Tough Love On Social Media: ReShonda Tate Billingsley’s Old School Parenting in the New Millennium

By ReShonda Tate Billingsley

I’m a good parent. Not a great parent. Not a perfect parent, but I do my best to train up my three children (ages 12, nine and five) so that they can become productive members of society. Doing that requires a desire to be their mama, not their friend, and the diligent, on-going effort to get all up in their business.

For all you new-age parents who say I’m violating my daughter’s privacy, you might want to stop reading now, because I’m really about to piss you off.  In my house, the only people that are due any privacy are me and my husband. I make it clear that when they get their own place and pay their own bills, then and only then will I respect their privacy.

Which is why I recently did what I do nightly–pulled up my oldest daughter’s Instagram account to check it. (In case you don’t know, Instagram is a social media picture-sharing website for teens and tweens). We talked extensively about proper etiquette in the cyber world. So imagine my surprise when I see my bright, intelligent child smiling as she held up a bottle of Vodka with the caption ‘Wish I could drink this Vodka.’ Before you do-righters chastise me for her having the liquor, she got it out of my husband’s bar to take the photo because she thought “it was cute.” She knew better but did it anyway and “didn’t see anything wrong” because she “wasn’t drinking, just posing.”

She had been warned against acting up on social media countless times but obviously,  it wasn’t getting through. So I took it to her level, implementing my motto of “Get tore out where you show out.”  I made her hold up a sign saying, “Since I want to take pics holding liquor, I am obviously NOT ready for social media and will be taking a hiatus until I learn what is and isn’t appropriate to post. Bye-Bye :( ”  I made her post  the picture to Instagram and I put it on my Facebook page as a warning to other parents to monitor their kids.

I never expected that photo or my choice of discipline to go viral. But with over 10,000 shares in just a few hours, that’s just what happened. I heard from parents that, to my surprise, had never looked at their child’s social media accounts, parents who were too afraid to publicly embarrass their kids, yet were at wit’s end on what to do with them, and parents who had never even heard of Instagram, yet found out their child had an account. Ninety-seven percent of the feedback was positive.  The other three percent  did everything from call me a ‘parental bully’ to tell me my child would ‘commit suicide’ to telling me I ‘sucked as a parent.’ Usually, that kind of stuff bothers me.

But not this time.

When it comes to my kids, I don’t play. This is a new age. We have to meet kids where they are.  Punish her by taking away her phone? Did that last week. Make her write an essay? She loves writing so that would be a thrill. Ban TV? She loves to read so that’s no big deal. Talking? Sure, but my talking obviously wasn’t sticking. So, since she showed out on line, she was punished on line. My daughter actually begged for a spanking instead, which she would’ve taken, gotten over in no time, and not realized the seriousness of her actions. Now, if and when she ever gets back on social media, she’ll think long and hard before posting anything crazy.

Some said the public humiliation would have long-term effects, that she would hate me forever for this. You have to know your child. I wouldn’t do this on my middle child because I don’t think she can emotionally handle it. But this one, she’ll be just fine. Yes, I got the ‘you’re ruining my life’ rant, but after a few hours, she was trying to figure out how she can start an organization at her school to raise awareness about social media responsibility.  In fact, she said her friends weren’t talking about her. They were talking about her “crazy mama.” Call me crazy. If it means steering my child on the right path, that’s a badge of honor I’ll proudly wear. And to all the naysayers, talk all you want. I’d rather you talk about me now than talk about my child later.

ReShonda Tate Billiingsley is the national bestselling author of 25 books, including the upcoming The Mommy Chronicles, about raising kids in the new millennium. Visit her website at www.reshondatatebillinglsey.

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Denene Millner

Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.

186 Comments

  1. Reshonda, is my FB friend so I saw the original post. I say go head! We need parents to be parents not weak-willed people trying to gain their children’s acceptance. I believe this will make her child stronger in the long run.

    • Having raised 3 children myself, I say, God Bless you! All of mine are grown now and I didn’t have social media to deal with, Thank God! But, I would have been just like you, all up in their business. You keep doing what you’re doing and the kids will be fine.

  2. Great parenting job! The same people that had negative responses to your actions will be the same ones talking badly about your child if you had not gotten a hold on her and she turned out a less than favorable member of society. Everything begins at home. We have to parentand not befriend our children in their formative years. There will a time we can be more friendly with our children, we just need to know the difference. Thank you for your parenting contribution.

  3. I love this! This reminds me of the time my mom made me tape a note on the screen door stating that I was on punishment and would not be coming outside so don’t ring the doorbell! My friends knew that Rita Roxanne did not play. I hated it then but I got over it and would surely do the same to my child. My mother was all up in my business I wasn’t allowed to have privacy nor secrets my fear of her magically finding things out kept me out of a lot of trouble.

  4. This mama applauds you. Several of my friends posted the picture on Facebook, which is how I found out about it. I stand up thank you for your bold parenting. I’m also a middle school teacher, and I see these kids abuse social media in ways that end up trickling into the school level and causing problems in this environment. Many parents have actually come to school questioning why their children get suspended form school for something they posted to YouTube or Facebook. Nevermind the fact that what their children posted was related to gang activity, instigating fights, or was sexually suggestive — and it was either filmed on campus or created issues to the extent that students brought up the matters and caused disruption at school. Who really needs the weight of the parents’ wrath — the school, or the STUDENTS?

    If there were more parents parenting in the way that you are, I know that we’d have a greater number of kids who in the long run, would make better decisions about their behavior.

    My oldest kids are 11 year old boy/girl twins. Though they’ve asked, I haven’t yet let them have Facebook accounts. They *just* got email accounts, which I set up for them as splinter email addresses from my own. I have full access to their accounts, which they mostly use to email friends who’ve moved away (we’re in a military town where friends often move when their parents are stationed elsewhere). You’d better believe I used YOUR teachable moment as one for my own kids. They need to know that I have no qualms about doing something similar should they ever choose to do something similar when they finally DO get to have some social media permissions.

    Hats off to you, and to your daughter, who clearly is positively responsive to your love — tough love, in this case.

  5. I totally agree! Keep up the good work!

  6. I think the punishment fit the crime! You are absolutely right, we’re dealing with new aged kids, with technology and advances we NEVER had. So we have to change with them. I still monitor my oldest childrens, 22, and 19, social media.

    The 22 year old has plans of going to optomitry school next fall, and the 19 year old has his sights on playing for a major football program. Schools, and employers alike are using social media as a tool to weed prospects out. It’s our job to protect our children.

    Go ahead I applaud you!

    • Yes, LaTonya! That’s right…… we are gotta be touch and protect the kids.

    • I think it is our job to protect our children, but at 22 and 19, they aren’t children anymore. As their parent you want the best for them, but when will they start having to monitor themselves, and accept the real-world consequences of their actions?

    • As a 28 year old, only child, with parents that were actively involved (and continue to be actively involved) with my life as a child, teen and young adult, at some point we need to be allowed to make mistakes and learn the consequences from them. I agree with “gradmommy” that at some point the adults (yes your babies) need to start monitoring their (our) own selves. As things progress in this world with social media, etc, then the punishments will likely become harsher both for children and young adults. Parents (of young adults, 18+) need to learn when to take a step back and let their kids falter, but still be there when they need the help up. Bruises heal. I think Ms Billingsley actions were just, as well. With the progressive “perceived” maturity of our youth today, the punishments should not be more lax, but more strict.

  7. Denalerie Duriso-Segura

    BRAVO!
    Your punishment was On Point! If MORE parents would take an intrest in what their children watch, post and say, society as a whole would be better.
    My child is on punishment now from fb, not because of anything she posted, but because of her grades dropping. Two A’s became two B’s… Not acceptable in my house when I know my child is an All A Honor Roll student since First Grade.
    Keep up the good work Mom!

  8. I’m also a fan of hers on Facebook and I agree with what she did. My parents have never looked at my social media sites (I’m 19, college, still at home) but I know better than to present myself in a way that would embarrass my parents or myself. When I’m older and have kids of my own, I’ll have the passwords to all their sites and will make sure that they aren’t posted anything crazy. This is the internet, and what we post could be there to haunt us for a long time to come.

