Censorship and DD3's teacher... AIBU?

(471 Posts)
NoNoNora Sat 06-Oct-12 20:12:05

Yesterday evening DD3's teacher called to voice her concerns about how appropriate the programmes we let her watch are. DD3 is ten and for all four DDs we haven't paid any attention to ratings, they'll watch what we watch and we won't question what they want to watch during their TV time (unless a fight breaks out between them), none of them are at all traumatised or have nightmares and they always voice their fears and/or leave the room if something is too much for them.
The latest craze at DD3's school is top trump cards and she took DD2's Buffy ones in last week (DD2 is at uni so DD3 has the run of her bedroom and belongings). As a family we all watch Buffy together and have done since it first started, we own the DVDs and the girls have grown up watching it. Of course there are things that the younger ones don't pick up on (i.e. much of the sixth season) but DP and I feel that it is a very positive programme for our girls to watch.
DD3's teacher did not agree with our view. She confiscated the cards for the day on Friday and then called me that evening. Apparently she was concerned that our older girls had been showing 'innapropriate' programmes to the younger ones. I explained that we watched Buffy as a family and I had given her permission to take the cards into school. She then proceeded to explain the importance to ratings and the problems with 'desensitising' children to violence and sex. I was flabbergasted and promised not to let DD3 take the cards into school again but maintained that I was doing nothing wrong in my parenting.

I can't be the only mum who thinks like this? DP is incredibly anti-censorship and wants to send her in with DD2's much more graphic 'Angel' cards on Monday, with a note to the (and I quote) "fascists".

HiHowAreYou Mon 08-Oct-12 15:55:16

The idea of a 7 year old watching it is just... a joke!

quoteunquote Mon 08-Oct-12 15:56:34

I have been sitting on my hands and reading this thread,

I do a lot of support work with teens and young people who are experiencing difficulties,

over the last 20 years I have been very interested in common denominators, the one thing that every single troubled youth that I have been involved with no matter what the background, is that they have all been exposed to footage that is rated higher than their age,at the time of watching, film, program, computer game,

I have never met a child in trouble that hadn't watched inappropriate images,I am known for asking other people who are involved with youth support what their clients experience are, I have yet to find anyone who when asked knows of any who have not been exposed,

not everyone who is exposed early to these type of images are going to have problems, but for so many reasons, those that do have problems will when asked tell you about watching or playing 18 rated, at an early age, will give you endless examples of what they saw at an early age.

anyone spoiling an innocent child's childhood by failure to protect,is stealing something non replaceable,

You get only one childhood, once it is over, it's over, no going back, and it is the foundation for your whole life, get it wrong and that impacts for ever.

It is the responsible adults that must do the right thing for every child, if you are unable to make the correct easy decisions for that child,such as those that have helpful guide lines such as ratings, please ask for help, there is plenty out there, you do not have the right to damage a child's peace of mind.

"I have never met a child in trouble that hadn't watched inappropriate images"

You know thinking back at my own childhood, I remember being invited for a "Film Birthday" at home at a boy in my class, I was 12. We were watching Amityville, Pet Cemetery, and Nightmare on Elmstreet.

I had been watching some 18 rated movies before, Superman for example. For some reason it was rated 18 in Norway, as was all the Bond movies.

But these films blew my mind. I was never scared of the dark, I had never considered zombies, or un-dead cats and dogs, ghosts or anything like this until that moment. I grew up with House on the Praire, ET, Astrid Lindgren tv programmes, reading Enid Blyton, etc. I can honestly say that the gruesome films mentioned above added no value to my life, rather the opposite. I am glad my parents had the sense to keep them from me.

I did not tell them what films I had seen, I did not want to put my class mate in trouble. However, he and his group of friends who were constantly watching movies such as this with very little parental control to their viewing, never "amounted to anything".
They were constantly getting into fights, started carrying knives, were excluded from school, one punched a teacher, and one threatened another teacher.

It may not be the films themselves having this influence, but growing up with parents who dont care about proper parenting, who teaches no boundaries, let the kids just get on with whatever.

youarewinning Mon 08-Oct-12 18:43:05

chaz thank you. I did not know that about editing and the DVDs. Is that the same for all programmes prewatershed with higher aged DVD ratings do you know?

FryOneGhoulishGhostlyManic Mon 08-Oct-12 19:41:27

I think there are a lot of programmes that get edited if shown pre-watershed. I like watching Stargate, saw it originally on Sky unedited and when it got to C4 at 6pm, they had made some cuts which ruined the plotline. May have been a little shocking but those scenes needed to be seen to understand the plot.

