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Entries in Parental Control (1)


Parental Control

A very caring former colleague recently put a post on Facebook looking for recommendations for Parental Software Control.

Let me say up front I don’t have personal knowledge of the challenges this parent is facing.  The post did make me think about what we did as  four children passed through this house.

Many families are faced with the same challenge.  I know parents who solved this by having one PC in the house, in a very public place.  The issue extends to TV, magazines, etc.  TVs now come with the V-Chip, allowing parental controls.

We didn’t edit.  Everyone had their own PC (it helps to be in technology and have access to older PCs) in their own room.

While some might argue we were derelict, we actually did this very much on purpose.

After parental discussion & consideration, we decided the world has a whole array of items tempting the little ones.  Rather than putting up hard shields, we focused on the children having the right values.

Do I think the kids may have looked at porn?  Well, let’s just say I just may have looked at browsing history when they had PC issues (generally a virus) and sure, there was some exploration going on.

Did we put a high fence around it, creating a hurdle an enquiring mind had to master?  No.  We focused on values. In this sense

“Parental control” is an oxymoron.

In fairness, the kids often thought we were watching their every move.  There was even a rumor of a Dad Cam.  The truth is, as parents we watched them closely, and technology does allow some close “monitoring.”  If someone was “sent to their room” as a correction, there were times the internet connection to their room was disabled (otherwise being “sent to their room” could be a reward.)

We insisted on everyone having dinner together, and talking.  We shared.  We discussed.

We decided by encouraging the right values, we would teach them how to behave in the world when presented with obscenity, porn, drugs, etc., or breaking the law (speeding is something they need reinforcement on.)  We couldn’t leave them in a bubble for their entire lives (although I sometimes wish we could.)  Are the kids perfect in every way?  No, they are kids.

What do you do?