  9. I love what u did!!! I’d do the same thing!!!

  10. Reshonda,
    I thought it was a joke, but I salute you and your choice. I too, am a product of my parent showing out on me where I showed out as well. Today, I am a productive citizen of society tax, bill, paying voter. More parents need to parent up and leave the friendship alone until their child is out of theirm home. In my opinion home life and society would be much better off!! Big salute to You!! Do the blessed parenting thing!!! I am not a biological parent, I am a concerned aunt, great aunt, and one-time foster-parent and it is hard, but the long term will be so much better!

  11. Praises to an ‘old school mom’. Her daughter will appreciate this lesson. Talk about her now, but you won’t have the opportunity to talk about her later. My 5 yr old took an eraser from school because his friend does it and said it was his turn. Well, I made him write an apology letter to the teacher and return the eraser. He had to read the letter to her, I told him he had to do it in front of the class, but my mom said he would be labeled as a thief by all his classmates. It is what it is, I’d rather they label him thanother versus 10 years from now-they already expect him to be a criminal (only brown baby at the school). Nip it in the bud now-social network…when he’s 40. GREAT job ReShonda!!!! We need more parents like you, at least we wouldn’t see the fishy lip, half naked pics posted.

  12. I say well done, too. Push over parenting is having long term effects. I see it in my younger brother’s generation, in today’s tweens and teens and among my son’s friends. I’m a mom, not a buddy. My son has plenty of buddies. I wish more people would take a tough love approach now and then.

  13. Heather Floyd

    I don’t understand why anyone would state that this punsihment is public humiliation. (We can leave that to the parents who made their daughter run the neighborhood in an adult diaper) Kudos to the mom for posting a self explanatory, nondegrading note along with a logical consequence…you mess up on the social media, you lose it!

  14. I totally agree with your method!!! I am a 57 year old grandmother of four. With three grown kids, my kids are aged from 31 to 39. If I had to raise a child today I would be DEVASTED!! With all the technology out there, it’s extremely different to raise children nowadays. Not impossible, just more diffcult. I applaude you and all of the other young mothers (parents) who are doing their best to raise responsible adults for the future. Good luck and God bless.

  15. Kudos, to you! You did your child a great favor with this one. Now, if and when she gets back online you will not have to worry that she will end up being one of those kids who post ridiculous, inappropriate pictures that sometimes lead to consequences they couldn’t even have imagined!

    From a mom who allowed my son to get a social media account….when he was 17 and in the 12th grade!!!! That’s when I thought he could handle one responsibly so that’s when I let him get one. Nobody knows your child(ren) like you do.

  16. WOW, I give you a standing ovation for that one! I think this is the perfect punishment. On my website Parenting My Teen. com I often talk about making sure the punishment fits the crime and making sure that the punishment STICKS and you nailed it here.

    What you actually did (not that she will see this until she is grown) but you just saved her from what could have been a HUGE Mistake! Kids don’t realize that picture on the internet STAY on the internet and can be used later to hurt you.

    KUDOS to you mom! :)

    Aurelia (who will be sharing this story with my own 12yo just in CASE he is thinking about trying to hide anything from me).

    P.S. I got through my sons phone every other night ;-)

  17. This is sooooooooo on time for Mother’s Day. Every Mama should know now that it’s not about being “popular” or “cool” with your kids, it’s about doing the TOUGH LOVE to make sure the message sticks.

    This is a hard lesson learned but the LOVE for her daughter speaks volumes. She will straighten up and fly right …from now on.

    Stay Calm and Instagram ON!

    Great post. And…Happy Mother’s Day to you D!

    Pam
    http://www.pamperry.org

  18. I applaud you for taking this stand with your daughter. I am actually on the same mission right now with my 11yr old daughter. We have to train them the way they should go. If we want them to be productive law abiding citizens in the future we need to nip some things in the bud right now!!!!

  19. I’m with you 100%. I’ve always told my son that is he showed out, I’m gonna show out with him! That was from the age of 4 up until now, and he’s 20. He tried me one time, and I stayed true to my word. He never did it again and he absolutely adores me!! He will even look at kids and be like, “Moma, what would you do?” as he laughs!

    My thing is, if you don’t care about your kids, the court system or police definitely do not care about them!!! Think about it!!!

    Major Kudos to you!

  20. You know what makes me pissed about Mrs. Billingsley comments…

    HOW DARE SHE……call Instagram a “social media picture-sharing website for teens and tweens”

    Tweens and teens???

    HOW DARE SHE!!!!

    *checks Instagram feed*

    lol!

  21. As a counselor that works with children of all ages, I applaud you. I have met with way too many older teens that needed to get this kind of loving discipline 5 years ago and now are nearing a crisis (or way beyond it).

    Creative parenting techniques can be hard on the parent as well as the child but are so important.

    Keep it up!

  22. I applaud you for your parenting skills. A punishment is to help prevent your children from doing the action again. I bet she won’t do it anymore.

  23. Dana Cleveland.

    Ketchup, mustard…….thats what I have to say to parents who dont stay aware of what their tweens are doing. They are exposed to so much more than we realize, and the peer pressure is unreal.

  24. I applaud you. It takes courage to be a real parent and teach our children the way they should go. We need productive law abiding citizens in the future.

  25. typpie LeBaum

    Team Mom!

  26. typpie LeBaum

    I sooo agree with your form of punishment. You love your daughter, that’s crystal clear. I dont know how parents can allow their children to have social media accounts without monitoring them. Get involved, show some interest, be a parent! Also, if she has been warned but showed off anyway, then…

  27. Bravo. Great job of doing what’s required when the time calls for it.

  28. I am an old school mama also. My 15 year old is without all electronics because she did not comply with our household responsible use policy. So guess what? She is more creative, grades are stable, and she has to actually talk on the house phone to her friends. Not sure when she will get her items again, probably when she gets a job.

  29. Sister, you are on it!!!! Old school mom for the 21st century~ Love it! ;-)

  30. Terri Simmons

    I totally agree with you 110%.

  31. I commend you Mrs. Billingsley. You have to stay on top of your kids these days, are they will run over you. I have 3 kids, that I did what I had to do to raise them, but they were strayed from the right raisings cause of peer pressure. Two boys, 22 & 24 yrs, my daughter, 18yrs, with 2 babies. I had my kids young, so I knew what I needed to do to better there lives. I talked to them to guide them the right way, but in there eyes, I was being mean. They wanted me to be like their friend’s parents, my daughter wanted to be like my nieces, full of freedom, cause my sister was always at work…… I didn’t want to be her friend, so she kept running away, til she end up not with one baby, .but 2….. My point to everyone is good parenting goes a long way, and it has its challenges, but good parents are never appreciated, till its to late, but never give up on your kids….

  32. I loved it. Old school to new school, what a way to get your point across. I look at both of my childrens’ network. I’m friends with their friends on everything, so they know I’m watching. My oldest is 24 and youngest 17. Maybe more of us should do stuff like this more often and maybe we won’t have so many problems with OUR children later on in life. When I say OUR, I mean all of our children across the world. There is absolutely no more COMMUNICATION. i applaud you.

  33. I understand totally. I check my step daughter every day. These day teens are into all kind of things and if you want to stay ontop of things! This is what real parents do. People thats talking negative towards this great parent. Yall wrong. New age parenting is what get these kids killed, on drugs, pimped or killing others. Wake ups people she did that right thing as a caring parent.

  34. You just gave me a wake up call today. I realized I had let my 15-yr-old son’s “privacy” go to far. So today, I changed his password on FB. I didn’t do what you did, yet. There have been some alleged infractions I heard about from family members that were deleted before I ever saw them. However, his idea to delete all adults so he can really cut loose is going too far. He can’t login from school and can only login from home from MY laptop. So when he does try, he’ll question it and we’ll have a reminder talk about the conditions by which I let him have an FB page to begin with. Thank you Mrs. Billingsley

  35. I agree totally!! We are not our children’s friends; we are the parents and should act as such. We are to set standards on what is acceptable as well as unacceptable behavior. Sometimes you have to “hit them where it hurts ” in order for the message to get through. My daughter decided to act up and I took her cell phone for a month and she looked like she lost her best friend. You keep doing what you are doing and hopefully we won’t hear from the haters about their kids being in jail or worse because they did not learn that there are consequences for the decisions they make.

  36. From one old school parent to another, I completely agree with what you did! If I had children that same age, I would have done the same thing. We need more parents willing to take a stance like this, instead of always trying to be their child’s friend.

  37. As an educator and soon to be parent, I applaud the author for taking her “old school parenting” to the next level. More parents should be aware of what their children are doing! The same people who feel like this is an invasion of privacy, have children who are running their house. Well, kudos to you, Mrs. Billingsly!

