My Experience With Professional Wrestling
My friends and I first got introduced to wrestling around fifth grade. We continued to watch it throughout middle school and early high school. Although I don't follow pro wrestling anymore, a few of my friends continue to do so. Personally, I have lost interest in the sport, but it did not take me long after that to realize professional wrestling should not be viewed by children. Here's why.
Wrestling Is a Business
Professional wrestling is a money-making business that markets to everybody, even our impressionable youth.
Professional wrestling is a worldwide spectacle that shows off athletic talent and perplexing storylines all for the purpose of entertainment. However, when television ratings are low, some unethical things may find its way into the show. For the owner of WWE, Vince McMahon, there is no restriction to the content shown on his cable television shows. Nearly every child under 12, not only believes wrestling is real, but also comes away with key lessons, good or bad, and applies it to their life. Wrestling should not be viewed by children because of the inappropriate profanity, the sexual exposure and the excessive violence which generates adult-like situations beyond their comprehension level.
Wrestling Shows Contain Profanity
One way or another, your child will learn to use profanity as they get older. However, during a wrestling show, a wrestler may use a bad word and the response from the crowd is a massive roar. This teaches children that it's not only okay to use profanity, but they will be rewarded if they do so.
Over the years, the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Corporation has done some improper things to gain viewership.
Through the course of one year
- The middle finger got raised one hundred and fifty-seven times.
- A crotch was grabbed one thousand six hundred and fifty-eight times.
- The "f" word was spoken one hundred and twenty-two times.
Excessive profanity is usually in rated-R movies, something children shouldn’t be permitted to watch. So if children shouldn’t watch rated R movies, then they shouldn’t be allowed to watch wrestling.
Wrestling Teaches Children Poor Sportsmanship
With all of the negative influences your child may experience, most are out of your control. However, your child being exposed to professional wrestling is within your parental powers.
Many wrestlers today become popular because of the way they rebel and cheat, translating to a child’s behavior in sports. Eugene V. Beresin and Jim Waxmonsky, former associate professors of psychiatry at Harvard Medical school, claim, “While only very young children are likely to act out the aggressive behavior they witness on wrestling shows, wrestling teaches older children that cheating and verbal intimidation are necessary to achieve success in life.” Children don’t understand that professional wrestling is scripted, therefore it is not acceptable to mimic wrestlers' attitudes in public.
Children Can't Differentiate Between What's Fake and What's Real
Despite many people solely believing wrestling is 100% fake, wrestling has its fair share of real injuries; injuries resulting from mistakes made by the wrestlers. A young child's extensive imagination is a necessity for their healthy development into adolescence. As a result of this, children can't usually tell the difference between what's real and fake. During a wrestling broadcast, the camera angles are switched to make the action look real. For kids to watch somebody like Roman Reigns repeatedly punch an authority figure it all seems real to them. This might lead them to perform moves on real authority figures such as police, parents or teachers. Since the fans cheer the wrestlers, a child may think that they can do the same by standing up to authority and receive encouragement from their peers. This can lead to disciplinary problems among your child and will cause them to model their favorite wrestler's defiant behavior.
It's Disrespectful Towards Women
Women's wrestling has been more than a controversial topic over the years. During the late 1990’s, women’s sexuality played an immense role in attracting viewers. Such exclamation on women’s bodies is not needed anymore, because WWE is a monopoly now. Although, the exclamation on their sexuality has not completely gone away. The owner of WWE, Vince McMahon, was involved in a scripted story line with a female wrestler that all reminded us why wrestling should be meant for adults only. During the story line, in order to receive her boss's forgiveness, female wrestler, Trish Stratus, was ordered my McMahon to strip and get on her knees and bark like a dog in the middle of the wrestling ring. Since children think wrestling is real, this teaches boys at a young age that they can control women. And good parenting doesn't make your child forget that. During the broadcast it would be perfectly acceptable to tell your young boy that women shouldn't be treated that way. The problem with this is that actions speak louder then words. And do you really think your child will believe you anyway? If women aren't treated this way then why is Vince McMahon doing it on TV? If women aren't supposed to be treated this way then why is the crowd cheering? These are all legitimate questions your child will use to defy you. We talk a lot about what this does to boys physiologically, but it messes up young girls just as much. When Trish Stratus was being bossed around and humiliated by McMahon, this teaches young girls to do whatever it takes to please men with power and money.
Sure, you can tell your child that wrestling is fake and not to mimic the wrestlers, but your child, consciously or subconsciously, takes away more values from what they see than what they hear. It's better to skip the wrestling until you know for a fact that your child is mature enough. Personally, I wouldn't recommend letting your child watch wrestling until they understand right from wrong pertaining to violence, sex, and profanity.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2018 Cody Piunno
Yeah stop looking at the bad. on August 04, 2020:
Wrestling is not all bad also kids are not stupid there not gonna act like a wrestler if you tell them not. im a teen and I watch wrestling I know a couple young kids who watch it they don't act like wrestlers.Your only looking at the bad focus on the good
Stephanie L Wattenbarger on June 02, 2019:
Thank you for this. As a grandmother to toddlers, I have repeatedly their parents this. Now I have back up.