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Three Kids Get Themselves Bitten by Black Widow So They Could Become Real-Life Spider-Men

Three young boys in Bolivia wound up in the hospital after coercing a black widow spider to bite them, to see if they transformed into superheroes, just like Spider-Man.

Marvel’s Spider-Man is one of the most beloved fictional super-heroes, with many kids spending hours on end imitating his web shooting moves. There is nothing wrong with that, as long as children understand that Spidey and his super-powers are not real, and that getting bit by a spider, even a radioactive one, doesn’t turn you into a superhero. Unfortunately, as evidenced by this story, kids sometimes have a hard time telling fantasy apart from reality.

Photo: Pixabay 

According to Bolivian newspaper El Deber, three brothers from Potosi, aged 8, 10 and 12, recently wound up in the hospital after being bitten by a black widow spider. That doesn’t sound particularly peculiar, after all kids get bitten by spiders all the time, but these three brothers actually coerced the spider into biting them by putting it on their skin and prodding it with a stick.

You see, the three were huge fans of Spider-Man, and earlier this month, as they were out grazing the family goats on the outskirts of Chayanta, a town in Bolivia’s Potosi region, they noticed a black widow. Instead of staying as far away as possible from the dangerous arachnid, the three brothers recalled how Peter Parker became Spider-Man and decided to try it out for themselves.

The older brother went first, making the spider bite him by prodding it with a stick, and then he helped the middle and youngest brother get their own shots at becoming real-life Spider-Men. It took about 10 minutes for the symptoms to show, and when the boy’s parents returned from gathering wood and found them crying in pain, they took them to the local health center.

Photo: greyloch/Wikimedia Commons

Unfortunately, the medicine received by the brothers at the Chayanta health center didn’t help much so they were transferred to a hospital in the small town of Llallagua, where their condition continued to worsen. The next day, they were taken to the Children’s Hospital in La Paz, with muscular pain, sweating, fever and tremors. It was only after a serum against black widow spiders was applied that the kids started feeling better. They were discharged on May 20.

“I am only sharing this story because it should act as a warning for parents to be careful. To children everything can seem real.¬†Films can be real, dreams can be real and they are the illusions of our life,” said Virgilio Prieto , head of Epidemiology at the Bolivian Ministry of Health.