Teen Sex on TV

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Teen Sex on TV

http://www.cnn.com/2011/11/11/opinion/henson-glee/index.html?iref=obinsite

CNN) -- Kids having sex on prime time broadcast TV? Must be sweeps month.
It's so predictable, it's almost laughable. Almost. That is, it would be if it weren't for the fact that there are real-world consequences for these brazen, ratings-boosting publicity ploys.
Fox's soapy, teen-targeted "Glee" tried to boost sagging ratings this week by showing not one, but two teen couples having sex for the first time -- one gay, the other straight. Show co-creator Ryan Murphy and the folks over at "Glee" are spinning this as a "teachable moment" for teens and their parents, an opportunity for dialogue about safe sex and responsible choices. The problem is Ryan Murphy wants to have his cake and eat it, too.
Hollywood loves to defend teen sex story lines by insisting, "Kids are having sex! We're reflecting the real world!" But the truth is much more sobering and complicated.
Yes, there are and always have been sexually active teens, but never before have depictions of premarital teen sex been so widespread in the media. Today, you are more likely to see sexualized teens than adults in sexual situations. By presenting teen sex as common, the media marginalizes teens who choose to remain abstinent while increasing the pressure teens are already feeling to become sexually active.
Television is a "sexual super peer," according to Jane Brown, a professor of journalism and mass communication at the University of North Carolina. The phrase "peer pressure" is used to describe the influence a peer group can exert on a teen's decisions. Television amplifies that peer pressure by making the entire realm of television, and all the characters in it, part of the teen's peer group.
When television portrays attractive, popular teenage characters as sexually active, it sends a powerful message to young viewers that there is an expectation that they, too, should be sexually active and, in fact, there might be something wrong with them, if they aren't.
Teens are also aware that television influences their behavior. According to one survey, a third of youths age 12 and older say the media encourages them to have sex by making it seem like "everybody does it." And why shouldn't they get that impression?

Beyond making teen sex the norm, researchers have found heavy television viewing to be predictive of positive attitudes toward "recreational" or casual sex and negative attitudes toward remaining a virgin. Studies have also found the more a teenager identifies with the characters they see on prime time TV shows, the more likely they are to be sexually experienced and to expect higher levels of sexual activity among their peers.
At least half a dozen studies in the past few years have documented a strong correlation between exposure to adult media content as children and the early onset of sexual activity among teens. One study even found that viewing of sexual media content was predictive of teen pregnancy.
If that isn't enough, why exactly do parents and teens need to sit down and watch a TV show that glamorizes teen sex in order to have a conversation about it? Let's hope most parents pass on Hollywood's attempt to help them out with the visuals and simply have an honest conversation with their teenagers.
If history is a predictor of future behavior, we can expect this trend to continue. A season or two into Murphy's show "Nip/Tuck" on the FX network, he was interviewed for a Bravo network documentary about breaking sexual taboos on television. Murphy stated, "It's tough to get that sexual point of view across on television. Hopefully I have made it possible for somebody on broadcast television to do a rear-entry scene in three years. Maybe that will be my legacy."
This, ladies and gentlemen, is the self-styled sex-ed teacher to America's teens. The worst thing parents can do is step aside and let Hollywood do the teaching.

Bolding mine.

So what do you think - is it okay for shows to depict teens having sex because teens really do have sex, and it is a way to bring up discussions about safe sex, responsibility, et fetera? Or do you think that shows that depict teens having sex are actually encouraging them to have sex? Would you let your teen watch a show that depicts teens having sex, assuming the message was one of responsibility?

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I think it is fine for shows to have teen sex on them. I also think it is fine for me to not watch it or allow my kids to watch it because it has sex on it.

I loved Glee. I still do. I watced the Glee Project and religiously watched the first season. However I have not liked the amount of sex they ahve had on it. I think it is true to the plot and is fine, just not my cup of tea. I probably watched Grease way too early and I know better for my kids. But as much as I love Glee it makes me sad I can;t watch it with my kids. Bummer.

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Were those supposed to be sex scenes? lol. Yeah, it was more like kissing and cuddling. I saw no hunka chunka going on. I know it was implied, but it didn't look like what sex looks like in the movies or late night shows on HBO.

Even if I did, I know that those actors aren't teens and it's my prerogative to watch or not, anyway. Personally, I'd let my teens watch those episodes. Sex happens and ignoring it does our teens no favours.

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I also think it's fine for shows to have teen sex. We can make the choice ourselves whether or not to watch it. Glee is filled with adult themes, so I don't think that show is problematic at all, that's sort of what it's about (although I don't watch it). It has never been a show for smaller kids.

I would let my teenagers watch a show with teen sex. Not my 8-year-old. I do see it as one opportunity for discussion, and it's their reality.

When I saw things with sex in them as a kid it went right over my head. Grease in 7th grade, I'm the weird kid who went to see Annie Hall 5 times when it came out. I was 11. Honestly I watch it now and see sex and drug scenes and I know that they really did not have much of an effect on me!

I think lots of shows do make it a "big" moment for teens, and address the gravity of it. I can't blame tv or movies for what my kids will think about sex. That's my job. But having it out in the open is not a negative thing to me. My parents were very open and although they were probably just a bit more open than I wanted, it didn't harm me. My brother allows his kids to see a lot more than I would, and they are healthy, happy girls and time will tell but they don't seem to be headed on bad (early sex, meaningless sex) sort of path. (They watch Glee, too.)

So I think if there is strong parental guidance, it's fine.

To me the bigger issue is the constant sexualization (which doesn't seem to be a real word) of women, the idea that our whole value is tied up in looks & sex appeal, and that sex is about power instead of love. That disturbs me more than the idea of a show in which teens who really care about each other have sex.

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I would let my teen watch it and discuss it if they felt they wanted to. IIRC that episode of Glee they did a lot of talking about if they were ready etc before they proceeded and the gay couple actually had a fighter because Blaine got drunk and Kurt wasn't happy with drunken nookie in the back of the car. To me teens see a lot worse portrayls of sex in movies targeted at their age which seem to show a lot od meaningless sex or drunken party sex (or have them implied).

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I'm not opposed to teen sex on TV per se. I just don't like how it is often portrayed. I would like to see more situations where the popular one and partner are thinking about having sex, talk about whether they are ready, and then decided NOT to do it and both of them being ok with that. It seems they always have the token discussion, but the outcome is sex - and that is what I think sends the wrong message to kids. We tell them to think about it, but for the most part, only show characters coming to one conclusion, which is sex.

eta. I used to really like Glee and watched it faithfully. But, like Lana, I don't like how the tone of the show has become so increasingly sexual.

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I am on the other side it seems. I don't like it, I don't think that just because something is happening we should watch it or approve of it. I never liked Glee and won't let my children watch it. Makes me glad we don't have TV and their viewing at home is screened.

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I feel like I'm piling the wood, slapping myself on the pole, and handing you all torches. However, I am just going to put it out there anyway.

