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Joined: 04 Mar 2007
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2007 2:28 am    Post subject: VIDEO GAMES Reply with quote

Good Evening,

I am a Mother of 2 boys: Age 17 and 3.5

Our 17 year old has always been given the freedom of playing video games as early as age 5. When I met my husband I was a single Mom, never married. 3 years later we married. Father and Son relationship was created.

Right from the start my husband whom I was only dating at the time brought over video games for my Son to play and from there sprung a great passion for the game.

Around 6th grade my Sons grades began to fall. I was told he had mild ADD. Not sure I agreed with that. Boys that are active are often mis-diagnosed in my belief. Partially due to large numbers of students to every one teacher.


As consequences we took away video game privleges as that is just what they are.....a privlege. It worked, grades would rise, we'd return the VG and the grades would fall again. I've tried this in many different forms over the past 6 years.

Here we are up to his senior year and still going through it but with more long term consequences: Failing grades, no video games for the entire remainder of semester.

BUT for the first time I have attempted to monitor what he was bringing into my home (that's right, I never told him what he could or could not play after he turned 13 or 14).

That was a BIG mistake on my part. I knew, atleast I always felt this urging by the Lord to monitor his choice of games, but I didn't feel that was a battle I wanted to fight. Wish I would've fought harder.

Last night my Son left our home in his car in terrible winter weather, picked up a friend (whom I approve of) and they both went to another boys home to play video games ALL night. I didn't know he was gone!

At 3 AM something just told me to get up (God). I sat down in my living room, looked out my large picture window only to see that his car was missing from the bottom of my driveway. I initialy thought the car was stolen as I would have never assumed the worse because my Son has always been so well mannered and behaved with the exception of his grades (which are still awful).

I called 911, woke my Hub, called his friends, searched every driveway in my neighborhood. FInally got a hold of his best friends Mom after I drove to her house. Only to find that her Son was sapposed to be with mine! (remember I didn't know that my son left our home to p/u someone after we went to bed).

The two of them were found about 6:30 AM sleeping at this friends house. A father in the living room who seemed more annoyed by my presence at his home to retrieve my child rather than helpful. He never even said hello. His daughter answered the door and I asked to come in. I walked right through that house, marched upstairs, told my son and his friend to get out of the house and drove the friend (who was sapposedly staying at my house, yeah right!) home.

After the arrival back to my Sons' friends' house there us two Moms were in her kitchen yappin with our boys about their actions.

What bothered me the most (other than my fear for my sons life from him missing in the middle of the night) was the length he would go to play video games, he would sneak out in severe weather and not plan to return home. He said he was going to head straight into work from this kids house. He didn't even have intentions to come home before we woke up!

i'm no longer angry, I'm sad. Both for poor decision making on his part and poor parenting on mine.

Beware: there are games out there that capture the minds of our young and the desire they have for more grows quicker than weeds in a garden gone rampant. As they get older they progress to more strategic games. Games of the mind in my opinion. Guns, violence, excplicit language, etc.

He's angry with me tonight. I cannot sleep as my heart aches so heavily for the choice I made: I am to approve EVERY game that enters my home. If his friends walk in with a game....its MINE! That means if my Son doesn't want me to take the game from them then he must inform them of our house rules. No exceptions, ever. Any game he wants to purchase must first be approved by me BEFORE its purchased and I'm given time to research the game before he can have the okay to purchase.

Now Dad is in the plan but due to mixed communication in the past there is one gatekeeper to decrease the risk of playing one parent against the other. We've gone down that road too many times to know better by now. This also keeps our frustrations as parents at bay with one another and avoids all the "he said/she said".

May each Mom who struggles with this, whether extreme or not know that she is not alone
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Joined: 05 Apr 2007
Posts: 4
Location: KANSAS

PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2007 12:55 am    Post subject: VIDEO GAMES Reply with quote

I have struggled with the video games as well. My 10 year old has been playing them since he was about 5, and when I met my husband it was an instant source of "male bonding" for him and my son. The last two years I have been very lax about the types of games he has. Some that I had heard of and knew were bad I banned. Others, I just didn't think it was bad enough (was I wrong!) or didn't do the research (should have!).
My son was diagnosed with ADHD about a year ago. He gets in trouble constantly at school, so I punished him by taking games away. We set a rigid schedule, limited video game time to 1 hour per weekemd day, none on school days. I was constantly fighting with him about playing more than the time allowed or when he wasn't supposed to. Then one day I told him the next time the games and system were gone the next time I had to tell him to turn it off. Well, of course that day soon came. I followed through. I made him pack up all of the games and systems himself and carry them to my car. I bet we had 200 games and 3 systems. My husband donated the stuff to a local charity. It has been so peaceful in our home since. It was one of the best decisions I have made as a parent I think. Video games are a waste of time, money and energy.
I have vowed that my 3 and 4 year old boys will never own a gaming system . They may not like it as they get older, but I know that it is the best thing for them.
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Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 37
Location: NJ

PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you both for sharing your stories. My son is going to be seven in a month and I already notice a change in him when he plays video games. I have already started using it as a punishment, that seems to be the only thing that works. My problem is my husband. He plays them right along with my kids. I actually sent him your posts in the hope that maybe he'll see I'm not the only one that thinks it's the games that effect his behavior. I would love to be able to get rid of the games, but I think my husband would have a heart attack. I hope he can see the importance of this. Thank you again and good luck to you as well.
Jessica Saldan
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Joined: 01 May 2007
Posts: 2
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I, too, noticed a change in my oldest son's (10 yo) attitude whenever he was allowed to go on playing jags (3-4 hours a day over weekends or vacations). He would become rude to the family, mean to his brother (5yo) and act like we never had a rule or chore in the house.

Once we (my husband used to make an idle threat that the PS2 would get pulled if things didn't change, I forced him to follow through on the threat) pulled the plug, my son became the sweetest child you could ever meet. He began making an effort to do his chores without being told 20 times and started to share and play with his brother. We took it away for 2 months before he could even think of getting it back, no questions or exceptions.

From this we learned 3 things: 1) Allow them to play video games, but enforce time limits and what they are playing (btw, I never allow anything rated over an E in the house anyway) 2) keep it a place where they cannot sneak off to play and need to ask permission 3) keep it as leverage for bad behavior, grades, attitude, whatever.

I know your son is older and is at an age where he will try to do what he wants when he wants, but maybe if you reason with him, you can suceed in getting his grades up and pulling him out of this pattern.
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Joined: 09 May 2007
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 2:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to say I LOVE video games. I have three boys and I think I like them more then they do. I play them at night, sometimes staying up to three. Its pretty addictive. I actually got myself a pink ds lite a couple months ago and I love the thing, I went on to get a psp as well. I guess if you can't beat em' join em'! Very Happy

Carrie mom of three boys
Vince 11
Tyler 4
Devyn 2
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