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Dubai selfie death: Parents urged to monitor kids' online activities

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Dubai - Parents should complement their kids often so they don't seek approval elsewhere.



By Sarwat Nasir

Published: Sun 27 Oct 2019, 6:00 PM

Last updated: Sun 27 Oct 2019, 8:39 PM

Psychologists are warning parents to be more aware of their children's social media activities. They should learn more about the impact the online world can have on young impressionable minds, they said.
Lenneke van Nes, a clinical psychologist at KidsFirst Medical Centre, said: "Socialising on social media is one way teenagers form their identity, which includes posting the perfect selfie. It's a modern way that our kids get peer approval and feel accepted.
"But how can we as parents and teens deal with the dangers and pressure of taking the perfect selfie? The most important thing is for parents and teens to be aware of the impact of social media and the urge of taking the perfect selfie. Don't prohibit it, but keep on talking about it. As a parent, try to do that in an open way. Let your children think of their own boundaries, not only in how to take a selfie but also in how they prioritise social media. Talk about perfection (made through filters and apps) and reality."
She said social media can be a "perfect platform" to practise social skills. "However, as a teenager, when you only feel anxiety, pressure and your self-esteem starts to depend on comments and number of likes, the user has to consider whether a healthy boundary has been crossed."
A psychologist at LifeWorks Holistic Counselling Centre, Sneha John, said parents should complement their kids often so they don't seek approval elsewhere.
Teens also need to ask themselves why they are posting on social media. "Can I post something that really makes me happy or just do something that my friends want me to do? They need to ask 'why am I posting this, what's my motive and will it bring me true happiness?'. If the answer is no, then maybe saying positive things to yourself will make a difference," she said.
sarwat@khaleejtimes.com
 


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