Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Just to Clarify...

Thanks for the wonderful comments yesterday and I will address them each in a moment.

For right now though...I present you with the philosophy of child rearing by Christine~

First...I have been through a lot of things in my 30 years so this is all based on my life experiences. I don't expect everyone to agree, but it is my blog and they are my views.

1. There is no right of privacy in my house. I am responsible for all that my children do or do not do, therefore, I will be nosy.
2. Children are dumb, call it innocence or whatever you will, but they have no judgment.
3. As a parent it is your responsibility to teach your children how to survive...This means they need to learn to cook and clean and be self sufficient by 18. Start little chores at age 5, like picking up toys and graduate every year until they are responsible for their laundry and such. My girls have lots of chores, I would stop the chores if those of you with sons would sign a marriage agreement with me and promise that their child would take care of mine forever....See not gonna happen, right. Thought so ;)
4. In my house, everyone has to earn priviledges, such as email, TV, sleepovers, toys.
5. The computers, TV's and everything else in the house is MINE. I only need to provide food, clothing, shelter and love. That means that they don't have to have the latest or the greatest in toys, computers, gadgets, etc.
6. It is my responsibility as a parent to make sure my children are healthy and fit. I will not make a meal for each of my children that is different or go for something easy, just because it is easy. Kids deserve to be taught what is healthy and what is not. (I am by no means a healthnut, but I want my children to have a good body image and be happy)
7. Lying is unacceptable and punished severely here.
8. Disrespect is not tolerated. By anyone. This means friends, relatives and the such. I do not tolerate disrespect from my children to anyone, either. (this is probably one of the reasons most other parents don't like me)

Okay~for now on to the comments~

I don't think you're out of line at all to be strict with your kids and the internet. I worked at a community center a few years back, and I was often shocked by the poor judgment of the kids. It wasn't that they weren't bright, but they were extremely trusting. And it's got to be tough to decide what to do with kids and the internet because, short of watching over their shoulder, no method or firewall or rules seem to cover all of the possible problems.

Is there a way on g-mail to only approve certain senders?
I have done this with MSN. I like Gmail because I can just have the email forwarded to my address and if I don't like something that was said, I address it. Only family members have her email address. I don't even think she remembers what it is and only I have the password.
That way you could only let her talk with people she knows, but you wouldn't have to read her e-mails? I don't think there's anything wrong with reading her mail as long as she knows you're doing it, but this is just an idea.
I thought a lot about the privacy thing and to be honest, it is better for her if I know what is going on even if she doesn't know that I read them.
# posted by Katie : 9:04 AM, January 17, 2006

I agree with you 100%. When I was in high school my best friend was kidnapped and killed.
I am truly sorry about your friend.
I'm a very paranoid mother. I read my kids email and their IMs (which are blocked to anyone but their friends). I find that kids are imaginative and find ways around things, so there are no IM's except to Grandma Snooze and I still monitor (not that I don't trust Grandma Snooze, just to make sure she is the only one D is chatting with)
No chat rooms. The world is full of freak jobs and it is our responsibility to take care of them. I can't even begin to think about the day they move out. You are doing the right thing. :)
# posted by Heather : 9:24 AM, January 17, 2006

I've really been enjoying your quotes each day, I used to have a quote of the day calendar and each morning it was like waking up to your own little piece of inspiration, to be interpreted anyway you want.
When I was young, the internet had yet to really take off so I never had email accounts or IM until I was late HS or college. I was actually very surprised that younger kids have email now! What happened to video games? =) It's very scary out there what people are capable of doing, stalking or hurting children. I think the way you protect your kids is admirable, you never know where these predators are hiding. They do have software out there that protects kids from going to certain sites and even scans their email for inappropriate words and flags the messages and sends it to your email box. It may make your job a little easier. =) I don't even let my kids play video games...I believe they should be active. Everytime the school sends home research to be done on the internet, I send it right back. (I have reference books that are helpful up to college level and usually she can find what she needs there) As far as software, I would do something like that, but again, I don't want my kids getting used to sitting in front of a computer when they could be active.
# posted by kmckiernan : 9:28 AM, January 17, 2006

I don't think you're paranoid about the internet at all. My boys aren't anywhere near 'Net browsing age (3.5yrs and 1yr) I go on the computer with my boys when they've been really good and they love , but DH and I have already decided that there will be no computers in their rooms. Any browsing will be done on a 'puter in the family room and we will monitor *everything*. DH is a computer consultant and has dealt with some really weird stuff on his clients' computers that involved kids/teens. He is all for key-recording programs!
Some days I wonder if I should even post my kiddos' pics on the net! You take such beautiful pictures, it would be a shame to not post them anymore. I am very careful not to mention names. Except for Grace...Because it really is a pretty common name.
# posted by shizzknits : 1:18 PM, January 17, 2006

You're a good mom Christine =)
I totally agree with you. You can never be too careful when it comes to the Internet and young kids. There are just too many bad things and bad people in this world. That wonderful cloud of childhood innocence doesn't last forever, but it should be preserved for as long as it possibly can be. I think you are absolutely doing the right thing =)
*hugs* to you and the munchkins =D I love you guys! We love you too! Thanks for the encouragement!
# posted by Kate The Great : 8:49 AM, January 18, 2006

So now that I have offended at least half of my readers, I'll go hide and watch Gilmore Girls and Idol whilst finishing that darn sock :)

I'm right there with you - The Girl's computer is in the family room in full view of my eyes at all times. She does not watch TV at our house (though her mom lets her A LOT). Even the stuff on Nick is a bit sketchy. She does chores, and has since Kindergarten. She earns her privileges and has them removed for any infraction (mostly disrespect and/or not completing chores).
So nice to have my "parenting manifesto" confirmed by others!
Howdy :o) (are you scared that I'm stalking you yet? two comments in one day!) I wanted to chime in and give you some moral support. I have a 16 year old daughter and I monitor everything she does. She also has to do chores and earn priviledges and if she parks her butt on the couch immediately after school she knows I'm going to come up with something for her to do ;o)

She really freaked out the other day when she found out that yes, Mom CAN find out who she's calling on the cell phone, she wasn't just bluffing. ;o)

And, now she is totally pissed because she's learning that I MEANT it when I said she wasn't getting her permit to drive until she gets a job and can help pay for her insurance. Huh. Mommy isn't made of cash - what a shocker ;o)

So to wrap up this novel - I think you're doing the right thing and anyone who doesn't like it can move on to another blog :o)
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