Parenthood
Dad warns others after son is admitted into critical care after trying the latest online trend
This trend may be the most dangerous yet.
Luis Gaskell
10.12.21

Something about viral “challenges” seems to be very attractive to children and teens these days.

In the past few years, there have been more than a few “challenges” that drew in a massive following.

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We watched people douse themselves in icy water for the Ice bucket challenge, recoiled in disbelief at the Tide Pod challenge, and watched folks jump out of a moving car to dance in the “In my feelings” challenge.

This newest challenge may be the most dangerous one of all.

Enter the blackout challenge.

In case the name didn’t give you a hint, this ridiculous “challenge” encourages viewers to intentionally choking themselves until they fall unconscious. In order to achieve their goal, some people are even using belts and ropes. Not good.

This should go without saying, but please don’t try this.

The viral challenge has already made headlines, much to the concern of parents everywhere. In a world where the bandwagon mentality is ever-so-strong, a bandwagon that encourages you to choke yourself unconscious is certainly not ideal.

Pexels - Ron Lach
Source:
Pexels - Ron Lach

But why are young people so eager to hop on these bandwagons?

Well, we might have to blame it on the need for attention. Truth is, we all crave attention every now and then. Sometimes we can’t help it. Though the problem lies in what lengths some of us will go to get it.

Pexels - Ron Lach
Source:
Pexels - Ron Lach

Indeed, the need for validation can make people do the most ridiculous things. And it seems like the worst has already happened.

A ten-year-old boy in Georgia passed away after he attempted the challenge.

His name was Robert Craig and he lived in Floyd County.

His 12-year old sister Madison discovered what had happened.

“I walked outside, I saw his tablet and I saw him hanging from the tree.” – she told People.com

The police have investigated and have ruled out suicide.

Although Robert was bullied, he never showed signs of being suicidal or depressed. The police believe Robert had been attempting the Blackout Challenge based on content found on the boy’s tablet.

Twitter video screenshot - CBS 46
Source:
Twitter video screenshot - CBS 46

He hasn’t been the only child to lose his life to this trend.

There have been at least four deaths attributed to this challenge.

One boy from Oklahoma lost his life after attempting the challenge with a shoelace around his neck. Twelve-year-old Joshua Haileyesus and an unnamed ten-year-old girl from Italy have also reportedly passed away after trying the Blackout Challenge.

This challenge isn’t necessarily a new trend. It’s been around for a long time, and it was just as lethal then as it is now. But TikTok’s form of easy video-sharing has made it easy for the challenge to spread online.

TikTok has already commented on the widespread problem. They state that they are taking measures to prevent more deaths. The company specifically said that it terminates and takes down hashtags “to discourage people from participating in or sharing potentially dangerous content”.

Here’s hoping it works.

Pexels - August De Richelieu
Source:
Pexels - August De Richelieu

It pays to take notice of what your kids watch in their spare time.

Trends and bandwagons tend to attract kids – especially those aged 10 to 15.

As parents, it’s important to teach our children basic common sense and why it’s okay not to follow the crowd.

Pexels - Pixabay
Source:
Pexels - Pixabay

Watch the heartbreaking story unfold in the video below!

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

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By Luis Gaskell
hi@sbly.com
Luis Gaskell is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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