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  1. #1

    Default war obsessed 7 yr old

    this is a little hard to talk about because it feels almost shameful in this day and age of people blowing things up and kids shooting up schools-buts it's really been weighing heavily so here goes! when my my oldest was 3 his uncle came to visit from the army and let robby dress up in all his gear and from that point on the military, weapons, and war has been an obsession. he plays war games, designs new kinds of guns, and says that when he grows up he wants to be a marine sniper. now i have mixed emotions about this-my father and grandfather were marines and i have always taken great pride in that but this is my baby boy who wants to be in a war and that's different. when he was little i even made a rule that nobody was allowed to give any toy weapons to him because i thought it was sending the wrong message-well the opposite effect of what i wanted has happened and now there are toy guns and swords and shields all over the place. now i am very careful to pay attention to his behavior and attitude. he is very affectionate, and shows great empathy towards others. he is very kind to animals and even insects. i'm trying to watch for all the signs of him turning into a violent, lunatic sociopath and i don't see that happening-yet. it's not just modern war and weapons that he loves-he's very into roman times, too. anything that involves fighting and killing-oh it was so hard to actually type those words! my husband says he's a boy and it's perfectly normal-that from the beginning of time little boys have dreamed of being warriors, but as a mother in 2010 it scares the hell out of me! i try to steer him in other directions and he'll go along w/it but there is no excitement or enthusiasm and it never sparks anything he wants to pursuit more. he just gets through it because i told him to and it's right back to war. should i be worried or is it ok that this is his thing?

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  3. #2

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    I firmly believe it is okay. My 9-yr-old is the same way, but also he is kind and loving and empathetic. I agree it is a boy thing, and I encourage healthy outlets for him, such as cub scouts shoot-o-ree where the emphasis is on the responsibility of weapons, as well as the fun to be had shooting targets.

    I think you are looking out for the right warning signs and not seeing them, so relax! A plus to his intense interest is that wars have pervaded pretty much all of history so letting him obsess about it will at least get some historical knowledge into his head.

  4. #3

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    My son, 4.5, is also more interested in guns and swords and fantasy war (like Star Wars) and good guys vs. bad guys and fighting than I am comfortable with. We have been very careful not to assign gender to toys or activities, so he ALSO plays with kitchen toys, and costumes, and takes dance classes and stuff...so he is probably very balanced.

    DH seems to think he is incredibly normal, other boys I know are no different, he is a sweet kid that loves to give hugs to family and friends, and won't leave the house without petting and saying goodbye to the dogs....so the problem is me, I guess. I am so uncomfortable with violence that I get queasy when he talks about shooting bad guys, or blowing up the enemy.

    I am willing to bet our worries are baseless, but I wanted to let you know you are not alone.
    Last edited by MamaB2C; 09-24-2010 at 11:30 AM.
    Brandi
    Alabama Gulf Coaster,
    Learning and loving life with DS 6 and hubby of 21 years

    DS is in public school, but we enrich and expand at home

  5. #4

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    thank you both so much for that! i too get queasy every time he starts talking about that stuff-like yesterday when he came up talking about how excited he was to shoot the enemy in the head w/his turret gun that he made from toilet paper and paper towel rolls and duck tape-I HATE IT and never know how to react to it!

  6. #5

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    Two of my sons were the same way. One is now a medic in the Navy, and the other in basic training in the Army ! Who knows what your son will grow up to be ?
    Jana - Better Early than Late. Secular Homeschoolers! Combined family with 7 adult children and...

    StartingOver again with our younger ones:


    Quince - aka Word Smith ( 10 ) -
    Emma - aka Perfectionist ( 8 ) A History of Us, Book Shark History and Literature, Human Odssey, Saxon 6/5 ( Quince ) Saxon 7/6 ( Emma ), Madrigal's Spanish, , Latin Prep 1, First Form Latin ( Secular enough for me ), Elemental Science Biology for the Logic Stage, Analytical Grammar, IEW SWI A, and tons of literature.






  7. #6

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    jana-any advice on how to react to these things? i don't even know what to say to him about it.

  8. #7

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    I HATE IT and never know how to react to it!
    Well, right or wrong, I have told DS that I will not play with him if people die in the game, nor do I want to hear stories about war and death. He has always had a knack for keeping relationships separated, meaning he doesn't try to roughhouse with Nana, but does with his daddy and uncle...so he seems to have accepted that I am not comfortable, and if he wants me to play with him, or listen to his stories, he has to be creative. If he is playing by himself, or someone else, I just ignore it (even if it's hard)

    One day we had a battle between the Potato Heads and the Assorted Action Figures, and had them fight with magic sleep spells and stink bombs and other non lethal weapons. When he tells me stories now, he qualifies things with "He didn't die, he was just injured and the doctors helped him". HTH
    Brandi
    Alabama Gulf Coaster,
    Learning and loving life with DS 6 and hubby of 21 years

    DS is in public school, but we enrich and expand at home

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by MamaB2C View Post
    One day we had a battle between the Potato Heads and the Assorted Action Figures, and had them fight with magic sleep spells and stink bombs and other non lethal weapons. When he tells me stories now, he qualifies things with "He didn't die, he was just injured and the doctors helped him". HTH
    LOL!!! That's funny!

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by kgm3 View Post
    jana-any advice on how to react to these things? i don't even know what to say to him about it.
    What I did with the boys was to research military history. Showing them that not everything was war. My son was just on a Mercy mission in the orient on the USNS Mercy. He hasn't seen minute of war yet. But he had helped to repair cleft plates, helped to clean up after disasters, etc. There is much more to military service than war.

    Bring a Soldier or Sailor home for the holidays !! Have him write to our soldiers, I am sure you have friends of family serving.
    Jana - Better Early than Late. Secular Homeschoolers! Combined family with 7 adult children and...

    StartingOver again with our younger ones:


    Quince - aka Word Smith ( 10 ) -
    Emma - aka Perfectionist ( 8 ) A History of Us, Book Shark History and Literature, Human Odssey, Saxon 6/5 ( Quince ) Saxon 7/6 ( Emma ), Madrigal's Spanish, , Latin Prep 1, First Form Latin ( Secular enough for me ), Elemental Science Biology for the Logic Stage, Analytical Grammar, IEW SWI A, and tons of literature.






  11. #10

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    My boys are the same way, all three of them. I was, too. For most of my childhood I wanted to join the Canadian Forces. I got a taste of it in the Reserves and then moved on. With my own children I don't mind them playing war but as a military history enthusiast I feel I am able to deal with their interest in this sort of thing and educate them in what war is really like. I think there is a difference between a child interested in weapons and war and a child who with the same interests who isn't taught that real war is not a game and real firearms are not toys. How many times have we heard a parent on the news say "I had no idea"? As homeschooling parents we have an advantage in that we can see what our children are interested in and use it as a way to educate them.

    A couple of months ago I posted about a fantastic resource for this sort of thing - The Pritzker Military Library. It is especially good for American military history.

    kgm, from what you've described I don't think you have anything to worry about. As a homeschooling parent, you obviously love your son and love teaching him. That in itself goes a long way to preventing him from going down the wrong path later in life.
    David
    Homeschooling Mitchell (8/11/2002), Michael and Matthew (5/11/2005) since 8/17/2009.
    Using Progressive Discover-e

    Me on Facebook

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war obsessed 7 yr old