Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Well shit.

On February 20th I handed my teenage son his first iphone. I should add with great trepidation. I had a lot of reservation but the bottom line for me, was the fact that I don't believe kids need to have the Internet at their fingertips.  Shit, half of the people I know don't need it and would probably make better company if they didn't have it. Reluctantly I gave in. No reason why, it was there, so I gave it to him.

Call me crazy.

Call me a clairvoyant.

February 22,  my son gave out his number to someone he "knows" through Instagram and almost immediately we saw the magnitude of the mistake.

I will take you back.

This person, who is probably 50 years old, befriended my son through IG a while back. Like so many "followers" you don't really investigate. I check and see who he is following because up until last week, I had no reason to think it mattered who was looking at his pictures. Originally I thought he would be safe as long as he was following "safe" people. Skaters, friends, Kashimo...

This thing that we are dealing with has legs like you would not believe. We are finding out, left and right I might add, how very susceptible our kid is. How very easy it is for even the "good" kids to get taken.

I say "good kids" not because I think my guy's is perfect. He is a kid, he has his days. But he is not one of those kids on IG tagging everything in sight to get followers. He isn't obsessed with that part of it. He really likes just taking weird videos with his friends and photos of his dog. He is not a typical kid online. Not for his age, so I guess what I am saying is I thought he was aware.

Well... he is now.

I hate to get all serious, as that is something I usually am not. I like to live free and not have too much drama or heavy stuff in my life but lately it is all around but unlike the other crap, this is important.

This is heavy. If you have a child, I suggest you read it, forward it, post it, share it and not because I am an awesome writer but because this wasn't going to happen to us. We were "prepared", we talked about this kind of stuff. Privacy and all of that but what I am learning about teenagers or kids in general- you kind of have to think of everything and if you don't- welp!, there's a window.

So I am sharing.

The "friendship" started with a common interest and comments went back and forth on pictures but if I am being honest, this guy commented way too much. He was like one of those people that introduces themselves by saying "I'm not a stalker..." we get that a lot. Anyway, then one day he PM'd my son. Private message for those who are still under that rock. After that he PM'd him a few more times, then he sent him a picture of his phone number and said he would send him a new phone case for his new iphone. This was the first time I knew he was "talking" to this guy. I didn't know it was a PM though, I saw the pic and the comment and we joked (Q and I) because Q had also, the day before, posted a message from Amazon about something he had ordered not coming until April, only problem was the message also included our address. I let him off the hook because it was an easy mistake. We laughed and said "well, he's go your address". Seriously, when I think back I see the magnitude. They (I) say "kids are dumb" but I now feel really dumb.

The guy was not on my radar at all and maybe he didn't need to be but I believe when you, a grown "man" ask a kid to text you, you have crossed the line. You are up to no good. You should know better and if you don't- well, if this guy didn't, he does now.

I wanted to share this because I believe that kids are really, really smart but at the same time, they are really really stupid. Just like us. They think something is harmless and then in an instant everything changes. I am the kind of parent that I like to teach my child about things that happen, without them always having to go through that thing. I grew up going through everything and I felt beat up a lot as a kid- I wanted better. This is something I felt was in my job description. I felt like I had this covered.

I failed.

Looking through this guys IG, he follows mostly young boys. He comments on his pictures a lot about being on the "sofa" and upon further investigation I noticed he goes to kids pages and tags other creepy guys, so that they will be made aware of the kids page. Some of the pages look like they are dummy pages for pedophiles. Like for REAL. It's all I can think about. What if he would have sent Q a picture of himself. Of something disgusting?

I would destroy him.

I know who this guy is. I know where he lives. If he ever contacts my child again I will absolutely plaster his name everywhere. Especially with the police.

After cutting ties with this freak, he posted this passive aggressive IG about how 'if you are going to post stuff on IG don't be shocked when people reply, that is what's supposed to happen'.
I know it was directed toward my child and it makes my skin crawl all over again. He didn't just reply to a post, he reached out privately to a child. A CHILD! When my son and I talked about it we were discussing how when he was little it was all "don't take candy from strangers". This guy knows teens don't want candy, so he offers something else. It is the same damn thing.

If I am wrong about this guy. I don't care.

I am pretty solid on my Momdar and it went off when I was privy to the fact that this guy asked for my sons number. As soon as I heard it I was seeing 100% clear on the matter. I'm grossed out. I am sick to my stomach and I have learned, along with my son, a very valuable lesson.

They say no harm no foul but I kinda beg to differ.


  1. Disgusting!!!! I hate those sick people!
    On German news they are discussing a case at the moment about a MP on whose computer photos of naked boys at the beach were found. The media says that he sails close the wind. Those photos he owns are not really illegal under German law, because they are "just show naked young boys at the beach", no posing etc. But I personally do not care if those children on this picture are posing or not- I think it is extremely strange that someone orders photos via Internet of some kids he doesn't know, not kids from friends of his, nothing, and they are naked and this MP justifies he did nothing wrong. Wait a second, it's not like "Hey, I need new shoes, let me order them in the internet, click-click, ordered, what else do I need - well, I think I also could need a dozen of naked foreign kid pictures at the beach, couldn't I? Oh let's make it two dozen..." Fucking bloody hell - it is NOT like that and that's why I personally think it's groce that this MP behaves like he's innocent. And it all came out, cause another MP told it although he wasn't supposed to tell blah blah, they do talk in fact more about a told secret within parliament than about the photos, which is sick. It's all a big swamp!

  2. Thanks for this! We all need this periodic kick in the pants to keep it real.

    1. True. It helps to spread the news, I think. These things can go unnoticed so easily and then you are dealing with a kick in the face.

  3. That's creepy. I've been a fan of your husband's band for a long time. I used to listen incessantly. Then adult life took over and I was only listening when a song would pop up on my ipod during shuffle. Then I kinda rediscovered the band through Facebook and instagram. Then I discovered Eddies IG. I started to follow it. Then I saw you and Quattro. I questioned, is this weird? I am not a "fan" or you or your son. But I figured what the heck. My initial feelings were I don't want to be the guy following the entire family of someone who's band I like. Strange thing is between all of your instagram and podcasts I feel like I know your family. I don't find it weird anymore. You have an amazing family. In this age of technology it's very hard to protect your kids without making them totally sheltered. I guess you just need to find the fine line between "do what you want" and "stay in your room and don't talk to anyone" . I think you're doing a great job finding that line.

  4. You said it. You are so right. I am glad you found us;)