A Letter to My 2 Girls Re: The Internet

Dear Roenne and Arden,

I love you so much. I hope you know that. I love you when you’re happy. I love you when you’re sad. I love you when you’re sleeping and I love you even more when you’re misbehaving. I love you.

You are not fully aware yet of this fact but soon you will come to know that your daddy works on the internet. That is, I earn a living for our family working on products and with people that engage on the internet – every single single second of every single day. I work there because I really enjoy it – I do my best work there and I find incredible pleasure by providing value to many, many people.

But I want you to know that the place that I work has no rules. No one tells anyone to “stop” and no one tells anyone what they can and cannot do. There are no spankings on the internet, no timeouts, and no one is denied dessert because of something they did during the day. People on the internet and people who use technology (like your iPods and iPads) can do whatever they want with very little consequence.

It makes this world both a very neat one but also very, very dangerous. There are people who will want to hurt you through technology and the internet. They may even be your “friends” – or people who you think are your friends. You will feel pressure to do things that you may not feel good about doing.

I want you to be courageous. Really courageous. Remember how we pray every night that you would be “strong and courageous?” That you would grow to be beautiful, strong, brave, and wise? Never forget that you are brave, that you are courageous, and that you should never feel pressure to do something that you do not feel like doing, especially on your mobile phones, on the internet, or with any technology that may exist.

You are my two beautiful girls who I love so deeply it hurts. It hurts because I know that I will not always be there to protect you from the bad stuff. I will not always be there to hug you and give you endless kisses on your face. I will not always be there to give you counsel about decisions that you will have to make.

That is a good thing, in some ways, since I want you to grow up independent from your mother and I. But I want you to always know that I’m here – I’m available for you to call, to text, to tweet @ – I don’t care how you do it as I will do anything to keep the communication channels open. I’ll use any device, any technology, and medium that you want and I’ll be there.

You are beautiful. You are brave. You are more important to me than anyone’s opinion or wishes or desires or pressure from the internet. You are always welcome here. You are safe.

I love you Roenne. I love you Arden. Never, never forget.

Your one and only “appa”.