Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Do You Know What Your Teenagers Are Listening Too?

WFMW: Teen Music Survey
Today, I was going to post a list of music groups with clean music for your teens to listen to. In order to compile the list, I asked 5 teens what bands they would recommend for my site. I told the teens the music had to be clean and something your mother could listen to. I started with a list of 30 music groups. I couldn't believe how hard it was to find clean music! The 5 teens did recommend the cleanest bands they could think of; however, between swearing, bad lyrics, and references to sex, I could only recommend a few of these groups.

From conducting this research, I have to ask one question: Do you really know what your teenagers are listening to?



Why it is Important for our Teens to Listen to Clean Music?

Music can influence our teens' actions for both the positive and unfortunately for the negative. Can teen music be linked to violent crimes? Consider these findings: The two shooters in the Columbine High School shooting in Littleton, Colorado regularly listened to heavy metal and Goth. Three 15-year-old boys stabbed to death a 15-year-old girl in San Luis Obispo, California after listening to the song "Alter of Sacrifice" by Slayer. A 13-year-old girl in Paddock Wood, Kent committed suicide after listening to the hard-core punk band EMO. There are also studies correlating rap music and teen pregnancies.


Ways to Monitor Your Teens Music:

1. Actually take the time to monitor you're teens music.

2. Let your teen know, from an early age, that you will monitor his or her music.

3. Don't think that because you're teen already listens to bad music that you can't monitor it or change your teens listening habits. Take control of the situation. If necessary, talk to a teen counselor or read up on helping teens make wise choices. I know parents who use two good, in fact classic, books on this subject called "Parenting Teens with Love and Logic," and "Back in Control."

4. Before buying your teen a CD, go on-line and find the lyrics to the songs. http://www.lyricsmania.com/ is just one of the sites to find lyrics.

5. Research the bands on the Internet. All bands have Web sites and My Spaces or other sites to peruse. At these sites you can learn about the bands and hear examples of the music.

6. Listen to clean music yourself. You can't expect your teens to listen to clean music if you aren't.

7. Watch what songs your teens download onto their personal computers, I-pods, and MP3 players.


What has worked in your home to help your teen make good music listening choices?

21 comments:

Lisa said...

Excellent advice for a concern that has slipped under the radar of many parents. Who needs subliminal mind control when immorality is blatantly piped into your children's heads hour after hour? The thing tha has worked miracles with our children is having gotten them involved in music at our church. They're music snobs now that they know and understand the beauty of better music. They get irritated with me if I listen to a little pop on the car radio! It's all about the company the kids keep, too, though... If they're easily swayed by a peer group that considers bad music cool, you have your work cut out for you. This kind of training really does have to start early, by training your children to choose good, wholesome friends.

Rick said...

Thumbs up for a great post!

We don't have teens yet, but it still is a concern. Rick's band plays some songs he wishes they didn't. He saves those to practice, without the amp, after the kids are confirmed to be asleep.

When the band plays bars they stick to the lyrics. When they play festivals and other events where there will be lots of kids they change their lyrics to be rated G.

Friends of ours noticed a really bad, depressed attitude in their teen. They did trace the source to one particular band. They tossed the CDs and within weeks they had a happy daughter again.

Marie N. said...

Oops! It's Marie N. who wrote the above comment attributed to husband, Rick.

Mandy said...

This is a great post. One that so many don't want to face including myself at times as I love rock! But yes it is a good reminder and important to discuss as a family!

Leah said...

I agree it's very hard. Even jsut listening to the radio in the car with my young children has turned difficult. I started listening to country stations because they were clean at the time, but now even those songs are using "HEL..." and "Dam..." rather frequently, and although they arne't eh worst words, I dont' need my kids repeating them!!! We've started listening to a lot of Jack Johnson CD's, and things like that.

Kaci said...

I agree with Leah we've been listening to Jack Johnson, Jewel, more mellowish CD's

Mark Salinas said...

