Is shutting down your teen’s Facebook account child abuse?
A certain 15 year-old girl in North Carolina wrote her Dad a letter and posted it on her Facebook wall. We don’t know if she intended for him to see it, but she did know her Dad worked in information technology. In fact, he stated that he spent a good part of the previous day working on his daughter’s computer. Tommy Jordan discovered the profanity-laced letter and decided to respond.
He read the letter and spoke about each of Hannah’s complaints. These included having chores around the house and being tired of so much responsibility without compensation. His rather calm demeanor while going through her list of complaints was filmed and posted on her Facebook wall as well as his and on YouTube. “This is for my daughter Hannah and for all her friends on Facebook who thought her little rebellious post was cute. And for all you parents out there who think their kids don’t post bad things on Facebook,” Jordan said at the beginning of the video.
Judge for yourself and discuss this now viral video. Comments run from full support of Mr. Jordan’s action to others calling for an investigation by Child Protective Services. Or is the video a hoax? Remember “Balloon Boy” from Colorado a few years back? Anything is possible today and until a full investigation is done, we don’t know what to believe. The point, however, is that many teens feel unappreciated and parents struggle to meet their demands while providing support, guidance and mentoring for their future. A second point raises the issue of an appropriate parent-child relationship: who sets the rules and who has the authority and to what extent to discipline errant teens.
Hannah is prohibited from any contact with the media. “Additionally, there’s absolutely NO way I’m going to send my child the message that it’s OK to gain from something like this,” Jordan said. “It would send her a message that it’s OK to profit at the expense of someone else’s embarrassment or misfortune, and that’s not how I was raised, nor how she has been raised.”