First, my child may be my child, however that does not make me supreme ruler over anyone, including my child. For this instance, I will use Alex, my 13 year old son, and Nikki my 9 year old daughter.

Realistically, sex now is happening before the teen years come up. Shocking yes, real none the less. I refuse to be a dictator in my home, television is at the discretion of the viewer, be it myself, Alex, or Nikki.

Nikki was watching disney one day, and one of their little music videos came on .. freak the freak out is the name of the song I think. The second freak was clearly the cover for the f bomb .. a few days later I'm at my inlaws, and my 7 year old sister inlaw is repeatidly singing freak the freak out.

The show Jake and Josh (I think that's it) and even i carly, have scenes that depict "teen relationships" .. Sure so does Glee, though i think Glee is aimed at older teens, none of mine are interested in it yet.

Music, movies, and media in general ARE indeed excellent doors to dialogue for parents who don't know how or where to begin. The problem is most people do not first of all know how to dialogue, and second of all think it's practical to wait until their child is 15 or older to have this "chat".

Dialogue isn't a series of things you want to say, and having your child repeat you and say oh yes you're exactly right. Dialogue is you listening to your child, understanding and accepting without judgement or anger, and simply restating how they feel so that first of all they know you have understood them and second of all that you are listening to them.

Dialogue is the first phase of active listening. It isn't about teaching your child, or trying to instill morals. Before such dialogue can happen, you will have had to all ready given your child the sex talk.

Burn me with your torch if you must, but the sex talk needs to be introduced between age 6 and 7. Yes to you it may feel too soon, your child in your eyes may not be mature enough. However welcome to the real world, with subliminal messages EVERYWHERE, and sex among youth happening at younger and younger ages.

The article at no point says anything about teaching about sex, it points out dialogue. Alex is 13, and he does have a girl friend. We have had the sex talk and have dialogued. Very uncomfortable, because I am afraid of what I might hear, however I suck it up. his life is not mine to live, it isn't mine to control, it isn't my place to force upon him what I want. It however is my place to hold his hand, to guide him to the best of my ability, and to listen to him and help him find ways to make good ethical decisions.

The one thing we always have to remember is what we see on tv does not dictate how we live our lives nor does it assume choices we make. I watch a lot of serial killer movies, I have written essays on aileen wornos, yet I haven't been a hooker, and I haven't robbed anyone, killed anyone, nor become a lesbian.

If my child liked watching Glee, I wouldn't stop them from watching it simply because I don't enjoy the content.

I'd like to think that I am one of those parents whom have set a good example. I live and act as a christian, as do my children. They know their bible, they know what Jesus wants, they know their life goals, and they know how to achieve those goals. They know about sex, drugs, and their own strengths to overcome any obstacles that may fall in front of them that could hinder their own achievements.

I know, and accept, that the lives of my children are not about me, it's all about them. I'm here to be their example, to love them, to guide them, to hold them up when their world turns on its side, and to listen to them, even when i don't like what I hear.

So maybe it isn't the show nor it's content that should be questioned, rather maybe how we interact with our children, and how we will help them be productive. What good help can come from said episode of glee, what can it do to help us, not what its doing that angers us.

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I don't need a TV show to teach sex-ed to my kids, I guess that is where we differ. ALSO, it is my home, I pay for the TV(if we had any), I shouldn't have to have tv in my home if I don't want it either. My boys at 8 and 9 I have had "the talk" with, and they have known from age 2 about their bodies, and some about female bodies, they know what periods/tampons and pads are and have for years. I felt it is more important they get the information from me and NOT from a TV show or in a back alley in whispering tones with their friends.

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again dialogue isn't teaching, its listening and restating. There is no law that says you have to have dialogue with your children, there isn't any law that says you can't dictate what happens in your home, but it's proven time after time that dialogue is the key to open communication from child to parent, not everyone feels they need to listen or understand their kids for this communication to happen though, I mean we all know how easy it is to go to our parents when it's their way or the high way right.

You are free to do whatever you please with your children, I simply told you what I do with mine, and how I view these things. I like my children feeling safe and comfortable with me, they come to me, and tell me things, and keep me fully involved in their lives. Nothing is hidden from me for fear of me getting angry. It is simply how I like my relationship to be with my children. I'm sorry if you don't appreciate it, but my children appreciate my willingness to listen to them and at the end of the day, that's what matters to me.

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The teen sex really on TV really bothers me because it seems to be so casual. I hope my children wait until there 20's to start having sex, I think the brain needs to be fully developed before they make such an important choice. But even in their 20's I hope that they dont have such casual partners.

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"mom3girls" wrote:

The teen sex really on TV really bothers me because it seems to be so casual. I hope my children wait until there 20's to start having sex, I think the brain needs to be fully developed before they make such an important choice. But even in their 20's I hope that they dont have such casual partners.

I hear ya. . . but I wonder how many of us waited till we were in our 20's with our fully developed brains, to make that choice. Gosh, I hope mine do too.

I didn't and I paid and am still paying a heavy toll. But that's the way it goes. Teens have sex, their parents keep their heads in the sand, babies are made.

------------

I kinda don't care if my kid is ready to hear and judge for himself/herself if sex is right for them or not. I want them to know and appreciate their bodies and understand consequences. It's really that simple here. And I don't think you should start talking to them about it when they are 6 or 7. My kid found his penis at 3 mos. old.

So, we talk about it. Not in a weird way. Not to shame him. Kids put their hands in their pants, they just do. So you have to just shrug it off and tell him it's not cool. It's BAD!

Girls do it too. And it's also not ok and BAD.

Harrumpfh.

.

Sex isn't bad, bodies aren't bad. They are both great. TV kinda sucks because it becomes the authority.

My kid started preschool and started saying,"I know all about x x x because I heard it on TV," It doesn't matter that we have 1 TV in a box in the basement that we pull out for the Indy 500 and the Macy's parade and that's it. TV has become the authority.

meh, I'll just keep hiking with him and my daughter, and playing sports and cleaning the house, and telling them what I think. I'll just keep doing what we all do, without TV and let it evolve.

I'm not saying that you should cloister your kid. Far from it. But the choices you make early have an effect. Be conscientious of them.

--------

Teen sex on TV is fine for kids who are ready to watch teen sex on TV. Simple.

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"BFrantz" wrote:

again dialogue isn't teaching, its listening and restating. There is no law that says you have to have dialogue with your children, there isn't any law that says you can't dictate what happens in your home, but it's proven time after time that dialogue is the key to open communication from child to parent, not everyone feels they need to listen or understand their kids for this communication to happen though, I mean we all know how easy it is to go to our parents when it's their way or the high way right.

You are free to do whatever you please with your children, I simply told you what I do with mine, and how I view these things. I like my children feeling safe and comfortable with me, they come to me, and tell me things, and keep me fully involved in their lives. Nothing is hidden from me for fear of me getting angry. It is simply how I like my relationship to be with my children. I'm sorry if you don't appreciate it, but my children appreciate my willingness to listen to them and at the end of the day, that's what matters to me.

