Sunday, December 13, 2009

I wasn't ready for porn to be in my house

One thing I've always prayed for and told my kids I prayed for was for them to get caught when they were doing something they shouldn't be. Ok. Not so bad right? I mean we learn from our mistakes when we get caught, right?

I think our violations thus far have been....lying, someone cheated on a test in 3rd grade, saying words they shouldn't say, and well.....that's about it.

Until......

This past Thursday night, I was doing something on my computer and glanced down at the history that showed up. Thank goodness I glanced. I think. Because here comes the part where my prayer was answered.

Gulp. Someone was just caught.

Reminder.....I have 3 boys. We are in the throws of middle school with the older two. They are 13 and 12. And people wonder why I smother precious son #3?

Gulp again.

I quickly glance on the history and there it is. My heart all but comes out of my chest and I'm not sure if I want to scream cuss words or cry or be sick or all three. And for the record, I did two out of the three before it was all said and done.

I pulled up this website and thought I would just die. Y'all, it is exactly what you think it is. It was disgusting. There is nothing mild about this site. This was horrific and the images are still in my brain. My youngest son confirmed to me that one of his brothers was on the computer after school for a little bit.

Cuss words inserted here.

I died. I knew what had happened.

Shortly there after, we talked to the son and he said he was looking for song lyrics and this website showed up. I believed him. I think.

Come to find out.....there were 2 other sites on my history. So, at this point I'm thinking this had nothing to do with song lyrics. Great. I'm sick again. I want to shelter my babies and go back in time. Please? Can we find a way?

So, son and dad have another conversation and this time we learn that a kid at school told him about these sites and he wanted to see.

Gulp.

And, yes he saw. And, yes I want to cuss again. And, yes I want to scream at the "world" and tell them to leave the kids alone and let them be kids. And, yes I want to scream at parents and the adult world that we better be on top of our kids lives or we are in for a rude awakening. And, yes I want to cry for the next week.

Some wonderful and sweet conversations have come out of all this and I'm grateful for that. However, his eyes have seen what no person should see in my opinion.

I have added a filter from AFA and I highly recommend you doing so. I've told my son that I failed him. It was MY responsibility to protect him and I didn't. I kept saying I would put the filter on, but didn't. My kids aren't really computer kids so there is excuse #1. There is no excuse.

The world is all over our kids. We can't protect them. We can have them in the best schools, church, social settings, and the world IS STILL GOING TO HIT THEM. Unless you are in a bubble.

Sometimes I want that bubble.

So, when I pray for them to get caught and they do........it's a hard place to be. I wasn't prepared to deal with this emotionally. I had not planned a reaction or what to do if "this" occurred. If you pray for your children to get caught, you may want to pray that you are prepared to handle the "caught." ;)

And, if you don't have a filter on your computer, please go buy the filter now!!!!!!

I'm begging you.

And, I love you and your kids too much! I'm anxious to hear your thoughts or experiences.

Hugs and blessings~

19 comments:

Kelly @ Love Well said...

Fran, my heart just broke into a million pieces for you. I have no direct experience with this; my kids are so young still. But I can imagine the gut-wrenching feelings and emotions.

Still, as much as I hate to say this, I think it's almost inevitable in our world. (Am I jaded?) Our culture is saturated with sex. So I'm glad God allowed you to catch your son at such a young, vulnerable age and start an open dialogue about the danger porn poses. It's the severe mercy.

Praying for you even now, that God would use this experience in your son's life to make his strong against the world's junk. (And for your mama's heart to heal and find peace.)

HisTreasuredPossession said...

Oh sweet friend. I'm so so sorry!!

thank you for your words of insight and warning to those of us coming behind you. I cannot imagine how you're feeling! Praying for you so much!

love,
rachel

Mary R Snyder said...

Girl, been right there with you. It was years ago with my oldest girl. Found her chatting with people she did NOT need to be chatting with. Scary stuff but you faced it! So many parents are just looking the other way because they don't want to deal with the 'caught.'

It's a hard and evil world. I want to wrap my babies in cotton and protect them -- and that includes the married daughter.

And you're right -- get the filter. I got the filter and a watchdog. I could see every keystroke typed. Better safe and all that jazz.

Melinda said...

So glad you kept him talking...even if the "bottom of it" was hard once you got there. So much better to have it all out in the open and into the light.

Still praying and have been with each remembrance of you. And I'll keep it up...it's a long, bumpy road ahead, but fortunately, you've got a God walking with you that's intimately familiar with the territory.

Love you,
Melinda

barbie said...

I am so sorry. I experienced this with my son, now 15, a year ago. I, like you, did not have a filter on the computer at the time, so I too felt like I had let him down. He came across the site from a window pop up, innocently enough, but it only took 1 second to suck him in. I too have now installed a filter. These things should not happen to our children. You are a wonderful mom. Don't ever forget that!

barbie said...

I am so sorry. I experienced this with my son, now 15, a year ago. I, like you, did not have a filter on the computer at the time, so I too felt like I had let him down. He came across the site from a window pop up, innocently enough, but it only took 1 second to suck him in. I too have now installed a filter. These things should not happen to our children. You are a wonderful mom. Don't ever forget that!

Leah said...

Fran,

I feel your pain and it hurts. It feels like betrayal and remorse and so much more. However, it sounds like you handled it well. I'm so glad that you were able to get him to talk about it. Now, we just pray that the Holy Spirit pierces his heart and puts a distaste in his heart for this.