  38. I have to say that I LOVE that you did this. I even posted the link on my Facebook page stating that when my kids get old enough to go online, I’d do the same thing. Good for you!!

  39. I recently had to take a ‘tough love’ stance with my 20 year old (which ended with her being asked to leave home). It is hard to ‘hold the line’, but you did the right thing. Keep up the good work.

  40. I know most of the posts are…well support what you done. I on the other hand I disagree for mainly one good reason. But first hear this.. I am not a perfect parent either. Nor do I want to be. I have two children similar ages and have been searching and reading and taking advice from anyone that seems close to the method of child upraising as I feel sensible.
    Therefore I do believe in disipline and rules and consequences. I wholeheartedly agree with you there. The only difference is that I strongly disagree with the way the disipline was carried out. This is not only my opinion, but many experts in the field explain that it is most important to present and maintain a KIND family culture. You still can get your punishment across but not with insult or humility. I had to step back and really take a good look at what they were talking about to see what they meant by this.
    You don’t have to take my advice and I am not trying to tell you how to raise your children. Just have an open mind and think of what they are talking about. It made me take a look at my family and myself in a whole different light.
    The best analogy given to me was good cop/bad cop. If you get a ticket from one policeman who was mean, obnoxious and demoralizing you walk away with hatred and nothing about what YOU did wrong such as speeding. On the other hand, if you receive a speeding ticket from a diffferent police officer who was kind and understanding and who really showed concern for your wellbeing, you might just listen take heed to what you were ticketed for.
    Just my opinion. Good Luck

    • When we dicipline and teach our children with love and consistancy, and by our own example as this mother is doing. Then all those other concerns you write about don’t come into the picture.

      A very important point that Ms. Tate makes is that she knows her children and based on that knowledge she applied what she deemed was appropiate punishment. A mean policeman a good policeman does not love you when they are writing you a ticket. They don’t care about your well being, they are just doing their job to the best of their ability, and is employing whatever approach brings them the best results. Regardless of how it may impact you for the rest of your life.

      When we are teaching and dicipling our children we do it from a place of love for our children’s best at that moment and in time to come. The children have their own inner wisdom where they recognize what we are doing and as much as they pout, complain, and carry on, they appreciate depend ont the strength, guidance and dicipline of that love and caring. They need us to be stronger than what they may facing on a daily basis and to show them how to conduct themselves. The analogy I like to use is, we are stewards of our children’s development and well being, they are God’s own, a gift on loan to us to love, cherish and protect until Jesus comes. Respect them and teach them in love,

      Just my opinion, and you know what they say about opinions.
      Best to you Sean and yours,

      Ole School Grandma

  41. you have set a great example for parents who are afraid to parent their kids…you should teach a class :) stay strong because god knows parenting takes strenght and a strong will to raise good children.

  42. While I am all for punishing kids that do wrong, I can’t help but think “Why does a twelve year old have a social media presence?”
    My daughter is soon to be 14 and has a facebook and an email account of which I have all access to. None of us are perfect, but lets think about what is age appropriate. Perhaps there is a bit too much freedom going on in that house.
    I see everyone cheering, but I think people are missing the point. Everything is not for every age group. I don’t understand the anger when you give a child a lot of freedom at 12 then get surprised when they ACT 12.

    • My thoughts exactly! Facebook is for users over 13 years of age. Shame on the mother for allowing the child to create an account for a website the child isn’t even old enough to use!

      • the child has instagram not facebook…. any child with a 4th generation ipod touch will have access to instagram.

  43. I totally agree with this as the punishment does fit the crime. I disagree that this is “humiliation” – I don’t think the daughter was reduced to being a lesser person, or even shamed. It was a reminder that how you present yourself on social media outlets has consequences, some of which you may not like when you choose to act out.

    One thing though…I don’t think policing social media accounts for children over 18 is reasonable. If you haven’t instilled the right values through discipline by 18, then you are simply extending your child’s childhood past a point where they have to experience the real-world consequences. Mommy and Daddy shouldn’t be saving them anymore. Be their “friend” on facebook, express opinions about the content, but policing when a child is 25? That’s too much.

  44. Yesssss! someone who is “crazy” like me…i love it

  45. This is soooo on point! Being an “old school” Mom and raising two sons has kept both of them out of jail. I was like you, “Wherever you pitch the tent, we will have the circus. Now, clown because I am the ringmaster.” That was my philosophy and they understood that there were serious consequences for their actions. It is time out for trying to be “friends” with your children and I agree that you have to know your children because parenting styles work differently for each child. Parents are in their own world these days and not in their child’s space and face. I commend your decision and keep on parenting. Train a child in the way it should go/grow and when they are old, he/she will not depart from that training. Love it!

  46. Excellent! I agree totally with you. From how you describe your relationship with your daughter, you’ve already done all the prep work with her, so she understands (and could probably have anticipated) your chosen punishment. Kids need to think ahead of time about the consequences of their actions. This is a little lesson for her, training her to do just that.

  47. Loved it when I first saw it on FB, and an loving it even more now. My parents would have done something similar and I’ll handle my son when the time comes. Kudos!!

  48. I love how the punishment fits the crime here. It’s inspiring. My kids are still too young for social media, and I can’t imagine having to change that soon, but I will remember this. Thanks for your courage and willingness to say “Get lost!” to those who have no authority in your life or your parenting.

  49. Susan Pickrell

    I think you are awesome! My 18, not pregnant, about to finish high school daughter said, this is something I would have done! I think shes right!

    YOU GO MOM. Thank you from one loving mom to another.
    I promise, she will grow up to love you more!

  50. Kudos to you mother. A few years from now when her peer’s parents are sorely searching for the best rehab for their child, while she prepares to enter the top university, she will throw her arms around you and thank you for your deep caring and powerful no nonsense mother love. You got to nip the foolishness in the bud. Happy and Blessed Mother’s Day

    Ole School Grandma

  51. I’m not a mother myself, but I see the effect that social media has on my friends children, and I take my hat off to you. I’m forever telling my friends that they need to monitor what their children are doing and who they are talking to, but they, like others spout off the whole “I’ll be invading their privacy” argument. Think I’ll be showing them this and reminding them that THEY pay the bills and keep the roof over their heads, not the children, and that they can have all the privacy they want they have their own home, until that day they better do as they’re told and realise that for every action, there’s a REaction, not always one they like, but always one they deserve!

  52. My son just turned 13 and I think what you did was “right” because now she has learned her lesson. Instead of no ps3 for the week WTH? What is that gonna do really? So keep up the great parenting and screw the haters!

  53. you go ReShonda, she better be glad that she has a parent who loves her enough to think of saving her from her own actions. had it been me, I may have gone a bit further, you know spare the rod, spoil the child. She’ll thank you later, or not but I bet she won’t try that again, nothing like good ole fashion peer embarassment,lol.

  54. I’m with you on this one, good job.

  55. I say, good for Reshonda! Parenting is a delicate balancing act – you don’t want to be too authoritative nor too lax. I think she handled this really well! She knows her daughter better than anybody and I believe she handled the situation appropriately. As she said, her daughter is now talking about raising awareness on appropriate behavior on social media. I’d say it’s a win for everyone.

  56. Way to go mom! Ol skool mom in full effect. It’s a shame when parents try to be best friends with their children.

  57. I think the punishment and this post are brilliant. Live by the sword, die by the sword. The girl posted the offending photo for the gratification of her social media peers, so it’s only reasonable her punishment be acted out and witnessed by the same group.

    Good job, Ms Billingsley!

  58. I agree with what was done as a punishment. When I was a child, my grandmother punished me by kneeling in her kitchen which was the hub of activity in her home in Southern Maine where she would rent rooms during the summer months. I will NEVER forget the punishment and I never was punished in that manner again because I never acted up like I had that time. Good job! I wish more parents would punish their kids like you did.

  59. Dear Reshonda,

    I’m not a mother, I’m actually 20 years old, so a few years ago I was still a teenager.

    Eventhough I’m 20, I see and dislike how a lot of young kids are going arround doing bad things like drinking alcohol at young ages, making vandalism, etc

    Don’t misunderstand me, but I think you took this too far way. She was actually right, she wasn’t drinking. YOu have a beautiful child who loves reading, writting and doing cultural activities that a lot of teenagers hate.

    I’m DEFINETLY not saying you are a bad mother. But maybe, you should consider try to think what would you have done or wanted to do if you where her age nowadays.

