Ever squirmed in your seat as you and your child watch an ad for erectile dysfunction medication together? With Super Bowl 50 taking place tonight and Panthers fans young and old watching the big game (we’ve already established that it is okay to let the kids stay up and watch), there are bound to be commercials that make adults laugh and then possibly pause and wonder, “Did that (hopefully) go over my child’s head?”
Commercials are often as much fun as the game, but parents should be prepared to answer questions that may arise. This year’s ads are expected to be funny, with lots of celebrity sightings and an emphasis on social responsibility.
Juliet Kuehnle, Licensed Professional Counselor at Southeast Psych reminds parents that viewing media together, like during the Super Bowl, is a great way to teach our children how to be consumers of advertisements. “By using our own beliefs and values, we can challenge certain things we’re seeing, teach our kids that commercials are all about trying to appeal to people to make them want things they don’t necessarily need, and try to put things into realistic perspective.”
Kuehnle also recommends asking children thought-provoking questions like, “Do you think she was treated fairly?” or “What else could they have done besides get in a fight? What would you have done?” “It can actually be a neat opportunity to dialogue about tricky topics and to remind them that it’s okay to challenge some societal messages rather than just absorb them as it can have a detrimental effect on self-esteem,” Kuehnle says.
For a sneak peak at this year’s ads so you know what to expect, and to get a good laugh ahead of the game, check them out here.