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Is older better? Re My little cousin and Myspace

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I've got a follow up question if you will regarding my post from a few weeks back when I found my 13 year old cousin on myspace saying she was 17. Here is the post if you want to read it: http://thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=144739

I eventually sent my Aunt an e-mail about it. Here is the relevant part of the e-mail I sent her:
Quote:
I’m writing to be a tattle I guess. I don’t know if you know that she has one or not, but I found ********'s Myspace page. That’s ok because her site is not too bad and her pictures are decent and everything (I’ve seen several kids her age where they are dressing and posing way to sexy for their pics!!) but she has on there that she’s 17. So I thought I should let you know, in case that gets her in a bad situation. I really don’t see anything wrong with her having a page. I think you have to be 14 to have a page, so she could have put 17 for that reason, but really she’s almost 14 anyway, why go up so many years? I’d rather she not know that I’ve looked at her page and talked to you about it. I’m sure at her age she’ll not see it as something that could get her or someone else in a sticky situation and I’ll just look evil. And Gram is always saying how ******(my cousin) just yells at the kids so I thought you’d be the better one to just let know she has a page at this point.


Here is my Aunt's reply:
Quote:
Thanks for the info. I did know she listed herself as 17, thinking that older always seems better. I've have pleanty of discussions with her about the internet and people using it.
don't believe to much of what Gram says about ****(my cousin). ***** does not yell all the time. You have to understand that Gram is not the same person she used to be. right now she is paranoid and very bitter. She finds anything to complain or argue about. There is no changing it, her mind is slowly going unfortunatley not very pleasant for us.
Take Care - Aunt ****


So my question, is saying she's older better? Parents please chime in.

I'm working on a reply e-mail now. I can see where saying she's older might help keep people who specifically prey on young girls away, but I just see the ones who think she's so much closer to being a legal age as a bigger threat. I'm deffinately glad to hear my Aunt does talk to her about dangers online.

Here is what I have so far:
Quote:
Hmm… I guess I can see saying she’s older as a way of keeping people who search for younger girls away, but I guess I just see someone thinking she’s much closer to a legal age as a bigger threat. I know people always thought I was older than I was, and since I always liked the older guys, I didn’t mind that one bit. Not that I ever even spent any time with anyone or anything. Then there was ****** (my step-sister) who almost got her boyfriend arrested for statutory rape because he was 18 and she was about 13 or 14 at the time. I guess I’ve just seen and heard a lot of stories about stuff like that happening versus people being approached because they were younger. A friend’s sister claimed older on purpose and it didn’t end too well for her. (Meaning she met an older guy online when she was 15, he thought she was older, and ended up getting them both in trouble).


Anything else I should add you think? I'm not touching the yelling thing...should never have said that in the first place but it's too late now. Should I suggest that my cousin's daughter at least make her page private, so only her friends can see her page? I know I've never updated my age with myspace, so in a few months, it will say she's 18 unless she can change her age or makes a new page then.


And on a side note, I did not appreciate the way she said that about Gram. I know Gram is not who she used to be. I might live several states away, but I talk to her all the time and I've witnessed one of her fits. But still, she is not that far gone. And I have in fact witnessed my cousin snap at her kids (meaning without warning start screaming at them for some little thing, like they didn't get their coat on fast enough.). But I can see her defending her daughter too. I know my Aunt knows my cousin has not made the best choices. I guess I just touched one of many wrong cords there. Don't get me wrong, I love my aunt to death, but sometimes she can be hard and stubborn as a stone.

post #2 of 22
I thought that Myspace had a special side area for youngsters so that they were more protected and made it harder to become 'friends' with strangers. If that's true maybe she made herself older to avoid that.
post #3 of 22
I do not have an opion as to showing that they are older or younger on there. As long as the parent is involved and knows what is going on and keeping an eye on their child on the internet I don't really see an issue. Now.. My nephews both have myspace pages and the younger ones page says he is 15 though he is only 12. When I asked him about it, he told me that you have to be 15 to have a myspace so they put the age up higher so they can see their friends too. That's just what he told me though. Hope I was of some help.
post #4 of 22
I don't see how putting her age as older is going to help anything. IMO I don't think she should even be allowed to have a MySpace page because of all the predators out there. That's just my opinion though.
post #5 of 22
Well, I can see the point of putting the age higher to deter child molesters, that that could also open up a whole new can of worms. A lot of it depends on your cousin. If she is just using myspace to keep in touch with her friends, that is one thing, but if she is on there to meet new people too, that could cause some problems. Espescially if she can pass for 17 or 18.

