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Old 01-18-2013, 09:45 AM   #1
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what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

i am flabbergasted at the things my BIL and SIL allow their 8 yr old to do. She's had her own digital camera since 5 (a nicer one than we have, mind you) and now she has her own cell phone and regularly texts people.

then i read some stories of 8 years olds going out on a date, entering "no getting fat" pacts with their friends, and having their own smart phones and laptops.

so, seriously... what do you allow your 8 year old to do? Do these things sound normal in your household? Or is this outrageous to you, too?

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Old 01-18-2013, 09:58 AM   #2
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

No, my 8 yr doesn't do any of that stuff. She'd like her own camera and I do allow her to use ours accationally. If we had the money for it, I'd get her one of her own. She's very responsible and would be fine with a camera.

She has no interest in a cell phone. Probably has no clue what texting is - dh and I rarely text. She is always with us or another trusted adult with a phone so we see no need for her to have one of her own at this time. None of her friends have a phone and none of them call each other at all yet.

Dd1 has no concept of body image yet. She is very skinny but doesn't identify herself based on her looks yet. Neither does she pay any attention to others looks yet. And boys are still icky to her - she says she's not going to start dating until she's 27.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:04 AM   #3
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

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Originally Posted by newbiemama View Post
i am flabbergasted at the things my BIL and SIL allow their 8 yr old to do. She's had her own digital camera since 5 (a nicer one than we have, mind you) and now she has her own cell phone and regularly texts people.

then i read some stories of 8 years olds going out on a date, entering "no getting fat" pacts with their friends, and having their own smart phones and laptops.

so, seriously... what do you allow your 8 year old to do? Do these things sound normal in your household? Or is this outrageous to you, too?
You described my friend's daughter to a tee. Flash foward six years later and do you know how I describe her? She looks like a whore.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:07 AM   #4
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

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Originally Posted by newbiemama View Post
i am flabbergasted at the things my BIL and SIL allow their 8 yr old to do. She's had her own digital camera since 5 (a nicer one than we have, mind you) and now she has her own cell phone and regularly texts people.

then i read some stories of 8 years olds going out on a date, entering "no getting fat" pacts with their friends, and having their own smart phones and laptops.

so, seriously... what do you allow your 8 year old to do? Do these things sound normal in your household? Or is this outrageous to you, too?
I opened this thread thinking it would be about free-range parenting, and then I read your OP and just went...

So, no. The only one of those things we allow at eight (I have a seven and a nine year old) would be the camera. My DD was allowed to use my DSLR with supervision and we do have a little P&S the kids are allowed to use. No cell phone, no laptop, no texting, no dates, no "pacts."

My 8 yos are allowed to ride to the neighbour's to deliver eggs. They are allowed to walk in the back bush. They are allowed to "supervise" their younger sibling when I run to the barn. They are allowed to have sleep overs at friend's houses. They are allowed to cook/bake in the kitchen with little supervision. They are taught to use the remote and may with permission turn on the television and borrow a laptop to play a game. But not many of the things you listed.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:08 AM   #5
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

Well my oldest is almost 6 and has a digital camera. He's very interested in photography, and actually takes good photos, it's not expensive though, it was my old one when I upgraded. Cell phones though are something that they can have when they can pay for it.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:54 AM   #6
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Dd1 will be 8 on the 2nd. We are thinking of getting her and dd2(5) a digital camara or a phone with a nice camare(will not! be activated! And thinking of this route b/c some cells have nice camaras and we can get them.cheap off craigslist). They both love!! taking pics/videos. They are very creative when it comes to what they use my phones camera for.

As far as a cell that actually calls/texts they can have that when they can pay for it-but we will probably revisit that as they get to their mid teens and start going out without an adult but if we do provide a cell it will be a bare bones version.

We havent even discussed dating yet as they are still years! from going on one. And no unhealthy pacts or clubs.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:02 AM   #7
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

DS1 purchased himself a digital camera when he was 8 with saved money. We got him his own laptop for his 8th birthday as he was being required to do school projects involving the computer. Sometimes he has to go online and post on his class blog.

No cell phone. He barely uses his email so I can't imagine him texting. Even at 10.5 he's never been away from an adult with one.

He's a boy and not very interested in girls quite yet. He is health and environmentally conscious and has always been. I could see him making some sort of health pact with his friends about staying strong/fit/healthy. He and his friends were really into "clubs" at age 8. Really all that meant was a groups of friends came up with a name for themselves and played pretend. In my son's case, it was spy stuff.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:13 AM   #8
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

My daughter had friends like that for a while. They parted ways by about 2nd grade. But, the two i'm thinking of were little tramps by high school.

One tried to meet up with her "online boyfriend" in 5th grade, but she had told him she was 16, and he had told her he was 18. Turned out she was 10, and he was 30. He was not impressed, and she was scared.... he did stay there with her while he called the police. She continued to chat with people online even after the police took her home and told her dad.

He didn't want to stifle her.

The other one had "dates" by 5th grade. They would get a ride to the pizza place or a movie theater and the boy would pay. I was horrified. SHe was all dressed up and wearing too much makeup.

At that age, my kid still like Pokemon.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:33 AM   #9
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

My 7 year old has his own adult digital camera. It wasn't overly expensive, but it was bought specifically for him for his birthday. He really enjoys taking photos and takes very good care of his camera. I was nervous about it, but he was attached at the hip to his kid camera and he had outgrown what it could do. I was tired of him using mine, which is much nicer than his.

He has nothing else listed and will not be allowed to for a very long time. Nothing you said is a shock to me, but it is totally unacceptable and inappropriate for a child of 8, IMHO.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:34 AM   #10
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Re: what do you allow your 8 year old to do??

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Originally Posted by NotLad View Post
You described my friend's daughter to a tee. Flash foward six years later and do you know how I describe her? She looks like a whore.
whoa.


OP, I don't have an 8 yr old, but I do know an 8 yr old in a family that is close friends with us. And no, she is not like that at all. She is sweet and innocent, and she seems to feel a little self-conscious and awkward about herself. She makes jokes she thinks are funny, but sometimes aren't. We all laugh anyway because we don't want her to feel bad, but it's like 10 seconds later she realizes it wasn't funny and then is embarrassed.... she also asks strange questions.

That's the 8 yr old I know. Seems to be in an awkward phase, but she is totally sweet and loving and innocent. Nothing like what you are describing....

"never get fat" pact is just weird... and actually SAD. to me anyway.
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