The following story comes with a warning: If you don't want to know about the secret lives of teenagers, then turn away now.
If you do, you might just be able to get an idea by browsing through the anonymous postings on Facebook pages set up for local high schoolers and college students to share their burdens.
Although the trend only began catching on locally in the first weeks of 2013, the Facebook page UC Berkeley Confessions has accumulated 20 "likes" and a wall of almost a dozen embarrassing moments, secret habits and bad language. The page is run anonymously, and is intended for students of the college according to the "about" description.
Confessions span what students do in their spare time, crushes and pranks. Users submit their confessions through an online form, and the Facebook page manager posts them online — all anonymously. Page visitors can respond to confessions by commenting on the post.
Some of the confessions, if true, may have serious implications. In one case on the page, a user has posted that they suffer depression and is considering suicide.
Nearby towns are also seeing "confessions" pages pop up, including Lafayette and Acalanes High as well as Danville and Piedmont. It would appear that the trend originated with the Moraga and Campolindo page, according to posts on the Moraga Confessions wall.
Facebook's privacy settings allow page creators and administrators to remain hidden from other users, making it difficult to find out who is operating anonymous pages. The downside is that anonymous pages are public and can therefore be read by anyone on Facebook.
Do you think the "confessions" pages are harmless, or should they be taken down? Share your thoughts in the comments below.