- Family and Parenting
Protecting Children From Violence and Hatred
Violence defined in the Webster's Dictionary is the expression of physical or verbal force against self or other, compelling action against one's will. In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th. Edition, there are many disorders where violence is a symptom, and others where violence was the cause such as post traumatic stress disorder or PTSD.
Hatred defined in the Word Web dictionary is the emotion of intense dislike; a feeling of dislike so strong that it demands action.
We are bombarded with violence and hatred every day. There is always something on the news that has to do with violence or hatred. Violence and hatred are the stuff that gets media attention. Precisely what I am doing here. Trying to get people to read my work. So I am just as guilty as the rest of the media. The media is wanting our attention and anything that stirs emotions will get noticed. Simply play on the publics emotions and you will get noticed. I bet you heard or read about a story of violence and/or hatred already today.
How do you Shield your Children?
Okay, how? Good question. Who knows the answer? From experience children are going to be exposed to hatred and violence at some point in their lives. I know that children who have first hand exposure to violence and hatred sometimes turn out to be violent and hateful adults.
Having some experience in psychiatry as I mentioned above, violence can either be a symptom of a psychiatric disorder or a cause. An example of a psychiatric disorder with a symptom of violence is the Antisocial Personality Disorder who is a person who has a long standing disregard (after the age of 15) for rights of others. An example of a disorder caused by violence/hatred would be Post traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD (Anxiety Disorders) and I'll add another interesting one Dual Identity Disorder, DID (Dissociative Disorders). PTSD always follows a traumatic event, a symptom may be; re-experiencing the trauma through nightmares. DID is associated with severe psychological stress in childhood, most often ritualistic sexual or physical abuse, the primary characteristic of this disorder is the existence of more than one distinct identity or personality within the same individual. The identities will ‘take control’ of the person at different times, with important information about the other identities out of conscious awareness.
In 2007, 53% of prison inmates were violent offenders according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. That is a little more than half of the population of prison inmates.
How to shield children from violence and hatred:
- Pay attention to your children, limit online and television activities by encouraging them to participate in extracurricular activities.
- No need to buy a device to keep kids from seeing and doing things online or on television its up to the parent.
- Listen to your children and be available to answer their questions in a nonjudgmental way.
- It's up to the parents to properly inform children of proper and improper behavior, use firm nonviolent consequences for improper behavior.
- If your child wants a game for a gaming device it is always a good idea for parents to review the game before it is purchased. Xbox has this feature on it's device and we look at the content of games. I personally have found that a satisfactory looking game from the outside may have offensive language in it's content.
The point is there is no way to indefinitely shield children from violence and hatred. Just pay attention to your children. You are their guidance as to what is wrong or right. Our children today are much more worldly wise than we were. Looking back as a child we only had three channels on our television and it was safe for us to run around the neighborhood unsupervised. We had bullies but there weren't threats of violence. Just this week there was a child caught with a gun at a local school and a teenager shot a gun in a crowd at the state fair. The Ku Klux Klan had a meeting in a local town hall where some of the members actually wore white robe and hood.
Keep the lines of communication open to your children no matter what age they are. Make sure they know they are safe with you no matter what. Let them know that whatever their concerns are that they are important to you.
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