    I mean, I hanged out with friends that drank alcohol at young ages and I never drank with them, I was actually the poor little thing who had to take care of them. And now that I can legally drink (where I live we can drink alcohol at 18) I don’t do it. I’ve seen from near the effects and I don’t like it.

    Maybe you should try to be more confident on your daughter. Is just my opinion, but I would apreciate that you read it, thought about it and respect it as I made with your.

    Sorry if there are a few mistakes in my writting, but I’m not an english speaker.

    Sincerly,

    Virginia

    • When you become a parent then you have the right to comment on this. Until you do, do not judge a parent by their actions. Even the best of kids have lapse in judgements. And they will try your patience. Don’t mistake her actions as not trusting her daughter. Having confidence in someone has nothing to do with those rash mistakes. I love my boys and trust them completely but they have made some “dumb” mistakes that cause for rash punishments. Again…. don’t judge till you have kids of your own.

      • im sorry but humans have the right to comment on anything they like as well as judge the actions of others. furthermore, if one has a parent, and feelings, they can comment on how a parent, parents. i for one may not have a parent’s perspective, but as a child it was my life being shaped and my emotions that could have been misread while being punished. as a rational young adult who can now express an opinion on how i was raised via a firmer grasp on the context of actions and their subsequent punishments in relation to my temperament at that age, and my demeanour at this age, i believe the finished product of parenting can provide insight onto the success or failure of parenting methods. leave the commenter alone. everyone’s opinion is appreciated and everyone’s point of view adds dynamic to the conversation. a child may not have a parent’s perspective, but a parent will never understand how their parenting actually affects the child until the child tells them.

        • Hangon dee, are you judging Karyn’s opinion on stating to be a parent first before commenting? That’s Karyn’s opinion, and as a human she can write what she likes (as long as moderation accepts it)

          Nah, just messing with you.
          I’m a parent too, but you don’t need to be a parent to realize that destroying a young girl’s life on the social media of the Internet is WAY over the top. But that’s just my opinion :) ie I don’t actually agree with Karyn in the first place.

  60. I forgot, I think that everyone need privacy, it doesn’t matter the age. If you have a good relation with your parents, like I do, the kid is not going to mind to let the mother come into her live.

    I talk by experience.

    Thanks again for listening my opinion :)

  61. I was laughing at this because you did just what i would have done.I wish there were more parents who cared enough about their children to be parents and not their friends she will always love you and when she grow up she will tell her children about it,so i say good parenting

  62. @Virginia,

    I’m not sure you read the entire article. I don’t think this was a snap reaction. This seems like it was a punishment that came after numerous warnings and previous incidents. In today’s society, its not the same as when you just disobeyed and screwed up in your own house. When you screw up on the internet it can have far reaching consequences. Try getting a job these days after acting crazy on the internet. Your business is out there. You have an online profile. So, this mother is teaching her daughter responsibility and how one thing can get big REALLY quickly. Sometimes, after warning in multiple ways, you have to take a stronger stand. I know I appreciate it now when my parents did it.

    • @Robert,

      I read the article and I also noticed it wasn’t the first warning. She deserved a punishment, but I still think it was a bit drastic. I ageree with you about the internet profile, it is very important to tell the kids that what you put there lasts forever and that you aren’t going to be a teenager all your life.

      I apreciate you answer and I see your point, but I disagree with the point of being an “oldschool mom” if that means not putting in the place of your daughter and don’t respecting her privacy. Everyone needs that, but if you build a good relashionship based in donfidence in each other, the daughter is going to ask and show a lot of things to her mother. Of course I’m talking of my experience, how my mother raised me in being independent but always trusting in her and knowing that she is the only one who wants the best for me. That’s why I showed her my pics like: “Look this photos mom!” or “look what I wrote”… I apreciate a lot how she raised me, even when she punished me, cause when she did it, I deserved it and was fair and the punishment proportional to my fail.

      I’m sorry I can’t express what I want exactly to say and I’m sorry if you are not understanding what I’m saying.

      Conclusion, she deserved a punishment but I’m afraid that being this drastics becomes, in the future, a lack of confidence or future revelion when she’s independent and can do what she couldn’t in the pass, etc

      Thanks for your polite answer, I’m actually not used to this (problem of anonymity in internet I guess)

  63. Amen. I tell my son all of the time” I am not your friend, I am your parent, maybe one day we will be friends, but as for now I am your parent…Don’t get it twisted.

  64. Bravo! Privacy does not exclude parenting and the guidance that you provided and shared speaks volumes to what many obviously have voiced. Unfortunately, our “new-aged” teens often impulsively miss the mark when they post a variety of issues on these on line social sites not realizing that they are forever available for public access.

  65. I agree with your action 100% It takes an real parent to understand What an mother will do to teach her child an life lesson something she will remember the rest of her LIFE. Tell her children.I had an daughter who wouldn’t stay in school. I would drop her off at the front door she would leave out the side door.I got tried of this so I made her wear dollar store house shoes to school you know the fluffy ones you walk to far in them on the side walk they will start to fall apart. Every night before I go home from work I would buy a pair. She gave up before I gave out.Today she has an high school diploma. So do what you have to do to get her attention. In the name of LOVE.

  66. Praises from one Old School Momma to another….thank you and although I hope I never have to do this, know that I won’t hesitate to do what is necessary for my children.

  67. Esther Morgan

    I was overjoyed to see a parent who is truly concerned about their child. I believe you made the right choice. I’m praying that she will thank you later for caring about her. God told us to raise up the child in the way they should go and when they are old they will not depart from it. Be encouraged for doing the right thing. Don’t worry about OPO- Other people’s Opinion

  68. I applaud your methods and effort! Parents must stay informed and keep up with the times! You made so many great points here but my favorite was “get tore out where you show out” lol

  69. You can’t parent every child the same way, nor is there a such thing as perfect parenting. So all those other parents who disagree might end up bailing little Suzie out of jail or find her on the next “Girls Gone Wild” video. Spanking and yelling does nothing but teach your child how to manipulate their parents into not spanking or yelling, in which case, both the parent and child have missed the opportunity to learn from the experience. Post a photo of your child holding a perfectly good sign that explains she won’t be using social media until whenever doesn’t seem like such a “bad” thing. Did you consider shooting her cell phone? ;)

  70. I agree with your actions. I told my kids all the time I’m not your friend , I’m your Momma. Don’t get it twisted. I also them them you don’t have to like my direction, you just have to follow it. and if you don’t like it , then find your own apt. pay your own rent, utilities, phone bill, cable bill,buy your own groceries. When you pay the bills, you make the rules. I let them know that no matter were you go, there are rules and with rules comes consequences when rules are broken. I taught them life is not fair, and be prepared to deal with that. I have taught them to be responsible for their actions. When you put your business out there, you are inviting comment and or ridicule.
    I agree you have to meet them where they stand and put it in their face because things are different from when we grew up.
    As parents , you have to love your kids enough to say stop don’t do that and mean it. Too often the child dictates to the parent but not in my house. I tell my kids there’s only one queen bee in my house and that is me. I also tell them I love them but I can love you from afar if you don’t want to listen. Children need and want direction. You just have to do it with love and consistency.

  71. Thank you, thank you, thank you parents are not friends. Too many parents want to be friends and not the momma or the daddy. He placed us in charge to impart wisdom, guidance and discipline. No doubt your little darling will remember this lesson. Good for you!

  72. John A. Herron

    I was a counselor working with families for over 12 years. All I have to say is WAY TO GO MOM!

    • Here here.

      So I also suspect you are happy for all the bullying and but of the jokes this poor young innocent girl is going to receive now? I mean Mom’s ok with it, the counselor says its ok.. Go kids make her cry.

      Destroying a young girls Internet social media? For young girls this may be the end of her life (in her mind) BUT if YOU don’t think its too harsh, then quite obviously your ‘counseling’ must have been more parental focused. Too bad you missed the point.

  73. I am in favor of monitoring young children’s computer use and mobile phone use, and am in favor of swift consequences, but a picture of a crying child in a public forum with a sign written by her mother makes me uncomfortable.

    Delete the account. Disable the camera. It’s not, as implied in this post, as if there are no other options. Strict and “old school” are fine, but there are things that were accepted when “old school” wasn’t old (paddling, beatings, humiliation) that we’ve moved past for a reason.

