Dealing With Teen Gaming Addiction

 Pages 1 2 NEXT
 

Dealing With Teen Gaming Addiction

How do you handle a teenager who places videogames ahead of everything else?

Read Full Article

So, te solution to gaming addiction is to lock them in a closet for upwards of 2 weeks?

I don't understand, how would you find a way to copletley block a persons video game availability without tramatizing them?

My parents gave me an ultimatum that by 18 I was going to do one of three things get a job and pay rent(not much just enough to show it sucks), go to college or move out. It sucked, but helped me as a person. now that I live on my own I know the full suckfest that is rent and bills, but I sill find time to play games pretty frequently while holding down a job and a relationship and friends. It just goes to show you really that when you are in your teens you decide your future in most cases. I did my best so I could get a good job so that I had more money and free time to do what I originally couldnt and that would be play games.

You force him, if you raised him right you won't have that problem to begin with.

JochemDude:
You force him, if you raised him right you won't have that problem to begin with.

Not necessarily, though you are mostly right.

Call it a 9/10 thing if you will.

The problem is the kid thinks games are more important. The funds for internet could just "dissapear" for a bit...if you know what I mean...

Dad does a similar thing with my little brother. He's constantly playing CSS, so whenever they leave him home to study, Dad takes the power cables for the network with him.

I think he learn't from the time where he decided to take everyone's mouse and discovered the hard way that I've got about three extras floating around that still work.

DaHero:

JochemDude:
You force him, if you raised him right you won't have that problem to begin with.

Not necessarily, though you are mostly right.

Call it a 9/10 thing if you will.

The problem is the kid thinks games are more important. The funds for internet could just "dissapear" for a bit...if you know what I mean...

Indeed. Though it could be inconvenient for the parents. But if they just stop paying for it for a bit(well, canceling it would of course be the preferred action), it'll be interesting to see what happens.

Say you're having money troubles.

EDIT: Oh yeah, glad to see you're still writing articles Dr. Mark. Love reading these things.

Not bad advice. For the kid involved, I'd personally recommend trying therapy first then going for the extreme if that fails to show any results or progress on the part of the kid twice or so. The description of the kid isn't personal or detailed enough to give us any lead on which would work best.

I have an additional recommendation for the parents: check, kindly and compassionately, to see if the kid is in an online, possibly long distance, relationship. These are VERY common to people addicted to the internet, and MUCH more common than many people would like to admit, because it is very much something new to the youths of today. Often a person's "addiction to the Internet" is in fact their need to see their lover online - after all, nothing is more addictive than other people.

If it turns out to be the case that there is a relationship of this kind going on, the parents would benefit from attempting to understand that the social connection online and especially in MMOs can very naturally lead to love like attachments. That could help them immensely in working a new schedule into the kid's life to improve his grades, especially if the relationship is deemed acceptable and adjusted with the advice of the parents. This is a recommendation from personal experience.

I'd love to hear Dr Mark's thoughts on this possibility as well, should he be reading this.

the spud:
So, te solution to gaming addiction is to lock them in a closet for upwards of 2 weeks?

I don't understand, how would you find a way to copletley block a persons video game availability without tramatizing them?

Well, "traumatising" is part of the process of breaking an addiction.

When people get into an addiction, it becomes "homely" to them. What really ever gets someone uncomfortable in a place of safety, a place which keeps their survival instinct relaxed and/or well practised like gaming does? You give them a shock. There isn't another way to do it.

The only way to create discontent with a pleasant equilibrium is to force a new equilibrium that isn't pleasant (at least at first), then, allowing the person to experience what they have been missing out on in their blessed reverie.

People in addictions can't be reasoned with, can't be bought, can't be charmed, and certainly can't be forced within the old equilibrium. It takes a revolution of the personal life to conquer addictions because they are intrinsic problems that usually sneak up on us or at least grow slowly over a long period, making us put them off until they (in such cases) become very serious problems.

Isn't it true that anything can be addictive? If so, video games aren't any different.

I'm glad to see Dr Mark back. His articles have been absent for too long.

