I must be some kind of idiot!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by gcvmom, Apr 29, 2009.

  1. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    To let myself get talked into allowing difficult child 1 to buy the new Nintendo DSi without finding out more about the new features. Like the fact that it allows internet access. And when my difficult child 1 has unsupervised internet access he seems to go straight to searching for porn sites. :sick:

    I took the game from him this afternoon because he wasn't getting his homework done. I just went downstairs to check on him and he's sitting in the dark with the game console on (I guess I didn't hide it well enough or make it clear enough that he'd lost the use of it for tonight). So I confiscated it again. He shut it off and handed it to me. I went to the kitchen and turned it on to find out what he'd been doing. Went to the internet link and looked at the history. Yep. He was looking at lesbian porn. :ashamed:

    I haven't even confronted him yet I am just SO unBELIEVEABLY LIVID. We've had discussions about this. About how inappropriate it is. How if he's curious I can talk to him about any questions he has. I've bought him books on puberty (male and female) that also address sexuality. I've tried talking to him about healthy relationships. His dad just thinks it's something to joke about and that it's o.k. to look at porn -- that's a whole other issue...

    Is it time to go back to a therapist to address these issues?

    These are uncharted waters for me and I feel like I am floundering in the dark.

    I need to figure out how to limit the use of this game console or he's never going to see it again.
  2. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Well, I am relieved to find that there is a Parental Controls setting that is PIN activated. So I can block whatever I want on this device. Now to figure out how long to keep this from him and how to calmly explain (again) why I am so upset with his behavior...
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Personally, I think it's an issue somewhere between the typical sex talk and being a laughing matter. These boys have a compulsion to look for porn- including lesbians and everything else. I doubt a therapist or even a beating would make that desire go away. A talk sure won't- at least none of this made it go away fro my difficult child. Neither did parental controls. Solid locks to keep him away from the computer when not directly supervised might do the trick. My difficult child took the hinges off the door when I tried that. Really, the only thing that made it stop completely and consistently was to keep the keyboard and mouse locked in my car when I wasn't using them- which is a pain in the rear. Other than that, if difficult child was in a phase of staying busy with friends or other constructive stuff it wasn't much of an issue. If he was unstable- it would be one of the first clues.
  4. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I've got the family easy child secured with passwords and restrictions. It just never ocurred to me that this new "toy" of his was a potential problem. Just another case of me letting my guard down when I should know better, I guess.

    I know a lot of this is normal teenage boy stuff. But the fact that we've talked about this... and his impulse control issues and difficult child-ness, not to mention a family history of obsessiveness makes me feel a mixture of anger and aprehension.

    I'm going to sleep on this and talk to husband about it before I address it with difficult child 1.
  5. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    gcvmom, I do the same ~ hit everything that has an internet connection with parental controls. I then tell kt that this is the way it is in my home. I cannot stop her from searching for "inappropriate" or curiosity sites when she's out & about with respite group. All the other of my team knows kt's limitations.

    You are doing good. The consequence for keeping difficult children new toy ~ check the minutes he was logged on to porn sites. That's the number of minutes you hold it from him.

  6. jenroack

    jenroack New Member

    I love the idea keeping it for the same amount of time that he looked at porn sites. I also agree that at that age, sneaking porn is pretty normal. They say that rules are meant to be broken. I think that rules were made so that parents could pick and choose their battles. Sneaking porn before bad is not cool, but I'd probably look the other way if it wasn't constant or affecting his schoolwork (but that's just me).
  7. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    In my opinion, you solved the problem with the game. Now to have the discussion about what porn is. How these women are sisters and aunts and MOMS - that might stop him in his tracks! LOL!
  8. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Another thought... I was under the impression that the DSi needed a wireless connection? You can secure that, too.

    This is more under husband's purview but it's a thought, if you know how. If not I can ask him!!!
  9. midwestdad

    midwestdad Lost

    Another thought for you - if it is your home wireless network, you can put parental locks on at the router. I agree with the punishment for violating the rules, but I wouldn't hold too many expectations for talking to him about why it upsets you. He's a 14 y/o boy under the influence of mind-controlling drugs - HORMONES!
  10. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    I also think that you are fighting a losing battle by trying to convince difficult child 1 not to look at porn. Emphasizing that these women are daughters and sisters and moms is, in my humble opinion, probably not the best way to go. Men compartmentalize anyway--those women are not "real" women....they are fantasies....and one has nothing to do with the other, as far as men are concerned.