This is so pervasive. So very pervasive...in so many homes and lives that we would never imagine.

Leah

beckyjomama said...

Oh Girl, my heart literally HURTS for you. I am praying for ALL of you and the mind and heart of that other boy as well. I am sooooo saddened by this.

Staceystace said...

We just went through this with 14 year old son. It is so tough. When Mark asked him about it he actually said he was relieved to have been caught. Like you, this is exactly what we pray for them. It did open the door for communication and increased accountability. We also bought a new filter called cybersitter. I cried for a week. Raising kids in this world can be so heartbreaking, can't it?

Sheryl said...

wow...this brings back every emotion i felt when i first found porn on my computer. sick. sad. devastated. angry. scared!!

it starts innocently enough but the hook is set. just one more look. addiction sets in. my son has read through "every young man's battle" two times now. he knows he is susceptible. we no longer have a desktop computer in the house, only a laptop. if he is on it, i know about it.

funny how i didn't realize my responsiblity in this until i read your words. it was my job to protect him and i failed! doing my part now. praying for God to continue to erase the images and to fill him with a desire for purity.

thanks for being real! it is sooooo needed.

colorfulwoman said...

Oh Fran, I am so sorry.I am chilled also because protecting my kids has so been on my heart lately. My oldest is only in 3rd grade(boy) and thankfully we haven't had this situation come up, but I know the temptations are around the corner. I never thought about kids at school telling ours about internet porn...ugh! It is so frustrating. I have been reading a book called Home Invasion by Rebecca Hagelin which deals with the same topic and helps equip parents to fight. Anyways, I am so sorry, my heart aches for you, but to echo others' comments, God can use it for His glory, even this! Praying for you and your sweet family!

Susan said...

Sadly, my darling, this is all too common.

Been there. Done that.

First I talked with the boy. Then R talked to him. Has happened with both the boys and the girl, too. Curiosity got them, no matter that we taught them. And let me tell you, one of the sites pulled up the first page that truly made me want to vomit. The most disgusting stuff I had (never) seen.

Keep the lines of comm open with them.

Love and hugs...

Susan

Stacy said...

I came across your blog and when I saw the title I had to read it because we encountered the same thing about month ago and your feelings described mine to a tee! and the situation was a school mate talked about it and it went on from there... we made sure to let him know he's not a bad child but we're sure he was curious, but that didn't make it right, and he lost some privledges for awhile, he was very remorseful and we believed him, he is a very sweet boy and just got caught up in something.

connorcolesmom said...

Oh.no!!!
Fran I am so sorry about that
what a nightmare
I am going to order that AFA protection as soon as possible
Thank you for your honesty and openness about this - I know my eyes are open
love you much
Kim

Cheryl said...

I read this post last night, not long after you posted it but I was too heart broken to comment.
It makes me sick to think about it.
You and your family are in my prayers, sweet friend.
Love you!

Warren Baldwin said...

Fran,
You handled this well. It was good that you talked with him. In their hurt and anger some parents will yell but never really communicate. That can actually create more curiousity in a boy.

When I was a teen my dad talked to me about the dangers of pornography:
1) Creates an unhealthy interest
2) Undermines what a true relationship is all about (respect for the WHOLE person, not just obsession with the body)
3) Will ruin your opportunity for a good marriage. If you take your image of womanhood from porn, you will place unfair expectations on your wife and will ruin your marriage.

Dad put the fear of it in me. But he did what you and your husband did with your son - he communicated with me. He didn't just scold me or humiliate me, he talked to me about it.

Boys are attracted to porn b/c it feeds their curiosity. In one sense it is natural for them to want to look at it. Yes, it is still repulsive, disgusting and a crying shame that kids so young these days are introduced to it. It is also sinful and intoxicating and can become an obsession or addiction, much like alcohol.

Which is why communication is so important at this stage in your boys' lives. You handled it well.

I wrote a piece on porn for my book Roaring Lions, Cracking Rocks and other Gems from Proverbs. I can email that essay to you if you like. I also have another piece or two I am writing for my next book. And, I am writing one book on "Meditations on purity for men." One thing I will deal with quite a bit in that book is pornography. It is one of THE BIG problems of today, thanks to the I-net. Anyway, if you want that essay, let me know and I'll email it to you (or even put it on my blog).

I'm sorry you had to write a post like this, but you did a good job with it.

wb

Jen said...

Oh, Fran, I am so sorry. I know that they are your "little boys" and it is hard to imagine that they would even have a curiousity for that garbage, but sadly they do.

I am impressed with how you and your husband handled it. You handled it with love and grace.

Lindsee Lou said...

Fran, working with students this kind of stuff just makes me sick. It's ALL over the place! Ugh. Sadly, it's hitting girls at the same rate now as it's hitting the boys. I could puke. You handled this so very well! What wise parents you are. Hoping you don't have to deal with this again!

Linda said...

Thanks for sharing such a sticky topic. I am familiar with this as well. When raising boys in this world it is so hard to keep them protected especially from the visuals that Satan would like to keep trapped in their minds. Sounds like you have taken the right steps, that and prayer is all we can do.
Linda

I blog so you can get a glimpse into my life as wife, mom of 3 boys, and someone who simply wants to bless others along the way. Have fun and be sweet :)

Boy 1

Boy 1

Boy 2

Boy 2

Boy 3

Boy 3

Designed By:

Munchkin Land Designs Elements by Amy Teets