I watch Glee. Yes, I am a big fan – even when the show gets a bit ridiculous. I love the music. I love the dancing. I love the way they don’t shy away from the controversial topics like alcohol, smoking, homosexuality, and sex. Do I think the show is appropriate for all teens to watch? I don’t live with all teens so I am happy to have each family make their own decisions about what is or isn’t appropriate viewing for them.
One of the things I like most about the show is the way it spurs conversation among my own family members. When the writers and producers risk it all to show teen alcohol struggles, teen pregnancy, bullying, and, yes, teen homosexual relationships, I take those scenarios as teachable moments to talk with my family. We have some great conversations where my kids take the lead on asking the questions AND voicing their opinions.
I realize there are organizations which take strong stands on limiting what kids should be exposed to on TV and I appreciate their intentions and their research into the shows. However, I prefer to use this information as a guide then watch the show and draw my own conclusions. Depending on what I’ve heard or read, I may decide to watch it with one of my kids or preview it on my own first. In either case, it is me, as the provider living in the household, deciding what is best for my family.
I regularly advocate for the health and education of my children and encourage others to do the same. What kids view on TV does influence them so it makes sense to advocate for what we believe in there as well. But please, let each of us decide what is best for our families without making those decisions for us.