Whilst the main reasons for internet use were the same across all age groups, it was quite apparent that the use of social networking remained as one of the top motives for young adolescents to be on the computer, with the breakdown of figures reflecting a 69 percent usage amongst the 12 -13 year olds, an 86 percent usage amongst the 14-15 year olds and a 92 percent usage amongst the 16-17 year olds.Despite the fact that for the majority of these adolescents the main social networking sites which provide opportunity to meet people remain the likes of Facebook, My Space, Twitter and Instagram, there is a small emergence of teens, as young as 13, who are now adding hook up, chat rooms, and dating sites to those that they visit.You will also find dating sites or meeting places for students in their 20s.
Rachel Hynes, mum to a teenager and publisher of the website for parents of teens The Kids are All Right, believes that at the present time social networking sites remain the way in which most teenagers are meeting people and describes these connections, rather aptly, as the equivalent of modern day pen friends.Whilst Rachel has no data on how often teens who meet online are actually meeting up in ‘real life’, she is certain that it happens, particularly in cases where people live within the same area and have access to public transport and the excuse of going to an event where they can meet.There is no way around it; your teenager is going to want to date.When he or she does, you’ll have to step up to the plate with some parenting skills.Here are five things every parent should know: While some teens tend to be interested in dating earlier than others, romantic interests are normal during adolescence.
Girls are more vocal about the dating interest and tend to be interested in a greater degree at a younger age, but boys are paying attention also.Last week, I was talking to a new friend and she was telling me all about her boyfriend. He sounded so great and she was so happy in her relationship.When I asked her how they met, she told me she had signed up for and had met him online right away. When I asked her why she joined Match.com, she simply said it was because she hadn't met any guys she wanted a serious relationship with. The guys I know at my college definitely don't want anything serious, but I still don't think I'm ready to join. One of Facebook's latest updates includes "Graph Search," which lets you narrow down friends or friends of friends that have the same interests as you.My LOL is one such online dating site that is marketed as “Google’s Number One Dating Site for Teens”, with a minimum age requirement of 14, whilst another is Teenspot, which offers chat rooms for its members entitled “singles”, “flirting” and “hottub”.Another one that is used perhaps more commonly amongst Australian teenagers is Tinder.“But, more than anything, your child needs to be able to come to you and talk about things, and you need to not be afraid to ever say NO!