When teens regret what they post

Last month a youth pastor friend called and left me a message:

Jonathan, we have a teen who sent a naked pic of himself to some girls at his school (Christian school), and now everyone at the school has seen it. It’s all everyone’s talking about at youth group. How do I deal with this?

I wish I could say the situation is uncommon.

No, I’m not going to tell you that every kid with a phone is posting nudes, but we do live in a day where SEND NUDES is definitely “no big deal.” And even if kids aren’t sending nudes, most teens feel regret about something they have posted. 57% of Americans who use social media have posted something they regret afterwards. 20% of young people say they post or text something they regret about once a week.

That’s a lot of regret!

Wouldn’t it be nice if we were having conversations about these real world situations in advance… instead of doing emergency cleanup afterwards?

This fall I’m launching two brand new resources to engage these important conversations:

The Teens Guide to Social Media and Mobile Devices:
The book is designed to put into the hands of a teen, AND has discussion questions so that a parent or caring mentor can go through the book with them.

The book offers 21 real life tips like:

  • Know the app before you snap.
  • Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want Grandma, your boss, and Jesus seeing! (Jesus is on Insta, you know!)
  • Peek at your privacy settings. . . so you know who’s peeking at you.
  • Take more “selflessies.”
  • Press pause before you post.

The book is already on presale on Amazon (for halfprice… wow!) and will come out this fall.

Wise Posting in an Insecure World- THE SEMINAR:
This will be the first workshop I’m doing with both parents AND teens in the same room. I’ll be talking to families about social media and their mobile devices, helping them navigate the digital world without regrets. You can contact me about bringing this workshop to your city HERE

About Jonathan McKee

president of The Source for Youth Ministry, is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices, If I Had a Parenting Do Over, 52 Ways to Connect with Your Smartphone Obsessed Kid; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He has over 20 years youth ministry experience and speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers and parents on his websites, TheSource4YM.com and TheSource4Parents.com. You can follow Jonathan on his blog, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.
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2 Responses to When teens regret what they post

  1. Allan Buckingham says:

    Jonathan, I wanted you to know that I read your story “Ten Minute Talk” # 21 about “Stewart” to a group of teens at the local juvenile detention hall last night. I lead a group that seeks to bring a redemptive “life lesson” or “life skill” to the kids. Seventeen out of the 25 attending prayed a salvation prayer for the first time. It is a powerful story that the kids can relate to. So many saw themselves in Stewart.
    Blessings to you and praise to the Lord.