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Re: Where there's smoke, there's fire....

Posted by Elizabeth on October 29, 1999, at 16:28:39

In reply to Re: Where there's smoke, there's fire...., posted by Colleen on October 29, 1999, at 1:31:00

First, a note to Gigi: I was impressed that you took the time and effort to read and consider the enormous response your post has generated. I hope you and your daughter are able to repair the damage that this incident has done to your relationship. Perhaps you will both be able to learn some things that will bring you closer together in the long run.

> I can't believe what I'm reading hear. I bet most of you have never had a daughter
> where the natural thing to do is to protect them.

Have you *been* a daughter recently? Do you remember being 14? I do - that was the year I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder - and if dirty conversations over the internet had been my only worry, life would have been great.

>It's quite ironic that after Gigi gave further details of the 18
>year old sending the video that some people
changed there minds.

It's not ironic at all. A critical piece of information had been left out. It sounded like the police had been called based on nothing more than an exchange of naughty emails (or chat room trysts, or similar).

> Yes most teenagers are sexually aware but
> with the way our society is now a days a parent
> can not be relaxed about letting their childern
> experiment with their sexuality due to dangers
> (AIDS, Date Rape etc...).

I agree that parents should protect their children, but how they go about doing so is also important. A healthy way to allow a child to grow is to be open with her and teach her how to keep herself safe.

Had I been in Gigi's situation, I would have had a long talk with my daughter about associating with strangers and in particular about giving them her address or phone number. I would not have punished her or pathologized her for her mistake.

I am still not sure if calling the police in was an entirely appropriate thing to do, though it no longer seems completely outrageous in light of this new piece of particular, I have trouble faulting the guy for his actions if he didn't know that Gigi's daughter is just 14 - quite possible, the internet being what it is. If that was the case, I probably would have just called him, explained the situation, and asked him not to have any further contact with the girl.

> Most 14 year olds are too naive to realize that someone
> can harm them and will continue to fall into
> there trap. That is where a parent needs to step in.

If a 14-year-old is that naive, it comes from lack of education, not simply from being 14. When I was little, "don't talk to strangers" was a common line. The world has changed a bit since then, and things are more complicated. Parents really do need to be open with their kids about the kinds of things that go on over the net, if they are to prevent this kind of thing from happening in the first place.

Anyway, if a parent assumes that her 14-year-old won't take full (dis)advantage of everything the internet has to offer, isn't *that* naive? (I'm not faulting anyone for being naive, just pointing out that it goes both ways.)




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