I have a 14 year old daughter so this one hits....excellent post! Thanks you!

Motherhood for Dummies said...

what a great post. That is definintly somethign that needs to be moinored but I think often forgotten by parents. We really try to make sure Lucy listens to Blues Clues or Dora... we just find the Wiggles a little to explicet :) kidding :)

angie said...

Excellent post!

mormonhermitmom said...

Excellent post. Good to see a place where the lyrics are posted too. Oh and it's not just teens, preteens are music savvy too. More work for parents, dang it.

Danielle said...

These are great recommendations for monitoring teen music... but what do you do if your husband is in a rock band? And can't wait to have his son grow up so that he can play music with him. Some of the music is great but some of the music would probably be borderline, let alone the conversations that take place while my husband practices with his buddies (you know the typical fart, sex, racial jokes that for some reason men find funny and seem to only talk about while jamming out). Thank god I have a couple of years to start worrying about that... it might just be enough time to work on my husband!!!

Kaerlig said...

Love the last advice to listen to clean music ouselves as adults. And I love Love and Logic books. I shudder the thought of my kids becoming teens. It's so easy to control things now.

Munchkins and Music said...

To answer your question, if my Husband was in a rock band that he loved, and the music he played wasn’t very good, I’d probably try to talk to him about how I felt as best I knew how. :)

If your husband feels the same way you do then maybe he can change the bad parts. To change will also depend on how much pull your husband has in the band. Is he writing the songs and lyrics? Then it’s easy for him to keep the bad out. If not, then it may take some chorusing. Hope this helps! :)

Sheena said...

I always keep this in mind as well. I hate for my 3.5 year old to listen to what my hubby does. She's starting to sing some of his rock songs! =( But I cannot convince him to play kid appropriate music in the car when he's driving. It's a battle right now. But at least whenever I'm driving she gets Dora, or Sesame street music, etc. Great post!

Alison said...

Lyrics nowadays make my hair stand on end. We'll not get into the whole topic of music videos! Let's just say that my homeschooled kids are free of the peer pressure to get into that stuff. I know what my kids are listening to because they share it with me. Otherwise, well, I hope I'd still know, but if they'd grown up in a different environment who knows!

Mae said...

Hi, Just wanted to stop by and say hi. I know that I've been missing some good stuff here. My other blog somehow got out of wack. So I been spending some time trying to build me another blog. I'm glad to be back in the blogsphere.

Abby said...

Thankfully I have a son that asks us to download the music he listens to into his mp3 player so I know exactly what goes in there. I am soooo blessed to have a child that actually likes to listen to jazz and classic rock. I know not your norm but who wants a kid that just wants to listen to what everyone says they should? I love that he steps away from the popular vote and is his own person!

By the way check out Steals And Deals to see the Fisher Price Little People drummer boy toy we put up. Mandy and I thought it would be up your alley. Its sooo stinkin cute and a great price!

The Happy Housewife said...

Great advice. We only listen to clean music around. Our kids don't even know there is anything else out there, at least for now.
Toni

Shawada said...

as a student studying this topic right now, I have to say that your tips are unrealistic. As much as you try to monitor your child's music, you can not stop them from listening to what they want to listen to. Also, most parents have busy lives and one of the last things on their mind is what their kids are listening to. I would like to know where you found your research because I think there might be some biased research.

Anonymous said...

oh come on man! you shouldnt stop us from listening to the music that we like. the thing you should do is help us, well not me, but other teens out ther to understand how to not let things influence them so easily or how to form their own opinins... welcome to reality...!

Gail @ Turning Winds said...

Fortunately for me, this has never become an issue for me and my son. He knows that I don't approve of him listening to metal and songs having provocative or sexually encouraging lyrics. I give him trust for picking the songs he like, and oftentimes I ask him what titles the current song plays on his ipod. It's my way of checking up on him. Lol!
Our kids can still open up to us without being too forceful and demanding.