Friday, December 14, 2012

This is why our girls do not watch the news

I'm sick to my stomach. All I want to do is go to our school and bring our girls home. I want them in my arms and safe in our house. It's not that easy though is it?

Mass shootings seem to happen more and more in the United States. Today's in Connecticut seems to be on track for the worst (or close to the worst) school shooting in history. It is on every channel. I've been watching it for a while now.

Our girls will not see it. We don't allow them to watch the news. Everyone in the family and all the babysitters know that the girls don't watch the news. We feel that they are nine-years-old and don't need to see all the violence and sadness in the world.

I'm strict about it. I don't turn on the TV when they are at home. If I decide to watch the news, I make sure they are upstairs or downstairs. I won't even turn on the news if they are on the same floor. I won't take the chance that they might overhear about some child beaten or some car accident or some mass shooting.

Yes, I'm limiting their knowledge of the world. I realize they will find out the harsh realities sooner or later. I want them to be mature enough that we can discuss the issues and feel like they understand those issues. I want them to have some world view so they understand that bad things happen, but that doesn't mean those bad things are going to happen in their neighborhood.

Mostly I keep hoping that some how, some way I'll be able to explain why these things happen in a way that makes sense. As I sit here right now I'm not sure there is ever going to be a moment when I can explain such violence in a way that makes sense. I do know that I can control their information flow until I can process it.

This won't last forever, but as long as I can make it happen I will. Childhood is so fleeting. There is no reason for our girls to learn about all the sadness when we can protect them from it for a while. They will grow up fast enough without us forcing them to process these kinds of adult problems when they are so young. 

No comments: