Ultimate Guide to Hashtags for Parents of Teens

Ultimate Guide to Hashtags for Parents of Teens

Ultimate Guide to Hashtags for Parents of Teens

Many adults have told me they just don’t understand hashtags. So they’re happy letting the teens in their lives “talk” amongst themselves using hashtags.

There isn’t a standardized guide to hashtags for parents of teens handed out to parents when their kids turn 13. It would be virtually impossible to write one standardized guide on hashtags for teens and keep it current. Anyone who works with teens knows the lingo they use is always evolving. Like technology, keeping up with the hashtags teens use can feel overwhelming.

Some parents figure, “Why bother?”

I get that perspective. But, can I share something with you? The Journal for Adolescent Health did a study to help them, called Understanding the Language of Self-Harm on Instagram (NSSI). Their conclusion is NSSI content on Instagram is often veiled by hashtags that are unclear or have double meanings. That means posts for self-harm aren’t always going to be caught and flagged by the platform.

Even though Instagram now has a great system in place to help users who struggle with self-harm, it’s important to remember the value we play in the lives of our teens. It’s important that we continue to have discussions with the teens in our lives about NSSI content and provide them with resources, help, and support. That is something an algorithm can’t do.

That is why it’s important to know the hashtags our teens are using.

So, what exactly is a hashtag?

Merriam Webster defines a hashtag as a word or phrase preceded by the symbol # that classifies or categorizes the accompanying text (such as a tweet).

Hashtags make it easy to follow or find content on social media. To add a hashtag to your post, you simply add the # sign before a single word or phrase, without spaces or punctuation #itsaseasyasthis. Numbers can be included in hashtags #4sure.

So now we know what hashtags are and why we want to know some of the hashtags teens are using. Are you ready to jump in and learn some of the popular hashtags for teens? Let’s go!

Ultimate Guide to Hashtags for Parents of Teens

Below are some general hashtags teens use. In this part of the guide, I’m simply telling you what the hashtag is and what it means. I’ll explain more about some of the hashtags for parents of teens struggling with self-harm and bullying issues a bit further down in this guide.

#bae – babe (or before anyone else)

#derp – stupid

#FBF – Flashback Friday

#foe – family over everything

#frape – posting to someone else’s profile, typically impersonating that person. The hashtag comes from the term “Facebook rape”

#hmu – hit me up

#idek – I don’t even know

#igaddict – Instagram addict

#igers – Instagrammers

#instagood – motivational images on Instagram

#instastyle – fashion-related images on Instagram

#jelly – jealous

#kikmessenger – lets others know you are available or prefer to talk on Kik

#livingdangerously – used when posted images show unsafe behavior.

#lmao – laughing my a** off

#lmirl – let’s meet in real life

#mce – my crush every day

#MCM – Man Crush Monday

#motd – makeup of the day

#mupload – image was uploaded by way of a mobile device

#nah – no or not

#ootd – outfit of the day

#otf – only the family

#ratchet – disgusting

#rp – repost

#selfie – taking a picture of self

#sick – cool

#smh – shaking my head

#so – significant other

#tbh – to be honest

#TBT – Throwback Thursday

#TT – Transformation Tuesday is typically images showing weight loss or fitness goals

#turnt – have fun; get rowdy

#turntup – super stepped it up

#turnup – step it up

#wtf – what the f***

#WCW – Woman Crush Wednesday

#yolo – you only live once

Wondering about all those emojis your teen uses? Check out my Parent’s Guide to Emojis!

Hashtags Used to Bully

Hashtags can be used to bully others online. A photo might appear somewhat innocent, but you might miss the true meaning of the post if you don’t read the text and hashtags. Trust me, your teens do not miss unkind behavior directed at them or others around them.

This next section of hashtags might be hard to read. But parents, please familiarize yourself with them. These might be hashtags your teen needs to discuss with you at some point. You might spot these on your teen’s account and need to gently get your teen talking about how to handle a cyberbully. Or, you might need to talk to your teen about how to treat others respectfully online.

#beyouch or #bizzle – another word for b***h

#borderline – borderline personality disorder


#derp – stupid

#frape – posting to someone else’s profile when they leave it logged in



#rab – rude a** b***h

#ratchet – disgusting

#subtweet – talking about someone but not using the name directly

#thot or #thotties – a promiscuous girl



#yag – you are gay

Hashtags Used for Self-Harm

The hashtags below are common ones teens use when they are connecting with others struggling with depression and various types of self-harm (NSSI). Some of the hashtags are words that would make sense to a parent. Other hashtags are somewhat cryptic. #mysecretfamily is a “secret club” hashtag which refers to a disorder. It’s based off the book My Secret Family by John Liebe [AFF]. Each character in the book struggles with a specific disorder.

#Ana – Anorexia















#Deb – depression; Deb is a character in the book My Secret Family by John Liebe





#ednos – eating disorder









#Max – anxiety; Max is a character in the book My Secret Family by John Liebe

#Mia – bulimia; Mia is a character in the book My Secret Family by John Liebe










#Sophie – schizophrena; Sophia is a character in the book My Secret Family by John Liebe

#Sue – suicidal; Sue is a character in the book My Secret Family by John Liebe








Hashtags Used for Sex and Porn

A number of hashtags can be used to find sexual content on sites like Instagram, Tumblr, Reddit, Twitter, and even Pinterest. It’s not my intent to spoon feed anyone a list of search words. My intent is to inform parents and caring adults of the hashtags teens may be using to find sexual content online.

While some teens might use #[insert explicit word], most teens are more concerned about hiding their intent to find pornography. Here are a few of the more popular hashtags teens may use when look for or posting porn.

#chirped – got caught

#cu46 – see you for sex

#lmirl – let’s meet in real life

#nsfw – not safe for work (post will include nudity, etc.)

#pron – porn

Are there hashtags your teen uses? Share them so I can add them to this Ultimate Guide to Hashtags for Parents of Teens!


Ultimate Guide to Hashtags for Parents of Teens-FB


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