This blog is my place to vent and share resources with other parents of children of trauma. I try to be open and honest about my feelings in order to help others know they are not alone. Therapeutic parenting of adopted teenagers with RAD and other severe mental illnesses and issues (plus "neurotypical" teens) , is not easy, and there are time when I say what I feel... at the moment. We're all human!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

How media effects our children

So I spent almost 3 hours last night researching the effects of media (books, movies, TV, music) on children. I cut and pasted a ton of it (20 pages of 12 point type) into one document (no footnotes or even researchers names for most of it - just info). I found research on how violent TV is, how violent media effects kids (scares them, makes them aggressive, makes them think the whole world is like that, makes them care less about people getting hurt), how too much TV effects kids (makes them fat and violent), and how media effects girl's body image (makes them think they are fat and that girls should be interested in fashion and boys and not activities).

Bob's assignment was to read the research and write an article for her private school's newsletter about why parents should "censor" the media their children are exposed to. She also had to write a 1 page paper on how the stuff she's been exposed to has effected her life. She's only done the 1 page paper so far, and I'm not happy with it. She also has the task of dusting all bookshelves in the house, cleaning them all, and moving all inappropriate items to my room. I LOVE books and we have TONS of bookshelves so this is not an easy task.

Bob's Media Report

I still don't know what to give Kitty for a FAIR Club assignment. I'm thinking that Bob's article might be at a level where Kitty can read and understand it. If so, then maybe I'll have Kitty read it and write a paper on how media has effected her life. Kitty was allowed to watch horror movies in preschool (The Ring, The Grudge, and her absolute favorite, The Scream). She gets obsessed with movies.

Open to suggestions! Kitty's extra chore was cleaning at my work (since I missed a lot of work time to deal with her issues, and she can't do my actual work, she can save me some of the other work I should be doing there - cleaning!)


Anonymous said...

Mary, I hate giving you advice because I don't have special needs kids. That said, I think having Bob move all the innappropriate books is well... innappropriate. If they're not for her eyes, they're not for her hands, either. I love a trashy romance novel but I've never left them sitting out where the kids can reach them. Box them up, bring them to your favorite Salvation Army where they give you those great deals, and donate them. You won't read most of them again anyway. The SA guy may even let you take half a dozen new ones home with you in trade. As for the movies, YOU and DH should be the ones gathering the ones you don't want them to watch. Don't tempt them with titles they may not have checked out yet! It's your job as the parents to "childproof" your home. Would you leave legos out for a toddler to choke on? Would you leave medicines out for them to help themselves to? Would you leave Playboy magazines out? You get the point. JMHO...

marythemom said...

Hi Denise!

No worries on the advice! Bob is my HEALTHY child. That said, she is also my most sneaky child. By having her go through the kids'and family bookshelves looking for inappropriate stuff, I now can discipline her if I find something inappropriate later! This way I can be pretty sure that she found things I wouldn't even know to look for.

My relationship with Bob is interesting. She is the most mature of my kids and the one I trust the most. That's why when stuff like this happens, I still trust her to fix it. That probably sounds crazy!

I know that if I can get Bob to understand WHY it's inappropriate then she is less likely to do it. If I just "childproof" then believe me she will find a way to do it anyway. Grandma takes them to the library all the time and despite my requests - does not supervise what they check out.

We do have areas in our bedroom that we can lock. I didn't think it was necessary, but will decide what is necessary to keep locked away. My biggest concern is that Bob has discovered what I learned long ago - for an extremely prolific reader, romance novels are one of the few things that can "keep up." Not surprisingly, she and I have similar taste. I'm going to have to find an appropriate way to feed her "hunger." Wish me luck!