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YouTuber, My 9-year-old son wants to be a YouTuber or a gamer

YouTuber, My 9-year-old son wants to be a YouTuber or a gamer

My 9-year-old son wants to be a YouTuber or a gamer that puts his skills on display on YouTube or something like that when he is older. This seems to be the norm these days. I have witnessed it among my middle school students as well. I don’t really understand it all, and I am trying to figure out how to respond when this is brought up by my own children or anyone else’s.

A doctor, a lawyer, a teacher, a software developer, even an artist. These I know how to respond to and even which direction to point them in. “Well, you’ll need to go to college and be pretty good at science.” Or “Be sure to read about or find other people who have done the same and maybe ask to job shadow them.”

See? Easy. But YouTuber? I don’t even fully understand what that means.

I have caught myself dismissing my son’s future plans when he begins rattling on and on about a YouTube channel. I either ignore him completely or do the I’m-not-really-listening-response given by parents for hundreds of years, “Uh huh.”

To me, wanting to be a YouTuber or a gamer is along the same lines as wanting to be a pro-sports player or a celebrity. There is a very slim chance it will happen, and being a more practical person myself, I would prefer he focus on a backup plan. But do I really want to be the parent that crushes her child’s hopes and dreams? Absolutely not.

Truthfully, I still view this whole YouTube thing as a fad that will eventually fizzle out. You know, like parachute pants in the 80s.

But this is what I have come to realize. YouTube is a thing, an honest to goodness thing, that isn’t going away and that seems to offer actual careers.

When discussing other career options, I feel pretty confident and secure in my knowledge of what it takes or what subjects may be necessary to focus on. But this is not about me and my comfort level.

Instead of dismissing the notion altogether I can ask questions.

Why do you want to be a YouTuber? What about it is appealing to you? What makes you enjoy watching other people’s channels? What do you think you need to be a successful YouTuber? Or simply, what are you watching today?

Instead of suggesting other career options I can offer some advice.

Make sure you are posting videos regularly. Try recording different things that interest you and find your niche. Keep in mind what makes you want to watch certain channels and incorporate it into your own videos. Have some of your friends help you out.

Instead of not listening when he’s excited about something related to YouTube, I can pay attention and even do my own research.

There’s a lot of information out there about YouTube that I am completely ignorant about. My child knows much more than I do, so I need to pay attention and learn something from him. And if there is something I am not sure about, well, a quick Google search will usually take care of that.

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