    Perhaps you could let husband guide difficult child 1 through all of this? Guidance from an adult male (assuming that husband is not addicted to porn), is probably exactly what difficult child 1 needs. He needs to learn the correct way to manage his sexual curiosity/fantasies and urges/behaviors in a responsible way. I don't think there's too much chance of Mom being able to model that for him.

    I would make it clear, though, that there are certain things that Moms don't want to find: porn sites on their computer, XXX videos in the VCR, and (sorry for being gross) "crusty" towels left in the bedroom, etc etc etc.

    Good luck with all of this!!

  11. ThreeShadows

    ThreeShadows Quid me anxia?

    What is it about males and porn? They are unable to see these women as living human beings. The mother/sister/aunt talk just doesn't seem to click for them.

    When I had tons of teen boys hanging around the house I was so trusting and naive. I thought they were playing video games, checking their mail on my comp. I was just learning how to use it and found the most disgusting, frightening, sadistic anti-woman porn clip on MY comp!

    The worst thing for me, other than the disrespect someone showed me, is that now I always wonder which one of these boys whom I harbored summers and vacations, fed and cared for, even LOVED, is the creep with sadistic tendencies. Yikes! Might even be one of my own difficult children!!!
  12. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    I agree that keeping boys away from porn is a huge challenge, and a battle some choose not to fight. husband may not see it as a big deal, but if your difficult child doesn't yet have a clear concept of a healthy and loving relationship (and what 14 year old really does?) then it could be very destructive for him.

    With my difficult child, however, it is ESSENTIAL. With the complete lack of boundaries and social understanding (Aspergers) combined with a huge level of grandiosity (Bipolar), the images that can be found in porn give difficult child very distorted ideas about how men and women interact with each other when they find each other attractive.

    For example, a few years ago, after sneaking onto my computer and looking at porn, my difficult child started grabbing women's breasts in public (at school, on the bus, in the shopping mall, etc.) because the images he'd been looking at depicted that sort of thing as a normal interaction. In one case, police were involved. difficult child is now on severely limited computer access. (one hour, every other day, fully supervised by his 1:1)

    GCV, you've already been given great advice on locking down access to the internet on the DS, and about consequences for inappropriate computer use. If you're so inclined, it might be worth implementing a "No Unsupervised Computer Use" policy, as a natural consequence. Your difficult child has shown that he can't control himself, so maybe he needs to have that control imposed from outside for the moment.

    Just my $0.02

  13. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Thanks everyone. I've had the talk about the fact that those women are people, with real lives. And how would he feel if that were his sister, cousin, aunt, grandmother, friend next door, MOM (ugh, there's a nasty thought!), etc.

    I do need to change our router settings. And I'll put the parental lock on the DSi before I give it back to him. And then I'll explain again my rules about this type of thing. I know the curiosity is unavoidable. It's just so alarming that access is so easy now. Before, when I was a teen, you'd have to stumble across an adult's stash of magazines to find that kind of stuff. But now it is so readily accessed -- even accidentally.

    And no, husband is not the best person for him to talk to about this in my opinion. His sex education came entirely from magazines, which is not grounded in reality at all. Explains a lot of his warped views. I guess I'm looking for a little more sophistication for my kids -- maybe that's a bit altruistic on my part. But I don't want my boys viewing women as objects (difficult child 1 is so introverted it's even hard for me to tell, difficult child 2 I think is on the right track), and I don't want my daughter feeling like a slave to her looks (so far, she's doing pretty well in this regard).