I've actually gone through something like this. During primary school (elementary school for Americans) i was exceptionally bright and eager to learn with the ability to demonstrate my knowledge in class. That was before i was introduced to video games. Then came secondary (high) school. My grades and general enthusiasm dropped sharply. I was playing games more and more, and staying up later and later to do so. I was irritable and deeply unhappy every second i wasn't at home playing. All my friends and everyone in the "real" world felt so fake compares to the people i'd met online. (By that, i mean the thought that everyone in the real world only feigns interest in you when they actually don't give a damn, which made me constantly suspicious and apprehensive of everyone). I passed secondary school, but instead of being a AAA student across the board i ended up with a bunch of C grades and a few B and A grades. Things culminated during university, where i just couldn't deal with it and ended up having a bit of a breakdown, causing me to miss lectures and avoid going completely. I couldn't hack reality. I just wanted to jump into my virtual worlds. Worlds where i have control and escape.

Fast forward one year; i since learned that i have social phobia and an anxiety disorder, which may have been the primary cause of my retreat into games. I've been through a year of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and i'm now studying at home with the Open University and about to start my second year and my life is getting back on track. From my own personal experience i would ask the parents to try and see if games are a form of escape for George like they were for me - escape from my phobia, escape from responsibility, escape from a feeling of a total lack of agency over my life. There is sometimes a reason we form addictions as severe as this. Just take it from one addict who nearly lost his life to his fantasies.

Lastly, i would ask the parents to try to be understanding when dealing with George. Don't threaten him, don't get angry at him. Talk to him calmly. Be understanding. Let him know that you want to help and assertively inform him that if he neglects the help give to him, he'll be throwing his life away, but it'll be his choice in doing so. My own parents were understanding when i had a breakdown during uni and it's their support that got me to get my act together instead of trying to run away and fearing the reaction of people around me. Don't take away his escape and create paper walls for him to break out of. Just offer him an open hand. You'd be surprised; a little empathy can move people out of the deepest and darkest of places.

Irridium:

DaHero:

JochemDude:
You force him, if you raised him right you won't have that problem to begin with.

Not necessarily, though you are mostly right.

Call it a 9/10 thing if you will.

The problem is the kid thinks games are more important. The funds for internet could just "dissapear" for a bit...if you know what I mean...

Indeed. Though it could be inconvenient for the parents. But if they just stop paying for it for a bit(well, canceling it would of course be the preferred action), it'll be interesting to see what happens.

Say you're having money troubles.

Best answer possible this time of year, can't argue with it.

I can really sympathize with the parents, and even empathize a bit, too. My brother became "addicted" to gaming (DoTA). Fucked up in his college; his grades tanked, financial aid dried up, and my parents refused to pay for his college. The result? He got his act together (mostly) and will now be graduating a couple of years later than most of his friends.

Lesson learnt.

Either go through him raging about his games being taken away or go through him failing highschool. From what I can gather the middle-grounds have already been tried.

Irridium:

Indeed. Though it could be inconvenient for the parents. But if they just stop paying for it for a bit(well, canceling it would of course be the preferred action), it'll be interesting to see what happens.

Say you're having money troubles.

EDIT: Oh yeah, glad to see you're still writing articles Dr. Mark. Love reading these things.

I got a much better solution, switch to dial-up. Now that right there would really screw with the kid and it doesnt prevent you as a parent from going on the internet. That and they can always sell his xbox to help pay for the cost.

Giest4life:
my parents refused to pay for his college. The result? He got his act together (mostly) and will now be graduating a couple of years later than most of his friends.

Lesson learnt.

Saw someone NOT do that. They supported the kid all the way through and are still supporting his sorry unemployed multi-addiction ass now.

Irridium:

DaHero:

JochemDude:
You force him, if you raised him right you won't have that problem to begin with.

Not necessarily, though you are mostly right.

Call it a 9/10 thing if you will.

The problem is the kid thinks games are more important. The funds for internet could just "dissapear" for a bit...if you know what I mean...

Indeed. Though it could be inconvenient for the parents. But if they just stop paying for it for a bit(well, canceling it would of course be the preferred action), it'll be interesting to see what happens.

Say you're having money troubles.

EDIT: Oh yeah, glad to see you're still writing articles Dr. Mark. Love reading these things.

Argh. Wouldnt have worked on me too much as I had some insight in my parents economy. Although I had the courtesy of my grandfather working at my school. And knowing when I was late on a project. So yea, I was moved over to his place. Heavy restrictions. Eased as I became more independant. I can say it worked, but it was harsh. Had to drop out of 2 clans and quit World of Warcraft entirely. I thought I got low grades because I sucked at school. My grades pretty much skyrocketed from D's to A's when I played less computer. So yea.

