Much like we used pig latin when we were growing up, teens these days have a very specific text language they use in an effort to keep parents guessing. This slang involves numbers or symbols replacing certain letters in words, abbreviations and, most commonly, acronyms. Here are just a few of these acronyms that every parent should be on the lookout for (and if parents aren’t periodically looking at their teens’ phones and computers, they should be!):
POS/PIR/PAW: Parent Over Shoulder/Parent in Room/ Parents are WatchingNIFOC: Naked in Front of Computer
(L) MIRL: Let’s Meet in Real Life
ASL (RP): Age, Sex, Location, Race, Picture (used to get this information)
PRON: Porn (filters often don’t pick this term up)
RU18: Are You 18?
143: I Love You
It has never been so important that parents keep themselves up to date and know what their teens are doing online. Teens need to understand that there is no privacy from parents online, and that parents will be monitoring their activity. Of course, it is impossible to know what our teens are doing online all the time, but having open conversations with young people about online etiquette and safety will help them to make smart decisions when we aren’t around.