Do you hold your kid’s Wi-fi password over his head? [OPINION]
Posted by: Lauren Carpenter
Published on: August 2nd, 2012 at 6:53 AM
This post I found on Facebook hit home.
I knew only one mom who actually held the password to the family computer as this image above suggests. I never went that far; I also allowed them to have their own personal passwords for IM, email and Facebook.
But when they were in middle school and older, you bet I was about as annoying as a mom could be when they were plugged in. Add to that we would only allow computers in the living room so hovering wasn’t as difficult as you may think.
Yes, I was a helicopter mom when it came to the Internet, and proud of it.
God, how they hated to have me around in that room. But, I learned darn fast just how nimble their growing fingers were to ‘get out’ of a screen as I approached.
Keeping an eye on your kids and what they do on a computer takes a thick skin and a lot of selflessness.
My kids were still in diapers when we got our first desk top; they were the first generation on IM and Facebook and a whole mess of other virtual venom that kids were getting into.
There were no friends or family members that could tell me how to prepare my kids (and myself) for the onslaught of all the crap they would see online. Yes, the computer was used for the good of homework, but this new Internet world needed navigation above and beyond the said school assignments; letting a 12-year-old on without rules in place was like letting him jump into a shark tank without any protective gear.
Hovering was the only way for me to make sure they weren’t eaten alive by the bullies and inquisitive searches that inevitably ended up in the R-rated category. The Internet introduced my kids (and me) to a whole new world, most of which we could all do without.
It takes a good, vigilant parent to watch what kids are doing online. Now that we’re all plugged in all the time, it’s a lot harder for parents to focus since they are continuously distracted by their own computer screens. But just remember, your kids are watching you; it’s not a “do as I say, not as I do” world that we live in anymore; it’s a mini-me world now. If you aren’t paying attention to your kids because you’re too busy texting or surfing the WWW, expect the same in return.
Now that my kids are in college or just graduated, I can’t control what they do online. It’s actually refreshing not to be watching their every move anymore. But, I have to believe that how they were brought up has paid off: they have lives and not one of them rely on the iPad or iphone for entertainment 24/7.
We hard ass parents have to stick together. Know you’re not alone, but we do seem to be a minority. Being vigilant pays huge dividends even though you’ll hear a thousand times a month when they’re young how much better other kids have it at their homes. Just ignore the disses – remember that thick skin I mentioned.
Then one day when one of your kids actually thanks you for being there and limiting his video/computer time while growing up like mine son did, you’ll know it was all worth it.