Tonite while we were going to bed, we starting talking about this blog and how easy it is for people to network online to meet people, dating, and even employment. We then realized that our oldest son, is a member of several "Social Networking" websites, such as Facebook and other sites. Trust us, theres quite a few. We then started thinking about the rules of some of these sites, as well as the hidden dangers, like pedifiles, identity thieves, and other nasty little people. Of course, most of the websites he uses are kid oriented, and these are usually the ones where you find the "Pervs", hiding out. But there are others like Facebook and MySpace, have age limits, and alot of kids these days alter the date of birth required for sign up. So it may say they are 16 or 18 years old, but in reality, these kids are as young as 10. This obviously poses all kinds of trouble just waiting to happen. So we decided to enforce some "Parental Law", and have him delete and/or close some, if not most of these accounts he has. Of course he wont be too happy, but oh well, his safety and our sanity, supersede any and all reasonable arguments he may have. But this rule will apply to all our children. So even if they dont have an account with any of these types of websites, they will be limited in the future, if and when they decide they want one.
In this day and age, it is not safe to leave the kids alone in thier rooms. It used to be the most you had, was a TV, or at best a radio and/or some toys. But today they have computers, gaming consoles, cell phones, and internet. Everything they need to explore and communicate with the world. This is not to say that you should lock them up in the basement, or shelter them from the outside world or society, but rather stay in touch, and keep on top of them. Make sure they are using the internet properly and safely. Dont be afraid to ask to see thier cell phones and check texts and sent/recieved calls. Give them all the room they need to grow, but keep a watchful eye on the websites they visit, and the friends they associate with. As parents its our duty to make sure they grow up smart, and not just book smart, but common sense smart as well. Its too easy to get fooled on the internet and texting, its too anonymous. Anyone can pretend to be anyone they want, and its too easy for people to get in contact with others, especially if you belong to many social networking websites. We try to educate our kids about the world, and how its not always sunny, and not everyone is a friend or can be trusted. Its sad when you think about it, we want so much for our kids, we want a world where they all fit in, and where everyone cares about the guy next to him. But the truth is that this world can be hard, and things only get tougher as you go on. Which is why we always wish for our kids to be successful, so that they wont have to struggle or have to worry about the things we have had to. Its funny how something as simple as a blog, can turn into a childs future. Now I have to go find my son, so he can show me how to publish this to our blog!