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Kids and Technology

I have been struggling hard with my youngest child who is 11. I have battled his incredible obsession with either a computer or a video game. I labored through it when he was obsessed with Club Penguin and then it was Minecraft. Now it’s Roblox and it’s taking over his life and our family.

In the past we’ve had to take the computer away from him because it becomes consuming. He doesn’t even want to eat because it will take him away from his device.

Sadly we went through this with Minecraft, and that was a few years ago! Now with his obsession with this new game, we are finding ourselves in the same situation again.

Many of you will say, why don’t you just take the computer away from him? My reply will be, please share this with my husband ! If your spouse doesn’t feel it’s a problem, he or she will not support you in the way needed. My husband is amazing, but his reality is different since he travels consistently and is at the office all day. He doesn’t get the full scope of the crazy.

Slowly, he has been realizing that we have a problem. Our son does not have any self-control once the grip of these games grab hold of him. If I give him a time limit, he never complies because he is too consumed with his addiction. His behavior turns into him yelling and screaming, running away from us and losing all self-control. I actually caught myself saying to him “I am divorcing you as your mom”. I’m not recommending you say this to your child but, man he sure can bring me to my knees. I’m desperate to get him to understand how his behavior is affecting not only me but our whole family.

As wonderful as technology is, it has been a major cause for turmoil in our lives I’m seeing. I’m aware that we all now live in a tech world and I am doing my best to find balance in it, so far unsuccessfully. As an initial remedy, I’m trying to encourage going back to our grassroots of playing outside, board games, communication, silence, even being bored! I am desperate for balance and when that balance shifts, finding a graceful way back.

I am far from perfect at this parenting thing. (hello, divorcing you as your mom ?!) I’m still learning. Ironically, my littlest tornado is child number four, so you’d think I’d have it figured out by now. The lesson is that every one is vastly different, and they each bring out different aspects of me. On good days, it’s my ability to be patient and compassionate, and on more difficult days it’s my ability to react from emotion and overwhelm. It’s full spectrum and today I am in the middle. I will say that the opportunities for learning that he provides are beyond abundant.

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