A guy I know was actually arrested and spent jail time because he met a girl on the internet who said she was 19. He had a one night stand (yeah, crummy thing to do) and when he didn't want to see her again, she had him arrested for rape. He is now a registered sex offender because she was only 15 and because of that he can't find a decent job. Not that I think your cousin would do anything like that, but a minor passing herself for older than she is can cause problems you can't even imagine.

It's good that an adult is involved and knows what is going on though. I do see her point about "older is better"...and she may be right. As long as she keeps an eye on what your cousin is doing, and you cousin changes her age so that she isn't showing 18 when the time comes, hopefully it will be fine.
post #6 of 22
I'll admit that I don't know a lot about myspace, but perhaps she has some friends that are on there that are older and if she lists her appropriate age she's cut off from them?

still I would ask how "being older" Is better
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelh1018 View Post
I don't see how putting her age as older is going to help anything. IMO I don't think she should even be allowed to have a MySpace page because of all the predators out there. That's just my opinion though.
Predators can get to people of any age, on any webpage, myspace, facebook, livejournal or any of the millions of them out there and even just on the playground or at the park. Saying someone shouldn't have a myspace because of predators out there, is like saying you should not walk out your front door because you might slip on a banana peel, or you shouldn't go to the park because their might be a predator there. You just need to be smart, alert and aware of things. It also all depends on this particular girl.

On myspace, the reason someone younger would put their age as older, I guarentee you, is because if you put under 14, no one can view your page. If you want to see your friends pages and let them see yours, you have to set your age on there as over 14 years old. That is sort of the point. I am sure (but again it depends on this particular girl) that she just wants to have a fun place for her and her friends to post comments and pictures and to talk to each other and tell jokes and blog, like any 14 year old, that is what they do...
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by calico2222 View Post
Well, I can see the point of putting the age higher to deter child molesters, that that could also open up a whole new can of worms. A lot of it depends on your cousin. If she is just using myspace to keep in touch with her friends, that is one thing, but if she is on there to meet new people too, that could cause some problems. Espescially if she can pass for 17 or 18.

A guy I know was actually arrested and spent jail time because he met a girl on the internet who said she was 19. He had a one night stand (yeah, crummy thing to do) and when he didn't want to see her again, she had him arrested for rape. He is now a registered sex offender because she was only 15 and because of that he can't find a decent job. Not that I think your cousin would do anything like that, but a minor passing herself for older than she is can cause problems you can't even imagine.

It's good that an adult is involved and knows what is going on though. I do see her point about "older is better"...and she may be right. As long as she keeps an eye on what your cousin is doing, and you cousin changes her age so that she isn't showing 18 when the time comes, hopefully it will be fine.
That is exactly where my biggest fears are.


My Mom and I just had a lengthy discussion about it. Her take is that my Aunt is esseintially telling me to mind my own business and that I should probably just drop it. She thinks I did the right thing in seeing that my Aunt knew, but now it's on my Aunt. She said to maybe talk to my other Aunt (their brother's wife) to see what she says. Not that it will make a direct difference, but she knows how my Aunt is.
post #9 of 22
IMO I don't CARE whether the kids think you should put you are older just to have a page. The point is that if they are that young and there is an age limit for MySpace to post, then the kids should be abiding to it. There's a REASON why its a certain age.

Too many times you have sexual predators cruising the MySpace pages for their next victim. Perhaps you can directly tell the Aunt about that. Older is NOT better!

And if the kids (friends) want to talk, they can get on the phone and talk or go to each other's houses. They don't need to be putting up MySpace pages if they are under age.

What your Aunt (and others) are saying is that "its ok to post the minimum age requirements even if you are 13, 10, or 7 yrs old! Where's the end? Sooner or later you will have kids on MySpace that are UNDER 10 yrs old and claiming to be 15 or 16 yrs old. Mark my words!
post #10 of 22
i think you already told her, its up to your aunt to pull it.
post #11 of 22
I hate myspace all together! Im probably the only one thats my age and doesnt have one LOL.
post #12 of 22
I don't think older is better
That just puts a red flag up saying "Hey I'm almost legal!"
post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
IMO I don't CARE whether the kids think you should put you are older just to have a page. The point is that if they are that young and there is an age limit for MySpace to post, then the kids should be abiding to it. There's a REASON why its a certain age.

