I realize I promised I wouldn’t write about my kids any more. But as a mom of two teenagers, sometimes, to quote a line from Risky Business, you’ve got say, “What the f**k, Joel.”
I feel like I’ve been holding in gas for a year.
Besides, they’ll never read this, right? I mean, are you friends with your kids on social media? Let me rephrase that: Are you friends with your teenagers on ALL of their social media accounts?
Exactly. (No judging here, I get that everyone parents differently.)
I tried friending my 16-year-old son who opened a Facebook account solely for school-sports-team reasons. He politely ignored my friend request. A few weeks went by and I asked him about it. The boy inherited his father’s quiet, dry wit. He looks at me, laughs and says, “Sorry mom, it’s never going to happen.”
And you can forget Instagram or Twitter. I tried friending my 13-year-old daughter on both and during breakfast one morning (after sending her invitations to befriend the woman who brought her into this world), she basically said, “Nope. Sorry, mom” with her eyes.
My teens are still great, caring kids. Especially when they’re sleeping.
As if my social media life isn’t pathetic enough, a very dear friend recently introduced me to Snapchat. I’m still awaiting my kids’ friend requests. (I’m on there as Jackie Hennessey or ventingsessions – I can’t seem to figure out how to add SnapChat to my laptop. One thing at a time, right?)
I think I have 12 friends on SnapChat. I swear I’m not a social Shrek. It’s just that everyone I know my age has yet to open a SnapChat account, let alone figure out this app that is probably one of the most popular communication tools used by teens. Think trading notes in study hall in the 1980’s. My kids are constantly taking selfies, only to disappear into some God-forsaken social chat candy land. A place where rainbows and unicorns actually exist.
I personally like the SnapChat filters where it erases my stray eyebrow hairs and age spots. But my daughter claims I’m using it wrong.
“Doing what wrong? I’m responding to my friend’s Snap Chat text messages.”
“You’re not really Snap-chatting, mom.”
Whatever. As if. True story. I actually muffled these very words under my breath and went to my room to listen to Madonna on Pandora.
I do recommend trying out SnapChat. It’s like text messaging with Cybil Shepard filters. And it’s not about being the most popular. (Because apparently, I’m sitting at the lunch table of the misfits.) If anything, you get to learn why your teens are busying themselves in this fantasy land. If you ask me, it’s nothing compared to MTV in the 1980’s. But it helps you relate to their world a little. It kind of reminds me of taking Jazzercise with my mom back in the 1980s. We had fun. Until I turned 13. Skip, ball change, I love my mom. But to this day, every time I hear a De Barge song, I cringe a little, and experience PJSD post-Jazzercise-stress-disorder flashbacks.
I found a smiley face link inside the SnapChat app that allows me to share bitmojis. Bitmojis are basically cartoon versions of ourselves. Oh yes. Caricatures. You get to sport permanent eyeliner, a waist and you can wear skinny jeans that don’t fall off your butt.
So my mom friend and I sometimes swap caricatures of ourselves playing the piano or hanging out on a sofa wearing skinny jeans. Another friend and I exchange laugh-out-loud bitmoji messages where we’re doing Karoake. And she’ll send selfies wearing a flowery princess crown. I do the same and have actually saved the photo to use as a potential Facebook profile pic. (Where I have hundreds of friends.https://www.facebook.com/jackie.hennessey1) (Or Twitter, https://twitter.com/JackieHennesse1 where I have lot of friends too. 2,700 and counting.)
I know, I know. It seems like a total waste of time. But it’s a cool tool. And very 13 of me. But fun at the same time.
Just don’t tell my kids.