These days, dating and hookup apps and websites like Craigslist Personals alternatives are becoming more and more of trend, and they are a great help for many, especially for those who are looking for a partner – whether short-term or long-term. While they serve their purpose, however, they may not be very much appropriate for kids and teens.
You can see this that with the internet made easily available and highly accessible for many, it’s not impossible for kids or teens to access dating and hookup apps and websites. While most of these platforms have strict 18+ age limit, there are hardly any precise age verification method to confirm the users’ age. Because of this, it’s very important for parents to monitor their children. If your 18+ teen is using these sites, however, you as a parent still need to guide them.
Initiate the “Talk”
It may not be easy to open a topic that’s as sensitive as online dating or casual sex, but it’s highly important especially with the fact that teens generally are still inexperienced. You can start the conversation by sharing how you’ve read something and asking what they think about it. Listen attentively and make sure to make your teen feel that he or she is being heard. This way, your teen will not think twice about sharing his or her thoughts and being honest. Also, make sure to clearly explain the risks of meeting strangers and emphasize that these online platforms are originally made for adults.
Encourage Same-Age Relationship
Since most dating and hookup apps and websites like Craigslist Personals alternatives are generally meant for adults, your teen will most likely encounter adults while using these platforms. For this reasons, it’s important for you to warn your teen about adult interaction. Sexual communication with an underage is a criminal offense, so let your teen know that adults who want to open the topic of sex are breaking the law. This way, you can protect your child from sexual exploitation by adults.
It’s better to encourage your teen to connect with their peers or at least, teens of their age, instead. Although they could still be strangers, the risk of exploitation is not as high as with adults.
Introduce Some Safe Craigslist Personals Alternatives
Although Craigslist Personals, the hookup category of Craigslist, one of the most popular classified ads websites, has been removed, there are still some safe Craigslist Personals alternatives that you can recommend to your teen.
Wild is a dating app for singles who are looking for people to hook up with. What makes Wild safe is its photo verification system that helps people ensure that they’re meeting the same person they met online.
Her is a dating platform meant for lesbians or bisexual women. Since this platform is specifically meant for females, men aren’t allowed to join.
Lucky is meant for both adults and young adults. It’s preferred by many because it offers safety and anonymity.
As you discuss with your teen about online dating or dating in general, make sure to keep safety as the first and foremost priority. Also, make sure to guide your teen in choosing a safe Craigslist Personals alternatives to use for his or her endeavor.