A new ‘almost’ war has started in our house. I want to watch Curious George and our 3 year old son wants to watch Ben 10.
I love Curious George and so did our 3 year old until earlier this week. A brilliant programme. What could be better than a cute monkey (who makes the most adorable noises) exploring the world and coming up with ingenious solutions to problems. It shows kids not to give up if you fail, to keep trying, think ‘outside the box’ and that friends can always be a helping hand, all you have to do is ask, after all it’s not always possible to do everything on your own. A lesson in there for many new businesses and some adults I can think of too!

But our 3 year old has been asking to watch Ben 10. Something he has never seen but kids at nursery are talking about so obviously he wants to know what the fuss is about and be able to join in with the Ben 10 play. I understand that, but it doesn’t sit comfortably with me. Have you seen Ben 10? It’s all changing into horrible looking creatures and blowing each other up, fighting with crazy weapons and alien stuff. Is that too much for a 3 year old or am I being too protective? Well obviously I’m not being too protective as our son has watched Ben 10 a couple of times now. I get the same feeling when he wants to watch Road Runner and Wile e Coyote bashing the crap out of each other. But then I watched all those what we would now think of as violent cartoons as a kid ( although at 3, I’m not so sure) and I turned out ok. I think. (Best ask the husband!)

The question is do our kids have more free access to programmes verging on the violent side earlier than we did? We hear our parents talk about how it was so much safer on the streets when they were kids and they could walk through a park at night age 10 and it was perfectly safe, but was it? Is it just that we now know more about violence and attacks than they did and we are just more aware because of the programmes and issues we are introduced to earlier in our lives?

Back to the current semi war in hand – Curious George vs Ben 10 – I’ll always encourage our son to watch the ‘nicer’ programmes but I can’t bring myself to think that if I stopped him watching Ben 10 not only may I become one of those cencoring, over protective parents but more importantly that he will miss out playing games with his friends and be excluded. What do you think?