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- Cyprus : Tax revenues fall 10 per cent in first quarter
- civil service reform : Furious PASYDY won’t play ball
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- Cyprus : Ayia Napa murder trial hears from first prosecution witness
The dangers of over-protective parenting.
I must be a really bad parent. Twice in the last few days, I have found myself at odds with what appears to be the moral majority over at least two high profile parenting issues: The McCanns and Facebook.
I was out the other night with some women friends, and I mentioned that my daughter has been reading Kate McCann’s book about the disappearance of her daughter, Madeleine. This provoked a torrent of abuse about the McCann’s behaviour, leaving Maddie and the twins in a hotel apartment while they had dinner on the complex with friends, 50 yards away. How could anyone be so irresponsible? And they were drinking alcohol! I suppose a truly responsible parent would never leave a child sleeping alone anywhere. What about leaving a child sleeping upstairs in your own house while you enjoy a drink in the garden with friends? Suppose a local paedophile, you didn’t know about, broke in and stole the child?
And what about leaving young children in childcare? What if the carer turns out to be a paedophile? What about leaving kids in a classroom with a teacher, especially private lessons? Even if the teacher has had a police check done, you can’t trust the check results, can you? I am starting to see paedophiles everywhere. Logically, I suppose good parents have their children surgically attached at birth and never ever go out or drink or enjoy themselves; at least not until the children are at least 35 years of age and able to take care of themselves. In the case of boys, possibly 45 years might be more appropriate. Of course by then, they may not have any resources to deal with the real world. And the world is a very dangerous place!
I bet that nice Mr Cameron and Samantha would never leave their children. That is what one commentator said on The Daily Mail website. I wonder what Mr Cameron thinks about letting 12-year-olds use Facebook? Mark Zuckerberg has been criticised for suggesting, at a recent education conference, that there were benefits to young people starting their education early. And by education, he presumably means that part of a kid’s development that involves negotiating the world and managing relationships. Facebook has no plans at present to allow under 13s onto the site because of the complexity of security issues, but at some point in the future they might tackle the issue.
I am guessing that Mr Zuckerberg, the FB founder, started his education early, which is why he is now a very successful, 27-year-old, billionaire, Internet entrepreneur. And he really doesn’t have to worry about tackling the security issues for under-13s on FB as one in five British 9-12 year olds already has a FB account; my own 12-year-old is one of them. Call me a bad parent, but I am not overly worried about grooming by paedophiles or bullying on FB. I think he is more likely to be bullied or bully someone in the school playground, where I can’t see what is going on. And thanks to FB, I have had the opportunity to discuss issues like talking to strangers on the net. Sadly, some children have arranged to meet dangerous individuals they hooked up with on the net, but they might have been equally naïve in going off with a stranger offering sweets on the way home from school. FB is not the real problem, over-protective parenting is….