The Squid Game: Keys to talking with our children about violence in fiction

This Korean series is a trend on social networks and on the video platform itself Netflix, the explicit violence that it presents can generate concern in parents, who ask themselves: From what age is it recommended to watch it and what should be taken into account if our daughters or sons are watching it or have seen some content allusive?

The Squid Game tells the story of a group of people who are invited to participate in a children’s games competition, but adapted in a perverse way. The prize can make them millionaires, but the chances of losing are many and the price is the highest: life itself.

This series reflects the acceptance of the naturalization of violence in all its contents. It is a series that has caused a sensation in the world, positioning itself as one of the most viewed worldwide; that is already a strong message”, Explains the magister Sandra Chafloque Chavez, family psychotherapist and teacher at the UCV campus Piura school of psychology.

Although this series is recommended for those over 16 years old, the reality is that many children and tweens are watching it. These are some suggestions made by the parent counseling specialist:

  1. Be firm with limits: The series is recommended for those over 16 years of age and this must be respected at home by the parents themselves. It is not good for young children to be exposed to this content. “In order to tell them why we don’t want them to see it, you have to have arguments. Exposure to such violent scenes can present problems such as night terrors. This is an opportunity to reinforce that the age recommendations of streaming applications must be considered and that the series, when they have a warning regarding the suggested age, must be respected‘”, He says.
  2. Investigate the reasons why it generates interest: It is necessary for parents to be attentive to the stimuli of their children and the reasons why they want to see this series. “It may be because all their colleagues see it, they feel pressured, because they were hooked by chance or because someone shared it with them. Anyway, it is very important that we ask them the reasons why they are interested”, Says Chafloque. He also recommends finding out what they think about what they are watching, what do you like the most about the series? What led you to see it? How do you feel watching it? We must take advantage of the opportunity to be able to talk with our children, since the series can originate interesting talks.
  3. Discover what “hooks” children and young people to the series: ‘The squid game’ hides in the influence of the children’s games of yesteryear (hopscotch, statues) adapted in a perverse way and distorting the association of money with the mundane and cruel of the human being; many are what has hooked them to see it. The series manifests many of the human weaknesses and psychosocial problems in the world such as: gambling, greed, lack of empathy and very strong messages such as that there is no room for error, anyone who makes a mistake is killed.

This series is an opportunity for questioning also for the parents themselves, indicates the specialist. “We become aware of the impact of games on children. Many times we do not know it and this platform has exposed the information that our children can access. It is very important to take responsibility for knowing what content they see and what is its influence on them”, He said.

The specialist calls for reflection that the broadcast of this type of content is an alert, so as not to be indifferent to the world reality that we currently live. The type of scenes, stories and outcome shown in this series is something that, for many years, has been penetrating the minds and personalities of children and adolescents and some adults who were formed under the influence of what was seen on the screens.

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