I concur with Stacey Nelson’s words! My son is 8 and has been drawing battles the last couple years too, and I’ve worried about it. My husband, who does not have ADHD/ODD, has told me multiple times: “I used to draw the same stuff when I was his age.” I have three sons whom all have multiple epic battles with their friends in the yard fighting bad guys. I think it’s innate for boys to want to be warriors and protectors, and it comes out in their play and art. There are stories of various heroes around the world throughout history for this very reason, and it’s why superheroes are so popular today. In the past it was characters like Hercules and Cuchulain, today it’s Batman and Ninja Turtles and Superman and Power Rangers. It’s all the same.
I think that girls like to play pretend heroines as well, but not nearly so often. Which is why as moms, even when we know that this is something boys have done for literally eons, we can still be prone to worrying about it: it’s so different than what most of us played! It’s good to be reminded when it’s truly something to worry about, and that, usually, everything is OK.
I did not, however, ever think of Ms. Nelson’s suggestion to ask “What next?” or “What else?” I’m ashamed I didn’t think of it! Or if I did, it was seldom! Can I blame it on taking care of said three boys? 😉 Anyway, I LOVE that suggestion, and I’m going to use it! Thank you!