familes-cousins and such-to keep in touch.

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2 25

my daughter is 10 she has a facebook that we use together only i have the password so she has to ask me to let her on. she uses it to keep in touch with our HUGE family she has no "friends" that are not family or close family friends and im with her while she uses it. i enjoy the fact she can chat with her cousin 2000 miles away facebook is just a fun social tool! as with plenty of other websites are probably fine for people of any age as there is someone responsible moderating childrens usage there shouldnt be a problem plus farmville come on!!! :)

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2 10

My son is 10 and he is not really interested in having a fb account. If I am on fb playing games and he wants to play I let him play the games. I think age 15 should be the age requirement. Really I dont see the need for a 10 year old to be on facebook anyway. They should find something more meaningful to do. It's bad enough with Tv and video games babysitting our kids....We don't need more of this technology to make them grow up before their time. As parents it's our job to monitor our kids if they do have a fb account.

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3 23

We live very far away from family. We live in Arizona but literally have family from California to Washington to all the way over to Vermont and Massachusetts. We share pictures and updates with our family through Facebook as a 'get all resource' so we aren't making 50 phone calls or sending out 50 letters. I don't have an unlimited cell phone plan and stamps keep getting more expensive, plus printing out pictures etc. It's a lot cheaper, more efficient and timely to keep up with family through facebook. I think keeping in touch with your family is a VERY meaningful thing to do on facebook. Even moreso for a grandmother of mine who is wheelchair bound and does not have the ability to get out to visit family like she used to so it's an easy way for her to keep in touch with her grandkids around the country.

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0 17

I let my 9 yr old girl have one several months ago. She is never allowed on unless I know about it and I have to always have her password so that I can go on and check it any time I want to. I set all of her privacy settings to as private as they would go and she is not allowed to invite or accept any friend requests unless I approve it. So far I have not had any problems or concerns and if I have any questions, I can ask her and she is honest about it. She has so far proven very responsible! :)

3
0 1

My 10 year old has one to play games and talk to friends from sports and school, plus family from outta state. He doesn't really get on it much, I have the passwords and am on his more then he is on mine. He knows not to tell people things, he can't add people for games only people we personally know. I get some people don't agree with this, but at least I know what my son is doing, I know lots of kids thats parents won't let them have a facebook that have created one themselves and their parents think that they don't have one. I would rather be honest with my children and them be honest with me, then sneaking around. He knows that I will deactivate it in a heartbeat, and I have not had any problems. I don't think age really has anything to do with it, but maturity. We can't always protect our kids from everything, if we do then when they become adults they will mess up more

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0 16

I let my son have one a nine years old because he like to play the games. I have the password and he is 11 now and there hasnt been a problem.

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0 1

My younger cousins have facebook ages 11-14 but their moms have the passwords and knows at least 95% of the people their family. The other 5% are associates from school. I think its not so much as an age thing. If you have a mature child then its your judgement at that point. If a parent is honest with themselves and can admit the child isn't ready and the parent doesn't have the energy to moniter it then this isn't the time.

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1 7

We monitor our children accounts daily. We have the passwords. They talk to out state and out of town relatives and classmates. We haven't had any problems. All our children have been using computers since age 3 and know the rules. They started Facebook age 12, 9, & 7. I think it depends on the child and there ability to understand the rules of communication.

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6 19

I allowed my daughter to have one at ten. However, it was, and still is highly regulated by myself. (She just turned 12). I Have the password, I am her friend. She is not allowed to post any pictures of herself. I mean ANY. Her FB name is a take on her name, not her ACTUAL Legal Name. She does not show up in any general searches on FB, and she is only allowed to friend friends and family. I mainly allow her to have it to remain in contact with friends and family from back home ,as we recently moved 1000 miles from them all. She does play a few games, but really doesn't access it too much. I monitor any messages incoming or outgoing. IN fact, I actually caught a possible predator and turned him in. She had been befriended by one of her school friends, but then was getting in box messages that were asking her personal questions. Some of which were things like what was her name, age, and what school did she go to, who did she live with, etc. My daughter did NOT reply to this, and told me it was weird cause her friend knew her name, and how old she was.I immediately reported it to FB, sent a message to the girl's mother, and unfriended them. It came out later, that it was the girl's step-father. SO please, be careful when even allowing their "friends" access, make sure it really is their friend. You can never be too safe when it comes to your children!!!

Also, my daughter does nothing on the internet without myself or my BF within watching distance. Most times she sits at the kitchen table on FB while I make dinner, once her homework is done of course. She also is only allowed a certain amount of time on the computer.