I remember meeting a girl during a placement who's depression and anorexia was thought to have been triggered by both cannabis use and viewing inappropriate films.

Fishwife1949 Mon 08-Oct-12 19:51:13

quoteunquote me too working with children in care one of the on going theams is lack of boundires and innaprotate viewing/ conversations

soverylucky Mon 08-Oct-12 19:55:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Fishwife1949 Mon 08-Oct-12 19:58:36

Yeah i tell my son i dont care what so and so mums says there will always be some pratt who thinks there being hip with there kids

quoteunquote Mon 08-Oct-12 20:00:27

Thanks fishwife1949 honestly I since starting to ask some 20 years ago, have yet to find one that hasn't had high exposure to 18 plus images, I find it a very worrying.

Bunbaker Mon 08-Oct-12 20:00:56

"It may not be the films themselves having this influence, but growing up with parents who dont care about proper parenting, who teaches no boundaries, let the kids just get on with whatever."

I agree.

Claudiecat Mon 08-Oct-12 20:23:17

Have been lurking and reading the whole thread. I think the op would do well to read Toxic Childhood by Sue Palmer. She has a fair bit to say about children's inappropriate viewing habits.
I wish I could find the attitude of the op shocking bit I too encounter it and the effects it has on my pupils on a daily basis. It smacks to me of selfishness in the extreme. Why on earth children of that age are up watching post watershed stuff is beyond me. Seems to me the op wants 'adult' tv time but can't be bothered to put the children to bed.
Anyone else thinking op has gone suspiciously quiet??

youare
I assume that is the case. Anything pre 9pm has to be suitable for children but DVDs can contain more adult material.

Nanny0gg Mon 08-Oct-12 21:23:09

Claudiecat I doubt she'll change her mind or her ways, so I expect she's tootled off.

I remember once, the number of Year 3 girls that said 'Pretty Woman' was their favourite film...
sad

ithinkimightbegoingmad Mon 08-Oct-12 21:23:50

i think OP and her family watch too much tv, of any description! An hour each after school and then something in the evening?! confused

i also want to reiterate that film certification is not a censorship or freedom of speech issue, it is a child protection issue

OP has stated her reason for ignoring viewing age limits, is that her DH is passionate about censorship and freedom of speech hmm

really? a lawyer? <boggles>

anonacfr Mon 08-Oct-12 22:28:15

Yes, that's what I said as well. Seems like a hell of a lot of TV which is why I was wondering if it wasn't about the parents wanting to watch what they wanted, rather than letting their kids 'experience' mature TV in a controlled way.
You want to watch TV in a controlled way? Try turning it off.

A 6 year old should be watching Pixar and Miyazaki, not Buffy or Silent Witness.

Did you see BBC News today about restricting screen time for kids, due to damage to neurological pathways, and some such....

echt Tue 09-Oct-12 11:50:44

No, but I read the article in the Guardian which ended with...there is no causal link, but possibly an associated one.

Not the same thing at all.

anonacfr Tue 09-Oct-12 15:29:25

Yes, it's all inconclusive but it's common sense to realise that plonking a child in front of a screen for hours on end is not exactly going to be intellectually stimulating.

OP, you're just so far on the other side of wrong, I don't think right is even visible any more.

FWIW, my parents DID stick to ratings, pretty rigidly, and they knew I was (and still am) quite sensitive.

When I was in college, age 18, as part of A Level Media Studies, we had to watch Kill Bill, in order to do a comparison with another film as part of our coursework. I got through the first 40 minutes or so, which is what we were shown in the first lesson. I thought, "Hmm, bit gory for me, but I'm alright."

Later that evening I realized, actually I REALLY wasn't alright with watching it, and I looked up the plot online - it got a whole lot worse. The next day, I had a nice chat with the head of department, explained that I wasn't comfortable with the content, but I was worried about failing, or being seen as a bit of a wimp. You know what she said?

"LV, that's fine. We'd much rather you told us, than suffer. Different people process things differently, different people are scared by different things. It's fine, we can sort something out."

I really think you're setting your kids up for long term problems, by not controlling their viewing more.

exoticfruits Tue 09-Oct-12 19:24:30

Grow up OP and be the parent here.

And tell DP to stop being wet and trendy-listen to the teacher.

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