Saturday, July 8, 2017

Giving them opportunities to use their judgment

I have two basic rules that I would like for my children to live by:
1. Do not kill anyone.
2. Do not do drugs.

Beyond this, I don't care who they marry (gay or straight), what job they have, whether they go to college, whether they get tattoos or piercings, whether they have a child out of wedlock, or whether they are Republican or Democrat or Independent. Whatever it is that I suspect other parents might make a big deal out of, I intend to not make a big deal of.

I just feel that a person can come back from most anything else but killing someone or doing drugs has the potential to completely ruin your life without any chance of returning to the life you had before.

We are pretty open with our children and try to discuss with them what is appropriate and not and when and why.

I do not monitor them every second on their electronic devices, but I find they regularly tell on themselves by letting it be known what they are doing. I don't think they think they need to be sneaky.

A part of me wonders if this is the right parenting tract, but I tell myself that I am giving them opportunities to use their judgment. I cannot parent the entire Internet.

As much as I would like to toss every device we own out a window after bashing them with mallets first and all of us learn the dulcimer, that is not likely to happen.

When I was 13 and younger, I was sleeping over at friend's houses and sneaking out to meet boys. I was too busy doing whatever it was I knew would drive my parents insane and get me into a world of trouble. I knew what was taboo, and I made a beeline for it.

Of course, there is a limit to what I will tolerate.  I would never (and will never) be a parent who buys my kids drugs or booze or or smokes or allows them to have boyfriends/girlfriends sleep over when they are of a certain age and in a romantic relationship with said boyfriend/girlfriend.

But I feel like I could actually drive myself insane if I try to police the wide web of the electronic world.

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