Our six year old had a sleepover guest last weekend. We usually stretch the rules for sleepovers, let em stay up later than they normally would. So. About ten p.m., Hux is asleep, I go upstairs to check on them. They're very quiet, their faces are ashen, they're glancing nervously at each other. The computer, conspicuously, is out in front of them. My little one finally says, "We saw something we shouldn't" and bursts into tears, very upset.
I pull up the history on the computer and see they've been doing Google searches on "naked boys" and "penis" and, my favorite, "naked boys penis stiken out." I should point out right up front they didn't see anything. I've got a program called FoxFilter that's pretty good at filtering sites. So while they didn't see anything, their guilt at even looking up those terms was overwhelming. I calmed them down, told them there was noting wrong with being curious.
They didn't get into trouble. I'm not gonna punish my kids for their curiosity. Curiosity should be celebrated. And they confessed right away. And the internet filter did its job. So it's all good news. I was even impressed at their spelling (except for that "penis stiken out" bit). But the unsettling thought remains, that we are leaving the calm, quiet waters at the shores of parenthood, and every day stepping out to the faster, more dangerous currents beyond.