“What about the Internet?” “Oh, we did the whole parental-control schmear, but Kevin cracked it in a day.”

Yesterday I talked about Lionel Shriver’s We Need to Talk About Kevin, which I recommend even more now that I’ve finished it. About a third into the book, Eva recalls her civil trial for parental negligence:

“You see,” I proceeded, “by the time he was eleven or twelve, this was all too late. The no-gun rules, the computer codes… Children live in the same world we do. To kid ourselves that we can shelter them from it isn’t just naive, it’s a vanity. We want to be able to tell ourselves what good parents we are, that we’re doing our best. If I had to do it all over again, I’d have let Kevin play with whatever he wanted; he liked little enough. And I’d have ditched the TV rules, the G-rated videos. They only made us look foolish. They underscored our powerlessness, and they provoked his contempt.”

2 thoughts on ““What about the Internet?” “Oh, we did the whole parental-control schmear, but Kevin cracked it in a day.”

  1. Pingback: More books by Lionel Shriver: Double Fault and The Post-Birthday World « Live from Planet Paola

  2. Pingback: Five American Writers « Live from Planet Paola

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