Counselors say prevent, before gets to Facebook parenting point

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - A dad in North Carolina shoots his daughter's laptop computer after reading her online post.

He expresses his frustration with his daughter in a video posted on YouTube.

"It was an involved parent, probably a little over the top with the gun I think," said Tender Hearts Child Therapy Center Counselor Jeanie Dale.

"I think he took it a little too far," said teen William Popp.

"It might have been his most effective way of dealing with it, but it's not really teaching a child how to handle problems effectively," said Community Counseling Center Counselor Audrey Burger.

"We have to remember were models for our kids even when we're angry," said Dale.

Burger says it's important to make sure the situation doesn't reach that extreme point. She says communication is key.

"The communication between a parent and a child is crucial especially at an adolescent age," said Burger. "Adolescents need to know they don't need to be afraid of their parents. That they can come and talk to them about anything."

"Take a few minutes to check in with them, see if there's anything bothering them," said Dale. "Seeing if there's something they want to tell you, and just giving them the message that you're there for them."

"You have to be a friend," said Mother Joy Burnette. "You have to be a parent and a friend, be there be there for them, let them know you're there for them. Let them know that they can come to you for anything."

"We'll have talks," said Popp. "We'll sit down and talk and make sure everything's ok."

"Evidently the child had some issues she needed to discuss with her parents," said Burger.

But sometimes parents wonder how to keep those lines of communication open.

"Be available," said Burger. "This may sound corny, but I'm a big believer in sitting down with your children and having meals together."

"Don't bring your cell phone to the table you don't answer the phone while you're having that meal then you can sit and have that if you make that a habit in your home, then that is a time for communication," said Dale.

Both counselors say not just communication, but positive communication is important.

"Give a positive statement," said Burger. "Tell them when they're doing stuff right, don't always stick onto bad things that they do, or the wrong things that they do. Catch them when they're doing something positive and tell them good job."

"People we see everyday, our families and stuff, sometimes we take that for granted and we don't stop and say thank you for doing that," said Dale.

The counselors also suggest monitoring your kids' Internet activity.

"The computer stuff, it's dangerous for kids, so they need to be monitored," said Burger.

"All the technology that's available to our kids we have to be involved, and we have to know what they're doing," said Dale.

"I have to be friends with my mom on Facebook, that way she can see everything I post," said Popp.

"I don't think I could have shot my daughters laptop, but I truly believe a parent has the right to know what's going on in their child's life," said Burnette.

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