  74. That was great. It looks like, from what you said, your daughter had the right reaction in the end. You are a good mother. I’m glad you didn’t let the silly negative comments get to you. Your daughter will grow up to be a wonderful adult!

  75. *fist pump*
    You go girl! I applaud you. Heck, I give you a standing ovation. Sometimes we have to become children to teach our children. What you did should be looked at as not only courageous but inspirational. Maybe if some of these parents did what you did; then they wouldn’t be on the news talking about how “he/she was a good child and the police didn’t have to shot him.” Well when an adult tells a child to do something and they (child) don’t listen, then the consquences can be severe. Trust me, this will be one of those ‘laughable’ moments when she graduates from college. Oh, and, trust me; I have done worst to my 5 children; (28-23) but none of them have ever been arrested nor in jail or even spoken to by law enforcement. We had this conversation and they said, “ma, you used to get on our nerves with your rules but you know what, thank you for doing it because we didn’t suffer anything by not getting to do what a lot of our friends were doing.” That moment: PRICELESS.

  76. Publicly humiliating your child=Love ???

    Hmmm…Not in any world that my children live in. I prefer to teach them love and mutual respect. Then again, Ive got 22 and 19 year olds that are successful, happy and still respect and love their parents who, rather than humiliate them when they made mistakes, talked, took priveleges, talked some more….built a relationship.

    But hey, I cant wait to see how this all works out for you. Im not going to try it with my 14 year old though. Im going to stick with my tried and true parenting methods. Ill try not to think of you and your daughter though. Its just too sad.

    • If I used this kind of shame tactic as a parent, I think I would feel ashamed of myself. I certainly wouldn’t broadcast it to gain support. There are many ways to parent, and I don’t think any of them should include humiliation. Though, I’m apparently in the minority when I say this, which saddens me. I believe parents should be the people that children trust under all circumstances, especially when they’ve done something wrong. It’s how my mother raised me, and it’s how I raise my children.

      • Don’t worry too much, that minority is still quite large.
        The majority of the world also once believed in women obeying their husbands! And many other worse past histories. This doesn’t make them right.

        Destroying a young girl’s social media on the Internet?
        This Mom seriously has no idea about disciplining.
        Here’s hoping the young girl will sue her Mom oneday for destroying her teen years.

        Kids can be cruel to other kids! But NOW they have the go ahead by her own Mom.
        If I was this parent I’d first delete all my extremely poor taste embarrassments online to this girl, then APOLOGIZE for being a bully to my own daughter.

        Discipline should not be about scaring someone for life!

    • Oh please…

    • I honestly do not think your parents would have thought twice about humiliating you in public. At least that was when discipline really happened. We respected our parents for what they did and we CERTAINLY didn’t do it again! Your 14 year old is just starting and good kid or not, they will ALWAYS have lapse in judgements! Lighten up, you may need it.

  77. I salute you. This is a great example of using the medium to teach a valuable lesson. I hope your daughter will now think twice about what she puts out on social media, it’s a lesson many so called adults still haven’t learned!

  78. You get big ups from me. My mama would’ve done much, MUCH worse, and did. And my self-esteem, as well as that of my 3 brothers is JUST fine. And I I love her for making it known early and oftern that it was HER and my dad’s world, and they let me live in it. Mine was NOT a child-centered household, and that was fine with me. I am APPALLED when I visit with friends sometimes and I see them letting the kids make certain family decisions, where will be vacation, what kind of car will we buy, etc.? WHAT? GTFOH…Democracy, as my mom would say, would come when I started working and cutting her and my dad checks for groceries, mortgage and bills. I knew what the expectations were, and what the consequences were when I did not meet them. She was loving, supportive and kind, but had NO PROBLEM getting in my ass when need be. Did I hate her in the typical, snotty, teen girl way? Sho’ did. Did I express that to her? Sho’ didn’t. My mama was CRAZY. If I (blatantly) broke rules and had events planned, like going to a friend’s house or a friend’s party, etc., I had to call my friend AND her parents, send my regrets for not attending and explain EXCATLY why I wouldn’t be there. Uh, I think I had to do that exactly 2 times before I stopped my shenanigans.
    AS far as my 8 year old, I will do WHATEVER it takes to get my message across to him about right and wrong- punishment, scarlet letter, whatever. Why? b/c I am raising a little black boy into a black man, and if *I* don’t take the time to instruct, guide, and yes, sometimes punish him, he will be in and get into a WORLD of trouble when society gets a hold of him. And that is NOT happening on my watch.
    At the end of the day, different strokes for different folks.

  79. Way to go! I think this just shows that you are a parent who knows her children. You know what works and what doesn’t.

    Many parents don’t take the time to understand their children and thus understand the best way to make in impact in guiding their behavior and ultimately their character.

    I don’t think this was public humiliation. This was demonstrating to your daughter that actions have consequences and when those consequences are made public, we allow ourselves to be open to accountability.

    You are going to produce a confident, self-assured, responsible and accountable woman if you keep up this type of parenting. ;)

  80. Michelle Ramos

    I don’t let my kids run around during religious services. I don’t let them run around in other people’s houses or in stores. If they’re acting up in public, the punishment is that we leave. I don’t let them jump on furniture and they certainly get in trouble for deliberately breaking their toys. People tell me I’m too hard on them, that “they’re just kids” (boys ages 7 and almost 6). I tell them, “When am I supposed to teach them respect and discipline? When they’re 15 and in trouble for something serious?” I agree with ReShonda–we are parents, not their best friends. Good for you, ReShonda, for doing something that is becoming increasingly unpopular: parenting.

  81. Finally a mother who takes her job as a mother seriously and not trying so hard to be her daughter’s “friend”. Too many parents are in denial of what’s out there. Parents need to be parents first. Hats off ReShonda.

  82. I agree w these actions! Keep up the good work! I caught my daughter talking to a gentleman online one time, who she thought was a teenager. Come to find out, it was a grown a$$ man that lived in Pittsburgh. He was planning to come here to meet w she and her cousin. I took her to the cold dark basement, made her take her clothes off and taped her to the post and taped her mouth too! By the time the hour was up, she knew what it felt like to be abducted. She has her own daughter now and understands that we do what we do because we love them, not because we are CRAZY!

  83. I think you did the right thing. I just wish we had more parents who care. I check my 17 year old son’s fb page all the time and let him know when there is a kid who has too much of a filthy mouth or posting inappropriately on his page. My son doesn’t post much and uses more for the spread of his business (recording music) than anything else. He respects what I say and understands why I say it. Keep up the good work. I could tell in the picture that she was upset so I think it is the best.

  84. This is awesome. I’m not a parent, but having been a teenager who mucked about with social media a little too young – I can totally see where you’re coming from. 10 points love!

  85. Good Job mom. Every year they have a convo. in my small town school about safe internet use with 7th & 8th graders. The princepal tols me that cyber-sexual behavior goes up after these convocations among this age group.

    If more mom’s did this do you think there daughters would think twice about posting body parts that only husbands should see. I think so. Obviously the schools and CPS can’t do what only parents can.

    Take not all mom’s- You are responsable for teaching your daughters to respect themselves. We are to teach them how their choices today will lead to consequences tomarrow and good choices gets good consequences.

  86. Since, you’re a good parent….DON’T HAVE LIQUOR IN YOUR HOUSE!
    Set the example and live it!

    • Chris….there are plenty of good parents in this world that have liquor in their homes. That is like saying, “If you’re a good parent, don’t lie. If you’re a good parent, don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink. If you’re a good parent, always pick up after yourself. If you’re a good parent, don’t ever skip church.” Why don’t you save the judging of other parents and what they choose to do in their own home, their business.

      • I think there’s a big difference between an adult (well over the legal drinking age) having liquor in their home & a 12 year old posting a picture holding a bottle of vodka.
        When she’s 21+ she can post pictures of liquor on her social media site. ;)

  87. When I first heard about this a couple of weeks ago, I wondered how to track the mom down and shake her by the hand! Then I saw the article on The Daily Mail.

    Well done ReShonda – I love what was quoted in the The Daily Mail: “The mother of three said that she wants to be their ‘mama, not their friend’ and will do everything she can to make sure they grow up to be productive members of society.”

    I couldn’t agree more. You had set your boundaries, and she crossed the line, in public. Why not deal with it, in public? I get it.

    Well done Mom – so glad common sense parenting seems to be making a resurgence.

