Communication with teenagers can be difficult at the best of times. When you are separated, it can be even more difficult.
I am always looking for ways to be part of my teenagers’ lives. I enjoy Facebook and am friends with my three teenage boys on it. It gives me some insight into their lives without having to ask awkward questions. The key to staying their friend is to not make comments on anything they post. If you do, you will quickly embarrass them and will soon be de-friended. (One son blocked me from reading his wall. Yikes – that hurts! )
I have also taken the bold step to invite my sons’ friends and even girlfriends (past and present) to be my friend on Facebook and, surprisingly, I have never been turned down. This gives me even more insight into the lives of my children and teenagers in general.
I think the boys are a bit more careful about what they post knowing I am their friend which, frankly, is a good thing. It prevents them from posting something that could bite them in the butt down the road when they apply for a job.
The New York Times has a great article about how Facebook can be used as an excellent conduit for communication with your teenagers. An interesting comment about the article is found at www.allfacebook.com. They have some great stories from other people’s experiences.
I text with my boys. I email them. I speak to them on the phone. I Skype with them. And I spend as much time with them as possible. It’s great being a dad in the 21st century. There are so many ways to stay connected with my kids.
Ooops.. Gotta go. My Blackberry is buzzing and vibrating… now just to figure out how it works so I can respond!!