How to talk to your child about sexting

April 9, 2014 (CHICAGO)

The American Academy of Pediatrics says about 20 percent of teen boys and girls have sent "sexting" messages. Adolescents have always explored their sexuality in various ways. Today, this is happening electronically (via smartphones and sexting).

What can parents do?
- Create ground rules. What apps can they use? What apps/websites are prohibited?
- Pay for the phone so you have the right to go through the messages, photos, apps, and accounts at any time.
-Make sure kids of all ages understand that sexting is serious and considered a crime in many jurisdictions.
- Explain the consequences of online behavior. Talk to them about privacy.
-Remind them that once these images are out there, they can't be taken back. This could affect their job and college applications and other future decisions. Some of these consequences could include criminal charges.

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