It’s always a hard time for parents whenever a vicious online trend, targeting kids, surfaces. Ask me what it’s like to parent three kids who pretty much like to do what they want to do. It’s a plain nightmare, knowing they wouldn’t listen much when you really want them to.
It’s not any different in India. In fact, because of the parents’ helicopter parenting, the Gen Z has turned rebellious. And like every other child, the Indian kids want the same, i.e. to have more and more freedom; or in short, to have boundless, no-questions-asked freedom.
The latest threat to the Indian parents’ tranquility and that to their children’s lives is the Momo Challenge. It involves a series of lethal tasks for the players with a final task that involves killing one’s self.
The Momo Challenge is as bad as it could get. But no child deserves to die at the hand of some merciless asshole who created this game. That’s why, being the parents of your kids, you got to take some measures. And if you don’t know where to start, the government of India has issued some guidelines for the parents.
The Ministry of Electronics recommendations
As expected, the ministry wants parents to start monitoring their kids’ online activity. Other recommendations include inquiring kids about their mental health and looking out for their suspicious or secretive activity. If your kids have suddenly started spending more time online, that could just be the premonition that you need. If your child seems to be angrier or if he’s making new social media accounts or changing their phone numbers, all these are very strong negative signs that your child is in danger and needs your intervention.
The ministry has also recommended parents to install mobile parenting applications on their children’s cell phones and computers, which could allow them to see their children’s entire online activity.
Get to work, already!
Don’t waste time. Your kids need you right now but are probably scared of reaching out to you. Well, you know what that is. Parents always expecting high of kids that kids don’t come to their parents with their problems to avoid being a disappointment. Go talk to your kids about it. If they don’t want to talk to you about any of this, seek professional help. Take them for counseling or even talk to their teachers at school.
Moreover, the Ministry of Electronics has issued a list of symptoms if a child is exposed to the Momo Challenge. Take a look:
- Preferring alienation—staying in the room most of the time
- Low levels of happiness and persistent low mood
- Giving up on day-to-day tasks or showing lack of concern
- Showing unprecedented outbursts of anger
- Marks of self-harm or self-mutilation