Emotional Growth Spurt
Recently I’ve come to realize that my son doesn’t just have regular old getting-taller growth spurts. From time to time he has an emotional growth spurt, too. It seems like overnight, something that has been an on-going issue (some for years) is just no-biggie. For instance, the pickiest eater in the world is now asking to try new foods on the regular. Very few of them are making it into regular rotation, but the desire to try is still a huge jump forward.
Trying new things
My favourite advancement in the emotional growth spurt is the new found maturity to want to try new things more than he wants to have things stay the same. He’s devouring new books, new music and new movies and TV shows.
Just 3 months ago, anything we watched HAD to be a cartoon. Like – no real people acting ever.
Now, no big deal. Wha? This has opened so many doors in the entertainment universe. Not only do I not have to watch the same few loved shows over and over again, he’s ready to explore new universes, magical worlds AND favourites I’ve had since childhood.
Deciding if he’s ready for more mature media
We’ve been working our way through some classics before we test the boundaries. The thing about this emotional growth spurt is, unlike an actual growth spurt, you’re not really sure how much growth we’re talking about. And though our timid guy seems to have matured 2 years over night, we can’t be sure – and who doesn’t remember the first scary movie they saw 2 years too soon. *hello The Shining.
Trying to decide how quickly to move to more mature media has been a bit of a challenge, but with Netflix, it’s easy to stop a show and come back to it another time. There’s no feeling that you’ve wasted money on buying or renting something you’re never going to watch. Or worse, having to do the dreaded crouched slink out of a movie theatre.
It’s hard to tell how soon is too soon for visual violence and it’s sometimes more sinister cousin, psychologically scary. But with great ratings online, detailed reviews and the ability to go at your own pace, Netflix takes the stress out of testing the boundaries.
How we watch together is changing… in a good way
We’re currently cueing up the Netflix original Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events. I had a pre-watch of the first episode and it looks amazing. (Am I the only one who does that when I’m worried it’s a show he won’t be ready for?) I sincerely hope this is not the one that goes too far. The acting is great, script is superb (how could it not be?) and the filmmaking is really sharp.
I feel like this emotional growth spurt in particular has made a huge change in my boy. He is interested in way more stuff. He’s able to see two sides to a story. And, we’re able to enjoy more of the ‘adult’ story line in kids shows than every before. And, not that there is anything wrong with cartoons, but being able to choose to watch a live action show together is like a whole new world.
How do you decide when your kids are emotionally ready for more advanced content? I’d love to hear how you handle it at your house.
As a member of the Netflix #StreamTeam, I do receive complimentary product from #Netflix as part of our ongoing partnership. All opinions are my own.