I can talk a pretty good game when it comes to letting kids read what they want. Sure, I've had my moments of fear and disgust, but overall? We've basically made the decision that Diana (and Chestnut, if she wanted to) can read anything in the house. It's all fair game. Diana is 12, after all, and while I may have stressed out about letting her read Speak when she was 9, now she's psyched out of her mind that it's the required reading book for 8th grade at her school, so she can read it for the 108th time, or whatever it is. (She has a particular affection for that fictional art room, so welcoming even in an alternate reality—she wishes for it, I think.)
All of which is to say that now there's something else, and I'm really kind of OK about it, but it gives me pause. It's this: yes, Hyperbole and a Half, a blog I love.
We've been reading it together for a while now; Diana particularly loves The Alot. It's sometimes racy, often profane, but it's always excellent and that's what matters.
Until we read her most recent update. It was moving. And sad. She talked in a painful and brutally honest way about depression, and it was harrowing. And it kind of scared the crap out of me that my kid was reading it.
It's not that I think that they should be magically protected from all mention or notion of the existence of depression. It's just that—I think they should be magically protected from all mention or notion of the existence of depression.
I know, I know—should they ever have the misfortune to fall under the dark cloud, it will be an immense comfort to them to know that they are not alone. And if they are lucky enough to miss that, reading things like this will give them insight into people, sympathy, empathy. This is worth it, of course it is.
It's just scary to watch them finding out about this sad old world, that's all.
Do you guys let your young 'uns read blogs?