I completely agree with you on the role of dialogue and the relationship between parentand child. However, I do believe that though I can makemy kids feels safe and comfortable comingto me and have an open communication with them about everything, it ismy duty as a parent to know when they are ready to understand certain thigns and how much they can handle.

Let's take your serial killer example. I like serial killer movies, too. But I am an adult. I know that the likelyhood of a serial killer coming to my door is minute and then I know how to protect myself enough to feel safe in everyday life. However, I know if my kids watched Monster or the Ted Bundy Story or news where they talk about things like that, they are not at a mature enough state to deal with the information in a healthy way. They would probably obsess that someone could kill them. They wouldn't know how to process the idea of how somene could do such a thing. They are not ready for that information, no matter how open our discussionis or how much I explain it. It would be like teaching a 2nd grader Calculus, they just don't have the life experiences and background knowledge to make it make sense in a healthy way. So knowing that as a parent, I know not to allow them acess to that info other then in an age appropriate way. But that is my job, not the media. Therefore I have to control the media as much as possible so that what they are exposed too helps and not hinders the dialogue and discussion that I believe they are ready for.

And, I think every child is ready for different topics at different times. My kids are not ready for the graphic sex or the intracecies of adult relationships. However my son (7) has always been interested in gore and movie fx and monsters. So where someone elses kid would not be ready for say Jaws, itis a staple family movie night choice in our house. And my daughter (10) willl sit and read Cirque de Freak series for hours at a time.

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I agree with Lana. My son is 8 and there is no need to talk about sex with him yet. He's not interested, his friends aren't doing it, and he's not watching unsupervised tv.

One of his friends is so sensitive that she can't watch movies with any sort of intense conflict: that rules out The Lion King, Snow White, etc. My 4-year-old can watch The Wizard Of Oz without getting scared; some kids can't.

My 8-year-old and I have many heart-to-heart talks. He has asked what gay is, why it took two of us to make him, etc. And he is not looking for the details. I have given him simple explanations and he is satisfied with those. If he dug deeper, I'd tell him more, but he is setting the boundaries very clearly.

So it depends on the kids and what they are ready for. I don't believe in hiding things from them but I also think it is important not to force things on them they're not ready for just because we think they need to know. They know they can ask me about anything, and they don't have to worry that they'll hear far more than they want to hear.

I grew up in the 70s when parents told their kids far more than was helpful!!! Trust me, it didn't do me any favors.

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I don't care what they want to show, I have ultimate control over the programs my child watches. If I don't feel like they are ready for that type of program, I won't allow them to watch it or parental block it on the TV. I do think that it's important at some point for teens to understand the full extent of teen sex, mainly consequences. I wish my parents would have been more open from the beginning.

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Did anyone else actually see the episode this article is talking about? It was really well done. And both couples were serious couples who were in love. One of them had been together for a long time (since previous seasons). All of them are high school seniors. They each talked it over a LOT, like in many previous episodes, too). And it seems they all felt special and positive about the choice they made after it was made.

All in all, I think it showed a good example of how sex can be. I've never seen such a positive and thought out portrayal of sex. Not just 'teen' sex. Any sex.

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I remember thinking the same about That 70s Show when Donna and Eric decided to have sex. It was really well done. And that was just a sitcom!

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I do not watch TV shows with sex in it, and I also would not allow my children to. Among other reason's, I do not want there to be unrealistic expectations. How many of you the first boy you kissed or had experiences with it was just as smooth and perfect as in the movies? Real life seldom looks like the movies and can lead to disappointment.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

I completely agree with you on the role of dialogue and the relationship between parentand child. However, I do believe that though I can makemy kids feels safe and comfortable comingto me and have an open communication with them about everything, it ismy duty as a parent to know when they are ready to understand certain thigns and how much they can handle.

I don't find it my place to know or decide when a person that isn't myself is capable of understanding, or what they can handle. the duty of a parent isn't to know what is in their childs mind, if that were the case every single one of us would be terrible parents and shouldn't ever have children. The only mind you know is your own, you may think you know your childs mind but thats as far as it can ever go. psych 101.

My kid found his penis at 3 mos. old.

And he knew it was a penis and understood its purposes? You mean he grabbed his winkie and pulled on it, that's realizing it's there, not knowing what it is.

I agree with Lana. My son is 8 and there is no need to talk about sex with him yet. He's not interested, his friends aren't doing it, and he's not watching unsupervised tv.

How exactly is it that you know that your son isn't interested, and that his friends aren't doing it? I think that's more of your own assumption than an actual fact. I have had 2 kids, going on 3, that have hit the age of 8, all of them had things to say about sex, if there is something to say, an interest exists. My 3 year old makes random comments about his weener .. including one statement he made to my mother in law about a difference in size that exists between himself, his brothers, and dad. He also a few days ago made a comment about growing a big pair of boobies. Don't worry i let him know boys don't grow big boobies, they grow big muscles on their arms, and he has been hulk hoganing since then. The point is, if there is something to say there is an interest. What the level of interest is varies, but i won't be so self deceived to the point of denial.

Each parent has their own way, each parent believes their way is best. I'm not an exception to that statement. Now I don't want to impose my ways of raising or interacting with my children, but sometimes I do think it's positive to throw the door open and give a good look inside. This is simply what I'm doing for all of you, now you can choose to not like it and shut the door, but hold onto it because maybe as your children get older it may be more helpful and understandable than it is now.

:violent2: My 6 year old really like this guy so I told him I would post it ... too bad there aren't any deer for the little guy to shoot at!

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"BFrantz" wrote:

How exactly is it that you know that your son isn't interested, and that his friends aren't doing it? I think that's more of your own assumption than an actual fact. I have had 2 kids, going on 3, that have hit the age of 8, all of them had things to say about sex, if there is something to say, an interest exists.

Is it possible that a child would be more interested in sex because they see it on TV all the time?

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"BFrantz" wrote:

again dialogue isn't teaching, its listening and restating. There is no law that says you have to have dialogue with your children, there isn't any law that says you can't dictate what happens in your home, but it's proven time after time that dialogue is the key to open communication from child to parent, not everyone feels they need to listen or understand their kids for this communication to happen though, I mean we all know how easy it is to go to our parents when it's their way or the high way right.

You are free to do whatever you please with your children, I simply told you what I do with mine, and how I view these things. I like my children feeling safe and comfortable with me, they come to me, and tell me things, and keep me fully involved in their lives. Nothing is hidden from me for fear of me getting angry. It is simply how I like my relationship to be with my children. I'm sorry if you don't appreciate it, but my children appreciate my willingness to listen to them and at the end of the day, that's what matters to me.

Dialogue is a TYPE of teaching. No one said I don't have an open dialogue with my children. I dare say the majority if not ALL the debaters here do have open dialogue with their children on a wide variety of subjects. Not limiting the information given to a child to age appropriateness is not the way I feel is safe to raise children. Parents are NOT "free to do whatever..they..please with their children" There are limits, and I dare say if one is allowing children to watch whatever they want .. it can cross social and religious boundaries. Which can have your children removed from your home.

