Boys. That's what this is about. Little muddy, sticky, rock-collecting, snake-loving, sword-carrying, gunfight-imagining boys. I am blessed to have three of them. They're seldom quiet, seldom still, and one or more is always up to some sort of mischief. And just to let you know, I wouldn't trade them for the world.
I'm amazed at the number of people who think that just because they role play fighting, that boys are "naturally violent". Or preoccupied with guns and violence. I haven't found that to be the case. My boys also love to play boardgames, play cards, to crochet, to build, to read, to cook and a plethora of other things. And two of my three LOVE babies. And they're gentle and kind, caring and loving. In fact, this year two of mine won awards at school for "Kindness and Compassion".
Do they fight? Of course, and I hate to burst your bubble, but my sister and I fought, too. And we played with cap guns and cracked each other over the head with batons. Do my boys fight other children? Yes, to defend themselves. We don't encourage physical violence, but we do encourage standing up for yourself. Is that wrong? I don't think so.
My boys don't like to hear or see things that portray real violence. The violence and death they see and hear about on television, radio or in the newspapers scares them. They feel compassion towards people who are hurt or have lost a family member. They don't understand why anyone would hurt another person for little or no reason.
And yes, there is a time and place for that kind of play. And several places are off-limits for that--school and church, to name a couple. Otherwise, I smile and wish for earplugs when I hear the "pew, pew, pew" of imaginary laser fights. Hey, I never said it doesn't get on my nerves, but so does the high-pitched squeal of a little girl playing with friends.