I'm not in the furry fandom like most of the teens who write to you. I'm in the Marvel fandom.
You probably heard of the movie Avengers: Infinity War, which came out a few weeks ago. I really want to watch it, but my mom thinks it's a bad influence (like it's too violent, etc). But we watch OTHER movies similar to Marvel, like Star Wars. They have violence too, so what's different about Infinity War?!
Also my mom is pulling my best friend into this. She's also a Marvel fan. My mom thinks that she's influencing me into "idolizing" movies and actors and all that crap. I mean, I love Marvel, but I'm not letting it get between me and school and church!
She thinks I'm going become a serial killer because of the violence.
She also thinks I want to watch the movie because of peer pressure; all my friends are watching it, so I've gotta watch it too. Well, NO. I'm not watching it because of peer pressure. I want to watch it because (and this may sound dumb) this movie is important to me. I'm in the fandom! I'm attached to these characters! I've cried and ranted over them! I see even myself in some of them; I can relate to some of the problems they face.
I'm careful. I'm not stupid; I know what movies I should and shouldn't watch. I even have Christian friends who've gone and seen Infinity War. CHRISTIAN FRIENDS. I really don't understand at all.
I'm sorry for all the ranting. I hope you understood everything. Thank you.
Jasmine (age 13)
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It is true your mother is not being consistent. Like you said, why is Star Wars okay but Avengers isn’t? Makes no sense. Have you asked her to explain herself? If she doesn’t like superheroes, does she also have a problem with Harry Potter movies? How about crime dramas or war movies? Why or why not?
Getting back to superhero movies. Your mom’s idea that they can make children more violent does not come out of the blue. Studies such as this one have shown that kids exposed to the violence of superhero movies can exhibit (but don’t necessarily exhibit) more violent behavior. The influence on kids is likely stronger if they are exposed to the films at a younger age. The kids were between 3 and 6 years old, for the most part, in this study.
Also, the argument that such films, which feature characters doing violent things for noble causes and who are motivated to help people, translate into kids who are also more socially minded and concerned about the welfare of others does not fly. With regard to acting more protectively and charitably to others, there was no change before and after watching such films.
It must be repeated, though, that you are 13 now and, at that age, less likely to be so impressionable. You seem like you have a good head on your shoulders, and one argument you could give your mom is, “Hey, Mom, you raised me better than that; you raised me to understand that violence is bad and be a good Christian, and I’m not going to go against that just because of some movie.” That said, I do understand where your mom is coming from. When I was your age, my parents wouldn’t let me see films like Jaws and The Exorcist. However, by the time I was 15 I was allowed to see Superman.
Your mom is trying to be protective of you, which is good. Better that than a mother who doesn’t give a damn about you, right? But have a conversation with her about what I said above and see if you can get a little more consistency and understanding from her.
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