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  1. This post came at a great time! My daughter just turned 14 and received her first phone from us as a birthday present. She asked us yesterday about getting an Instagram account. After much deliberation with my husband, we decided that the answer is no for now. While she is a responsible, hard working teen, we also feel she is impressionable and not mature enough to weed through the pulls of this world yet. We will revisit the topic in 6 months though and I love your ideas for how we can guide her. Thank you for your wisdom! I CANNOT wait for your boy book to come out this summer! We have 3 boys following closely behind their sister and we could use all the help we can get!

    1. sounds like you are doing some difficult, intentional parenting!! It WILL pay off!! 🙂 Keep it up and thank you so much. aloha

  2. Oh how I needed this today. I am constantly feeling like I’m on an island. If I’m not nagging him about his social electronic use, I’m arguing over what he sees and how he handles inappropriate material. I just don’t have the right book yet to navigate him through things , but I hear there is a great book coming out called “BOY MOM”. Have you read it??? Lol I’m so excited to read it! Love your love for your boys and family.

    1. you’re the best, and I’m here for you! Keep pressing on in the beautiful, hard work of parenting WELL!! xo

  3. Desire' Robertson says:

    Hi Monica,

    This post was the perfect post for me today, since my 13-year-old asked last night for Instagram.
    I am rather “anti-social media”, and am very reluctanct to let my teenagers wander into the world of social media. Having read books and attended talks on the subject, I have yet to see a real “positive” side to it for teenagers to be on it (especially in light of their immature frontal cortex).

    I have once again said no to my son, and reiterated my reasons why, and I feel I have made the right choice after reading your post. Your Josiah is significantly older than my son, and it sounds like he is on the right road to maturity, but I don’t feel my son is there yet, and your point about the kids feeling pressure to impress others, etc. really hit home, as I think he would be drawn into that.

    Thanks for your words of wisdom, and in a few years when they are more mature, and when the subject comes up again (if I can hold them off that long!) I will definitely make the suggestion you made of chosing 5 people they want to “target” their posts at, so that they are always mindful of what they are posting. Excellent advice.

    Thank you!

    1. Well done Desire’! Sounds like you are doing the beautiful, hard work of parenting well! 🙂 Yes, Josiah is older, and he’s also always been a bit of an old soul maturity-wise… I don’t expect most teenagers to think through things like that (I know I didn’t think that maturely at his age!) and that’s why I hope parents might help them move in that direction. 🙂 Thanks for the awesome comment. Aloha!

  4. My oldest is only 10…some of his friends have Insta and more seem to be joining every day, so I know soon he will ask. I’ve been reading and trying to decide what to do when he asks. This is a great idea. Thank you for sharing! One thing I know I will say no to is SnapChat…that just seems way too hard to control…

    1. Totally agree on Snapchat! Good luck with Insta–keep me posted on how it goes. 😉 Aloha-

  5. I am always amazed at how mature your boys are and that has to speak about God in their lives and how their wonderful parents have raised them. I am truly, truly amazed. I’m not sure I am that mature yet and I have quite a few decades on them.

    1. Thank you Kendall! I too am often humbled by Josiah’s convictions…:) He definitely keeps me on my toes! That’s why something like this is a good idea for most parents to bring up to their kids–I really don’t imagine too many teens are thinking along those lines on their own yet. (Which is totally fine and normal!) As parents though we can get the wheels turning, in the right direction. Appreciate your kind comment… 😉

      1. Looking forward to seeing you guys soon. Aloha my friend.

  6. Monica, that is a really great idea . . . and I am definitely going to use that plan for my own Instagram account! 😀

    1. I know, right!? I really should have mentioned that more in the post…this is definitely NOT just for the kids!! 🙂

  7. We have had this conversation with our 16 , 14,12 yr old just this week . I have insta but rarely use it . I myself took but 5 minutes to “explore” , clicked on a somewhat innocent picture of a guy hugging a girl …and talk about a rabbit hole … straight up pornography … on MY site . I don’t want to be seeing that and I sure don’t Want my kids to see that when they do not have self control to scroll past.

    I really liked the idea you posted Monica about using it on the home computer and posting pics from my phone .
    Almost all my kids classmates have Instagram . I wonder how many really know what can be seen on a phone or tablet . Thank you for helping us all keep informed to protect the eyes which is connected to the heart ❤️

    1. Thank you Tarah! So true…Instagram can absolutely take one down some rabbit holes and it is SO important for parents to be aware. It takes a lot of maturity to handle any social media with wisdom. Thanks for the kind comment! 😉 Aloha-