Yesterday, Logan was sitting at the computer working on his ozone project. He was excited about it and wanted to share with me what he had learned. He told me that he had to search quite a bit to get the information. Searching on the Internet always worries me because I never know what innocent word may cause photos of naked people to pop up. If you have ever made the mistake of researching the White House as a company, you know what I mean.
Although we had the talk about Internet awareness many times, I felt like this was another opportunity to point out that bad things could come up when you are researching. Logan assured me that nothing bad had come up with his searches.
Then he stopped for a moment, "Wait. Something bad did come up on the computer."
My heart stopped. Inside, alarms went off. Outside, my face was calm.
I recently saw Michelle in the Middle speak. She spoke about the emotional and intellectual issues that children ages 11-18 go through and how to handle them as a parent. One piece of advice that resonated with me was about pretending you just had a Botox injection. Keep your face as neutral as possible when your child is telling you something that may not typically produce a neutral face. This encourages your child to share more about their life without feeling judged.
Neutral face on.
Logan explained about that bad, bad internet: "I was studying for my states test and I pulled up different sites to help me. One of the sites had Washington and Oregon in the wrong spots. That's bad Mom, right?"
Relief flooded through my body, "Yes, Logan, that is just terrible."