We know privacy is a touchy subject for children - especially teens. How do you convince them that you're looking out for their safety without causing resentment? You have enough to worry about as a parent, so Bark has done the research for you. Here are some great conversation starters to use when you discuss Bark with your children:
- Start a conversation with a real life example, something like, “Hey sweetie, I’ve been reading about cyberbullying and how serious it is, sometimes even making kids feel depressed or suicidal, like in the show 13 Reasons Why. Have you seen any of your friends cyberbullied? I’d like to make sure you stay safe when you’re online, so I want to work with you to add a protection service called Bark to help keep you safe from cyberbullying.”
- Reinforce that it’s your job as a parent to keep them safe, but you trust them and want to give them privacy too. You can say something like, “The reason I want to use Bark is because it will let me know when an issue is happening, but I don’t have to read every text, email, or social media message that you send. I don’t really want to read every time you ask your friends what's up, but I do want to know if someone is cyberbullying you or sending you inappropriate pictures.” Their daily chatter remains private unless a potential issue is detected and then you’re alerted so that you can work with them to address it together.
- Take a moment to help them understand that you do trust them, but that you can’t blindly trust everyone else that they may know through school or with whom they might happen to come into contact with on the internet. You can begin with an analogy, “You know how when you first got your permit you had to have someone driving with you to help you watch out for other dangerous drivers? Well that’s kind of how Bark works, it helps me watch out for bad drivers on social media who put you in danger.”