Children and Urban Legends
Children have wonderful imaginations. That rock in the back yard is a mountain, the tree is a jungle, and the car is a spaceship. We want our children to stay little and innocent forever, and we morn when they grow up. But, what happens when they go someplace dangerous or where they can't be seen? Then the parents get the over active imagination. Not that it isn't well founded, what with all the crazies and perverts out there. But keeping a child from those forbidden places opens a new world for them.
"Why can't I go there? Will I disappear? Will a witch grab me? I have to go tell my friends!"
This is what a child seems to think, especially about a strange house or the woods. The real reason is that their parents won't know what happened to them and that is the worse kind of fear imaginable, where your child is gone and you can't find them.
However, not long after they come to some outlandish reason for not being allowed to go somewhere, every child in the neighborhood knows of the Old Witch on the hill or in the woods.
And it doesn't stop with the little kids, either. Older children often make things more fantastical by telling a story that a friend of a friend told them. You know, the one where one kid went into the house/woods and never returned? Yeah, it grows bigger and bigger. And thus, a local legend is born.
Now, your child is grown and not so little. Go ahead and weep a little. Done? Okay. The legend that was accidentally created is still in their minds. As teens, they just have to go check it out! Especially on Halloween.
A group of friends will go to the house and try to stay all night. They will jump at every sound, turn door handles the wrong way and think they are locked in, and come home screaming about how the legend is true. Of course, you might see one kid walking down the street with a big grin on his face. After all, he did just pull off the greatest prank ever.
If not, well... every legend does have a bit of truth in it, right?
Of course, there are sightings. In the woods, at night, you can see anything. I mean, there is Slenderman. That was the reason for two girls in Wisconsin to stab their friend nineteen times, or so they say. In houses and graveyards, you see ghosts.
But that isn't he only place to find phantoms. That's right, there are literally ghosts in the machine. Well, on the internet. All around the world, you can find a legend of nerds in the afterlife.
In Spain, a killer site is dedicated to a Blind Maiden. According to the anime, Ghost Stories, Yomi-Net is a gateway to the spirit world. And many more, including YouTube! Apparently, we aren't safe from ghosts anywhere. What you may find could be the last thing you ever see.
But never discourage imagination. I mean, yes, the image above is disturbing. But what does this story tell you about the environment of the child in question? Exactly! Not the happiest life. Does that mean that "Lisa" isn't real? Absolutely not!
In the realm of parapsychology, or the study of psychic phenomena, children have a greater tendency to see the spirit world. It is because their minds are open to such possibilities. They haven't learned how to tell when a person is real or fake, in any sense. All they know is that they can be anything, do anything, and see anything.
Depending on what the imaginary friend tells the child depends on if they are good or bad. And having an imaginary friends could show how desperate the child is for a friend to play with. So, support your child, but keep an eye on them. If something in them changes, then seek help if necessary.
In the end, everything started with something small. Trying to keep our children safe to a spooky Halloween story run amok. But they all serve the same purpose. Keeping our children safe. The horrors on the internet are as real as the predators that use it. Whether the house on the hill is actually haunted may never really be known, but it is still a hazard. So, no matter what, keep the little ones safe this Halloween.