I am a 90’s child. I grew up in a time where we were outside more than we were in (in the warm seasons, anyway!), where we could leave in the morning with friends and not come back until dinner time (or until it got dark!), run around the neighborhood without a second thought. And it was AWESOME.
Unfortunately, it is now 30-some years later (waaaaaaah!) and times have changed.
I’ll be honest, we got a computer and dialup (shout out to AOL) when I was around 13 or 14, maybe? Of course, it was downstairs in the computer room (or den, according to my mom) and fairly private. For awhile, I spent my time online fangirling over the Backstreet Boys and any info I could find on them. Once I turned 16ish though, it was on. I was in chatrooms all the time. And man…mom, please skip this part…there was more than a few times when I would sneak out and meet up with random guys at night (or invite them over to my house, when my mom was out) after my parents were in bed. Ugh! So stupid, and gives me major heebs now. Thankfully, nothing scary happened. But you best believe that knowing FIRST HAND how sneaky teens can be, I will be all over my girls to make sure they never have a chance to do anything sketchy like I did!
My oldest is only ten – and my youngest is nearly three. I am hoping I won’t need to worry about any shady stuff from the ten year old for QUITE awhile. I do monitor her internet/tablet use, but like I mentioned – sneaky kids!
When the time comes however, I will be using this to go over some rules with her!
There are so many dangers online these days – especially for children & teens, this is such an important conversation to be having with yours!