Originally Posted by prothyraia
That's a really broad spectrum of things, though. My kids play all KINDS of things that I would never want them to do in adulthood. I mean....I won't even get started, we'd be here all day.
I agree. One of the first that comes to mind is car crashes. DS2 slams Hot Wheel type cars together in "crashes" all the time.
|I think it's interesting that you see gun play as so linear, because that's not been my experience watching children engage in it. There's certainly as much skill and responsibility involved in learning to use real guns as there is in fencing, and just as much possibility for creativity with pretend guns as with pretend swords. (fairy dust guns, magic pew pew that turns you into animals, shrink rays, freeze rays, etc. etc. etc.)
My kids' sword play more often involves pretend killing and injury than their gun play, honestly. It certainly involves more *actual* injury (hey, even foam swords can hurt!)
This is all pretty much my experience, too.
|I find this distinction between swords and guns as acceptable/unacceptable to be a bit baffling. Swords are actually even *more* specifically tools of violence and murder then guns. You can't go out and hunt food for your family with a sword. It's a brutal weapon created to hack into someone and maim them or cause them to bleed to death. I guess because they're not currently used for that purpose, it's easier to maintain the mental separation between fantasy and reality, but I doubt it's because the fantasy is actually any cleaner or more noble than that involved with guns.
I've been thinking the same thing.
DS1 happens to love swords and just got his first "real" one (a birthday present from his dad). It's actually a decorative sword, and not a real
sword, but it could definitely be used a weapon in a pinch (ie. it wouldn't last 10 seconds against a quality sword, but it could hurt, or even kill, someone). Finances permitting, I expect he'll own a few dozen, or even a hundred, before he's through.
He's expected to follow safety rules, and if his younger siblings ever manage to so much as see
it, except under strict supervision, it will be confiscated, and removed from the house. (He can have it back when he moves out.) It's a weapon. It's dangerous. It's not a toy. DS1's interest in them is mostly aesthetic, from a collector standpoint, but that doesn't change the fact that swords are tools meant to kill people, and nothing else. That's their sole reason to exist - to kill people. I don't worry about that, with respect to ds1's interest in swords, swordfighting, fencing, etc. (he hasn't learned yet, but wants to study fencing and swordfighting). He doesn't want to, and isn't going to, hurt or kill anyone.
I probably wouldn't let ds1 have a real gun in the house. The only reasons I differentiate between a gun and a sword in this respect are:
1) He can't legally have a gun, and
2) A gun is small enough that one of his siblings could, conceivably, find it and shoot it and/or hide it without me or ds1 realizing it was missing. If he were fool enough to leave it loaded, they could also kill someone with one. They couldn't get his sword without our knowledge, and if they could, neither one of them has the strength/mass to actually use
Guns have a real life use (hunting) other than killing people. Swords don't. (I realize they both have an adult use that isn't killing - fencing, range shooting, etc - and both are collectibles. I'm talking about their original functions.)