Should you censor your teen's music?

Avatar for Cmmelissa
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Registered: 11-13-2008
Should you censor your teen's music?
32
Thu, 09-27-2012 - 3:45pm

I'd love to get your thoughts on this.  I'm a relative newbie when it comes to the teen world, and while I had views coming into this on what I would or wouldn't allow, I  know from experience that you never say never when it comes to how you parent. 

I just read an opinion piece from the Chicago Tribune, the mom was explaining her reasons behind her decision not to censor her daughter's music choices, here's a link if you want to check it out: http://www.chicagonow.com/music-mom/2012/09/should-you-censor-the-music-your-teenager-listens-to-this-mom-says-no/.  

I agree with her to a point, but unsure if I'm willing to totally let it go.  There are still movies/TV shows that I don't allow my oldest to watch, so why would I have a different viewpoint when it comes to music?  I was taken aback a couple of years ago when I heard some of the songs that my friend's daughter would listen to, they were pretty obscene and went way beyond what P!nk or Katy Perry put out.   Although you have to give some leeway and can't control all their environments, you can at least try to keep it at a minimum.  Am I totally in la-la land with this thinking?

Do you try to censor the type of music that your kids are exposed to?

 

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 6:06pm
Sigh... at least he told you about it? I would take that as a positive sign.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 6:02pm

Yeah, you know what they were doing at my sons' school?  They had a friend leave mid-year.  The school did not shut down his account right away.  The kid gave some other kids his account information, and that's where they were dropping -- and picking up -- materials.  My son said he knew about it but wasn't part of it, and I almost believe him.   Almost. 

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 5:53pm
Thanks for your reply. It is very hard to control what their friends have in terms of video games. I've managed to avoid it so far by not having an Xbox, but I'm sure my son will be getting one in a couple of years (he's only 14 now). I'm sure he's played them over at friends houses, so I do my best like you have to raise them with good values. I'm pretty glad that for the most part his friends come over here, at least I know to some extent what they are doing. Not that you'll ever know it all...and that's not always a bad thing.

I know our district is pretty strict about the school computers, they have to sign a computer agreement every year. I'm not how good they are at policing it though, the kids can be very tech savvy.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 5:45pm

Well, you do what you can with your kids.  Mine are 16 and 20 now, and their belief systems are fairly apparent to me.  Of course we raised them with the hope that they would adopt our belief systems and values, but you never know.  They aren't clones of us by any means, but they have pretty strong social consciences.  So I am grateful for that.   What would I do if they WERE attracted to that kind of stuff?  Well, make it clear why I am not; why I think it's wrong, why I don't want it in my house and would consider it a violation of the respect I hope they have for me by bringing it into the house; if they insisted on doing it anyway there would not be much I could do besides refuse to pay for electronic devices like smart phones, I-Pads, laptops, and other places they might be storing such material.  I will say I never allowed violent video games or movies when my kids were younger, but the 16 year old is liable to bring home borrowed games like "Assassin's Creed" and stuff I would rather not have him playing.  We've talked about my objections, and he gets them, and doesn't own any such games, but his friends do bring them over on game nights and stuff and I have pretty much given up now that they are all in high school.

As for file sharing music, they do it all kinds of ways.  The easiest way is for them to upload their stuff onto the computer, download it to a CD, and share the CDs.  They also have music stored on file sharing sites.  I am not sure how they work.  I even know that, contrary to school rules, some of the kids store stuff on school computers and tell their friends how to access it to download it.  They are always at least one step ahead of the adults on the watch, wherever the watch is occuring.

 

 

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 4:46pm
I probably am being naive :smileywink: What would you do if your children did have tolerance for it? I see why you aren't worried about it, but what if that's truly what your children are interested in? I guess what you are saying is that because you have raised them to have certain belief systems, they wouldn't be attracted to that type of music? I don't think I'm making sense, so apologies if I'm not. I can't quite get out what I'm trying to say!

Good point about the file sharing, agree that it's a huge concern and I would consider it stealing as well. Just curious how they are sharing files with each other, can you shed some insight on it?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 4:29pm

I think you're being naive.  A kid that wants to listen to "forbidden" stuff is not going to purchase it on a parent's gift card.  They can get it t from friends throught file sharing. I am more concerned about the ethics of file sharing than I am that they are going to listen to obsene/pornographic/racist/misogynist/homophobic stuff -- my kids don't have much tolerance for that.  Yet try as I may, I have a hard time persuading them that file sharing is stealing.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-07-2003
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 3:46pm
I don't plan to censor music when my kids are teens. I listen to some fairly explicit stuff on occasion and still manage to be a responsible adult. If the music they listen to offends me, I might not let them listen to it where I can hear it though and I wouldn't buy it for them.
Avatar for cupcakebabe
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2011
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 2:23pm

I think I'd be more inclined to censor my tween's/preteen's (or whatever the heck they are called now!) music than my 16/17yos. BUT if I saw that they were buying music that degrades a race/gender/person, I would definitely tell them no way.  I do agree with you on the credit card issue (though some may be using itunes giftcards?). If the older teen was using my card/account to download bad music, I wouldn't allow that.

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 12:26pm
Since most kids these days download their music, and need a way to purchase it, I think a parent has control over that process since it would be their credit card. I'm talking about the music that ashmama mentions, music that's not played on the radio because it's too obscene and graphic.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Fri, 09-28-2012 - 11:45am
How would you even go about censoring your teen's music? My 16 year old 8 plus waking hours a day not in my company. I have no wag of controlling what he listens to during those hours, and little way of controlling what he listens to with his earbuds in when we are both home.