I’m one of those moms.
I think I stated once that I would rather let my kids go to daycare at Hooters than to own a play gun. No, seriously. People actually say things like that – – even when they aren’t under the influence of any hallucinogenic substances. But I have a true natural aversion to real-life violence. I’m keenly aware of the preciousness of life. And even though I understand that fantasy violence is just that – – fantasy – – I believe that it can desensitize us to the real thing over time.
So of course, it naturally follows that I would spawn a child who happens to be obsessed with all things violent and horrific. My youngest son would give his left elbow to be allowed to play the video games that his compadres have open access to – – God of War, Call of Duty, Resident Evil – – they are all off limits in Topsy-Techieland.
Now I know all about preteen and teen rebellion. My mom and dad were flower child wannabes, so I tried out my wings as a very conservative Republican for a while. Even attended a private ultra-conservative Christian college, which really threw a cork in their plans for me.
So as a parent, I well know that putting stuff “off limits” only increases its appeal. Thus…I have REALLY tried to be more low key on my anti-violence warpath (hee). The other day, H-T wanted to buy a toy shotgun with his own money. For the first time in my parenting career, I turned my head and let it happen. He begged for a violent video game for Christmas, telling us to do all the research we wanted on it and promising to write a homeschool report about it if he got it. I ordered the game. He has been spending at least one afternoon each week watching old black and white horror movies on the web. I haven’t blocked the sites.
I think I am being incredibly generous since everything in my parenting sixth sense is screaming out against these gestures of blooming independence. But sometimes I feel like I am just giving in and buckling against my own value system.
So for those of you who have dealt with these issues – – what conclusions have you come to? Is it more important to stick to your guns (hee) and enforce your own values, or to allow your kids to express their personal independence and test out their own value systems?
I would truly love to hear some mama (and daddy) wisdom and get some advice from an outside perspective…shoot away (hee).
Remember that every comment this month gets you an entry into the Big Fat November giveaway for that HP Printer!!