At What Age Should Children Be Given Facebook Accounts?

Children have so many things to worry about, should social media be another one?

When I was a kid, I think the only things I was warned about what kids shoplifting and flashers!

As a child in the 80s, it felt like an innocent time and I’m sure it wasn’t and all children were protected from the badness in the world. Roll forward 20+ years and I’m now the parent to a 14 year old and 14 month old girls.

There’s terrorist attacking our world, governments that are crippling the economy, Brexit giving us uncertain futures and all the while having this constant beauty pageant that is social media. In the 80s the idea of sharing every picture throughout your day for 1000s of people to see was only available for those in the newspaper.

Social media has changed the way the world communicates and for a blogger like me who lives 200 miles from family and friends from younger years it’s great to shares my views, family photos and day to day stories. But I’m old enough, strong enough in character and confident to be able to take any potential trolling or criticism.

When Beth was about 10 there was definitely a conversation about SM and thankfully she took our guidance and it was a conversation that we then put off for a few more years.

At 14, we spoke about it again. I was initially against a FB account as there’s a million and 1 ways to communicate with friends why does anyone need it. But after a number of talks, when everyone in your year has it, friendship groups are forming online and this new world is moving quicker that you’re learning, I felt that she’ll fall behind with society.

There was literally no way we could say no when the arguments for were so strong and we had to install the trust and responsibility should anything happen, that we’ll be trusted to speak to and let know when something’s not right. Be it trolling, random messages, cyber bulling or profile hacking.

The power of social networking can be a good thing though too and crowdsourcing support and guidance is now the norm. Somewhere like Qutee as a parent is paramount for asking questions to a large audience and getting a range of answers for people outside of your friendship group.

I wish I’d known about the parenting function when I first became a step dad and then a dad to Dorothy. There was so many questions! I’ve found it now so I’m hoping I’ll have no in-answered questions now :)

So what age should Children be given a Facebook account?

So here’s my latest Qutee discussion, should children have Facebook accounts and at what age should they start?

So if you’re a parent, going to be a parent or just want to have your say check out some of the really interesting topics over in the parenting 101 hub – https://www.qutee.com/h/parenting-101/ please take a look at the above and share your opinion.

I’m really interested to hear what you thought about how we went about dealing with the FB issue and how you would have done it differently.

This post was sponsored by Qutee but the topic wording and discussion threads was all mine and one I feel really worried and passionate about. Please use the Qutee discussion section above to let us know what you think!

  • Jeremy Barnes

    I think this really depends on the kid. We ran into a lot of problems with our teenager and social media. She was 13 at the time and it was a disaster. I’m trying to get the 5 year old more used to the ideas and principles of internet safety and protocols so that maybe it won’t be as big a deal when she gets to that age

    • That’s great. If you could post on the Qutee discussion in the middle of the page as well please as I’m sure there’s lot of people that would like to respond. It’s something that does need to be nurtured.

  • john adams

    I will be keeping my kids away from social media for as long as possible. I don’t think it’ll be much older than 14 but if I could keep them away from all social media until they had left school I’d be happy. Obviously I use social media as a blogger. My kids feature on my social pages all the time. As an adult with experience of using social media, however, I know what I am doing. I fear most teenagers don’tr and don’t appreciate the risks posed by it.

    • I’ve started a discussion in parenting 101 above in the black frame. Please feel free to contribute as that’s a great point. Also I still don’t know exactly what’s going on all the time haha

  • There has to a compromise between what they want and what is safe for them. Sadly, these days children way too young are using social media and if many of their friends use it and they don’t that can have an impact too.

    • I’ve started a discussion in parenting 101 above in the black frame. Please feel free to contribute as that’s a great point. Theres also a poll on ages

  • OMGitsagirl

    Our eldest went on Facebook at 12. I set the account up so had his password and could monitor what was happening.

    After the initial excitement of finally being on there it dies down and he didn’t bother with it.

    Now that’s he’s in the big school he uses it more.

    It is one of those things that is really down to the maturity of the individual
    child.

    His brother turned 12 in Dec. He still has no phone or Facebook as he is not mature enough for them.

  • It’s really hard. I grew up without social media as Facebook didn’t launch until I was in my twenties. Lucky I don’t have children yet so I don’t need to think about this, but I can imagine how tough it is to ensure your children are safe online x

  • Children and social media is a huge discussion I see time and again, and one of the hardest ways we as parents can not control. My Daughter does have facebook, and for her it is her lifeline, but although I give her privacy, she knows I can log on at anytime or I will check her devices whenever I want too. She knows the dangers and is very good at speaking to us if she is not sure on something. I also think it depends on the actual child as to what age. I am definitely going to be popping over and reading through qutee.com

  • Stephanie

    This is such a BIG topic, I loved hearing your thoughts! I think it’s important to let them embrace it (making them miss out is a big source of bullying) but I definitely think they should be older than 14. xxx

  • Baby Isabella

    Totally agree that children under 14 should have Facebook accounts, even though FB is probably safer and better monitored than other application these day. In another 10 years my folks will be having a conversation with me regarding my own profile.

