9 year old was looking up porn (and not the vanilla stuff) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 22 Old 04-08-2010, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess I gave my 9 year old too much credit. She's a very intelligent, responsible child. So, my husband and I gave her permission to visit certain websites to play games online. We've had discussions with her about no chatting, and only visiting these particular sites. The computer she uses is in the office, which is open to the rest of the house. We check the web history (though she didn't know that), just to make sure she's only going to the sites we agreed to.

Last Friday night, I went out, leaving my husband to watch over her. When I came home, I checked the web history, and i found out that my 9 year old daughter was googling porn. I'm not talking about vanilla stuff, either. These were things that even shocked me and my husband (and we're far from being prudes). It wasn't like my daughter accidentally stumbled upon these pages, either. She specifically searched for it. I know for a fact it was her that did these searches, not my husband.

I can understand why my husband didn't check on her often enough, as she's been getting online for a couple months now, with no problems. I'm more mad about the fact that she lied about looking up porn when we confronted her with the web history. I was ready to have another conversation with her about sex. She's beyond the biological, and is more interested in the bizarre. She's too embarrassed right now, so I'm giving her some space. In the meantime, she's banned from the internet.

I just don't know how to broach the subject with her. I'm concerned about some of the subjects she was looking up (I don't even think it's legal!!!). Some of the searches were obviously more than just for giggles, too.

How do I talk about this with her?
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#2 of 22 Old 04-08-2010, 02:08 PM
 
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It worries me that she knew what to search for. Does she have any friends who seem to be "in the know"? Did she find your stash of naughty books? How did she get tipped off to what she was searching for?

At nine... my kids could barely stand the thought of plain old mom and dad sex.. let alone anything colorful.

I'd let it rest for a week or more. No computer time. Then approach her your concerns. "I don't think what you looked at was normal, dear". Then provide her something that covers the more normal... sex is fun.. here's the basics.. we treat our partners with respect.. book. The Joy of Sex is our bible for that. Both my teens have read it.
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#3 of 22 Old 04-08-2010, 02:21 PM
 
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I would put blockers on the computer so she cannot access porn again.

Then i would give it a few days before talking to her about sex, pornography and relationships. I'd want to know how she knew what to google for, but i also think it would only take a friend with lax parents and an older sibling for a lot of kids to hear about this sort of stuff. Does she know about sexual abuse? I only ask because my DD will by age 9 (knows a little now, at 4, but just what she can handle) and i could ask her how she found out what to google for, framed with the fact that grooming often involves showing kids porn and i want to be sure she's not in a dangerous situation.

I know a few 9 year olds who have their period already - they are certainly thinking about sex! I don't think curiosity is abnormal (far from it!) and it might be useful to remember that though what she was looking at is completely off-the-wall-bizarre, she probably has NO frame of reference for that. You see it as "beyond biological" but it's possible, even likely, that she didn't get to that stuff FROM biological, but rather went straight there via a tip off from a friend or acquaintance. To YOU this stuff is "worse" than other stuff, but she probably isn't aware of the range available out there, or of what the borders of "normal" look like (and how much that can vary from one individual to the next) - it's like being taught to read and then sent into a library, you might come out with Enid Blyton, or Shakespeare, or the Marquis de Sade, and until you'd read quite a lot of other books you'd have no idea how to frame the first one you picked up.

FWIW i can remember a "friend" showing me a movie featuring girls and horses when i was a young teen. I was really into horses, which is the only reason i was watching it, and it freaked me out and made me feel really weird for a few months about doing the most mundane, perfectly normal stable duties. If my mother knew i'd watched it i know she'd have freaked out, but i wasn't coming at it as someone who was sexually interested in horses, just as someone who was interested in horses and naive enough that she didn't get where the movie was going until it arrived there. I'm positive the stuff in that movie is illegal in most of the world, but i wasn't aware of that at the time. it just left me thinking how weird some people were.
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#4 of 22 Old 04-08-2010, 03:55 PM
 
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I discovered my two kids doing the same. 10 and 11 years old. They were so embarrassed about it that they denied it altogether. It was hard because I was mad that they lied but totally cool with them being curious. Anyway, I just sat them down and said I was not mad at them for being curious but mentioned the dangers of the net and how some of the images could even be too much for me. Anyway, just to let you know we downloaded a free program called K9 Web Protection and it's worked really great. It's easy to turn it off with a password so you'll want to keep that for you and your hubby. Good luck.
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#5 of 22 Old 04-08-2010, 08:44 PM
 
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"I know for a fact it was her that did these searches, not my husband. "

How do you know this?
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#6 of 22 Old 04-09-2010, 01:04 AM
 
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Yes, are you certain it wasn't your dh?

Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#7 of 22 Old 04-09-2010, 12:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by journeymom View Post
Yes, are you certain it wasn't your dh?
I'm sorry; I was thinking the same thing. I don't know too many 9 year old girls who would be interested in looking up porn. My 12 year old dd (who started going through puberty at 9) has only recently become mildly curious about such things.

If your dd was searching anything more sophisticated than "boobs" or "penis" I would seriously question where she was hearing this stuff...If it was your dd who did the searching, I would be worried...
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#8 of 22 Old 04-09-2010, 02:22 PM
 
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totally putting myself out here with this but just wanted to say that at 11 or 12 i was googling some pretty hardcore porn....I won't detail it all but it definitely had a sexual component, I mean I wasn't just idly surfing and stumbled on it, and it was my way of proccessing sexual abuse that had happened much earlier. I had already had those inclinations/urges by the time I was 5 but obviously a 5 year old is not sophisticated enough to search for porn. If my 9 year old really was looking at those things it would be a HUGE gigantic red flag....more like a banner....that she was being or had been sexually abused. and fwiw my abuser did not show me porn....the interest in "not vanilla" stuff was my way of wroking out/coping with what I experienced. OP for your dd's sake I really really hope it wasn't her searching that stuff.

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#9 of 22 Old 04-09-2010, 02:28 PM
 
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I have a 9 yo DD and would be really, really, really surprised and shocked if it were her looking at it, and not DH. So I'm also curious how you know for sure it was her - especially since she says she didn't do it.

Anyhow, I would download www.k9webprotection.com. It's free, and easy to customize.

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#10 of 22 Old 04-09-2010, 02:28 PM
 
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I would definitely put child locks/porn blockers on the computer so that she can't access things like this in the future.

I didn't grow up in the "age of the internet," but if I had I might have done the same thing. You see, I had kids I knew at school that loved to tell the weirdest sex stories, usually on the bus or in other places that the teachers wouldn't be looking. It was pretty hard core stuff, you wouldn't think that 4th graders knew about icky things like that. It always made me super uncomfortable, and I wondered if what they were saying was real or if they made it up. If I'd had the opportunity to look and see if it was real I very well may have done so. However, I am REALLY GLAD that I never had the opportunity: I think that kind of thing can be pretty damaging to a child.
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#11 of 22 Old 04-09-2010, 03:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tinuviel_k View Post
I would definitely put child locks/porn blockers on the computer so that she can't access things like this in the future.

I didn't grow up in the "age of the internet," but if I had I might have done the same thing. You see, I had kids I knew at school that loved to tell the weirdest sex stories, usually on the bus or in other places that the teachers wouldn't be looking. It was pretty hard core stuff, you wouldn't think that 4th graders knew about icky things like that. It always made me super uncomfortable, and I wondered if what they were saying was real or if they made it up. If I'd had the opportunity to look and see if it was real I very well may have done so. However, I am REALLY GLAD that I never had the opportunity: I think that kind of thing can be pretty damaging to a child.
Right, to all of the above.

And what Waiting2BeMommy said occurred to me, as well.

Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#12 of 22 Old 04-10-2010, 02:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know it wasn't my husband, as he's quite a large guy (6'6"). That computer is set up at a desk with a chair only I and the children can sit comfortably at. He has his own computers (we have 3 laptops and 3 desktops), so if he was going to do a search like that, he'd do it on his own computers. He knows I check the internet history, so if he was looking up something he didn't want me to find out, he wouldn't search on that computer. The searches were spelled incorrectly the first time (I do believe my husband can spell better than that ), and the searches were done right after and right before other searches were done on my daughter's games she's been playing. My husband was with me when I was looking at the internet history, and he was just as shocked as I.

So far, I've been giving my daughter space. Last night, I told her if she was curious about sex, she can always take a look at my book collection (I'm a midwifery student). She picked up my copy of Our Bodies Our Selves, and took it to her room. I'll give her a few days and check back in with her.

I talked about the situation briefly with my ex husband (her father). Right now, my current husband is on the way to drop the 9 y/o off at her father's house to visit. My ex knows not to let the 9 y/o on the computer for the time being.

I think the reason she searched these particular things is because she had been looking for information on a particular game, and some questionable sites/videos came up (I saw the videos she looked at). They combined her game with sex, which caused her to do some other searches on this subject. That brought up more sites, which she browsed for a little bit, and clicked on links. The train of thought is pretty easy to follow.

I didn't have the filter on, because I had been using the computer earlier that week to look up material for class (considering I'm a midwifery student, I need to be able to look up sex). I usually use my laptop for class, though. My husband is a computer expert (studied Computer Science at an Ivy League University), so it's not a problem setting up the computer so only certain sites are available. I suppose it's our fault for being so lax. My 9 y/o just moved in with us a month and a half ago (she had been living with her father up until recently), and we just never got around to setting up the computer for her, as I really didn't think she'd be looking up this stuff!
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#13 of 22 Old 04-10-2010, 04:23 PM
 
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It sounds like you have things in hand.

Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#14 of 22 Old 04-13-2010, 11:42 AM
 
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It sounds like you handled this very well... : )
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#15 of 22 Old 04-14-2010, 12:43 AM
 
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AtYourCervices, 6'6"? Damn, he's tall! You'll like k9 protection because you can easily click it off when you need to do your midwifery research and back on again. Harder for kids unless they figure out your pass word. I think it's normal for kids to be curious, even kids that havent been molested. The internet almosts pulls people into porn because it's so easy to stumble on to it and being sexual beings as we are, it's normal to be curious. Good luck with how this all plays out with your daughter and you.
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#16 of 22 Old 04-14-2010, 10:08 AM
 
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I will say it's pretty easy to stumble on things. I was looking for rainbow kippahs and found some interesting things.
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#17 of 22 Old 04-16-2010, 12:28 AM
 
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I think that being mad about her lying isn't realistic. I can't imagine that most children her age would tell the truth about looking up porn.

Heck, I lied to my mother about looking at the instructions in her tampon box!

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#18 of 22 Old 08-24-2010, 02:34 AM
 
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First let me say what a blessing this community is. I swear anything I have issues with dealing with my kids I can find help here.

My husband found our 9 yr old son had been doing this exact thing over the last couple of days. We've not yet talked to him since my mom is here visiting and we don't want to sour the time with her.

I would be interested to know if you ever got an answer as to how she thought to search for this stuff? Also what game was she playing.

I'm am pretty sure my son was led down the same path in nearly the same way via an online game that seemed pretty innocent. But as you know ads pop up, searches go awry etc etc.

I'm also really concerned with what some had said about the red flags for abuse. It is really one of my greatest fears as a mom. Any suggestions of what questions to ask him? How to approach the topic. Should I be a part of the talk, or should my husband do this on his own?

Any help is greatly appreciated!

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#19 of 22 Old 08-24-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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I think that being mad about her lying isn't realistic. I can't imagine that most children her age would tell the truth about looking up porn.

Heck, I lied to my mother about looking at the instructions in her tampon box!
Times have changed, I guess?
I think that GoBecGo really has a point. Probably your DD wasn't aware of how "out of line" she was. As you said you could easily follow her train of thought, so she was likely hopping from link to link. (Which is easy as you know - be it for midwifery students or for LLL Leaders. Really interesting stuff that pops up there. )

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#20 of 22 Old 08-24-2010, 11:50 PM
 
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Thanks to rule 34 it's ridiculously easy to trip over sexual stuff on the internet.

Glad to hear that it was just clicking through from a reasonable search!

My thought had been that maybe she heard a word some place and was Googling to try to figure out what it meant.
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#21 of 22 Old 08-27-2010, 09:34 AM
 
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We had the same issue with my nine year old dd. I had no doubt it was her and not dh as he's a much better speller. And it was done at a time when I was sitting watching TV with dh at my side.

She was looking for stuff specifically related to one pop singer, but in a most definitely sexual way that made my eyes bug out. I brought it up by talking in neutral terms about the singer at breakfast the following morning, and she almost immediately burst into tears.

We had a long talk about why searching for that stuff is a bad idea. I think she had gotten into one of those sites with all sorts of pop-ups and she had a hard time turning it all off. That was scary for her. We talked about how easy it is to get into stuff you really don't want to see (which I think happened), and viruses, and the fact that if you get certain inapropriate sites, even if you didn't mean to, you can be in trouble with the police. (underage porn).

We also talked about how she could come to us about questions, and we discussed the books that we have that deal with sexuality in an age-appropriate way. We are pretty open about sex and always are willing to discuss anything.

We haven't had a repeat of the problem.
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#22 of 22 Old 08-28-2010, 11:15 AM
 
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totally putting myself out here with this but just wanted to say that at 11 or 12 i was googling some pretty hardcore porn....I won't detail it all but it definitely had a sexual component, I mean I wasn't just idly surfing and stumbled on it, and it was my way of proccessing sexual abuse that had happened much earlier. I had already had those inclinations/urges by the time I was 5 but obviously a 5 year old is not sophisticated enough to search for porn. If my 9 year old really was looking at those things it would be a HUGE gigantic red flag....more like a banner....that she was being or had been sexually abused. and fwiw my abuser did not show me porn....the interest in "not vanilla" stuff was my way of wroking out/coping with what I experienced. OP for your dd's sake I really really hope it wasn't her searching that stuff.
Safe hugs if ok, waiting2bemommy and thank you for saying this. My thoughts as well-- and I hope it's not the issue.
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