There’s a new, secret language teenagers are using when it comes to the written word to hide what they’re saying from their parents.
The use of acronyms is nothing new. Most people are familiar with some of the abbreviations, like LOL (laugh out loud) and OMG (oh my God).
However, the 41 Action News investigators discovered a whole new list of acronyms that are not as innocent.
For example, RUH is code for 'are you horny?' Then there’s, GNOC, which means, 'get naked on camera.'
When talking to some parents on the streets, they were familiar with LOL and OMG. But, when asked about RUH, Jennifer Loyd guessed, 'Are you home?'
“For us oldies, it’s a little bit over the edge,” Loyd said.
According to pediatric psychologist, Steven Lassen, parents should be monitoring their children’s phone conversations and online activity.
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“We’ve seen a lot of instances where parents feel like their kids are doing OK and then they check their messages and there’s a lot going on under the surface there,” Lassen said. “They can very quickly get caught up in what’s happening with their friends in a text string.”
For parents who need help monitoring their kids, apps like TeenSafe allow parents to view text messages, cell phone calls and social media activity.
Lassen suggests that parents let their teenagers know they will be monitoring their activity. If something is found, he said it’s important for parents to stay calm and discuss with their children why this way of communicating is unacceptable. Lassen also suggests following up that conversation with a consequence like, technology grounding.
“If there’s one good thing about these devices, it’s kids are highly motivated to keep them,” Lassen said.
To become more familiar with this hidden language teenagers are using, NetLingo keeps track of hundreds of acronyms.