Who said anything about anger?

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"BFrantz" wrote:

How exactly is it that you know that your son isn't interested, and that his friends aren't doing it? I think that's more of your own assumption than an actual fact. I have had 2 kids, going on 3, that have hit the age of 8, all of them had things to say about sex, if there is something to say, an interest exists. My 3 year old makes random comments about his weener .. including one statement he made to my mother in law about a difference in size that exists between himself, his brothers, and dad. He also a few days ago made a comment about growing a big pair of boobies. Don't worry i let him know boys don't grow big boobies, they grow big muscles on their arms, and he has been hulk hoganing since then. The point is, if there is something to say there is an interest. What the level of interest is varies, but i won't be so self deceived to the point of denial.

Because I have an open dialogue with him. I have 2 kids too, and nieces and nephews, and when they're interested, they talk about it, or look, or ask questions. Mine is doing none of those things. I also think that noticing your penis does not mean it's time for the sex talk. There's a difference between an interest in your body and wanting to know about sex.

My son pours his heart out to me when he is troubled, he brings his questions to me when he's confused, and he shares his ideas with me when he's excited. This is the greatest gift he can give me and I am blessed that he does it, but I will take some credit and say that it's also because I listen to him with an open heart, I try to understand him, and I share with him my thoughts & ideas about what he is going through. Believe me, if he wanted to know about sex, Angel I would know; and (b) we would be discussing it.

Not every child is the same, and talking about a penis does not mean it's time to discuss relationships and where babies come from.

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"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

I do not watch TV shows with sex in it, and I also would not allow my children to. Among other reason's, I do not want there to be unrealistic expectations. How many of you the first boy you kissed or had experiences with it was just as smooth and perfect as in the movies? Real life seldom looks like the movies and can lead to disappointment.

I don't think that's what's on tv anymore. The example I gave, That 70s Show (which was on back in 2002/2003 maybe?) showed two teens who had been dating for a long time and the girl (Donna) finally decided she was ready. When it finally happened (after delays and whatnot), she was actually disappointed, and upset, and he (Eric) wasn't. He loved it. So she talked to him about it and they worked it out and tried again, and it was better.

They don't do those magical experiences anymore, as far as I know.

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"Rivergallery" wrote:

Dialogue is a TYPE of teaching. No one said I don't have an open dialogue with my children. I dare say the majority if not ALL the debaters here do have open dialogue with their children on a wide variety of subjects. Not limiting the information given to a child to age appropriateness is not the way I feel is safe to raise children. Parents are NOT "free to do whatever..they..please with their children" There are limits, and I dare say if one is allowing children to watch whatever they want .. it can cross social and religious boundaries. Which can have your children removed from your home.

Who said anything about anger?

I do happen to allow my children to watch whatever television show they choose. If that makes you believe I am a bad parent and my child should be removed from my home first of all let me say you have no clue what the Child Service System works nor what it is for. Let me secondly reassure you that my children are far from abused or neglected, letting my children watch Harold and Kumar go to White Castle is NOT abuse nor neglect. Social and religious boundaries do not dictate abuse and neglect. In fact in most circumstances they rebuke one another. Some abuse reports are washed aside because of religious outlooks, when investigating the first job is to interview the parents, and find out their beliefs, and their culture.

I think for me you have really crossed the line, so I've got nothing more to say to you. I wish you luck with your children and I hope you find some peace with yourself.

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"freddieflounder101" wrote:

Because I have an open dialogue with him. I have 2 kids too, and nieces and nephews, and when they're interested, they talk about it, or look, or ask questions. Mine is doing none of those things. I also think that noticing your penis does not mean it's time for the sex talk. There's a difference between an interest in your body and wanting to know about sex.

My son pours his heart out to me when he is troubled, he brings his questions to me when he's confused, and he shares his ideas with me when he's excited. This is the greatest gift he can give me and I am blessed that he does it, but I will take some credit and say that it's also because I listen to him with an open heart, I try to understand him, and I share with him my thoughts & ideas about what he is going through. Believe me, if he wanted to know about sex, Angel I would know; and (b) we would be discussing it.

Not every child is the same, and talking about a penis does not mean it's time to discuss relationships and where babies come from.

I have 6 kids, wide age range. Obviously I'm not talking to my 3 year old about sex, I didn't say i was or even rolling towards it, i was pointing at a level of interest. Obviously at 3 he is noticing some pretty big things and there is a level of interest and a level of discussion, mostly who has what. it's good that you listen to your kid, I'm not saying he does or doesn't have an interest, my biggest point was that you don't know what his friends are or arent doing or saying.

Also there comes a point where children begin acting differently and having totally different conversations with their friends than they do with mom, far different conversations! You have an 8 year old son, so hang on because this could begin any time. Keep that openness though and it should be an easier transition. I think Alex was about 10 when the major shift began, for some reason their brain wiring gets messed up about that age and suddenly mom isn't cool anymore. It gets rough, and those rough patches shift and change shape almost constantly. You already have the dialogue thing going with him, so you'll really notice when he stops meeting you for answers, thats when he is getting them from those other friends and at that point you'll have to initiate the dialogues.

I'm not sure where you are geographically, I'm in the midwest, which seems to lag behind with social interaction. Dialogue is rather "new" previous generations (our parents) had the my way or else thing going, I got my dialogue skills from my schooling, I've passed it on to my kids, so this is something they will be great with when they have kids. You sound like you're pretty well with it, so good job! It's nice when people can say they dialogue well and have great success with their little people. It isn't an easy task to let your children be who they are without being over-baring. I think thats part of the real skill that people lack and still believe they are dialoguing.

It's been wonderful hearing your point of view, thanks for answering my questions to you! I appreciate it. Now I get to go to work, ah I miss my people!

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I'm in the northeast. My parents weren't the "my way or else" type...I grew up in the swinging 70s when parents told their kids far more than we wanted to know. But apart from that, we were all about dialogue as a family. This is not new to me.

I think most of the parents on this board are the same way. . .we talk to our kids and we listen to them.

I have a pretty good sense of what his friends are up to. I know them, I see them regularly, and more than that, I see what level they are at and their interactions with each other. None of them are having sex or talking about it...if one was, they all would be pretty quickly! I hear a lot about the things they talk about.

I have an 18-year-old sister so I'm not that removed from all this. When she was 13, I asked her if any of her friends were having sex, and she said, "NO!" and I waited and then said, "But one of them is, right?" and she said, "Yes."

Believe me, I'm open to discussing these things. I just don't believe in a hard & fast rule about what age, and I don't believe in putting everything out there for them to see. I absolutely restrict what they watch, but they watch a lot of different stuff! If it's questionable, I pre-screen and/or watch it with them. Usually I watch with them anyway. (That's how I got hooked on Star Wars The Clone Wars cartoon.)

