Parents on Facebook? What Parents? Teens Will Just Ignore Mom and Dad There, Too

Filed under: In The News, Research Reveals: Teens


parents on facebook picture

Sixteen percent of teens who are friends with their parents on Facebook report being friends was a pre-condition to use the site. Credit: Getty



Stop right now. Before reading any further, go to the kitchen and get yourself a brown paper bag. This is shocking news guaranteed to make you hyperventilate.

According to a new survey, teenagers often ignore their parents. That is not a misprint. Teenagers often ignore their parents.

Everyone out there still conscious? Anyone need smelling salts?

OK, so this little tidbit of news is about as old as the day Eve sent Cain and Abel off to junior high and said, "Be nice to your brother, Cain. He's sensitive."

The news angle here is that teens have found a whole new 21st century way to ignore their parents. They do it with Facebook.

Kaplan Test Prep reports 35 percent of teens on Facebook with parents who are also on the social networking site refuse to "friend" their folks. Among those teens, 38 percent say they ignore their parents' friend requests.

That's cold, kids. Real cold.

Parents get their revenge, however. They may not know how well their kids are doing on FarmVille and other Facebook games, but they know what's happening in algebra.

Among the teens surveyed, 44 percent say their parents are "very involved" with their academic lives, while 38 percent they are "somewhat involved."

"Although for generations high school students have come to accept and even embrace their parents' involvement in their academic work and the college admissions process, Facebook continues to be the new frontier in the ever evolving relationship between parent and child," Kristen Campbell, executive director of college prep programs for Kaplan Test Prep, says in a press release.

When a teen ignores a parent's friend request, she adds, it doesn't necessarily mean they are hiding something.

"But it could mean that this is one particular part of their life where they want to exert their independence," Campbell says. "Alternatively, some parents and their children may actually mutually decide to keep their Facebook lives private from one another."

Other survey results reveal that 16 percent of teens who are friends with their parents on Facebook report being friends with them was a pre-condition for being allowed to create their own profile.

The survey, conducted by e-mail, included 2,313 students who took the SAT and/or ACT between June 2010 and December 2010.

Kaplan Test Prep provides educational and career services, including standardized tests, for individuals, schools and businesses.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.