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0 0

That's what I need to do when I create an Account for my children, especially the search restrictions! Thanks for that info. I like how you're doing it. I think I'll try that when it's time. My kids want a cellphone & computer/access before highschool, but I don't play favorites in my house! My oldest didn't have her own cellphone or computer (w/o internet) until she was in highschool & she had to work for it & pay her own bill, so why should I allow my younger kids to have one now? Not happening! Kids expect things handed to them now a days. What would they have done 25 yrs ago?

12 14

With monitoring and frequently checking the privacy settings I think 12 or 13 is fine. My girls(14 and 16) are also friends with their grandmother, father, aunts uncles etc so they never know who will see what they post. Our school district also has a laptop program so the teachers can see what they do too. I tell them if they don't want their grandmother to see it don't post it. It's worked really well so far.

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4 8

when he/she is over 18...I say a good age to have a fb account..

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0 20

I would have my 12 year old but I will be there to monitor her friends that she request. That's what I do now.

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2 22

My 13 year old daughter has one and not only am I one of her "friends", but I have her password an check her account daily. I check all her messages as well. I have aslo set up her privacy settings to restrict who finds her - If you don't know her, you ca't find her; it's that simple.
When I let her have her own account, I posted on my own wall and asked my friends to keep a vrtual eye on her. It absolutelytaks a village to raise our children. Even though she grumbles about me "being nosey", I know that deep down she appreciates me checking on her.

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1 0

I didn't let my kids until they were 13. On my youngest daughter's 13th birthday she said,"Now can I mom?" and that was the first thing she did that day!

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10 2

when my child leaves the house... im 26 & dont have fb.. too much stupid drama and crap on there... by the time my kids are old enough there wont be a fb any more!

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0 0

I totally agree with this- I was going to post my opinion about fb but I I know it will upset way too many people! I do understand the keeping intouch with family factor- but military?? Fb is not the only way to communicate via Internet - I am a military wife and skype offers a few different set ups - and others exists but that's another topic- I was a user of fb - got off of it - I am stay at home mom of twins- (& 9yr old) so getting on the computer was refreshing to me - something to do at night- especially since my husband is in afghanistan - I couldn't take the drama of fb anymore- felt like I was back in high school- and all the post by younger kids of the parents that were friends of mine-I never changed my settings to do just friends- so I saw everything that was posted - I don't know I am not a fan of the computer - I think kids depend way to much on it- I know every child is different and raised differently - I can only go by what I have seen and heard - and I live kinda a boring life at that- so what I have seen and heard makes me feel strongly about the technology in our world and our youngsters - if you think your child is going on fb and sitting there and just playing games- or just "talking" to their friends( which in itself I don't understand- pick up a phone! Write a letter!! (I am referring to friends that live close by- not miles apart!!)it might start off this way- very simple- but for most their curiosity will give in and they will hear something said by someone and check on it- and start looking at posts of others and so on and so forth- and if you are able to check on them -watch over them as they sit there 100% of the time - that is really great- but kids are smart little buggers!! Remember we were all there- and I wasn't even a bad girl or sneaky- and I am not even saying that this is a bad thing- I just totally feel that face book has no place for kids - I am talking under 18 - heck I think as a society it has no place for adults- I have seen too many moms play that barn game.( .... What is it farmville )more than they play with their baby!! But this is just my opinion- I know kids have different scenarios in their lives- step parents- parents out of town- family out of town -ect... I feel kids just are too much on cells and computers iPads iPhones- and it's always fb they are talking about - the person that first commented hit the nail on the head when she stated.... FB was designed by college students for college students! Let them play that barn game

12 18

I think it is fine to have a facebook by like 9 or 10 but just like everything else, it should be monitored by you. Set the rules from the beginning. My daughter (who just turned 11) knows she is not allowed on it unless she asks me is not allowed to send or answer friend requests unless she and I know the person. I log on every once in awhile to check her settings and have had her page on private from the beginning. She veryyyy rarely gets on and is not allowed to post many pics at all. The main reason she needs to ask me before she gets on is because I was once going on there myself and accidently typed in "faceNook" instead of faceBook and it came up as porn! The sad part is the "B" and the "N" are right next to each other on the keyboard, so imagine my suprised face when porn popped up! Just like I said, watch closely, you can never be to safe, but like someone else said, if you say no to every little thing, they will want it even more and just find a way to do it behind your back. I am soooo very protective, but even I can understand that much:)

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31 9

My daughter has 0 interest in Facebook. For awhile I had her dad on mine(we're divorced) until he mentioned he was getting all my statuses via text messaging and kept posting mean comments on my personal status messages. Now any updates for him are with the phone since he refuses to use Skype. I wouldn't let my daughter have one until she was at least 15, and would be monitored at all times. My cousin's daughter and my niece are both 14 and sometimes reading things they post wants me to smack some sense into them. Very glad my 7 yr old doesn't care at the moment.