    • Baby Isabella

      *shouldn’t* doh! 14 is too young

      • Would love your opinion in the discussion above to support my 14yr old limit.

  • I think there is actually a minimum age required by Facebook to allow you to open an account if I remember well. I don’t know what age should a child be given access to social media, I think that it all depends on their maturity really. Age can be relative.

  • oh this is so hard as my 3 teens are 14 when they got theirs and I think thats far too young but all and I mean all their friends had one

  • Nige

    It’s really intersting this question what age indeed my 3 older children have been on the internet and social media since about age 11 or 12 they have never had an issue. Why well I have always been open and encouraged them to talk if their is a problem. I have taught them right from wrong and to see possible pitfalls in the use of social media. And always use common sense after they are not stupid they understand danger if you have educated them properly they will regonise danger and will know how to avoid it.
    Now my five year old twin girls my wife and myself are educating them now about social media of course they don’t have a fb page wouldn’t be much point at that age. When they ask which I’m sure will be about 11 years old I don’t see a problem we both blog and use social media extensively they already know what it is and how it works. They know we blog, etc and that we are social media. They use you tube kids but they don’t know we have parental controls on so they can’t access material that I dont want them to see.
    This question comes up a lot, we are living in a world where social media is part of the fabric of society now and it will be my five year old twins world teach them young and gradually and when they enter the world of social media. They will have the most important tool to go online common sense.
    Sorry I went on a bit I’m very passionate about this subject. I think in life they greater pitfalls they could come across. Drugs etc. It’s all about education.

  • I was surprised to find out recently that children as young as 7 years old have Facebook accounts!

  • Melanie Edjourian

    I’m going to avoid allowing mine to have an account for as long as possible there are many hidden dangers online.

  • Joanna

    An interesting topic. I really think it depends on each individual child and there maturity and education when it comes to internet safety.

  • For me I grew up in care so I was legally not allowed to have Facebook until I was 18. But I do feel that 15 is a good age. Social media can be so cruel x

  • Whilst I didnt get to have a facebook account until I was 18/19 I think kids these days are growing up with it and if they are taught about the dangers of the internet etc before they start using it then they should be fine. I don’t know what view I will take when my future kids request an FB account.

  • shoshana sue

    I am glad to be part of this discussion as I am raising a 12 and 10 year old. My 12 year old’s school friends are on social media and I am not talking about FB. Two of them followed me on Instagram and I have had to block them for now. There is a a lot of pornography on Instagram and it bugs me that parents allow 12 year olds to have Insta accounts.
    Back to Facebook, I think under 14 years not okay for a child to have an account. I will set up my daughters’ accounts when they respectively turn 14

  • Melanie Williams

    This is such an important talking point…kids and social media. Such a tricky topic with many different variables for parents to consider :) x

  • Hmm… this is a tough one. I don’t have children, but I do know how important social media is to my generation as well as gen z. I don’t know what age I’d let my kids start using facebook.

  • Donna

    This is a real worry for all of us parents isn’t it!!! Great post, it’s something I need to focus on very soon

  • Mummy’s Monkey

    This really worries me. My girl is only two so I don’t think she’ll be asking anytime soon but I know of seven year olds with facebook! That won’t be happening here but keeping up with it all worries me

  • It honestly makes me feel weird seeing babies who are either new borns or not even born yet with facebooks, I don’t understand it! xx

  • Louise O’Brien

    I really like reading this post. I have a son now 19 who is addicted to technology. You can actually see the anxiety on his face if he isn’t close to his phone at anytime. He spent two years in a relationship that was very phone oriented. What I will say is 14 is a reasonable age for SM. I wouldn’t let any of my children do it any younger than that. The world we now live in is so SM driven. With business’s needing to connect and network through this medium means it’s so hard to get away from it.
    What I have found with my eldest son though is he doesn’t switch off from it. I will encourage a lot more technology free days with my youngest. I will encourage it by switching off myself and trying to make sure my little one isn’t as hooked hopefully as my eldest.

  • I see a lot of kids with Facebook accounts at young ages and I wonder why. I don’t think I would want my kids on social media until they are well into their teen years.

  • I always thought Facebook had a minimum age of 13, but I think even at that age things should be monitored cause teenagers can be so cruel.

  • Hayley

    I’m so glad social media wasn’t around when I was younger, I joined Myspace when I was about 15 but that’s long gone now!

  • I started using social media at the age of 17, let’s say I had really strict Parents plus we didn’t have a computer at home. Would I have been in social media if we did have a computer probably, hey I am being honest here. This generation of kids and the way social media is going, it will be so hard to keep kids off social media. When I have my children and there are old enough to understand the dangers and risks of what they see or post on social media then I would let them have an account that I can monitor. My mom is always looking at everything I post lol… so why can I be my child’s number one fan lol…