Reporting | Sexuality

Q+A: The Secret Lives of Teens Online

The conversation about the pornification of social media is long overdue.
Q+A: The Secret Lives of Teens Online
Image: Shutterstock

I wish I wasn’t seeing this.

Facebook suggested I might like to become “friends” with a teenage acquaintance, who barely resembled the little girl I met years before. No longer carrying a stuffed animal and book in each arm, as I remembered her, she posed in a skimpy top and sultry makeup, as her peers relayed the usual comments: “You’re so pretty!” “Hot!” “Gorgeous!”

I thought of little chats I’d had with her about her favorite books, way back when. I felt a little bit sick. I closed the app. What happened?

Studies estimate American teenagers spend an average of nine hours a day using screens. That’s two hours more than they spend sleeping. Many of these hours are devoted to social media, which some teens admit to checking at least 100 times a day.

For “digital natives”—people who’ve never known a world without the Internet—social media has become the place where relationships are formed, ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview
To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.
Already a CT subscriber? for full digital access.
June
Subscribe to CT and get one year free.

Read These Next

hide this
Access The Archives

In the Archives

This article is available to CT subscribers only. To continue reading, please subscribe. You'll get immediate access to this article and the entire Christianity Today archives.

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? to continue reading.