It comes as no surprise that teenagers are constantly searching for new ways to get attention, gain social media ‘likes’, or go viral on the internet. They are the masters of trendsetting and they know it.
The only problem is that some of the trends they come up with are dangerous… like eating Tide Pods.
However, American teens have truly outdone themselves with this new craze called the “48-Hour Challenge,” which involves disappearing for two straight days.
The concept of this absurd challenge is to see if their disappearance will scare their parents, create a social media buzz, and if it will get their photo circulated throughout the news.
The unfortunate thing, among many, is that whenever the local news brings attention to the teen who ‘disappeared’ (but who then magically reappears a couple of days later), it spawns the interest of other teens to take on the challenge for themselves.
With a growing fascination to gain popularity and to be noticed, teenagers are conjuring up new ways to put themselves on the grid.
This new challenge is yet another way for teenagers to gain attention, all while basking in the joy of seeing just how much their parents care about them when they freak out about the disappearance of their child. It’s enough to make any parent want to make their child disappear for real once they find out that the scare was all one big joke…and the joke is always on the parent.
When asked about the best advice that should be given to parents who might fear this action from their kids, Polly Dunn, child psychologist, simply feels that parents should resort to communication. “I think talking openly and honestly about the challenges and the dangers especially with younger children and more impressionable children is the best policy,” stated Dunn in an interview with Brobible.
She does not suggest that parents ignore the challenge by pretending it doesn’t exist or that their teens wouldn’t participate. Dunn would rather that parents discuss this crazy challenge with their teens openly, rather than waiting for the challenge to present itself in some other manner.
Raising teenagers has never been, and will probably never be, an easy feat. Teens require a certain amount of attention, guidance, communication, and protection. As parents, we can’t assume that once our children reach the age of 14 that they are capable of thinking on their own without support. True, we want to provide them certain freedoms so that they can learn and grow on their own.
They need to learn boundaries, even if they must sometimes set them for themselves as a result of the lessons learned from the mistakes that they make. Unfortunately, this is not one of those moments. It is important to speak with your teens about the dangers of this challenge before they hear about it from their peers or social media videos.
If they know that you love them now, they will do all that they can to protect you from pain…not test your love for them by bringing you pain through idiotic challenges.