Essentialy. Restrictions help. But be sure once they dont need the restrictions that you remove them. If its done right it will work. If its not done right, the kid will hate you. A good one is this. Set a time-limitt on the internet. The kid cant hack himself into the router if its turned off. Adults only need to check their mail once a day. So 3-4 hours where he can sit at his computer and then CUT. Then once he can manage it himself. Remove the timer and give unrestricted access.

All of this is first-hand experience though. Could be a more skilled hacker could hack himself into an offline router and turn it on.

Mark J Kline:
Ask Dr. Mark 21: Dealing With Teen Gaming Addiction

How do you handle a teenager who places videogames ahead of everything else?

Read Full Article

The first step is, of course, finding the cause.

Maybe, as mentioned in your response, there are some undiagnosed difficulties that make school just plain awful. Learning disabilities, vision problems, social problems... the list could go on for miles. The basic idea is school is a game your child is losing, so they turn to games they can win.

It could just be "senioritis" setting in a bit early. He's mentally "done" with school, experiencing an exaggerated form of the old, "This crap is stupid and doesn't help me, I know it all" phenomenon we all experience. It could be that the impending life changes heralded by graduation (or at least being out of high school) are overwhelming, and games are where he goes when that reality freezes him up.

Here's the kicker, though. Whatever the cause, the next step isn't using that knowledge to solve the problem. You can't. Firstly, games are more fun than school, so you're not going to be able to "sell" him on choosing school over gaming (which seems to be how he has chosen to frame the choice). Secondly, he's too old for you to fix school -- he's nearly done, pass or fail. Thirdly, he's apparently too old and independent for any sufficiently powerful tactics to be enforced--anything you could try to do to force a change, he could just walk out the door and go to a friend's house, as you've said he does.

You can't solve this, and that's the hard truth. But by knowing the cause, you can figure out how best to support him in solving this. My feelings? That "support" will likely take the form of withdrawing some of that support. People don't learn the lessons they're taught. They learn the lessons they're forced to experience.

Once he's 18, you don't have to kick him out the door... but consider charging him rent. Consider having him share household expenses and responsibilities. Do it a step at a time, to avoid overwhelming him and causing him to shut down. Tie freedom to responsibility, and build his sense of agency (the idea that the things that happen to him are a result of his choices, not some outside "force").

Or, if he prefers, he can choose to try it all on his own. He might decide (unwisely) to do that. But don't phrase it as an ultimatum at first. Make it a choice, so that he'll only have himself to blame (or praise) for any consequences.

Silva:

Well, "traumatising" is part of the process of breaking an addiction.

When people get into an addiction, it becomes "homely" to them. What really ever gets someone uncomfortable in a place of safety, a place which keeps their survival instinct relaxed and/or well practised like gaming does? You give them a shock. There isn't another way to do it.

The only way to create discontent with a pleasant equilibrium is to force a new equilibrium that isn't pleasant (at least at first), then, allowing the person to experience what they have been missing out on in their blessed reverie.

People in addictions can't be reasoned with, can't be bought, can't be charmed, and certainly can't be forced within the old equilibrium. It takes a revolution of the personal life to conquer addictions because they are intrinsic problems that usually sneak up on us or at least grow slowly over a long period, making us put them off until they (in such cases) become very serious problems.

First we need to prove that gaming addictions are a genuine psychological phenomenon. The research I've seen on so called gaming addictions has been beyond dismal, often self-report studies with gamers asked questions similar to "Would you feel uncomfortable without games?".

We need to genuinely show that gaming addiction follows Griffiths' (2002) components of addiction:

Salience - The addiction becomes more dominant over other behaviours when deprived for more than 24 hours (i.e. after long cessation periods it's all they can think about and all their behaviour is geared towards sustaining the addiction)

Mood Modification - The addict behaves significantly differently when carrying out the addictive behaviour (note, this doesn't mean 'is a bit happier', this means their behaviour is significantly out of character as one might behave on a cocaine high)

Tolerance - More and more of the addictive behaviour is required as a tolerance forms for the initial dose (i.e. one would eventually do nothing but the addictive behaviour once maximum tolerance forms, like crack fiends)

Withdrawal Symptoms - Negative physical and behavioural traits formed when deprived of the addictive behaviour for sustained periods of time (e.g. shaking, vomiting, irritability; all of the withdrawal symptoms must be significantly out of character)

