There are so many decisions that you have to make when you are a parent. They start the minute you get pregnant and my Mom tells me that they will never end.
When the boys were little, the decisions that were made such as which foods to feed them, which diapers to use, what their bedtimes were going to be, etc... were relatively easy. We made the decisions and enforced them.
The older the boys get the more our decisions require and deserve discussion and explanations along with the enforcement. We want our boys to know the foundations behind the decisions we are making. We are trying to teach them how to make their own decisions. The older they get the more they are on their own to make decisions. We want them to have what they need to make decisions. We don't want them to make a decision because "Mom or Dad doesn't want me to." We want them to be able to say no or yes and know why they say it.
Recently Todd came to me about two different video games. Both had previously been on the "off limits" list. He asked if we could revisit the games. We did. After some research and discussions, one is now off the list and one will stay on the list for a long time.
Todd knows that our "lists" are much different than a lot of his friends. There are days when he gets frustrated that he is the "only" kid in his class that can't play "M" rated video games, but he is only 10 years old and I believe I am still responsible for what is being streamed into his mind. Instead of having him notice the lack, we try to show him and provide the vast amount of good options out there in books, music and games.
My friends who have kids older than Todd tell me that all these decisions don't get any easier.
That is O.K. I don't need the media rating system. I've got my Father God for Parental Guidance!