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In other words you're acting as your son's guardian, which is exactly as it should be.

The problem I have is with telling your kid: go ahead sign up and lie about your age. There's a huge difference between the parent taking the step of creating the account with a password known by the parent and telling the kid to go ahead and lie, which is what a lot of (probably childless) commenters suggest.

"You need to fill in an earlier year here, otherwise Google's computer will think you're too young to use GMail [and might throw away your email at some point]"

It's important to be clear that you're lying to a computer system, not another human being.

I would be inclined to teach my kids that if they run across something that has unreasonable barriers, they should work around them. The more creative they are in working around them, the better.

That will likely make parenting an absolute hell, but they'll be well-equipped for dealing with the adult world.

Determining which barriers are unreasonable takes a lot more maturity than I think you realize. Kids need to learn to play by the rules before they learn which ones to break.

Exactly so. Working around comes later.

I agree and I would say this barrier is more inconvenient than unreasonable. And we should not encourage rule-breaking for convenience.

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