Q for Parents about News coverage

akritenbrinkakritenbrink Lynnwood, WA (Seattle area)
I feel kind of traumatized by news coverage ever since last year when the Access Hollywood tapes came out, and this year has been a never-ending avalanche of news coverage about sexual misbehavior along with a lot of other unsavory things like racism, xenophobia etc. And I am a 44-year-old grown ass married lady.

I've been curious for a while- If you are a parent in this day and age, especially if your kids are old enough to sort of know what is going on in terms of sex stuff, but not old enough to really understand, how do you manage this stuff? When I was a kid it was seen as important and educational to read the news, but nowadays?? Is this something you encourage, discourage, do you have to explain a lot, etc? I am curious to hear the experiences of parents in this era of "gross news."

Comments

  • I explain a lot about about the edgy stuff being discussed and that our democracy is strong enough that we can survive any given period of turmoil. We had a Civil War and Andrew Johnson’s impeachment was pretty spectacular.

    History is important for kids, and adults, to put stuff into perspective and make an effort to avoid repeating the really bad bits.

    I find that hiding real stuff in the news from kids is seldom a good strategy.

    I’m 43 and my youngest just turned 15 so your mileage may vary.
    akritenbrink
  • akritenbrinkakritenbrink Lynnwood, WA (Seattle area)
    I should have clarified- I don't have kids. I was just curious what others are doing. I could just see having to have conversations about this with young kids and teens.
  • DeeDee Adelaide
    My daughter (age 19) had and still has zero interest in watching the news. At school they used to watch a kid version called Behind The News. 
    akritenbrink
  • A_Ron_HubbardA_Ron_Hubbard Cincinnati, OH
    You really need to take into account the child's temperament and intellectual and emotional advancement.  Like, my son is very smart and ahead of the curve emotionally, but he's also extremely prone to anxiety.  So when he's with me, I think carefully about the type and tenor of coverage I listen to.  NPR is fine, Crooked Media not so much.  Live breaking news about anything potentially scary?  Forgetaboutit.  It's like any other media, really.
    akritenbrink
  • MichelleMichelle California
    edited December 2017
    It's not just the news.  It's all forms of media.  My soon-to-be 11 yr. old niece was having some anxiety after she caught part of the San Andreas movie (about the 10.0 earthquake hitting California, the state breaking off into the ocean, fires, chaos, mass destruction, etc) about 2 yrs ago when her dad was watching it at home.  She was 8 at the time and would nervously ask my dad, "grandpa, is that going to happen to us?"  He said that the first time she asked, she was slightly teary and visibly scared.  

    I think A.Ron's right, you kind of have to base it on the child's ability to process what they're seeing, but it's also smart of the parent to know what is acceptable viewing for your kid.  Like, if I had been at my sister's house when my brother in law was watching that movie with two young girls in the room with him, I'd tell him to put on something else because wtf? No little girls should have to watch that and then be scared for their safety.  
  • akritenbrinkakritenbrink Lynnwood, WA (Seattle area)
    You really need to take into account the child's temperament and intellectual and emotional advancement.  Like, my son is very smart and ahead of the curve emotionally, but he's also extremely prone to anxiety.  So when he's with me, I think carefully about the type and tenor of coverage I listen to.  NPR is fine, Crooked Media not so much.  Live breaking news about anything potentially scary?  Forgetaboutit.  It's like any other media, really.
    When I learned about "gifted kids" in college (I studied education), they actually listed anxiety about current affairs as one of the signs of a child being gifted.
  • fortunately, so far my kids are aggressively disinterested in news.
    akritenbrink
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