advertisement
Question
Posted by: Superheromom | 2011/10/09

How to deal with outside influences

Hi doc.....my son just turned 8yr old.
He has some problems with social skills and will be starting therapy at speech therapist next yr. Friends easily irritates him and he gets anoyed when they don''t understand him...He made a new friend, aged 15 yr...they get along VERY well. This older friend is relaxed with lots of patients...this worked wonders with my son! But it seems as if this child might have instigated my son to watch some porn on the internet, and stupid me didn''t have protection on my computer...I have now! What''s the best way to handle this situation...I did explain all the issues about porn to my son....he says he is curious...I bought him an age appropriate body/sex education book....I can''t prevent him from playing with this kid? Because maybe he will just meet another boy who tells him things, exct. Must I confront this boy...I don''t have any proof? Or do I let them play, keep a close eye on them and prevent them from having access to the computers?

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

OK, firstly a good reminder that ALL parents should insist on having protective software on their computer, and should not allow uncontrolled private internet access to minors. Kids have a DUTY to be curious and explore, and its neither unnatural or unhealthy for them to try to find out more about sex, especially when adults seem to them to be peculiarly secretive about it.
The best protection of all is to have an on-going, open and honest conversation with your children, age appropriate and evolving as they do, about sex and other such issues.
What the other boy did was probably appropriate to his age, though not so much so for your son, but he shared with your boy something he had discovered and found interesting, as he might share a stamp collection, perhaps. You can't prevent exchanges of information between kids - at school he will probably have heard and still will hear, all sorts of alarming information about sex, some accurate, much exaggerated or inaccurate, from other kids.
You have started dealing with this well, by starting a calm discussion ( and i should be on-going, not one-off ) about sexual matters, so he can feel comfortable in asking you about other things of this sort he might encounter, and by providing proper accurate information.
"Confrontation" is far too fashionable these days, and often hermful. Discuss with your son how to handle it if the other boy suggests something similar in future. There's no good reason to ban them from remaining friends, rather than suggesting this particular topic shouldn't be top of their agenda. I doubt that the other kid is an incipient paedophile - a 15-year-old who befriends a much younger kid is often a lonely loner rather than a predator. You don't mention whether he is an only child, or even more widely different in age from his sibs, which would make this scenario more likely.
And try to help your son develop other friends as well, rather than let this friendship become too exclusive
Yes, do have a calm word with his parents, who may want to monitor his web use too, and may well want to disuss this with him.

And again, they'd probably be the only kids at school banned from computer access, if you chose that route - better allow access with proper monitoring and software controls, so they can discover the useful stuff rather than the sleazy stuff.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

4
Our users say:
Posted by: Maria | 2011/10/10

I agree with the other posters. W hat does the 15 year old get out of this relationship? You have to keep a very close watch on this situation. Having said that, when my brother was a teenager he often played with the neighbours'' two boys who were a couple of years younger. They looked at him as an older brother, and they spent many happy times playing cricket and touch rugby in the back yard. There were always parents around, and they never sat cloistered in a room e.g. playing computer games. My brother was mature for his age, and got on better with people older and younger than himself than with his peer group.

The best thing you can do for your son is to help him develop those social skills. I''m not sure how speech therapy is going to help, unless his problems are primarily due to physical communication difficulties? Intervention by a child psychologist and/or OT seems appropriate. You can also help by setting up play dates, and discussing with your son what kind of behaviour makes friends, and what pushes them away. Initially structure the play dates so that there is a plan, and as he gets better at interacting allow him more freedom.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: Romany | 2011/10/10

It is unhealthy for your 8 year old son to have a relationship with a 15 year old teenager.
Do not allow this to continue.

Reply to Romany
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/10/10

OK, firstly a good reminder that ALL parents should insist on having protective software on their computer, and should not allow uncontrolled private internet access to minors. Kids have a DUTY to be curious and explore, and its neither unnatural or unhealthy for them to try to find out more about sex, especially when adults seem to them to be peculiarly secretive about it.
The best protection of all is to have an on-going, open and honest conversation with your children, age appropriate and evolving as they do, about sex and other such issues.
What the other boy did was probably appropriate to his age, though not so much so for your son, but he shared with your boy something he had discovered and found interesting, as he might share a stamp collection, perhaps. You can't prevent exchanges of information between kids - at school he will probably have heard and still will hear, all sorts of alarming information about sex, some accurate, much exaggerated or inaccurate, from other kids.
You have started dealing with this well, by starting a calm discussion ( and i should be on-going, not one-off ) about sexual matters, so he can feel comfortable in asking you about other things of this sort he might encounter, and by providing proper accurate information.
"Confrontation" is far too fashionable these days, and often hermful. Discuss with your son how to handle it if the other boy suggests something similar in future. There's no good reason to ban them from remaining friends, rather than suggesting this particular topic shouldn't be top of their agenda. I doubt that the other kid is an incipient paedophile - a 15-year-old who befriends a much younger kid is often a lonely loner rather than a predator. You don't mention whether he is an only child, or even more widely different in age from his sibs, which would make this scenario more likely.
And try to help your son develop other friends as well, rather than let this friendship become too exclusive
Yes, do have a calm word with his parents, who may want to monitor his web use too, and may well want to disuss this with him.

And again, they'd probably be the only kids at school banned from computer access, if you chose that route - better allow access with proper monitoring and software controls, so they can discover the useful stuff rather than the sleazy stuff.

Reply to cybershrink
Posted by: Mother | 2011/10/09

NO you do not allow this friendship to continue! A 15 year old does not normally befriend an 8 year old, with the situation that has developed you must assume the older child has ulterior motives.Your son is exactly the sort of vunerable child a peadophile may choose to groom.

Perhaps a conversation with his friends parents may be in order- what do others think?

Reply to Mother

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
advertisement