Most parents are probably already familiar with terms like OMG, LOL and WTF, but teen texting lingo does not end there. Chances are your kids speak text far better than you do, but it is important to stay as fluent as possible.

While many texting terms are harmless – the equivalent of slang used by teens of every generation – others are more worrying. There are texting acronyms for everything from sex and violence to drug use and smoking. Knowing what all those acronyms mean will make it easy to spot potential dangers and counsel your kids on how to stay safe. If you spot any of these acronyms on your child’s phone or in their browsing history, you might want to schedule time for a face-to-face chat.

MOS in teen speak means Mom Over Shoulder. If you see your child or teen typing in this acronym, you would be right to wonder what they have to hide.

PAL, PAW and PIR are similar acronyms, translating to Parents Are Listening, Parents Are Watching and Parents in Room, respectively. Again, this lingo could indicate that a young person has something to hide.

You may already know that 420 is code for marijuana, so keep a sharp eye out for this troublesome number. That is not the only number you need to watch out for – 1174 is teen speak for an invitation to a wild party – one that may include drugs, alcohol, and sex.

The acronym IWSN translates to I Want Sex Now. If you spot this text on your teen’s phone, it is time for an immediate conversation about risky behavior.

GNOC is nearly as bad. This common teen-speak acronym means Get Naked on Camera, and it is often an invitation to sexting and other inappropriate behavior. Parents who spot this troublesome text should take the opportunity to point out that anything posted on the Internet is there forever.

F2F and LMIRL could be indications that your teen has fallen victim to an online predator. These two texting terms mean Face to Face and Let’s Meet in Real Life. If you spot either term, your son or daughter’s safety could be at risk.

In the Internet age, safety means more than teaching them how to cross the street and not to talk to strangers. Taking a proactive approach to their use of technology can enhance their safety, improve your relationship, and keep them from making mistakes that could last a lifetime.

Story Credit: EditorUMT@gmail.com

Photo Credit: Meghan Schiereck/Unsplash

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