The Necessity of Superheroes
Part of what the Modern stands for in Mindfully Modern Mama is just how much of a geek I am. Some of you may have even found this blog from my first one called GeekMama! I love several fandoms, one of the biggest being Marvel. Both my husband and I love superhero comics, movies, and characters. So as geek parents why do we think introducing superheroes is so important?
I asked my six-year-old what superheroes do. Her response was “they save people.” It was that simple. In the heart and mind of a child, that is incredibly powerful! Kids, generally, don’t have much control over their lives. It can be pretty scary at times, that feeling of being powerless. So the visual of ordinary-looking people transforming into strong, intelligent, and compassionate heroes can be comforting and empowering. It’s also incredibly influential. Our kids see these people, oftentimes imperfect and flawed, reject fear to do what is right.
I love watching her dress up as The Wasp, Captain America, Wonder Woman, Captain Marvel, or even better, her own creation. Rescuing her little sister when she falls down or defeating the evil Pillowman and saving us all from certain doom. What better role models for our children than those whose entire lives revolve around helping others?
It also changes as they grow. The influence becomes more personal, more relevant. At least it did for me. They discover that the world isn’t fair, and that’s hard. They also discover that these hero’s imperfections often run deep. That some have difficult or dark pasts; some have serious fears and weaknesses; that sometimes figuring out the right thing to do isn’t always easy. Many times the right decision is not the easy one. These things are important. These are the necessary discussions we need to have! That no one is perfect, not even our superheroes. That you can have fears and flaws and still accomplish incredible feats and do mass amounts of good. That you can make a difference.
They will realize at some point that they won’t grow up to be super-powered superheroes. But if we’ve done our job as parents, they’ll always know they can be their own real-life versions of them. And they’ll understand what that means because we have had those conversations and been the example. So, is introducing superheroes really all that important?
It is absolutely necessary.
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