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Teen Slang - Trying to Decipher the Foreign Language of your Teen.

For most parents, attempting to connect with your teen is an uphill battle that is only getting steeper. With social media websites and messaging apps completely dominating your teens life, it comes as no great surprise that there is a communication break down on a very basic level between parents and their tech- savvy teens.

Along with the advances in technology over the last decade, the language of today's youth has evolved into, what we have dubbed, the 'Facebook Vernacular'. This is a language which many parents are not familiar with and it is snow-balling from a simple communication problem to a pop-cultural barrier between the generations.

We here at have decided to provide you with a brief cultural guide and a glossary of 'trend-words' (so that you don't lose touch completely with your teen!). We have also included the translation for different emojis. Though it seems silly, teens are becoming more and more dependent on these little faces to express themselves instead of using actual words. They're teenagers, they'll grow out of it (hopefully!).

First off, Text Speak!

Have you ever texted your teen and received a nonsensical jumble of letters in response? Teenagers love taking the lazy route and texting is no exception! These random letters are mostly abbreviations.


Laugh Out Loud (not Lots of Love!)


In My Honest Opinion


What are you up to?


To Be Honest


Laughing My F***ing A** Off


Fluff/ F*** My Life


Rolling On the Floor Laughing

What's App me

What's App is a free text app that will not use up credit but does require wifi.


Private Message

The 'rents

short for parents, usually used if you're looking over their shoulder while they text.


P*ss Myself Laughing


passive aggressive version of ok if not followed by a smiley face




a noncomitted response to most chore/work related texts

Native Irish Slang

Slang is a living language which can be found at the core of every youth culture. Although some slang may be carried forward from generation to generation, it evolves along with the teenage culture and always has a concrete relationship with pop culture.




hungover/ not feeling well


making fun of someone or something light-heartedly


can be a broad description for anything but watch out for context, can be related to drugs


Expression of Embarrassment


means disgusting


Another term for embarrassment, 'red-faced'


disappointment or anger

Online Pop Culture References

The following examples are just some of the terms we have come across on Facebook and Twitter that parents may be a little confused by.


This term relates to someone or something that is grossly over-the-top dramatic, trashy or obnoxious.


When a person gains access to a facebook page which is not their own and posts as that person. These messages are usually harmless though sometimes vulgar.


Creative way to simplify a task


means the same as stalking, only you are not stalking the person themselves, just their social media profile updates and pictures.


Babe/Baby term of endearment although you shouldn't google it, and if you're Dutch, laugh away! It can also be an abbreviation of 'Before Anyone Else'




Term used when somebody falls, trips or does something that goes terribly wrong




You're probably already familiar with this one. It means You Only Live Once

Awky Momo

awkward moment


A fake account on facebook where someone can pretend to be someone they're not.


taking a picture of yourself about a thousand times and posting the best one up on every Social Media site you're on, after a couple of hours cropping and editing it, of course!


When you're so hungry that it puts you in an irritable mood


refers back to the use of hashtags on Twitter. The more a tagged word is used, the higher ranked it becomes on the trend list.


is a sign that you may have noticed many teens using before a word or a sentence without spaces. It is used on most social media sites as a 'trend-word' or as an ironic punch line to their post, #forexample. Some teens have even started making fun of the #craze themselves, using hashtag-forexample sarcastically.


Made famous by the infamous actor, Charlie Sheen, usually refers to when something goes in your favour or if you are exceptionally good at something. Usually used in hashtag mode eg;
Just won the lottery #winning

Totes Emosh

totally emotional


Throw back thursday, usually posted along with a picture from the past onto social media sites


When a person purposefully starts an argument online by posting an offensive message.

I can't even

a typically dramatic response to anything your teen does not want to do or deal with


Is an app that allows users to create very short, funny videos, usually only 7 seconds long


is a type of dance which involves a jerk-like movement of the behind.


Teenagers love using smiley faces! However, they do have they're own meanings attached and even this can change depending on the context.

The Innocent Smile

used for general texts

The Nervous Sweat

used when feeling scared or unsure how to tell you something bad that they did

The Blushing Angel

used when feeling proud, humble or when saying thank you sincerely

The Nervous Grin

usually an insincere smile or ironic smile

The Winky Face

infamous for mixed signals, usually means the user is up to no good!

The 'One is not amused' Face

emoji version of 'whatever' or a 'keep out' sign, used when feeling unhappy, bored or indifferent

The Buddha Face

used when feeling content, relaxed or peaceful

The Cracking Up Face

used when feeling under pressure or overwhelmed

The Playful Smile

used when making a joke or poking fun at someone

The 'Why me?' Face

used when feeling sorry for one's self

The LOL Face

used for hilarious laughter at a joke or funny video

The Huff

used when annoyed or fed up

The Ha-Ha Face

usually used when laughing at something stupid you or someone else did

The Angry Face

used when annoyed or mad at somebody

The Squinting Grin

used when feeling very happy or excited

The Super Angry Face

used when furious with somebody

The Sly Smirk

used when feeling smug, secretive or gratified

The Stressed Face

usually used while studying!

The Lovey Dovey Face

used for affection, either towards a person or an object

The Disappointed Face

used when person is disappointed with themselves, also used when sad

We hope that this brief glossary of teenage terms has helped you in some way. If you have heard your teen using any new words or phrases that we may have missed, feel free to comment below and help out your fellow 'rents! Don't forget to check out our other resources to help you through the techy teenage years.

Facebook Safety
Tips on how to set-up their Facebook page securely
Read more ...

Tinder - Advice for parents
Some advice for parents who may be worried their teens are using this popular dating app.
Read more ...

SnapChat - A parents Guide
Tips on what SnapChat is and how it is being used by teenagers.
Read more ...

5 Internet Safety Steps
Steps every parent should take to protect their teen online in 2015
Read more ...


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