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"BFrantz" wrote:

I do happen to allow my children to watch whatever television show they choose. If that makes you believe I am a bad parent and my child should be removed from my home first of all let me say you have no clue what the Child Service System works nor what it is for. Let me secondly reassure you that my children are far from abused or neglected, letting my children watch Harold and Kumar go to White Castle is NOT abuse nor neglect. Social and religious boundaries do not dictate abuse and neglect. In fact in most circumstances they rebuke one another. Some abuse reports are washed aside because of religious outlooks, when investigating the first job is to interview the parents, and find out their beliefs, and their culture.

I think for me you have really crossed the line, so I've got nothing more to say to you. I wish you luck with your children and I hope you find some peace with yourself.

There was a case that we debated not long ago where the children were pulled when the guardians allowed them to watch porn. I don't know what Harold and Kumar go to White Castle is, I would have to google it. But yes CFS has pulled children for what guardians allow them to watch. I am not and did not say you allow your children to watch those, I am saying there are limits and we are governed by those limits.

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"BFrantz" wrote:

I have 6 kids, wide age range. Obviously I'm not talking to my 3 year old about sex, I didn't say i was or even rolling towards it, i was pointing at a level of interest. Obviously at 3 he is noticing some pretty big things and there is a level of interest and a level of discussion, mostly who has what. it's good that you listen to your kid, I'm not saying he does or doesn't have an interest, my biggest point was that you don't know what his friends are or arent doing or saying.

Also there comes a point where children begin acting differently and having totally different conversations with their friends than they do with mom, far different conversations! You have an 8 year old son, so hang on because this could begin any time. Keep that openness though and it should be an easier transition. I think Alex was about 10 when the major shift began, for some reason their brain wiring gets messed up about that age and suddenly mom isn't cool anymore. It gets rough, and those rough patches shift and change shape almost constantly. You already have the dialogue thing going with him, so you'll really notice when he stops meeting you for answers, thats when he is getting them from those other friends and at that point you'll have to initiate the dialogues.

I'm not sure where you are geographically, I'm in the midwest, which seems to lag behind with social interaction. Dialogue is rather "new" previous generations (our parents) had the my way or else thing going, I got my dialogue skills from my schooling, I've passed it on to my kids, so this is something they will be great with when they have kids. You sound like you're pretty well with it, so good job! It's nice when people can say they dialogue well and have great success with their little people. It isn't an easy task to let your children be who they are without being over-baring. I think thats part of the real skill that people lack and still believe they are dialoguing.

It's been wonderful hearing your point of view, thanks for answering my questions to you! I appreciate it. Now I get to go to work, ah I miss my people!

Your previous definition of Dialogue is incorrect. It is simply a DISCUSSION between two people, instead of a Monologue. It is not simply "listening and restating". That is not a dialogue. Listening and restating are parts of good conversational skills, but do not make up a FULL dialogue.

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"Rivergallery" wrote:

Your previous definition of Dialogue is incorrect. It is simply a DISCUSSION between two people, instead of a Monologue. It is not simply "listening and restating". That is not a dialogue. Listening and restating are parts of good conversational skills, but do not make up a FULL dialogue.

I'm with Rivergallery on this one.

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"freddieflounder101" wrote:

I don't think that's what's on tv anymore. The example I gave, That 70s Show (which was on back in 2002/2003 maybe?) showed two teens who had been dating for a long time and the girl (Donna) finally decided she was ready. When it finally happened (after delays and whatnot), she was actually disappointed, and upset, and he (Eric) wasn't. He loved it. So she talked to him about it and they worked it out and tried again, and it was better.

They don't do those magical experiences anymore, as far as I know.

Because I have not watched those types of shows since I was a teenager, I have no idea if this has changed or not.

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Brooke, I'm guessing you have done research on the effects of media with children at different age levels, yes? What is your perception on how the media effects children's behavior after watching specific types of shows, especially when they have no outside guidelines of what is considered appropriate or inappropriate? Even if there were outside sources to guide them on appropriateness, do you think some kids still deflect from what their sources guide them and follow what the media says because the child believes that gives a more accurate picture of what the real world is really like, therefore see the behaviors as acceptable?

I know in some states, a parent may show their child pornography as long as the child does not say no and it not be considered a child protection issue. However, do you think that the child would not be influenced at all for watching pornography? Do you find it to be acceptable parental behaviors?

Do you also think that with continual dialogue (each actively listening and each actively discussing their thoughts and perspectives which can become teachable moments) that they're going to share everything with you and that nothing will be hidden? Do you think it is possible a child may not share with their parent because they either think it's not the parent's business or concern or that they don't want to disappoint their parents? All the dialogue in the world doesn't mean they're going to share everything 100% of the time. I know of no parent/child relationship that has a child who's grown up telling their parent 100% of what they're thinking and what is going on in their life every step of the way no matter how close and open they are.

I am also a bit confused by you're statement here:

I don't find it my place to know or decide when a person that isn't myself is capable of understanding, or what they can handle. the duty of a parent isn't to know what is in their childs mind,

Is it your belief that your children should just tell you that they're capable of understanding all situations and that they're able to handle them and that a parent should just believe what the child says to be true? Is the child making the decisions of what they think is in their best interest or is the parent? How exactly do you gage when your child is ready to handle more responsibility or capable of understanding certain concepts or situations? Do you disagree that it's a parent's duty to learn as much as possible what their child's perception and understanding is? If you do disagree with this, how does a parent have open dialogue if a parent isn't attempting to learn (know) what is going on in their child's mind? How is this not a parent's duty to establish rules and guidelines based on the perceptions, maturity level, and level of understanding of the child?

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As for my answer to the OP, I agree with Lana on this one - even about my thoughts on Glee.

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"freddieflounder101" wrote:

I'm in the northeast. My parents weren't the "my way or else" type...I grew up in the swinging 70s when parents told their kids far more than we wanted to know. But apart from that, we were all about dialogue as a family. This is not new to me.

I think most of the parents on this board are the same way. . .we talk to our kids and we listen to them.

I have a pretty good sense of what his friends are up to. I know them, I see them regularly, and more than that, I see what level they are at and their interactions with each other. None of them are having sex or talking about it...if one was, they all would be pretty quickly! I hear a lot about the things they talk about.

I have an 18-year-old sister so I'm not that removed from all this. When she was 13, I asked her if any of her friends were having sex, and she said, "NO!" and I waited and then said, "But one of them is, right?" and she said, "Yes."

Believe me, I'm open to discussing these things. I just don't believe in a hard & fast rule about what age, and I don't believe in putting everything out there for them to see. I absolutely restrict what they watch, but they watch a lot of different stuff! If it's questionable, I pre-screen and/or watch it with them. Usually I watch with them anyway. (That's how I got hooked on Star Wars The Clone Wars cartoon.)

