Posted by: amica | November 29, 2009

Stolen Opportunity

M and I are home alone today. The plan was to go see a movie with my parents, all of us, today. The adults had decided that before we went on our holiday excursion and I didn’t tell the kiddos, of course. The day before we left, M was on the laptop typing up his research paper and I was next to him, monitoring helping. My mom calls and says she wants me to grab a couple of items from the kitchen to bring on the trip. I go into the next room that although I can see M, I could not see the monitor. 5 minutes. Maybe. I come back, he hasn’t progressed in his paper, he says he needs a starter sentence from me. I then explain about the movie and if he couldn’t get the paper done that evening, it would be fine because he and I could stay home so he could finish it while everyone else went to the movie. He got it done, and it was done well. Days goes on, tuck in the kiddos, go to bed myself. Sleep is about to take over when OH.MY.GOODNESS!  I scrambled to the livingroom, almost forgetting to turn off the house alarm/motion detector. Open laptop, look into history and THERE IT WAS. 5 minutes. For 5 minutes he looked at porn. In the livingroom. With me smiling at him from the kitchen. His sisters playing in the floor in front of him. He clearly had been thinking about it, wondering if he would have an opportunity, and took it as soon as I left the couch. Giving him that 5 minutes is totally my fault. I am still continuing to give my kids the benefit of the doubt and it is harming them. I didn’t say anything to him the entire trip, didn’t want him to not try to behave if that was his plan. The trip was good. M really handled himself well for the most part and I was able to head off H’s conversations before there were too many raised eyebrows. We played hide-and-seek in the dark with flashlights in the middle of the county, fed horses, and Santa even came to visit AE at my cousin’s house. I got to see my grandparents and have a wonderful visit. The ride home was looong and we arrived in Austin at about midnight last night. I had already planned to drive the remaining 1.5 hours home and when I told M he was coming with me, he never batted an eye. Once in the car, I asked if he knew why he wasn’t getting to stay. He said he didn’t want to talk about it. Oh no, if you can do the crime, you can own up to it. He cried and I said I hope we can find a way to help him stop and he said him too. So he has pulled some weeds and swept and is helping me with laundry. It is a nice day, for both of us. Probably not the best punishment but he really enjoys one on one time with me even if it is because he is in trouble.



  1. A neighbor of ours has designed a program called Sentinel that we use with our kids. It’s not perfect, but it does keep out the blatant porn sites. Let me know if you’re interested. m brush (at) austin. rr. com.

    Mary in TX

  2. Thinking of you and the kiddos and sending up prayers–I wish I knew how to help. Know that I love you guys!!

  3. I so get what you mean when you say trusting our kids harms them (and us too). We had a reminder of this earlier in the fall when we trusted P to walk to/from school independently and it turned out he went bananas. It took all of the five minutes you experienced! They really do make the most of whatever narrow window we give them. I find these ongoing revelations/reminders to be very sad and discouraging and daunting. But don’t give up!

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