The Choking Game – Warning to Parents

The Choking Game – Warning to Parents

Were you aware of this apparent fad threatening our kids?  I wasn’t.  I was aware I needed to talk to my kids about saying no to peer pressure on smoking cigarettes “because they can kill you” – but the Choking Game takes threat of death to a whole new level.  Our school district recently sent out a newletter that included this warning:

An Important Warning to Parents

Even if you’ve never heard of it, chances are your child has. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the “Choking Game” is a dangerous activity that kids play to obtain a brief high.

The object of this risky activity is to stop blood flow to the brain until the player passes out. Young people have different names for this activity such as the pass-out game, fainting game, blacking out/blackout game, and other variations. The dangers involved are great and include the risk of seizure, memory loss, broken bones, concussions, brain damage and death.

Warning signs for parents include:

  • Unexplained marks on a child’s throat
  • Severe headaches
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Changes in personality, such as aggression or agitation
  • Items such as belts, leashes or ropes tied in strange knots and found in unusual locations

There are many things that I’ve thought about warning my kids against.  However, it never occurred to me that I would need to tell them that they shouldn’t allow someone to choke them until they passed out.  Seriously?  Come ON kids… Think!

I know that is easier typed out in my frustration than actually *heard* by my kids, so I did actually ask my oldest two if they had heard of it.  Neither one had, but our oldest is 9 and this seems to be something more prevalent in 11- 16 year olds.  It is also apparently more likely boys that are playing than girls.  I don’t know if this is a “prove your manhood” type thing or is part of a sexual experiment with erotic asphyxiation.  What I do know is that 82 mothers have lost their children because their kids took it too far and died.  That is 82 kids too many.

Please talk to your kids about this *game*.  Make sure they aren’t participating and also make sure they have a safe person to tell if they know others doing this.  Their lives are truly at stake.

You can read more at the following sites:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dangerous Behaviors Foundation

Have you heard of this?  Is this something your school districts are talking about?

*photo courtesy of Lyle Troxell

12 Responses to The Choking Game – Warning to Parents

  1. I sat down with my 17 year old daugter and watched a documentary about the Choking Game. Its horrible. I think communication is key. Thanks for putting the word out there.

    • It is crazy to even think about it. Do you remember where you got the documentary? Maybe I could add the link to the post. I agree that communication is key to almost all of these things – but sometimes I just don’t even know what it is I’m supposed to be communicating about. That’s one of the great things about blogging and twitter is keeping up on safety and other trends for my kids.

      Thank you Pam!

  2. This is horrible! I just had to ask though so I went downstairs to talk to my 15 year old son and his 16 year old friend.
    They hadn’t heard of this. I’ve found that often times the children who go to church regularly (like the one’s downstairs!) do not hear about or get involved with these things.

    Both boys were appalled that this was happening. I told them just to watch for this on the bus as there are younger kids. They should say something to an adult before someone gets hurt — or if a child looks like they are dangered to go ahead and step in.

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