Table of contents:
- "Blue whale": what is it?
- Why do teens play Blue Whale?
- How to protect a child from such games?
- What to do if the child is already interested in "death publics"?
- How to talk to a teenager so that you can reach him?
Video: "Blue whale" and other dangerous games: how to save a teenager
2023 Author: James Gerald | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-24 12:31
Parents of teenagers are in a panic: a blue whale swims on social networks and forces children to commit suicide.
The surge of activity in the so-called "death groups" is really alarming, but before sounding the alarm and taking gadgets from your child, you should figure out why teenagers "bite" on such "games", how to prevent interest in dangerous publics and, most importantly, how to establish trusting relationships in the family.
"Blue whale": what is it?
If you still do not know what kind of "beast" this is, we will tell you. For the first time, people started talking about "death groups" almost a year ago. Then, information appeared in the media that public pages appeared on social networks one after another, in which teenagers were given different tasks (usually related to self-harm), and the last on the list was suicide. If a teenager wants to get out of the "game", the moderator threatens to kill his entire family.
It might seem like just someone's stupid joke, if not for life stories - children really cut strange symbols on their wrists with blades, watched psychedelic videos, did not sleep for weeks and … committed suicide. Now "death groups" are again heard. Silent House, Sea of Whales, Blue Whale - these and other online games add to teens, scare parents and cause excitement on social networks.
123 RF / ssstocker
Why do teens play Blue Whale?
Before figuring out how to deal with death groups, it is important to understand why they are so attractive to children. And the point here is primarily in adolescent cravings for danger.
Oksana Alberti, psychologist:
“The child has a lot of energy, and it requires its realization. Defeating danger gives a feeling of euphoria, success, and increases self-esteem.
Any child's play contains elements of difficulties, and its meaning is to overcome them. But earlier, children played outdoor games and intuitively understood the danger of overly risky activities. Games with the use of gadgets shift the sense of reality. In virtual reality, dying is not scary, so the sense of real risk to life is blurred."
Psychologist Tatiana Gavrilyak:
“In order for a teenager to join the game associated with suicide, he must already have the prerequisites for this - dissatisfaction with himself, his life, difficult relationships in family, with friends, in love. And then such games fall on fertile soil, if there is no such soil, the child will never be involved in it. And signs of some trouble appear long before a child can find such a community."
How to protect a child from such games?
Deprive gadgets and the Internet! This is probably the first thing that came to your mind. But experts are sure that the problem cannot be solved this way.
First of all, it's important not to panic. Parents themselves draw the attention of children to the existing problem by making endless reposts on social networks, taking away gadgets, turning off the Internet.
The forbidden fruit beckons a child, and even if he was not going to look into such groups before, there is a risk that a banal interest will overpower common sense.
Also, divesting gadgets doesn't make a lot of sense when all other teens have gadgets.
What to do if the child is already interested in "death publics"?
First of all, and this is really important, it is worth recognizing that the child has problems. And problems need to be helped to solve. Do not punish, do not lock the houses, do not shout hysterically: "Do you not understand how dangerous it is?"
123 RF / Iakov Filimonov
First of all, you need to understand what prompted the teenager to such an interest. Perhaps the problem lies in relationships with friends, parents, teachers, etc.
“It is worth talking to a child, how he feels, what worries him, what is important in his life. Normally, such conversations should take place regularly, parents should be those people with whom you can always talk heart to heart and get acceptance and understanding, no matter what happens. If there is no trust, the relationship has already been destroyed, then they need to be improved,”explains Tatiana Gavrilyak.
In addition, it is important to always remember that adolescents are collective and dependent beings. Oksana Alberti believes that, ideally, the family should become “her pack” for the child. If in the parental home a teenager is bad, he is not understood and not accepted, then he will definitely find those people who share his views on life, who have the same problems as he does. And at best it will be a harmless hobby group, and at worst, “death groups” on social networks.
How to talk to a teenager so that you can reach him?
There are no generic keys here. Danger stories won't help either. Unfortunately, adolescents, due to their age, do not understand the reality of death. Children think that this is an illusion and you can play with it. Therefore, there is no point in intimidation.
It makes sense to discuss the reasons: why a teenager turned to the "Blue Whale" or any other dangerous public, what feelings this "game" evokes in him, what worries him in real life, why thoughts about death arise, etc.
123 RF / sabphoto
It is important to be prepared for the fact that one conversation will not solve all problems. Building trusting relationships is a long and painstaking process. It requires patience, restraint and love. The most important thing is to convey to the teenager - he is understood and accepted for who he is.
And, of course, do not forget that adolescents value a sincere interest in their life. Parents who go headlong into work and completely forget that there is a living person nearby who needs care and attention (and not just “did you eat?”, “Did you put on a hat?”, “Did you learn English?”), then they are surprised to find that across the kitchen table sits not a happy child, but a depressed teenager.
And, finally, the most important remark from Oksana Alberti: “Children need to be occupied with outdoor games and useful physical labor, preferably in a playful way. And other activities, where they work with their hands, run, throw the ball, etc. If children from an early age are taught to do something that is interesting to them, but alive, and not electronic, the subsequent acquaintance with the computer and the Internet will no longer bring such harm."