Violence is a major issue affecting kids – especially teens. The recent shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School left hundreds of students in a panic, dozens injured and death counts that are said to be "numerous" as officials stormed the scene.
Teaching kids about violence is a difficult topic for mom and dad.
The Child Development Institute suggests parents encourage their kids to talk about the things they hear and see in their lives. Parents need to learn and understand their child's feelings to provide a welcoming discussion on the violence that they experience in their lives.
Children should not be facing these fears on their own.
Social campaigns are playing an important role in helping fight against abuse and violence of women and children.
Teaching Through the #MeTheForce Campaign
The #MeTheForce campaign was started by Mayur Ramgir who recently won the "Best First Time Director" award for his MeTheForce music video. What parents can learn from this video, which is designed to help eradicate violence against women and children, is that teaching through music and video works.
#MeTheForce is a great example of social media being used in the proper light to fight against violence.
The campaign is designed to fight against violence, and the video shows us a few ways that we can teach kids to rise up against violence:
Supports. Starting with parents, there is a need for support among kids. Talk to your kids, explain that they're able to talk to you about their problems. Listen to your kids when they talk about their problems.
Story. Through the use of video, a story is told. It's important to allow your child's story to be told, or they can tell a story of a friend or someone else that has endured violence and sits in silence.
Teaching Through the #MeToo Campaign
Kids, unfortunately, are victims of abuse, including sexual abuse. The #MeToo campaign led to women across the world telling their story of sexual abuse. An often hidden away problem, there are a lot of lessons that can be taught to children through the campaign.
Geared towards women, the campaign lets women tell their story, and often this is the first time women can begin healing.
A few points I personally learned from the campaign and am relaying to my kids are:
Don't Wait. Nicole Eggert, actress, was a victim of sexual abuse over 30 years ago. She has lived through her pain for decades. Teach your kids to come out against abuse and violence and not to wait.
Take Action. Waiting for justice and staying silent allows other violence and abuse to continue. By taking action, whether it be telling a parent, teacher or contacting police, it's possible to help save someone else from the same abuse.
It's essential that kids have an outlet to talk about the violence and abuse they experience. Teaching your kids that they can talk to you or someone else is very important. Violence support groups are also available for parents and their kids that have suffered abuse together.