Conflict - The addictive behaviour causes conflicts with other peoples and behaviours, with the addictive behaviour trumping all other behaviours and interests (i.e. being willing to risk everything else in one's life to get the addictive behaviour, again think of crack fiends)

Relapse - The addictive behaviour's cessation period is inevitably interrupted by a return to the addictive behaviour which almost instantly returns to its initial intensity due to tolerance (i.e. a gamer not playing games for three years after playing 12 hours a day every day will relapse and build back up to 12 hours a day within days of starting gaming again)

In the few genuine empirical studies I've seen on the matter they either failed to find all signs of addiction in 'addicted' gamers, or found that gaming was being used a coping mechanism (as the good doctor points out) due to some other stressor. I've also seen awful, trumped up studies for which the 'scientists' should be shot where they've desperately tried to shoehorn gaming into these categories whilst completely failing to understand the severity of the categories in genuine addicts ("Oh, he wants to play games instead of doing nothing, must be an addiction!"; a genuine addict would gladly kill you to get his fix, it's not a mere case of wanting the fix, it's a willingness to behave irrationally to get the fix).

Far too many things are classified as addictions these days by people looking to cash in on the scaremongering or the juicy clinician contracts to deal with the false problem.

Since we don't have the case history of the young man in question, and since the case is reported from the extremely biased subjective viewpoint of a close relative, we can't really comment properly on the case other than to make vague guesses at the causes. My advice would be to try and get the child to open up to academia only if that's what he wants to pursue. Far too often I see parents who've decided that they want their child to be an Ivy League trendsetter and view any deviance of the child from this desire as a problem with the child; if your kid isn't interested in your goals for your kid then that likely just means that maybe you shouldn't be setting his life goals for him.

My advice to the parents would be to start an open dialogue with the child. Ask him what his interests are and why those are his interests. Ask him what things he doesn't like and why he doesn't like those things. Use this information to help (not nag, help) him to find a life path that he'd actually like to follow. Maybe he'd like to work in games design?

Dastardly:

You can't solve this, and that's the hard truth. But by knowing the cause, you can figure out how best to support him in solving this. My feelings? That "support" will likely take the form of withdrawing some of that support. People don't learn the lessons they're taught. They learn the lessons they're forced to experience.

Once he's 18, you don't have to kick him out the door... but consider charging him rent. Consider having him share household expenses and responsibilities. Do it a step at a time, to avoid overwhelming him and causing him to shut down. Tie freedom to responsibility, and build his sense of agency (the idea that the things that happen to him are a result of his choices, not some outside "force").

Again, these strategies are fine strategies of coercion, but why coerce? Just because you, the parent, think something is right for your child doesn't mean that thing is actually right for your child.

In my experience it's far better for a parent to lend support than force it. If a child isn't ready or willing to do what you think is best for him it may simply be that what you think is best for him isn't what's actually best for him.

Would you rather your child be successful or happy?

image

Tell him that reality will leave him alone if he gets 100% on everything.

One of my best friends had complete apathy for school and his future and basically played games obsessively. Surprisingly what changed him form a D student to an A student was having a kid. He finally had a reason to consider his future. In order for him to kick the addiction there may be a need to for him to find the reason to succeed, the parents can help him find this, but he isn't self motivated to change there is not much anyone can do about it until he his. Of course I'm not saying he should have a baby, just needs a reason to be self motivated.

Also I'm glad Dr. Mark is back, I thought he was gone for good.

Yeah, I admit I had a bit of a problem with gaming in high school too, but I was often able to rely on my intelligence to keep my grades up (tests and the like) even though I often missed homework assignments. I managed to get into a good college, and that acted like a bit of a wake-up call, as you either work damn hard or you fail, and I had to get work done on my own rather than having my parents nagging at me. When they say college teaches time management, it's the truth. And having classes I really cared about (game design) definitely help engage me with school too.

Interesting, I am personally glad I am not that bad. But I think if I was stupid I would be.

Oh god, Runescape. I wasted 3 years of my life on that game. In the end, I gave my password to someone and stopped playing MMO's forever.

Forget about the gaming; let him play as much as he likes once his responsibilities are taken care of. Instead, make him do his homework and studies. Periodically verify that it's being worked on, and always verify that it's gotten done. Check with his teachers, as well. And keep on it.