That's awesome .. i think a lot is about where you are located .. people in California seem to be more onto the attachment parenting, dialogue, gentler in their parenting in general .. but parents around here seem to be more ridged in general, down south is more into being more physical. My Mother and Father were definitely more hard nosed my way or my way anyway. They meant well, and I am certain that they truly believed their way was best. I turned out great if I do say so myself, my brother on the other hand not so much. I was too afraid to rebel, my brother on the other hand not only had no fear but forgot to stop rebelling lol!

I'm sorry you got hooked on the star wars cartoon, that must be awful. I get caught in dragon ball myself .. I'm so ashamed lol!!

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"Beertje" wrote:

Brooke, I'm guessing you have done research on the effects of media with children at different age levels, yes? What is your perception on how the media effects children's behavior after watching specific types of shows, especially when they have no outside guidelines of what is considered appropriate or inappropriate? Even if there were outside sources to guide them on appropriateness, do you think some kids still deflect from what their sources guide them and follow what the media says because the child believes that gives a more accurate picture of what the real world is really like, therefore see the behaviors as acceptable?

I know in some states, a parent may show their child pornography as long as the child does not say no and it not be considered a child protection issue. However, do you think that the child would not be influenced at all for watching pornography? Do you find it to be acceptable parental behaviors?

Do you also think that with continual dialogue (each actively listening and each actively discussing their thoughts and perspectives which can become teachable moments) that they're going to share everything with you and that nothing will be hidden? Do you think it is possible a child may not share with their parent because they either think it's not the parent's business or concern or that they don't want to disappoint their parents? All the dialogue in the world doesn't mean they're going to share everything 100% of the time. I know of no parent/child relationship that has a child who's grown up telling their parent 100% of what they're thinking and what is going on in their life every step of the way no matter how close and open they are.

I am also a bit confused by you're statement here:

Is it your belief that your children should just tell you that they're capable of understanding all situations and that they're able to handle them and that a parent should just believe what the child says to be true? Is the child making the decisions of what they think is in their best interest or is the parent? How exactly do you gage when your child is ready to handle more responsibility or capable of understanding certain concepts or situations? Do you disagree that it's a parent's duty to learn as much as possible what their child's perception and understanding is? If you do disagree with this, how does a parent have open dialogue if a parent isn't attempting to learn (know) what is going on in their child's mind? How is this not a parent's duty to establish rules and guidelines based on the perceptions, maturity level, and level of understanding of the child?

HOW children act after watching a television show shouldn't deffer than from how they behaved before the television show. I'm assuming everyone here is practicing active parenting, and have taken the time to teach good behavior and acceptable tones. If one hasn't then I have assumed too much about them, I apologize to them, and don't care to speak to them as I find focusing on teaching their children right from wrong is more important than speaking to me about something they don't really care about.

I don't care to discuss porn with you, nor anyone else. To be very clear here, I find porn to be disgusting. We have no porn channels on our television, and we have no porn movies. Those things aren't an option provided in my home. I don't watch it, and I don't show it to my children. I'm a little shocked that a question like this is even geared at me, the original post was about glee, and television shows in general, not about porn. I don't think I'm saying anything more to you without you clearly changing your topic to me. I may not throw a leash on my child and instill over-baring control in their lives, but I'm not sick and twisted either thanks.

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"BFrantz" wrote:

That's awesome .. i think a lot is about where you are located .. people in California seem to be more onto the attachment parenting, dialogue, gentler in their parenting in general .. but parents around here seem to be more ridged in general, down south is more into being more physical. My Mother and Father were definitely more hard nosed my way or my way anyway. They meant well, and I am certain that they truly believed their way was best. I turned out great if I do say so myself, my brother on the other hand not so much. I was too afraid to rebel, my brother on the other hand not only had no fear but forgot to stop rebelling lol!

I think you will find all different kinds of parents in all different areas.

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"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

I think you will find all different kinds of parents in all different areas.

That's true, however i was speaking in general .. I just did I research paper in diversity and culture .. it's amazing how large those things are in our own country based on the region in which you live.

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"BFrantz" wrote:

HOW children act after watching a television show shouldn't deffer than from how they behaved before the television show. I'm assuming everyone here is practicing active parenting, and have taken the time to teach good behavior and acceptable tones. If one hasn't then I have assumed too much about them, I apologize to them, and don't care to speak to them as I find focusing on teaching their children right from wrong is more important than speaking to me about something they don't really care about.

I don't care to discuss porn with you, nor anyone else. To be very clear here, I find porn to be disgusting. We have no porn channels on our television, and we have no porn movies. Those things aren't an option provided in my home. I don't watch it, and I don't show it to my children. I'm a little shocked that a question like this is even geared at me, the original post was about glee, and television shows in general, not about porn. I don't think I'm saying anything more to you without you clearly changing your topic to me. I may not throw a leash on my child and instill over-baring control in their lives, but I'm not sick and twisted either thanks.

This response actually did not answer my questions.

The questions regarding media have nothing to do with parenting specifically, they have to do with how much the media influences children at different age levels. You say that a behavior shouldn't change after watching a show. Why shouldn't it? Perceptions can change from a show, why wouldn't behaviors have the same possibility of changing? Parenting is separate from what they're visually watching and hearing. Some kids lack parents or parental involvement. The debate at hand is not specific to how awesome of a parent we each may think we are or may be.

Case-in-point example is a study on effects of a most popular children's t.v. show (Power Rangers) at the time of the study in children's behavior. http://clem.mscd.edu/~sandersc/3310%20power%20rangers.htm Granted the study is a bit older, it holds many valid points. If the behaviors change within peers after watching the show, why would behaviors not change amongst peers after watching a show that depicts what Hollywood (network, or whomever is creating the show) would consider to be acceptable sexual behaviors for each specific show aired geared towards a specific adolescent/teenage/young adult age group? Media plays a very powerful role with kids and I believe it's for the parents to be very picky in deciding what is appropriate or inappropriate for each age group.

As for the porn question, please don't be shocked as you, yourself, stated that you allow your kids to watch whatever they want to watch. But the questions I asked has everything to do with the debate at hand... Do you think a child would be influenced if they watched porn? If so, why would you think a child would not be influenced by other shows the media produces?

Will you please answer the remaining questions you've left unanswered or did you intentionally ignore them? Oh - and as far as I know (maybe I'm wrong?), I don't think any parent here is over-bearing or has their child(ren) on a short leash - nor is a parenting styles/dialogue (or lack thereof) limited to specific regions in the U.S.

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The truth is Tracey, I found your post offensive and I don't really care enough about your questions to answer with any real thought. I'm sorry but that's just how I feel.

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It's a legitimate question.

If it's okay to let your kids dictate what they watch, and you allow them to choose whatever they want, where do you draw the line? Okay, obviously porn is in a different category, but there are a ton of sexually explicit movies out there and they end up on tv. There are insanely violent shows & movies that end up on tv.