  88. You rock Mom and in my opinion you have done the right thing. How you raise your child and to what norms and moral standards is YOUR business and not the new age freaks who bellow about privacy and scarring and all the new age junk sprouting around. People are trying to psycho analyze every situation surrounding the raising of children. Rubbish!!! Good old fashioned parenting like you have done is the way to go…and in a few years time she will look back and THANK YOU for the way you raising her. I also had an occassion with my own daughter and although there was no facebook or instagram then…I did something very similar….AND I DONT REGRET IT NOW 10 YEARS ON. Today my daughter is a responsible young adult and member of society. Whilst they live under your roof and you pay the bills ….then you make the rules. There should be more parents like you.

  89. I have three teenage boys ages 14, 16, and 18 and they have no privacy until they are out of my house. I have all facebook accounts and I check they regularly. If they have something I don’t like I delete it. I agree with you.

  90. milissa garcia

    Good for you!

  91. Good for you! This is what a good parent does: invokes consequences for bad behavior. Much better for her to do this at 12 and learn from it than to make this mistake at 27 and haver perhaps a greater and more serious consequence.

    She may not feel like it now, but she will thank you later when she can look back with perspective. My children did.

  92. You are one amazing woman! I applaud you for taking a stand on this issue and assuming your responsibility as a caring and concerned mother. Fear not, one day your daughter will thank you for caring so much in your effort to help her become a responsible adult.

  93. LOVE the story! Has to be a Southern woman :) More parents should act like PARENTS and not FRIENDS! I only became a friend to my children after they were grown, but never forgetting, or letting them forget, that I am still the parent. (added note: I tried to go to Reshonda’s website, and it wouldn’t work. Kept giving messages that there was a problem connecting to the website, and I really wanted to see it). You GOOOO ReShonda!!! Keep up the good work and you will have 3 wonderful people to add to the adult world.

  94. YAY you! I did something similar in Dec 2011. Set it to music and made a video out of it. http://youtu.be/Nnzms5Fh9KI

    • The crime? Lying about creating a FB account when she was told she was too young to have one. The punishment? A FB post about her crime.

      Humiliation? No, it is about clearly defining the rules and roles in a parenting relationship. My child just ended up with an overly creative parent.

  95. Sue Schilling

    I am a mom in this technology age. I agree totally with punishing like this. In keeping track of media I not only have full access to passwords, but I have cell phones set up with gps so I can locate where my older daughter is at all times. I also have it set up where I can read every text message that is sent or received with her phone. We are not just fighting people in town anymore, now it is the entire world we have to watch out for.

  96. Go for it! I say “Hoorah for you!” I have never understoond the parents who say, “I just didn’t realize she was talking to the ‘boy’ who turned out to be a 45 year old creep stalker man and now she’s dead.” What? My girls (16 and 13) know that if I can’t log on to their facebook or email account at any time then they don’t have the luxury anymore in our house. You are 100% correct in the fact that until you turn 18, you don’t have any say in what goes on in my house, especially when it comes to your safety and well being. Good for you. I applaude you and would probably have done the same thing.

  97. The thing that struck me the most is when you said “You have to know your child. I wouldn’t do this to my middle child…” I LOVE hearing from parents who actually realize that all discipline doesn’t fit all children.

    My kids are 11, 14, 16, 17 & 20 and we have yet to have any issues with social media. We are very open and honest about things like this, and use bad decisions by others as an example of what NOT to do.

    Good job momma:)

  98. You are a great Mom! Thank you for acting as you did. If more parents would stop being the “friend” and become the parent then this world might be a little bit better.

  99. I too recently disciplined my 8 year old son this way but I didn’t post the picture. Him thinking that I sent it on facebook and to my family was enough to send him groveling. He knows better than to act up and when he found out I didn’t put it on facebook, he called me out on it and I told him that every one in the family knew about what he did, he just said “OH”, I told him that next time he did something that he knew was wrong, the whole world would know about it. Kudos to moms out there taking a stand with their kids. This social media thing is too much for them to handle and understand the consequences it has when things are posted. When we get a computer and he has access, I too will be monitoring every thing he does online until he’s 18 years old and gone out of my house.

  100. Mom failed miserably, instead of making a teachable moment mom chose to humiliate daughter and you wonder why kid resents mom! just saying!

    • Agreed.

      Not only that, but now this young girl can be laughed at and made to look like an idiot in front of all her peers (oh and the ENTIRE world!)
      No probs though, Mom says its ok to mock her own daughter publicly.
      Go kids, time to hit her where it hurts, everyone’s ok with it!

      NOT a good parenting tactic.
      YES it works, so would have beating the hell out of her.
      NO these disciplinary techniques are not actually a good idea.

      I can see it now, the child psychologist says, Have you tried embarrassing her entire teen life by posting embarrassing pics on social media?
      Well no actually :/ Wouldn’t that be devastating for her? I mean it would nearly kill her!
      Oh yes, I suppose it would. But EVERYONE agrees with it.

      Just shows how backward our society still is :(

  101. Parents do not have the right to intrude in the life of their children. They have the responsibility to respond to their needs for guidance since very early years and model for them appropirate choices so the child and adolescent can make good choices for themselves. Inapropriate teen behavior is an indication that those needs have not been timely met as needed.
    S. M.

    • Also agreed.

      I hope this child is able to sue her parents if the rest of her teenage years are full of taunts and jokes pointed at this innocent young girl.

      This type of life intrusion is extremely big for a child. If you are not seen as cool on social media, but rather the butt of a cruel joke, it can (and likely will) be devastating.

      Quite obviously MOST people still enjoy the ‘kick him/her when they’re down tactic’ Just as her school age peers are about to begin on her.
      Some (actually a lot) of adults never grow up. This Mom is a bully IMO.

      • Christine Crane

        IDIOT! KIMSLAND You obviously are not a parent. and if you are watchout your doomed.

        • If she one day commits suicide over this, with inevitable further cyber bullying that everyone’s agreed upon, should I write back with, I told you so? Or would that be in bad taste to post online?

  102. I commend you, you’re actually being a parent that shows your children their are limits, their is an expected behavior, and that they will respect you. Respect is different than fear. People who think that talking solves everything are delusional. Like you said, we may not be the best parents, and we may not be perfect, but I’ll be damned if I let my kids run the show.

  103. ReShonda, you are my new hero!

  104. I applaud you for going down the “I’m your mother not your friend” route and do believe that every parent has the right to discipline their kids however they see fit aslong as it’s not physically abusing them, as that solves nothing. But at some stage over the next few years love your daughter will start to test the boundaries more and more as do most teens…usually because of a mixture of hormones and peer pressure.

    At some point a parent realises the OTT strictness will fail to work because they will rebel regardless if not in front of you then behind your back getting up to all sorts which is worse. The best you can do as a parent is warn them thoroughly, be there for them and let them make their own mistakes as it’s part of growing up / realising what it takes to become a responsible adult. If warnings and banned priveliges fail then so be it- let them make those mistakes and recoup whatever the consequences of it- that is the way they ultimately learn. To humiliate is never a good idea in the long run because all it does is harbour yet more resentment from them for you which will usually backfire in more ways than one as the years go by. From a UK mum of 3 children aged 7, 18 and 19.

  105. I think you did a wonderful job. As a mom and Step-mom I would do the same in a heart beat. nothing wrong with keeping your kids in line. That is your job as a parent. and those who disagree are prob the same people who put their kids on youtube singing nasty songs and thinking it’s cute.

  106. “She begged for a spanking”?

    Quite obviously spankings are not uncommon in that young girl’s home either.
    So lets be clear here:
    Mom will embarrass own daughter publicly for punishment
    Daughter receives spankings so often that she even asks for it
    A 12yo social media site is her world, now fully disrupted over a joke!?
    Internet postings last > FOREVER.

    Yes way to go Mom, I wonder can you watch your daughter for signs of suicide as well. Although you’d need to be a caring Mother for that (too).

    Tough love? More like destroyed life. So which school doesn’t have kids that are on Facebook again? Oh wait none! Poor girl will be teased for her whole teen life (12 at the moment though!) Oh and with her Mom’s blessings. Come on kids start the attack, even her Mom is in on it.

    Idiots!

    • kimsland – I think we all know you’re 12 years old OR ‘stuck in your tweens’ – lol….your posts are hilarious. “A destroyed life?”….yes, I definitely KNOW you’re 12.