Too many times you have sexual predators cruising the MySpace pages for their next victim. Perhaps you can directly tell the Aunt about that. Older is NOT better!

And if the kids (friends) want to talk, they can get on the phone and talk or go to each other's houses. They don't need to be putting up MySpace pages if they are under age.

What your Aunt (and others) are saying is that "its ok to post the minimum age requirements even if you are 13, 10, or 7 yrs old! Where's the end? Sooner or later you will have kids on MySpace that are UNDER 10 yrs old and claiming to be 15 or 16 yrs old. Mark my words!
That's the way I feel too.
post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your replies guys. I'm gonna think and pray on it for a day or so before I send any e-mail to my aunt. I may just leave it, but I think at least I want or need to send a reply saying something to the effect of "I hope you know I only contacted you about it because I was concerned for *****." I can just feel my Aunt's defensiveness through the computer. I really am relieved to know that my Aunt did know about it and has talked with her.
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
IMO I don't CARE whether the kids think you should put you are older just to have a page. The point is that if they are that young and there is an age limit for MySpace to post, then the kids should be abiding to it. There's a REASON why its a certain age.

Too many times you have sexual predators cruising the MySpace pages for their next victim. Perhaps you can directly tell the Aunt about that. Older is NOT better!

And if the kids (friends) want to talk, they can get on the phone and talk or go to each other's houses. They don't need to be putting up MySpace pages if they are under age.

What your Aunt (and others) are saying is that "its ok to post the minimum age requirements even if you are 13, 10, or 7 yrs old! Where's the end? Sooner or later you will have kids on MySpace that are UNDER 10 yrs old and claiming to be 15 or 16 yrs old. Mark my words!
But what about those friends that you cant see, the ones that live in other towns and things like that?

I think you did the right thing, and trust her that she has talked to her. Despite popular belief not all kids are dumb and will go running out to meet every guys they meet online. Most are smarter than that, and know how to be safe. Remember these kids have grown up with the internet, its a basic part of life for them now. They can be smart about it.
If you are still that worried about your little cousin while not talk to her on there one night and just make sure she knows to be careful, I'm sure you will feel much better knowing that she is careful.
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by capt_jordi View Post
But what about those friends that you cant see, the ones that live in other towns and things like that?

What do you think a "phone" is for? If they can't just go over to the friend's house, then they call them on the phone and have a set time limit to be talking so the phone is not tied up all nite.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by theimp98 View Post
i think you already told her, its up to your aunt to pull it.
Its not really your place to be following this so closely (no offense at all). I think if you told your aunt then at least you have done your part.
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trouts mom View Post
Its not really your place to be following this so closely (no offense at all). I think if you told your aunt then at least you have done your part.
I have to agree with Bruce & Nat. Put yourself in your cousin's shoes. How would you feel if you Aunt found something here you wrote and reported that to you mother. Let you Aunt take care of things, it is her daughter afterall.
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazyforinfo View Post
I have to agree with Bruce & Nat. Put yourself in your cousin's shoes. How would you feel if you Aunt found something here you wrote and reported that to you mother. Let you Aunt take care of things, it is her daughter afterall.
I agree too...you can continue to monitor as a caring adult since she is very young, but as far as it goes now you have done your part and found out your aunt has talked to her and is handling it
post #20 of 22
Actually, I agree to. You've done your part by letting your aunt know. But, I think it would be fine to send another email to you aunt explaining you were just concerned and you feel so much better knowing she is involved and keeping an eye on the situation. It would probably smooth her ruffled feathers.
post #21 of 22
I had my 6th grade students try to add me on Myspace. They are only 12!!! I reported them, sure they were mad at me but I'm not their friend, I'm their teacher. I really don't think kids under 17 should be on Myspace at all. There are too many creeps out there!! You did the right thing telling your Aunt. I really think she should cancel the account.
post #22 of 22
I'm thinking with the others that it is up to your aunt now.

However, if my daughter had done something like that, I would have been more upset that she lied at all, rather than what she lied about. In keeping with the name of this thread, my idea is: Honest is better.
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