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0 0

my thoughts are i think its a great thing that fb have a restriction age. i found out the hard way about under age children being on fb. my daughters 10 and she had a fb account, now i checked evrything on it and if anybody was adding her she came to me, one night she was in her wee friends and they liked a site on fb video chat rounds and the 2 of them went on it and were approached through there webcam by men in there 20s and 30s asking them to expose themselves and were exposing themselves to the girls. now my daughter is removed off fb but shes payed the horriblist price. fbs security checks should b a lot strictor.

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32 26

I let my 9 year old have one briefly. I went online with her and monitored all her activity. She was mostly interested in playing Farmville. So I closed down her account and she plays Farmville on mine now. We will revisit the idea when she is in middle school.

I want to be her friend when she has an account. I only want her to friend people she personally kmows. FB is not kid-friendly, but neither is the rest of the world.

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57 5

it says on face book or my space they have to be over 13 yrs old but i wont let my daughter until she shows me she is responsible to many kids now know way to much about computers so u have to watch them whole time they on computer it horrible what people put on computers now lots of programs u want to be careful of because of virus and people that lie to get people to send them money just so much out there it was sick last week it was on news that someone put porn on the sesame street web site people are sick to put something like that on a kids web site they got the person that did it thank god and got everything removed from the site but any more u got to be careful any where on the web

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0 20

I think I will let her at age 13, I think by then she will be mature enough and it will be following the guideloines of FB.

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0 4

My first thought is that b/c FB has an age requirement of 13, it will be no sooner than that. I don't want to teach my child that it is okay to justify breaking rules. At the same time as a grown-up, I totally understand the exceptions, those with parents in the military etc., and as long as a parent is supervising then it makes sense to me. My oldest got one at about 14, he didn't have any interest before then. I am his friend, he is my friend. I have his username and password and he knows I monitor his account even now that he is older. It takes awhile for kids to really get that whatever they post is out in the world for all to see. For example, although my son has never posted any curse or vulgar words, he did once post a negative comment about his employer. That post may have been up all of the 30 seconds it took me to explain that it is not ever a good idea to speak negatively about your employer and most especially not to write it down on the computer for all to see. I also monitor the posts of his friends, who for some reason sometimes feel the need to post inappropriately (per my definition). When they do, I hide them, I tell my son they are hidden and in a couple of weeks he can bring them back, if they do it again, I unfriend them. Mean mom maybe, truly my actions are for my son's safety and education. I certainly wouldn't want to wait until he was in college, I wouldn't be able to monitor his activity and no power to intervene...or at least much less power.

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0 9

The FB was initially intended for 18 years and older, therefore in my house the rule apply. Being a officer of the courts I am very cautious with my children because of the many many strange people that are out there. My page is not able to be search unless you are a friend, meaning you will have to tell me personally to search your name and request your friend.

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0 12

At first we decided that 13 was a good age and that is when we allowed our girls to get one. We had full access, such as passwords and were also their FB friends, as well all of our extended family is their friends too. I was really opposed to facebook at first,but when my step-sons Mom had moved away and he was really struggling with the lack of contact for the first year she was gone. When he truned 10 he asked if he could get a facebook account so he could talk to her more ofter (she didn't answer the phone very often, or intitiate phone calls) So we decided to go back on our original rule an let him have one early. We of course has complete access to it and monitor everything that is being said and done. His friends are limited to family and a few friends at school that we know. Computer time is limited and our computer is in the living room, and they are not allowed on unless we are home. All things I can check easily. If they go on at other times facebook posts what you are doing, such as games and posting on other peoples accounts. Facebook has been a great tool for my step-son to use. He can send his mom messages when he is on and she sends them back when she has time, this way times do not have to be coordinated to home at the same times. We update pictures for him so he can show his mom and brother, and she does the same. It really has worked out for the best. It is also a great tool to have when a punishment is needed, our kids always think twice when facebook is threatened to be gone. And it is nice to see what is going on in the teens lives when they 'forget' to talk about something, some of my dauhters' friends have also added me as their FB friend, so I get to see what they are doing too ;)

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12 27

My daughter loves getting mail. But since it is rare that anybody sends mail these days, I made my daughter a fb account. We both used to play Sims and she plays Smurfs. But She rarely gets on her account to play Smurfs, Im on it checking to see what has been going on. I put her account on private, as mine on.

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