  107. I A-B-S-O-L-U-T-E-L-Y LOOOOOOOOVE IT!!!!!! Oh and she was crying, she wasn’t crying when she was posing with MR. VODKA. I applaud you for doing it, be intrusive because even the sweetest ones have something to hide. ALWAYS!

  108. Very well done! Children don’t understand the idea of permanence of photos shared on the internet or social media and how it can affect them in the future. She’ll thank you for the discipline later. My husband and I are expecting our first child today and we’ve already decided what is and is not allowed on social media and we’ll talk to him about it when the time comes. Parents need to be parents, not best friends. I applaud you!

    • A young girl’s best friend would never be so cruel to post humiliating pictures of her best friend on a social media site.
      That would be devastating, possibly something your worst enemy would do.

      A parent is not a cop. Parents CARE for their children, quite obviously this Mom in question doesn’t.
      Destroying (or attempting to destroy) a young girl’s online social media, is like Internet suicide. This poor young girl is going to be bullied online or at school for possibly years to come. All because her own Mom is a non-caring bully herself.

      • Kimsland get over your bitterness, overly sensitive about this matter the mother did what needed to be done. The child did not care about embarrassing her parents because essentially that is who most people look at when children make mistakes “THE PARENTS”. So with that being said MIND YOUR BUSINESS…..Keep the negativity to yourself

      • Christine Crane

        Your an idiot if you continue to believe this mom did the wrong thing. I would love to see how your social butterflies turn out.

      • Christine Crane

        The last comment was for kimsland or fantasy land

      • Harassment and cyber bullying is not something to just get over.
        This mom is not exempt from that. I hope the child sues the mom for all she has.

  109. LOVE IT! You’re teaching your daughter right. For every action there is a consequence. I applaude you!

  110. I commend this mom! The very few (and i repeat very few) who had negative feedback to this post goes to show where parenting is going wrong. One parent hoped that the girl in the future sued her mom, are you serious? How ridiculous! Not only did this mom get the point across to her child her child has become an advocate for educating other children about social media sharing. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being involved in your childs life and knowing how she is sharing her life with others. A childs reputation is easily damaged and once it is there is no way especially in smaller towns to repair it. So even if the child was embarrased by her mothers punishment, at least her child has a better chance with thinking twice before doing something thar can scar her reputation forever which would bring her a lot worse ridicule than this would ever bring her and for a lot longer period of time. On another comment it said as to why we have moved on past paddling and other forms of punishment, i believe different forms of punishment work for different children and as this mom showed she knew that, but i dont believe we have moved on past these punishments i believe some socialand even some political bodies have made it somewhat socially unacceptable to punish in sime forms and as one of the previous parent comments encourage children to sue their parents (simplt appauling!!!)

    • Note, spanking is NOT universal. Thankfully it has been fully banned in some countries.
      Inflicting pain and fear (and embarrassment!) on young girls, is not actually a good punishment ever. It is cold, mean and hurtful, unless you feel husbands of wives should be allowed the same courtesy?

      Parents are not above the law when it comes to cyber bullying and harassment online.
      For a young child born into the social media online, it IS their social life, if we like it or not. It would be the same as publicly yelling abuse to your child at a sporting match, actually worse because now the entire world (mostly) think this innocent young girl deserves this embarrassment.

      The majority does not always have the right beliefs, history has shown that.
      This girl has been given the all go for others to continue abuse towards her online. The mom is all for it, and so are you!

      • Kimsland,

        With all due respect, you are part of the problem. I suppose, in theory, a parent could be liable for cyber-bullying…such a case would be rare, and this wouldn’t qualify…not even close.

        You refer to the “innocent young girl”….when you say “innocent” you imply she’s done nothing wrong…nothing could be further from the truth.

        “Inflicting” common sense on a youngster is ALWAYS a good idea. Youth today don’t say please or thank you, they dont rise when elders enter the room, they dont say yes sir or yes mam…as was the case not all that long ago. The reason we don’t see respect from children is because we don’t teach them to respect others nor do we teach them to respect themselves….apparently though, we’ve taught them it’s ok to sue their parents…Congratulations. What a great world that will make.

        In 10 years we can compare notes on how your children advanced in life under your parenting ‘skills’ for lack of a better word, to how RaShonda’s children advanced in life….I have zero doubt as to how that will turn out.

  111. Christine Crane

    Praise God a mother who knows what she is doing. We are in different times. Our children were intrusted to us as parents to raise by God correctly. We are answerable to God for how they turn out. God did not intrust the schools, churches or many people with so called good intentions on the internet to raise them. All the power to you for a job well done. If the story had read differently, like child posts on the internet her preferance for drinking and was killed by etoh induced accident . The world would be all over this mother.But instead she corrects her child because she loves her and she is called abusive. Get a grip!

    • Yes Allah should be happy with this result, didn’t he also abuse young girls?
      Oh you are speaking of that other fictitious prophet of the fairytale lord. Here’s a heads up, the entire universe evolved naturally 13.7billion years ago (at least) and still continues to do so today. You have no soul (nor does anyone obviously).

      Don’t leave it up to your fantasy god to help you, try to grow up and guide your children maturely. This mom is no worse than any other cyber bully that intentionally wants to cause pain to a child online. I think the girl has a good case in court. Note god won’t be attending to protect her from that either!

      • Denene@MyBrownBaby

        OMG, Kimsland, we get it: You don’t agree with the way this mother punished her daughter. Thank you for all of your comments, but really, your ranting up and down the comment section probably won’t change all that many minds. Can we please agree to disagree?

        Thanks.

        The Management.

  112. Awesome!!!
    Too many parents are afraid to parent. Too many parents think their child is suppose to dictate the flow of things. My parents brought me up with the ‘where you show out at is where you get it.” I wasn’t online but they definitely got on my behind. Then I was not happy. Today, I can proudly say I am. They did what was necessary to save my life. Proverbs 23:13

    Children today are crying-begging for discipline while the parent is trying to buy them something or reason with them….Ummmhumm yeah.

    j

  113. Dear Mom,
    I was so impressed that your approach to punishing your child was so on point. Your child has by now fully comprehended the power of online comments. You are a wise and mature mother. Hip but not by any means a “buddy” to your daughter. It is all parents jobs to guide, teach and yes, control the actions of our children. Do not be discouraged by the naysayers. Your discipline was both fair and instructive.As my own mother said to me many times,”You’ll thank me someday”, and believe me I have.Continue to love your daughter enough to correct her.

  114. Bad Parenting? Really? Bad parenting is the idiot who stuck his kid in the washing machine at the laundromat. What ReShonda did is just the opposite! We are PARENTS, not their friends, not their buddies, and if more parents behaved as this mom did, we would have fewer societal problems. I grew up in the era when that type of parenting was just beginning to surface, and I remember my parents telling me, “I’m your mother/father, not your friend, so I don’t really care if you don’t like me.” Too many people are afraid their kids won’t like them, and that’s a shame. What they need to be concerned about is whether or not their children RESPECT them. ReShonda’s daughter will, no doubt :-)

  115. Congratulations on being a GREAT Mom!

  116. You hit the nail on the head with the comment about not trying to be their friend! I never tried to be my daughter’s friend either. I was her parent. Funny thing is…..now I am her friend! She grew up to be a very smart and wise person. So will your children!
    When she got mad at me at times, (which they get over very quickly) I would always tell her to add that reason to her list of things to tell her therapist one day when she was having to see one because I had “ruined” her life. Today she thanks me for being the parent I was.
    You are doing a good job and she will thank you one day!

  117. I knew your name looked familiar!! I love your books and I admire what you did with your daughter. I bet she has even more respect and admiration for you than ever before. I’m 28 and my mom would’ve done the same thing when I was younger. Keep doing what you do, and keep writing! May the Lord bless you and your family.

  118. Awesome is what I say! Sounds like what I would do.. If you don’t want to be embarrassed, then don’t do anything that I would embarrass you for. That’s what’s wrong with kids, they don’t have any emotions because society says we should coddle our kids delicate emotions. If you don’t make a child feel emotion then they won’t have any. They should feel shame or embarrassment when they do something wrong, they should feel compassion when they see someone that needs their compassion, they should learn respect or be punished for the lack of it.. For those that have negative things to say either don’t have children or their kids are disrespectful, hateful, and out of control and they don’t know it.. Those kids act innocent in front of mom and the second she turns her back, well, you know how they act..

