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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Is it OK for parents to monitor their teenager's internet usage and text messages?

    Is this violating privacy? Our teenage daughter is only 14 so I feel like I have the right as a mom to monitor what she is doing.
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  • 1


    Draga Jevtic

    Counselling Psychologist, Organisational Psychologist, Psychologist

    Draga is an experienced practitioner, manager and director with 25years counselling and organisational psychology experience. She also has 20+years of experience on Not-For-Profit, health and … View Profile

    I would encourage you to develop a relationship with your daughter which encourages an open and trusting relaionship between the two of you and one in which she is OK in sharing with you herself what she is doing on the internet rather than a relationship where she feels you are “spying” on her and she then becomes more secretive about what she is doing.

  • 1


    Leanne Hall

    Clinical Psychologist, Psychologist

    Integrative Psychologist, Health Coach & Personal Trainer in private practice. I have expertise in assessing and treating a range of disorders and conditions; depression, anxiety, … View Profile

    I would also add, that as a 14 year old she does not have the cognitive capacity to always make well informed judgements and decisions. As such, I certainly understand your concern with regard to internet and phone usage.

    I would suggest setting firm limits around computer and phone usage. Such as not having a computer in her bedroom, and handing over her phone when she goes to bed. I would also encourage you to show a genuine interest in her friends & activities, as this is the best way to develop an open and trusting relationship with your daughter.

    While having an open and honest relationship with your daughter is certainly very important, respecting her privacy is equally important. As a parent it can be a challenge to accept that your little girl who used to tell you everything….is sometimes “secretive”. This is not necessarily a bad thing, and may simply reflect that she is growing up and developing her own identity.

    Best of luck!

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