50 Unexpected Texting Abbreviations Parents Should Know About

Carla L. Hirsch
texting abbreviations parents should know

*** This post will be updated as the new acronyms appear.

Have you ever caught your kid texting weird words or unknown abbreviations to friends? If you asked what “PAW, BRB” was and got an explanation, “that was a typo,” chances are they’re fooling you.

As kids are pretty good at technologies, they are unlikely to make so many typos in two words. In a teen’s world, “PAW, BRB” means “Parents are watching, I’ll be right back.” So, if you see them sending strange abbreviations to someone else, be sure it is made on purpose.

As most teens hide their online activity from parents, they face a necessity to text safely, without you revealing their real intents. They often use acronyms to mislead parents and get the message delivered correctly.

Table Of Contents

Teenage Texting Lingo: What Is an Acronym?

An acronym is an abbreviation that consists of the initial letters of multiple words but is pronounced as a single word.

Acronyms are extremely popular among kids and teens because they use abbreviations everywhere on the Internet, and especially on social media. They also allow children to communicate instantly, without typing long pieces of text.

However, kids have another good reason to use abbreviations and slang words in their messages. As teens know that parents keep an eye on them, they use acronyms to keep their conversations secret. It is a strategy that kids use to perform restricted actions and prevent adults from overreacting.

If you’re one of those parents who keep asking themselves, “What does FTF mean in texting?” or “What does KMS stand for in texting”, keep reading this article.

Texting Dictionary for Parents: 50 Abbreviations You Didn’t Know About

There are hundreds of acronyms that young people use while texting. They help to shorten commonly used phrases and encode information that kids want to hide from their parents. Although some acronyms (such as IMHO for “In my humble opinion” or YMMD for “You made my day”) are harmless, others (such as KMS for “kill myself”) can alert you about the danger.

Decode their secret messages.
Detect the danger and safeguard your kids

If you wonder what a “thot” is or confused about the real SMH meaning, this article is right for you. Below, you will find the top 50 most popular texting codes parents should know about.

text acronyms for parents

General Acronyms

  1. AF — As f**k
  2. AFK – Away from keyboard
  3. AFAIK – As far as I know
  4. ATM – At the moment
  5. Bae — Significant other or crush
  6. Bih — Short form of b*tch
  7. BRB – Be right back
  8. BTW – By the way
  9. Cappin’ — Lying
  10. Dope — Something extremely cool
  11. Fam — Friends
  12. FINSTA — Fake Instagram account
  13. F2F or FTF – Face to face
  14. GB – Goodbye
  15. GLHF – Good luck, have fun
  16. IMHO – In my honest opinion
  17. KMS/KYS — Kill myself/Kill yourself
  18. OFC — Of course
  19.  OTP – On the phone
  20. SMH – Shaking my head
  21. TBH — To be honest

Acronyms for Parents

  1. CD9 — Parents around/Code 9
  2. KPC — Keeping parents clueless
  3. POS — Parent over shoulder
  4. PIR — Parent in room
  5. PAW — Parents are watching

Sexual Abbreviations for Texting

  1. ASL — Age/sex/location
  2. Body count — The number of people someone has slept with.
  3. Daddy — An attractive man, usually older, who conveys a sense of power and dominance
  4. DTF — Down to f*ck
  5. FBOI — F**k boy, a guy just looking for sex.
  6. FWB — Friends with benefits
  7. GYPO – Get your pants off
  8. GNOC: Get naked on camera
  9. Hentai — Graphic anime pornography
  10. LMP — Like my pic/lick my p***y
  11. LMIRL – Let’s Meet In Real Life
  12. NIFOC – Nude in front of a computer
  13. Smash — Means to have casual sex
  14. Swoop — To be picked up in an automobile
  15. Skeet — To ejaculate
  16. TDTM — Talk dirty to me
  17. Thicc — Having an attractive body
  18. Thot — That ho over there, used instead of “slut”
  19. WAP — Wet ass p*ssy

Acronyms for Drugs

  1. 420 — Marijuana
  2. Broken — Hangover from alcohol
  3. CID — Acid
  4. DOC — Drug of choice
  5. Molly – Ecstasy/MDMA

Emoji: Visual Acronyms that Parents Should Know About

In addition to teen text abbreviations, teens often use emojis to express their thoughts and feelings. Many parents consider them to be harmless kid stuff — funny, bright pics that aren’t worth the attention of an adult person.

Yet, some emojis have a completely different meaning when used by a teen. They are called sexual emojis. Here are the most used emoji acronyms that have a totally different meaning than they suggest:

  1. 🍆 — Penis
  2. 🍑 — Butt
  3. 🌮 — Vagina
  4. 💦 — Ejaculation
  5. 🌶️ — “Hot stuff,” inappropriate content
  6. 👅 — Often stands for oral sexual activity
  7. 😈 — Naughty
  8. 🤤 — Sexual desire sent in response to nude pics
  9. 🍒 — Breasts/testicles
  10. 🍃 — Weed
  11. 👻 — Ghosted (when someone is dumped without explanations)
  12. 👉👈 — Shy about flirting
  13. 💯 — Means “I agree”

I Know the Meaning of Text Acronyms for Parents: What Now?

acronyms parents should know

Now, you know a lot about texting abbreviations that teens use online. Although you don’t need to bother yourself with a question, “What does TCH mean in texting?” or look for the meaning of bae, the danger is still there.

If you want to prevent your kid from sexting with strangers on social media or getting into dangerous online challenges, it’s not enough to know teen slang and acronyms. To protect your child from communicating with online predators on the Internet, you need to know when exactly your kid uses an acronym and who the recipient is.

A proven way to find out is by using a parental control app, such as mSpy. After you install the app on your kid’s phone, you can use a keylogging feature that records keyboard strokes on your child’s device and allows you to:

  • Find out if your kid is searching for inappropriate content online (drugs, alcohol, sex, etc)
  • Set restricted keywords
  • Get immediate notifications when they use specific words
  • See all the content that contains dangerous acronyms

About mSpy

mSpy is a parental control app designed to help you to detect dangers in time and prevent your kid from doing something they’ll regret for the rest of their life. In addition to creating a database of restricted words (now you know as much as 50 new acronyms), the app allows you to monitor conversations on Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, and other instant messengers.

What’s more, you can view your kid’s browsing history, bookmarks, social media chats, and connected Wi-Fi networks right from your smartphone. And of course, you can block unwanted apps and restrict suspicious contacts on your child’s phone remotely.

There’s no better monitoring solution!
Sign up. Install. Monitor.
Carla L. Hirsch is a writer, editor, and journalist. She has been a staff writer in various US-based periodicals for five years. But then she decided to dedicate her life to traveling and freelance writing.


  • as a teenager I can say some of these things are very stretched. I have never used or seen anyone use the taco emoji as a stand in for a v*gina, and no one I know has ever use the chile emoji for sexual context. I also have never heard things like NIFOC, LMIRL, GNOC,
    GYPO, and multiple others listed here. I think the ones you as a parent need to look out for the most is the eggplant emoji, the peach emoji, (also, the cake emoji can be used for the same reason as the peach) ASL, (because if someone is asking for that it is probably a stranger that doesn’t know them) and especially kms/kys

    • Thank you for commenting! We’ll be updating this post with new abbreviations from time to time and will take your comment into consideration 🙂

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