Survivify: Family

How to Survivify: When Parents & Grandparents Join Facebook

The good news: thanks to medical advancements, people are living longer. The bad news: they are spending their golden years experimenting with online dating, Facebook and other amusements.

So, what to do if your parents and/or grandparents start friending you and -- horrors -- your friends on Facebook? Well, this is definitely a good time to familiarize yourself with Facebook's privacy and friend management features. Organize your FB friends into various lists (family, coworkers, etc.) and create a list of people to exclude from certain updates, photos, etc. You can also tweak your settings so that only you will be notified when you're tagged in someone else's photos and videos. This way, you can limit the potential for humiliation.

Maybe your folks will behave themselves. If so, sharing social media with them can be fun and perhaps even enrich your relationship. If they start behaving badly, just talk to them about it. Or threaten to post a few embarrassing photos of them.

Look on the bright side:

  • No more complaints if you don't call home often - just refer your mom to your status updates.
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Tips from the trenches:

  • Teach your folks how to use social media. This way you can have some control over what they know how to do.
  • Scold them if they overshare. No one wants to read TMI posts from aging parents.
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Words of Wisdom

I didn’t know what Facebook was, and now that I do know what it is I have to say it sounds like a huge waste of time. -Betty White