Huggy Waggi: should children buy “scary” toys?
Many parents are concerned about the abundance of various monsters on store shelves. What to do if a child asks to buy another monster? Elena Samokhina, a clinical psychologist and medical editor of the Modern Health magazine, answers the questions that concern moms and dads.
Hagga Waggi is a fashionable and desirable toy for many children of different ages: it is a blue monster with an anthropomorphic body, a triangular head, bulging eyes and several rows of sharp teeth bared in a wide smile. However, adults should be aware that the game forms the worldview of the child, his character and behavioral patterns, so you can’t blindly follow the fashion for toys.
The first rule is to follow the age restrictions indicated on the toy. They are put not just like that, but taking into account the development of the psyche.
Do not buy monsters for other people’s children as a gift and for your own as a surprise: if the baby has not seen this monster before, he may be scared.
The opinion of adults is very important for the younger generation, so correctly and reasonably indicate your attitude to the toy and offer an alternative: “I don’t like this monster. Look at his evil face! Maybe we should take a bear/hare/doll/helicopter?” But if the child still really asks for a monster, do not be afraid to take it – with a generally normal emotional background, such toys can even be beneficial.
Horror stories have always attracted children. In any interesting fairy tale, there are always terrible villains, and heroes get into dangerous situations, meet monsters and defeat them using strength, dexterity or cunning. So the child learns fear and learns to cope with it on the example of magical heroes and with the help of toys.
Some parents go to the other extreme – they try to protect children, especially girls, from all evil, do not read scary and even just sad fairy tales, turn her room into a world of pink ponies. Having no experience of overcoming their own fear and fighting evil in the game, such children do not develop a suitable behavior model and are lost when faced with rudeness and aggression in life, for example, peers.
Make sure the toys are varied. If the shelves in the nursery are full of monsters, transforming robots, growling dinosaurs and saber-toothed tigers, the child develops a one-sided view of the world. There is a feeling that it is completely filled with dangers, and this has a bad effect on socialization, increases the level of anxiety and aggression. Fill cabinets not only with monsters, but also with cute, soft, endearing characters. There should be at least four or five “cute” ones for one “scary”.
Try not to give babies toys that are much larger than them. Even the cutest bear the size of a dad can cause real panic in a little person.
Pay attention to how the child plays with dolls, animals, monsters, cars, cubes and designers. In such games, one can notice signs of cruelty or a bias towards destruction to the detriment of creation, indicating the psychological problems of the baby or parental mistakes. A problem detected in time can be corrected, including with the help of a psychologist.
And remember, children’s games are serious!