I was giving a talk to fifth graders about my job and it came up that one of them watches Criminal Minds. I was horrified. I actually love that show, but it is filled with explicit horrors, violent and sexual. Sometimes I have to fast-forward through certain scenes or just look away until they're done. It's extreme. If your children wanted to watch it, would you let them? I couldn't help it, I told the kid right out that she shouldn't be watching it. (And then I let it go.)

That show is on network & cable...not a premium channel or anything like that.

So the real question is, where do you draw the line? And how can you assume that these images won't affect them? I would definitely assume that my 8-year-old or 4-year-old watching Criminal Minds or Law & Order SVU, both of which I like, would affect them in a negative way. They don't even know rape exists.

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"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

Is it possible that a child would be more interested in sex because they see it on TV all the time?

IMO, absolutely. Some of the "adult" stuff young children nowdays know is downright shocking. That information has to come from somewhere and it is usually from the home environment (what they watch/what the parents allow/etc). The stuff my daughter has had said to her/overheard since kindergarten (she's now in grade 5) from her peers would make you cringe. I am not talking "normal" kid talk... I'm talking disturbing jaw-hitting-the-floor-I-can't-believe-a-[fill in the age]-would-know-that type of stuff. Stuff that when the school finds out warrants a phonecall to the other child's parents and in some cases further followup.

Honestly, why do young children need to see this kind of stuff (sex/violence/etc)? What purpose is there? So yeah, I totally agree that it is VERY possible the more they see this kind of stuff, the more it becomes "normal" for them, and the more they become interested in it. IMO, there is no need for that kind of stuff to be "normal" for a young child. As a parent, I am responsible for my child as long as they are under age/living under my roof (though I'm sure even when they pass that point, I'll still feel a responsibility simply because they are and always will be my child :)). It is totally within our rights as parents to pick and choose what we allow them to read/watch/etc. At 10 and 6, they are not old enough or mature enough to make all their own decisions, so that is where dh and I step in and make them. We have a TV but no cable/etc. so can't be used for TV-watching, only for watching DVDs/videos... and those, we pick and choose what we allow our children to watch.

I have no issue answering my children when they ask questions... I give them the answers age-appropriately and even that is way more info than I ever had at that age. However, I have also had to explain other things to my daughter over the years that there is absolutely NO reason she would ever need to know or even should know at this age. And I find that very disturbing.

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"BFrantz" wrote:

The truth is Tracey, I found your post offensive and I don't really care enough about your questions to answer with any real thought. I'm sorry but that's just how I feel.

It's not much of a debate then if you throw out statements without substantiating what's behind them and if someone else respectfully questions the statements, you just refuse to answer. You were offended that people brought up porn. Ok. Laurie already addressed why it was brought up. What about the rest of the questions that have nothing to do with porn?

Do you also think that with continual dialogue (each actively listening and each actively discussing their thoughts and perspectives which can become teachable moments) that they're going to share everything with you and that nothing will be hidden? Do you think it is possible a child may not share with their parent because they either think it's not the parent's business or concern or that they don't want to disappoint their parents? All the dialogue in the world doesn't mean they're going to share everything 100% of the time. I know of no parent/child relationship that has a child who's grown up telling their parent 100% of what they're thinking and what is going on in their life every step of the way no matter how close and open they are.

I am also a bit confused by you're statement here:

Quote:

I don't find it my place to know or decide when a person that isn't myself is capable of understanding, or what they can handle. the duty of a parent isn't to know what is in their childs mind,

Is it your belief that your children should just tell you that they're capable of understanding all situations and that they're able to handle them and that a parent should just believe what the child says to be true? Is the child making the decisions of what they think is in their best interest or is the parent? How exactly do you gage when your child is ready to handle more responsibility or capable of understanding certain concepts or situations? Do you disagree that it's a parent's duty to learn as much as possible what their child's perception and understanding is? If you do disagree with this, how does a parent have open dialogue if a parent isn't attempting to learn (know) what is going on in their child's mind? How is this not a parent's duty to establish rules and guidelines based on the perceptions, maturity level, and level of understanding of the child?

I don't see why you would be offended by these questions. They are valid questions that pertain specifically with what you stated. You're offended because someone is trying to understand your line of reasoning for the statements you've made or challenges some of your comments? That, to me, is a cop out answer. Why bother debating then?

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"freddieflounder101" wrote:

It's a legitimate question.

If it's okay to let your kids dictate what they watch, and you allow them to choose whatever they want, where do you draw the line? Okay, obviously porn is in a different category, but there are a ton of sexually explicit movies out there and they end up on tv. There are insanely violent shows & movies that end up on tv.

I was giving a talk to fifth graders about my job and it came up that one of them watches Criminal Minds. I was horrified. I actually love that show, but it is filled with explicit horrors, violent and sexual. Sometimes I have to fast-forward through certain scenes or just look away until they're done. It's extreme. If your children wanted to watch it, would you let them? I couldn't help it, I told the kid right out that she shouldn't be watching it. (And then I let it go.)

That show is on network & cable...not a premium channel or anything like that.

So the real question is, where do you draw the line? And how can you assume that these images won't affect them? I would definitely assume that my 8-year-old or 4-year-old watching Criminal Minds or Law & Order SVU, both of which I like, would affect them in a negative way. They don't even know rape exists.

I agree. I would love to know how one draws a line because the simple fact that you are not posting from jail means you do have boundries. And if you do have boundries you must have decided yourself where those lie based on what you believe your children can handle and should handle and that is no different then what any of us have done, our line is just at a different place then yours.

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My husband and I watch Glee with our 14 year old daughter every week. It pains me at this point because the show just sucks now. 1st season was great. This seasons?? Blech, I'd rather do laundry, but instead we sit together and watch. It actually brings up a lot of great conversations. That particular episode was done well and the fact is kids at 14 know people are having sex. Hell, some of their friends may be having sex. I don't now nor have I ever based our parenting on TV shows. I believe our influence and family morals that have been life long will dictate how my kids behave and the choices they make.

I also have an 8yr old and he's never seen Glee. I think he's too young. And honestly, it wouldn't interest him. And I've never once heard him mention sex of any kind. Nor any of his friends. So that comment a page or 2 back about kids as young as 8 talking about it is foreign to me. Neither of my kids talked about sex at that age.

My parents never censored what we watched as kids. I remember watching Porkies as a kid. I look back and wonder what the hell they were thinking. But I think more than anything, they just didn't realize what it was about. They never watched it. I also remember watching Cujo when I was 5 with my dad.

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"BFrantz" wrote:

I don't find it my place to know or decide when a person that isn't myself is capable of understanding, or what they can handle. the duty of a parent isn't to know what is in their childs mind, if that were the case every single one of us would be terrible parents and shouldn't ever have children. The only mind you know is your own, you may think you know your childs mind but thats as far as it can ever go. psych 101.

