I vehemently dislike video games. Maybe it’s because I don’t have the hand-eye coordination that my son has, or maybe because I can’t hardly play, let alone succeed, at any of the complex games he enjoys. So, it’s not surprising that I cursed the day my husband brought a gaming system into our home.
My son Jansen used to be an avid reader, a worthy competitor at board games and creator of the most intricate geometric drawings. But now, his every waking moment is focused on gaming. He seldom engages face to face with his friends, and his goals are all about advancing to the next level. Tearing him away from the living room is like pulling a band aid off a scab. One would think I was torturing him if they heard his moaning and groaning.
My husband and oldest son have reassured me that gaming enhances an individual’s fine motor skills, especially for pilots. But the last I checked, Jansen wasn’t interested in pursuing that career choice. While I know it’s common place amongst school age boys to be completely engrossed in gaming, I didn’t want that to be the only thing in my son’s life. After talking with other moms, I knew I had to start setting some limits.
Jansen now has one hour a day for gaming and is required to read 30 minutes daily. With extra time on his hands, he now participates in youth group, hangs out with friends at the park and even volunteers to go food shopping with me. These days, it is nice seeing my son interacting more with live individuals instead of interactive games.