  119. I applaud your decision. Too many parents make excuses for their children’s behavior, often sweeping it under the rug with statements like “kids will be kids” or “well they can still get it from their friends”. Just because they are kids or can get it from friends does not absolve us as parents from doing our jobs to teach our children morals and values that will last a lifetime, versus taking the easy way out. Our children don’t understand how people will exploit them and potentially try to hurt them by what they post on social media. Keep up the great work! I needed to see this article today. I have a niece that I am caring for and this is area that I am currently dealing with, not understanding boundaries of social media. She will be reading this tonight!

  120. I applaud you. In a social media world, where our children are growing up with cell phones attached to their ears, texting 24 hours a day and computers available anywhere and everywhere, you must connect with them on their level. Although social media can be a good thing, we are starting to see more and more how dangerous it can also be. With pedophiles, cyber bullying, kids spying on each other and all the gossip that spreads faster than wildfire, it is nice to see a parent and child connect and undersand the reprecussions a picture could have. Hats off to you and your daughter for getting it! Thank you!

  121. This appears to be nothing more that an attempt by ReShonda Tate Billingsley top use her daughter to self promote and get her name out as an author. Shameless.
    Further, publicly embarassing someone as punishment is asinine, especially if it’s a first offence. If the child chronically abuses and fails to follow established guidelines, I can see how the punishment would escalate to public shame. But this?? I ain’t buying it. Just a calculated sham by a second rate writer to gain attention.

  122. First, let me tell you this….
    I would have “spanked” her AND posted the picture. She would have gotten the whooping for touching the alcohol in the first place (cause I’m sure she obviously knows better), posted the picture (to help re-enforcement of the betrayal of trust you showed her) and revoked the privleges (due to the lack of maturity she showed).

    NOW…..

    I’m old school, not old. I’m a married African-American father of two girls. I had to have a similar kind of punishment in regards to my eldest, but it was about passing inappropriate notes in school. When it first happened, I talked to her and told her it was inappropriate behavior and why we don’t do that.

    Then we went to conferences, and the teacher broke out a note she had written that day. A week after our talk.
    So I had to embarass her. I didn’t want to, but just like you, the ‘laying on of hands’ doesn’t work all the time because they know it’s only a temporary punishment.

    So, i told her grandparents…..our Pastor…..Godparents…..everyone who is influential in her life.

    Haven’t had that problem again, and had an excellent year in school!

    Keep up the hard work, and don’t listen to these ‘haters’ that tell you that you are scarring YOUR BABY when they aren’t raising her.

  123. As an educator, I applaud your decision. This was not abuse or humiliation, this was taking responsibility for your actions. If you had said “I am too stupid to use Instagram” or chosen other words to put her down, perhaps. The FACT is that she demonstrated that she was not ready to handle the responsibility of Social Media. The NUMBER ONE thing that I see as a teacher today is that children are being raised to place the blame on someone else, that the rules do not apply to them, and that they should not have to deal with the consequences of their choices. It is not Old School Parenting or New School Parenting, it is just Good Parenting and you deserve all of the support and recognition that you get from it. I will be mentioning it on this week’s CTRL-ALT-DELiver Podcast at http://netcaststudio.com/ctrl-alt-deliver/ because it IS important to teach our children the right way to handle tech. Thank you!

  124. Hello, Im not sure you will ever see this comment, there are so many. But Im going to leave it anyways. I completely and totally agree with you. When my daughter asked for a Myspace page I told her that she would have to give me all her passwords and I would be checking all the time. I also told her that she was not allowed to make friends online. Never. Only people she knew already. Is it not our job to protect our children and help them grow up to be good human beings. I dont agree with anyone who says you were invading her privacy. Privacy is a privilege. Not a right.

  125. I’m a 20 year old young woman with, in my opinion, the best mother on the face of the planet & I’m sure if she saw this article she would give you two thumbs up!! Children are not fragile creatures that need to be coddled & babied. They need discipline. They CRAVE discipline! My mother spanked me when I needed it, used time-out when I was younger, & embarrassed me when I needed it & I love her for it. Now I’m 20 years old, going to college & working. I know exactly what I want in life, exactly where I want to go, & I have the self-control & self-discipline to get myself there. Meanwhile I’m watching people my age & older wandering around in the dark, screwing up their life – people who bragged about their “cool parents” in high school. My mother was never my buddy & never tried to be the “cool” mom, but she is the best mom I’ve ever seen.

    I think you’re a good mom too.

    When your daughter is 20 she won’t hate you or be scarred from her punishment. She’ll appreciate the values & common sense you instilled in her. When I was younger I didn’t always get it, but mom always did what she thought was best & didn’t worry about the people that said she was too harsh. No parent is perfect, but I think parents that use discipline correctly are better then the rest. :)

    God bless.

  126. I too was brought up in the age of old school parenting. My mother had me in her late 30s, I was raised with my grandmother who had a way of talking about you to your face to correct your behavior but as a kid made you feel really small. My family did not play because relatives also had the opportunity to discipline me and my mom was so involved in community things that if people saw me on the other side of town with friends i’d walk in the door and be asked “why were you over …?”

    I had zero privacy. I grew up the better for it because people cared about what I was doing. I meant something to someone and when I got old enough they peanut gallery backed off. I feel like these new age parents make things hard for everyone else.

    If this new age parenting worked out so well why are we hearing about young adults going to trial for misusing social media and online tools for invasion of privacy… for cyber bullying? Why is the fear of “sexting” in teens and tweens so rampant? The way you pry into a 13 year old’s life is very different from the way you pry into an 18 year old’s life.

    Privacy didn’t officially begin until I was old enough to buy my own cell phone with my money.. or as my grandmother once told me when i wanted to know about the price of something that needed repair “When your purse is carrying 20s and 50s you can know more.” There is a clear definition of child and adult. People aren’t making that definition as clear anymore, I think.

  127. God Bless you ReShonda! Your daughter is very lucky to have a Mom like you! :-)

  128. Monique Green

    This just gives me the horrors. This is abuse. Public humiliation is no way to earn respect or build a healthy relationship with a child. Adolescence is hard enough without having your confidence eroded like this. Perhaps you might like to ask yourself some questions about why your baby is drinking. My mother was like you, had no respect for me as a person, was hard and controlling and did not nurture the tiny seed of adult inside me. When I was good, and I was a good kid, there was no praise. When I made a mistake, and people DO make mistakes, especially young people, she was ruthless and there were no limits to what she’d do. I loathed her, and now live 16000 miles from her and it’s not far enough.

    Ask yourself if that’s what you want for your future.

  129. I believe in this case what the mother did was what was needed…This little girl perception of alcohol is toxic at the age of 12.…In the caption of her pic she stated “Wish I could drink this Vodka”. So before this would actually become a bigger issue in the future I totally agree with this mothers approach. Yes it’s embarrassing to the child now but I believe this young lady will see how much her mother loves and cares for her and the discipline she received probably saved her from future problems and as a bonus I know she’ll think twice before posting something she knows could get her in trouble. Proverbs 19:18
    Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death.

  130. Hats off to you for being a good mom and teaching your child a lesson she won’t forget… and needed to learn. Our job as parents is to teach our children how to become good responsible adults, teach them right from wrong, and that actions have consequences. You did just that. Way to go!

  131. Hello ReShonda
    I am in Australia and I am a social work student. Recently, our media had a photograph of a child holding a sign during a demonstration in Sydney. That photo also went viral. When adults write slogans for children to hold or ask children to copy out statements for public display, are we using our power appropriately? And what of the child’s right to privacy?
    Signs are but bits of ink-splotched paper. What came home to me was that your daughter seemed to be crying.
    Jenny

  132. My daughter is 16. I don’t know how to check her social medias. There is no way in hell she will accept me as a friend. She won’t delete anything she posts, she will use someone else’s phone at school or something if I take hers, she will make up another page, she will go to whatever extremes to keep the drama going. My question is, how do u get them away from it all? I hear from her friends parents that she posts awful things. WAKE And BAKE!! So am I supposed to assume she’s getting high? If she is then what?? She claims everything is s song….I’m not stupid.

  133. And passwords?? Yea right. I’m a single parent at my wits end!! Age slanders me on Twitter I’m sure. It’s heart breaking and sad that ur child would do those things and say nasty things on these sites about ur mother. I don’t have an account. I don’t really like that type stuff. How do I cut it off???

  134. Go you!! I am a grandmother and a dance educator for 40 years! I wish more parents were like you, but sadly, they are not. More and more want to be friends and popular with their kids. NO!!! Be a parent for God’s sake!! Good for you!

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