And I find it exactly my place to decide what my child is capable of understanding or should understand. You may disagree but that is the beauty of parenting in the free world. I know what my child is ready for because I have an open dialogue and a good relationship with my children. They have told me, shown me, and illustrated to me what they are capable of when it comes to real life issues. Couple that with our family values on where we believe they should be, and I think that gives us some pretty direct parameters of what they should and should not be exposed to. And I think we can have a grasp on where children are developmentaly and then can extrapolate that to help us decide what life issues they are ready to handle. Child Development 101.

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"JorgieGirl" wrote:

Did anyone else actually see the episode this article is talking about? It was really well done. And both couples were serious couples who were in love. One of them had been together for a long time (since previous seasons). All of them are high school seniors. They each talked it over a LOT, like in many previous episodes, too). And it seems they all felt special and positive about the choice they made after it was made.

All in all, I think it showed a good example of how sex can be. I've never seen such a positive and thought out portrayal of sex. Not just 'teen' sex. Any sex.

Yes I actually saw it. I stick to my original position.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

And I find it exactly my place to decide what my child is capable of understanding or should understand. You may disagree but that is the beauty of parenting in the free world. I know what my child is ready for because I have an open dialogue and a good relationship with my children. They have told me, shown me, and illustrated to me what they are capable of when it comes to real life issues. Couple that with our family values on where we believe they should be, and I think that gives us some pretty direct parameters of what they should and should not be exposed to. And I think we can have a grasp on where children are developmentaly and then can extrapolate that to help us decide what life issues they are ready to handle. Child Development 101.

I agree completely. That is part of my job as a parent.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

And I find it exactly my place to decide what my child is capable of understanding or should understand. You may disagree but that is the beauty of parenting in the free world. I know what my child is ready for because I have an open dialogue and a good relationship with my children. They have told me, shown me, and illustrated to me what they are capable of when it comes to real life issues. Couple that with our family values on where we believe they should be, and I think that gives us some pretty direct parameters of what they should and should not be exposed to. And I think we can have a grasp on where children are developmentaly and then can extrapolate that to help us decide what life issues they are ready to handle. Child Development 101.

Well stated. 100% agree.

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I worry TOTALLY about becoming de-sensitized to things due to seeing it daily on TV. We should be more horrified about things that happen in real life but we see too much of it in ficitonal TV shows that we don't feel the full impact when it's the real thing. We almost view it as another Hollywood show. It lacks impact. It's sad we are not more shocked. The same goes for video games. When we play them we eventually become numb to the real thing. SHooting people isn't a game. It's real and awful.

If de-sensitization (is this even a word lol) can happen to adults it most certainly can happen to children. A child seeing sex, violence and other adult content can easily stop becoming awed by real life. They should have some feelings about seeing someone shot and killed. It's shouldnt be a game to them or another fake show on TV.

I feel it is definately our job to keep our kids from seeing things before their time. I have had the sex talk with my 12 year old. I did not do this at 8. She wasnt ready. I loved the TV show LOST. She wants to watch it. NOPE. Not yet. She wants to play Teen games on her DS. NOPE not yet. I will hold off as long as I can.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

And I find it exactly my place to decide what my child is capable of understanding or should understand. You may disagree but that is the beauty of parenting in the free world. I know what my child is ready for because I have an open dialogue and a good relationship with my children. They have told me, shown me, and illustrated to me what they are capable of when it comes to real life issues. Couple that with our family values on where we believe they should be, and I think that gives us some pretty direct parameters of what they should and should not be exposed to. And I think we can have a grasp on where children are developmentaly and then can extrapolate that to help us decide what life issues they are ready to handle. Child Development 101.

AMEN! Totally agree with all the above.

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I am gonna jump on the agree with Lana train here. It is 100% my job to know what my children are and are not ready for, and then to act accordingly

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"freddieflounder101" wrote:

It's a legitimate question.

If it's okay to let your kids dictate what they watch, and you allow them to choose whatever they want, where do you draw the line? Okay, obviously porn is in a different category, but there are a ton of sexually explicit movies out there and they end up on tv. There are insanely violent shows & movies that end up on tv.

I was giving a talk to fifth graders about my job and it came up that one of them watches Criminal Minds. I was horrified. I actually love that show, but it is filled with explicit horrors, violent and sexual. Sometimes I have to fast-forward through certain scenes or just look away until they're done. It's extreme. If your children wanted to watch it, would you let them? I couldn't help it, I told the kid right out that she shouldn't be watching it. (And then I let it go.)

That show is on network & cable...not a premium channel or anything like that.

So the real question is, where do you draw the line? And how can you assume that these images won't affect them? I would definitely assume that my 8-year-old or 4-year-old watching Criminal Minds or Law & Order SVU, both of which I like, would affect them in a negative way. They don't even know rape exists.

I haven't seen criminal minds, but I will say my kids have seen law and order several times. My auntie used to watch it all day long, and now and then I watch it too. My kids know a lot of things. When I livein a world where bad doesn't exist I'll be more concerned with it, unfortunately I don't get to live in that world. In march, my good friends daughter, who by the way was very close to my children, was killed, stabbed 32 times and left dead on the train tracks, my brother is a meth addict, he stayed with us while his wife divorced him due to his drug problem, on top of my own children I am supporting 2 nieces both in which he fathered out of wed lock, my brother in law is going to prison for snorting coke in front of my 1 year old nephew and robbing cars, every child is at some level of risk for molestation and kidnapping, and statistically the perpetrator is a close family member, and usually a parent. Rape is real and does happen, my 7 year old and my 9 year old are both aware and have taken ju jit su for self defense.

My children are well prepared for reality, I have taken the time to explain to them that television shows aren't real, video games aren't real, and we have a family full of musicians so they know far more than most people do about that. Grandma Peggy taught Chris Rice how to play piano, she also has taught every member of our family starting at age 6 .. I know it has nothing to do with anything here, but music is true soul food.

I think they hype over tv is silly, it's just tv. I let my children be who they are, not who I want them to be. In turn I have 4 children in school that are advanced, all with straight A's, my oldest daughter skipped a grade, they are polite and respectful, stand up for kids being bullied, they are all christian in their words and actions, and all of this while mom doesn't tell them they can't watch a certain show or movie. It's amazing that tv doesn't dictate them isn't it.

I take a different approach to my children then you do, but I'm willing to bet that my children are just as good, if not better by my biased opinion, than yours.

Really, my kids don't watch much tv, but when they do it's whatever, and we tend to make it something we'd all like to see. Most the time the tv is being used for video games, Alex loves call of duty and other shooting games. After high school he fully intends on joining the military, he wants to be a sniper. He's a darn good shot with a real gun too, not just a video game gun, and yes we take him to the range, he knows all about gun safety, and he can hit dead center bulls eye from 150 feet. Pretty good for 13 huh.

Truth is I'm finding this debate rather prudish and sheltering. It's fine per family, because you know what's best for your family. You can argue with me all day, but just like you, I know what's best and what fits for my family. You don't have children that act and are like mine if you aren't doing it right. That isn't saying my way is right for everyone, because that would be a lie, some people don't have polite or respectful children and they let them watch tv all day long, obviously it takes far more than that.

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