Is your kid a video game addict?

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I adore Penn and Teller's TOTALLY NSFW episode that they did on their show, "BS," about this exact subject. They put a semi-automatic in the hands of a 9-year-old gamer to test the theory that kids who play first-person shooter games will become homicidal maniacs and you know what happened? The kid cried. Any dillweed who asserts shooting games will turn kids into gun-crazed murderers has never EVER shot a firearm and needs to seriously stop before I lost all patience and slap them. See - THAT'S what makes people violent: stupidity. But the focus isn't on such games and I'm totally digressing. 

For the record, I won't allow my kids to play games like Grand Theft Auto because I don't like to glorify stealing cars. I also don't get the "fun" in that, either. Really? AUTO THEFT? I get shooting games where kids role play with soldiers and you're protecting America and innocent people, blahblahblahblah but I've already told Liam that if he brings any pimpin' and ho'ing or auto theft game into my home I will record myself destroying it on camera and then share it with the Internet. If there isn't a redeemable quality about the game then I'm not having it. 

Please to enjoy this episode and relatedly, I like to think that Rob put in the metal music bed just for me. 

What do you think of kids and video games? I'm going to briefly open comments (until the evening) to get your thoughts. No butthats, please and thanks. 


My son is 15 - and is definitely WAY too into video games. But he's nowhere near violent, despite the fact that he loves guns as much as he does video games. Now that he's older, I do let him play games like GTA, but only after he explained to me why he thought he should be able to play it, and actually made sense.
He'd no more steal a car than he would commit murder - and that's because of what he's been taught at home, NOT what he's learned from video games. It's easy to blame media... much harder to take personal responsibility for what you teach your child.
I'm just glad to see that you opened comments, even if it was only temporarily :)

We let our kids, 8, 6, and 4, play videos games. When we get a new one, it's a given that nothing else will get done until the 8yr old has run through the whole game at least once. Even my daughter, the 6 yr old, gets into gaming. Of course, we are careful about the type of game they play. The LEGO series are great. We only have a Wii, so things like Wii Music and Endless Ocean are on our shelf too. We got Legend of Zelda, and let our then 7 yr old play it with us in the room while his siblings were in bed. He played through the first level, then declared it to be "too scary" and quit. So I trust my kids to know when something is a little too much for them. But we haven't really gotten any of the 1st person shooter games yet.

There is a book - Don't Bother Me Mom, I'm Learning. Title sounds iffy, but the book is very excellent. Talks about how today's video games are great learning tools. My 4yr old is learning fine motor skills learning to control the wii. Decision-making skills, games like Zoo Tycoon, Rollercoaster tycoon, etc all teach business management and finances. There is sooo much more, like the doctor who will only hire surgeons who are also gamers because they have a proven track record of making less mistakes during surgery. It's a good book, I highly recommend it.

This was a great video commentary of the subject and great post.

I think the bigger issue is the 'addiction' part of it... just like almost anything, you can become addicted to video games.

Definition found online for Addiction: 'being abnormally tolerant to and dependent on something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming'

I believe the key to this topic is moderation... making sure your kids are exposed to many different things, like playing outside, riding bikes, sports, books, electronics, music, and yes video games... There are some good skills that can be learned from playing video games.

What you don't want is your kid to be a hermit and be totally engrossed in video games... so much so they can begin to lose sight of reality.

Are kids aren't to the video game age yet, but we limit the amount of TV watching. It's good to set boundaries and sometimes TV watching doesn't get those creative juices flowing as much as craft time / playing outside.

p.s. thanks for opening up comments as well.

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