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Every parent should know about this game. Many have experienced it as kids.

Nurse and mom Jinny Schmidt wants parents to be aware of a game that’s circulating amongst tweens right now, because it’s not a game at all.

In a PSA posted to her TikTok, Schmidt shared that her daughter informed her that boys in her class were beginning to play what she called “The Firetruck Game.”

As Schmidt begins to describe what the “game” entails, it’s easy to see why she’s concerned. All parents should be.


Here’s how the game works: a boy puts his hand on a girl’s lower thigh. And he tells her “my hand is a firetruck” as he slowly moves it up her leg. When the girl gets uncomfortable, she is supposed to say “red light.” Except for when the girl says “red light,” the boy responds with “sorry, firetrucks don’t stop for red lights.” And so they run their hand all the way up the girl’s leg, Schmidt explains, and sometimes they “touch the girl’s crotch.” Yikes.

Many viewers noted growing up with the Firetruck Game, or a version called “The Nervous Game,” or “Red Light Green Light.” Suddenly The “Squid Game” version of “Red Light Green Light” doesn’t seem so bad.

No matter what it’s called, though, it’s touching without consent, and is inappropriate on so many levels, not least of which being that it’s an excuse for sexual assault. Hence Schmidt’s alarm.

“I know that kids will be kids and kids will do some stupid shit, But we’ve got to do better teaching our boys to keep their hands off of other people and teaching our girls that it’s okay to have boundaries,” she says, before asking parents to “be aware” if they hear their kids talking about it.
@the.funny.nurse Y’all gonna see me on the 6 O’clock news. #jrhigh #kids #tween #preteen #parents #moms #momsoftiktok #dads #dadsoftiktok #teacher #teachersoftiktok #publicschool #school #firetruck #firetruckgame #firetruckgameawareness #girls #boys #game ♬ original sound - Jin-Jin

And she is, of course, absolutely right. Folks who watched her video wholeheartedly agreed that the behavior should not be tolerated, and many shared some pretty intense, although warranted, reactions to it.

“We’d be playing a game called Ambulance next,” one person wrote.

“Press charges,” said another.

“We have a game also. It’s called ‘oops I broke your finger,’” a third added.

But many also chimed in to say that they would be talking to their kids immediately about it, which is probably the best route overall. That way kids can protect themselves, and others around them.

Middle school years in general are pretty rough. They can be just as difficult to navigate for parents as they can be for the kids going through it. It’s painful to watch your still baby-faced child go through many of the same awful pains that you did, many of which are unavoidable. But some things, like terrible and abusive games, can be avoided. So make sure to have those important conversations when you can.

A PSA by the It's On Us campaign demonstrates just how absurd it is to blame survivors of sexual assault for their violators’ actions.

In the video, an admiring hotel guest wanders by a wedding cake — “It looks so delicious," she observes — before taking a huge handful of cake without asking the baker for permission. When the baker reacts, aghast, she blames him for making such a great looking cake.

"You were the one that made it so tempting," she tells him. "Tahitian vanilla icing and pretty little flowers? It's like you were begging me to taste it."


If that language sounds familiar, that's because it's something we hear all too often when talking about survivors of sexual assault. How was she dressed? Did she consume alcohol? Why wasn't she aware of her surroundings? Questions like these excuse violators and put blame on victims, adding to the stigma that can discourage survivors from speaking up.

It's On Us launched the PSA on the 23rd anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act. Written by then-senator Joe Biden, VAWA established a national hotline for victims to call, as well as greatly expanded the number of services and shelters available to survivors nationwide.

While the PSA is meant to be tongue-in-cheek, its message is a serious one. Victim-blaming prevents many victims of sexual assault from speaking out.

We have to do better.

In September, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced her department was rescinding Obama-era guidelines on sexual assault, giving more leniency to accused violators. Advocates against sexual assault argue the move shows the administration isn't prioritizing campus rape and sexual assault.

"[This] announcement is a threat to the progress we’ve made and to the rights of every student on campuses across the country," It's On Us said in a statement. "It’s On Us campaign remains committed to fight for the full enforcement of Title IX and for the rights and protections of every student and every survivor."

To get involved, visit the It's On Us website. If you need help, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-4673.

"I'm sorry."

"I wish I could have been different. I won't disappoint you anymore."

"I wish I could've been better..."


"I love you."

If those were the very last texts you read from a family member or friend — a loved one who didn't feel as though they could truly be themselves — how would that make you feel?

That's one question posed in a new PSA from nonprofit Mythic Bridge, a group that uses filmmaking to empower at-risk youth. The organization's "Change the Script" campaign aims to shed light on the issue of LGBTQ youth suicide — a silent crisis that's taking far too many young lives, even amid the growing acceptance of queer people and relationships.

In the powerful new video, we see the moment a desperate young man decides to jump off a rooftop (before learning that, fortunately, it wasn't the end to his story):

In the PSA, Mythic Bridge highlights a vital stat anyone concerned with youth suicide needs to understand:

Young LGBTQ people are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their straight, cisgender peers, with young transgender people being particularly vulnerable.

That's why the nonprofit is raising funds on Crowdrise to help LGBTQ youth express themselves through creative storytelling in an accepting, loving environment — so they can help change the script when it comes to things like suicide, bullying, and depression.

Photo via Mythic Bridge, used with permission.

“Everyone has their version of how scary coming out was," Mythic Bridge co-founder Donald Klein said in a statement. "Maybe they didn’t have that safe space to lean on."

"I hope they see the Change the Script campaign and learn that Mythic Bridge is an open door. They should understand that we’re here, and we make no judgment.”

To learn more about the Change the Script campaign, visit its page on Crowdrise.