I don't know if you know this, but I can see everything you say and do. Actually, I look to you to help ME know what to say and do in a lot of situations. You are supposed to be smarter and more mature than me, so I always thought you would be able to guide me and help me through life.
But, lately, I'm not so sure I can count on you. You seem to be just as confused as I am. Take violence; you say you don't want me to be a bully; to be mean to other kids and tease them and call them names, but then I see you do it all the time on TV, in movies, and even in real life. I overhear your conversations where you say mean things about your friends or people at work behind their backs and you make fun of them and we all laugh. i don't get it. Why is it ok for you and not for me?
And are you going to tell me that movies and TV are just make believe? Not reality shows. I've seen Simon Cowell be so mean he makes men and women cry, I've seen Abby Miller on Dance Moms and Alicia Dunlap on Cheer Perfection make little girls cry, and I've seen Real Housewives yell and scream such mean things at each other I thought they were going to really kill each other. It scared me. I've also seen you laugh at comedies where the actors have scenes where they look like they're all kids making fun of each other. Is that the way you entertain yourselves - by laughing at people being humiliated?
And you spend a lot of time watching movies filled with violence, watch TV shows every day about terrible crimes, and play video games where you get to practice shooting guns to try to kill as many people as possible. Then you turn around and tell me I can't play video games like that or watch shows and movies like that. I don't get it. Why do you think it's ok for you but not for me?
I can't figure out what you want from me and what you want for me? Do you want me to look up to you as a role model? Well, how can I do that when I see you (and other grownups) being angry, hostile, critical and just plain mean to each other? That what you're showing me all the time. I see it everywhere I look.
When I was little you taught me to be nice and kind to everybody and you wanted me to be a good person. You taught me that hurting another person's feelings is always wrong and that if we care about each other and treat each other with respect we can all get along. But, I don't see you grownups getting along. I don't see you treating each other with respect. Am I missing something?
If you want me to be nice and kind to people you need to show me how to do that. I don't know the words to say and the actions to take by myself. I need you to be my teachers and role models. If you only show me criticism, anger, meanness, and cruelty that's probably the way I'll be, too. Because It will show me that you think it's ok to be that way. Maybe you think it's even good to be that way. Is it?
Would you please decide because I am totally confused and don't know what to believe anymore.
Thank you for listening to me.
A kid's point of view