    It just goes to show me that I can't stop paying attention, even for second.
  14. eekysign

    eekysign New Member

    What a balance beam to walk!!!! - sometimes I'm happy I've got Sis to deal with, not a boy-difficult child. Different set of problems, but at least they're ones somewhat similar to my own experience! :)

    difficult children and porn - that's a rough one. Personally, I don't know a single adult male who hasn't looked at porn - I'm an internet generation baby. The WWW was just getting started as we hit our teens - so we grew up with it as less of a taboo topic, not something as "dirty and wrong" as it used to be. If it makes you feel any better, none of my friends grew up to objectify women as pure sex objects. Some of them aren't particularly interested now, but ALL of them were interested when they were 14. I was close to a bunch of guy friends at that age, and they were all porn-crazy. It's curiosity as to what goes on, what things look like, and it's simple happiness for the nakey ladies. Even if the stuff you find seems a little "out there", it's again, probably more curiosity than "that's my bag, baby!".

    So I guess that's the question - where do you go from saying, "Oh, it's typical teen behavior" to "Ehhh, my difficult child is starting to obsess and behave inappropriately.". It's like a parent-child dance - every parent says "No porn!" and every kid says "Yes porn!". And every kid sneaks into the stuff (computer, friend's house, etc), and every parent tries to shut them down. Seems like a really strange dynamic. No idea what the solution is, though!

    Side note, I find porn funny. We used to have "Bad Porn and Pizza" nights in college. To each his/her own, I guess. :)
  15. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Sounds familiar.
    You beat me to it with-your next note after your initial post--you figured out the settings.
    You already talked to him about it, and took it away from him, so far so good.
    I'd make sure he finishes his homework and chores every day b4 he can have it back. It will be a back and forth issue and he will argue for it.
    Stay strong.
  16. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I think I am gonna have to side with eeky NOW...lol. Back when Cory was in his hay day I was going nuts trying to figure out how to stay one step ahead of him in the area. It didnt work...lol. Cory always found porn everywhere...online, mags, videos, even catelogs. Now he doesnt even touch my computer to look for it anymore. It used to be he would go straight for the stuff and surf for sex chatrooms and have 4 or 5 IM's up and even webcams going. Now...no interest at all. I think...maybe...he watches a video every now and then but not often.

    Jamie didnt do this much at all if ever as a teen...couldnt be bothered. He was more into outdoorsy stuff. Now he is into the "bad porn and pizza" stuff. His friends in the Marines send some of the most gawd awful icky stuff you could imagine. It is so gross it is funny. Bunch of guys get together to watch these really stupid funny clips and drink beer and eat pizza and laugh.
  17. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    I guess the key for me is the difficult child-in-question's ability to put porn through a "realism filter", if you will.

    I think a typical teen would likely understand that what he's watching is not grounded in reality, and behave accordingly when dealing with real girls and women.

    But then I think about my difficult child. His social constructs are based to a large extent on visual images to which he's exposed, usually from TV and movies. He truly doesn't understand that the situations he's seeing are exaggerations and distortions rather than true depictions of how people act.

    So...when he runs, he runs like Shaggy from Scooby Doo. When he's surprised, he does a double-take, just like Gilligan. And when he really really likes a girl...well, you get the idea.

    For him, we either have to carefully control what he's exposed to, or deal with a living breathing big ol' uncontrollable cartoon character.
  18. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I think if our family didn't have the mood disorder/mild bipolar issues (and all the compulsiveness and hypersexuality that can go with it), I wouldn't be as worried. If he was a typical teen/easy child, my anxiety over this would probably be much lower.
  19. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Trinity, you snuck in on me, but you said concisely what I think about this in regards to my difficult child(s). :D
  20. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    gcvmom...I worried to death over the sex thing too. Being bipolar and being hypersexual myself...plus knowing that Cory was extremely hypersexual...and trust me, Cory started this sex stuff really early and did some really nasty stuff...I worried a whole lot about how he would handle relationships and I guess you would call them normal sex stuff. I worried that he would be caught up in date rape stuff. That he wouldnt be able to take NO for an answer. That he would see this internet porn and think that is what sex was all about.

    This isnt what happened.

    Cory's interest in porn subsided when he actually started having some sort of sexual activity with the opposite sex. Probably around the age of 16. Yeah a bit young but oh well. He has been in very "normal" relationships for his age. There has never been any hint of force or stuff like that. He has had several older girls from colleges that have come calling on him for a bit of fun...lol. But otherwise...fairly normal stuff.