I just got a flashback to when The Kid was about 14.... Psycho pedophiles were meeting their prey on social media and she really wanted to join Myspace and Facebook.
Before she was allowed to join social media she had to agree to two rules...
No giving out her personal information (phone number, address, etc.) to anyone she met online.
I must have her username and password.
Also, because kids will be kids I needed her to understand why I had these rules. So, I showed her news articles about kids who were abducted.... some even killed by people they met online. I needed this sheltered, spoiled Disney channel kid to know that not everyone is who they seem to be.
All was good for a couple of weeks. Until I heard her on the phone around 2am.... one, two, three nights in a row doing the flirty laugh thing many young girls do when they like someone. I wanted to give her her privacy so I didn't say anything, yet.
After the third night of the young girl in love giggles I got concerned. I looked up her phone and text message records.
What I found was scary as fuck.
Someone with a Hawaii phone number had been calling or texting her every 5 minutes... while she was at school, in the middle of the night... all damn day! The frequency of their communication made me sick to my stomach and very uncomfortable.
That night I talked to her about what I found. She admitted she met a guy named “Johnnie” on MySpace and gave him her phone number. She said they had not met but they talked a lot on the phone. She claimed she gave him a fake name, Kendal, but real phone number.... blah blah blah.
I immediately took her little pink blackberry away from her.
When I got to work I called the number from her phone....
“ Hellloooo” weird sounding mature man’s voice picked up the phone.
"This is "Kendal's" mother. She is 14 years old. Do not call this number again. If you do I will notify the police and fuck...” before I could finish he hung up the phone.
Look, I don’t fight. I just don’t have the energy for it. But I will if I have to. I don’t know where those words started to come from but I think fear took over. That voice sounded like he was a scary sick fuck and this whole whatever it was needed to end.
But I wasn’t finished.
The Kid needed to know how dangerous this situation is and what could happen.
I asked her questions about him. She didn’t know anything but that he said he was 20 years old and lived out of state. He wanted them to meet.
Something clicked in my mind and I created a whole scenario...I told her the police called me and told me about him. I told her that coincidentally they contacted me to let me know that he was a pedophile and they had been investigating him for months .... Heck, I didn’t know what else to say I just needed to scare her so she knew how serious this is.
But I still wasn’t finished.
A couple of days later while she and I were in the car I had a friend call and act like a police officer. I made sure to have the call connected to Bluetooth so she could hear the conversation. The “Police Officer” was updating me on their investigation. They were unable to locate the pedophile. He had been harassing young girls for months trying to get them to visit him. The Officer said my daughter was lucky that I intervened and went over some safety precautions then the call ended.
I didn't need to verbally say much after that call... the look on my face said “I told you so” and the look on her face let me know she was nervous. She apologized for not following the rules and said it wouldn’t happen again.
The next morning The Kid called me in a panic about 15-20 minutes after she had already left to go to school.... She was almost in tears and her voice was shaking. She told me she had been sitting in the lobby of our apartment building because she was scared to leave. She thought Jonathan The Pedophile was going to get her so she wanted me to take her to school.
My job is done!
I told her the truth about this many years later. She was upset that I terrified her.... Oh well, the alternative could have been a lot worse. I would have done it again if I had to.
Have you ever made up a complete story to prevent some bullshit happening to your kid?