Yeah, guess what, that's a pretty big time commitment on the parents' part. So is a lot of parenting. The teenage years were never billed as the easy time. You want some kind of fire-and-forget miracle cure, but that's not how discipline works (neither self-discipline nor discipline of others), and it's a lack of discipline, not a gaming habit, that's ultimately the problem, here. Get on his ass and stay on his ass.

it was a fine article untill he started to talk about drugs. giving drugs to a kid that wants to play games so he wont play them? i would like to see any doctor that does it in jail NOW.
the first option is similar to what my parents did. when they noticed that i get around thier passwords (this was before internet was existing) and sitll play regardless they simply did the "do what you want, we dont care anymore" thing. its partly because they had new child by then so attention moved elsewhere (and im happy for it). Why this worked is because when there was no longer the urge to "play while you still can" the need to play dissapeared. my grades jumped a lot, i started to prefer movies to games and whatnot. letting people sort it out on themselves is the way to go.
to put a person in a electronic-free enviroment forcibly in todays society would not only traumatize him but alienate him so he would never want to do with you anything anymore.

As for not wanting to go to school, thats normal, who would. afterall its outdated. watch this cool video for more.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcDGpL4U

Could be a more skilled hacker could hack himself into an offline router and turn it on.

Why bother, all you need to do is go to a router and press the on button?

Pfft. Kid needs an ass-kicking. If I tried to pull this shit with my parents it'd mean a world of hurt. I learned from a very young age not to engage in a contest of will with my father because as a child you cannot win. These parents have obviously taught their son that he can walk on them. And what a surprise - he does!

Take all of his things. If he's this addicted I doubt he paid for that computer or Xbox himself. And when he's 18 make him start paying rent. Tell him he gets a 6 month grace period if he graduates high school.

If he throws a fit, doesn't graduate, and refuses to pay rent...kick him out.

Seriously..Medication? You suggest MEDICATION!? Are you out of your mind?

the best thing to do is make sure he finds a girlfriend. will solve a lot of problems.

The beauty of 18 year old kids is that you can legally kick them out and show them that there is more to life than video games.

BGH122:

Silva:

Well, "traumatising" is part of the process of breaking an addiction.

When people get into an addiction, it becomes "homely" to them. What really ever gets someone uncomfortable in a place of safety, a place which keeps their survival instinct relaxed and/or well practised like gaming does? You give them a shock. There isn't another way to do it.

The only way to create discontent with a pleasant equilibrium is to force a new equilibrium that isn't pleasant (at least at first), then, allowing the person to experience what they have been missing out on in their blessed reverie.

People in addictions can't be reasoned with, can't be bought, can't be charmed, and certainly can't be forced within the old equilibrium. It takes a revolution of the personal life to conquer addictions because they are intrinsic problems that usually sneak up on us or at least grow slowly over a long period, making us put them off until they (in such cases) become very serious problems.

First we need to prove that gaming addictions are a genuine psychological phenomenon. The research I've seen on so called gaming addictions has been beyond dismal, often self-report studies with gamers asked questions similar to "Would you feel uncomfortable without games?".

We need to genuinely show that gaming addiction follows Griffiths' (2002) components of addiction:

Salience - The addiction becomes more dominant over other behaviours when deprived for more than 24 hours (i.e. after long cessation periods it's all they can think about and all their behaviour is geared towards sustaining the addiction)

Mood Modification - The addict behaves significantly differently when carrying out the addictive behaviour (note, this doesn't mean 'is a bit happier', this means their behaviour is significantly out of character as one might behave on a cocaine high)

Tolerance - More and more of the addictive behaviour is required as a tolerance forms for the initial dose (i.e. one would eventually do nothing but the addictive behaviour once maximum tolerance forms, like crack fiends)

Withdrawal Symptoms - Negative physical and behavioural traits formed when deprived of the addictive behaviour for sustained periods of time (e.g. shaking, vomiting, irritability; all of the withdrawal symptoms must be significantly out of character)

Conflict - The addictive behaviour causes conflicts with other peoples and behaviours, with the addictive behaviour trumping all other behaviours and interests (i.e. being willing to risk everything else in one's life to get the addictive behaviour, again think of crack fiends)

Relapse - The addictive behaviour's cessation period is inevitably interrupted by a return to the addictive behaviour which almost instantly returns to its initial intensity due to tolerance (i.e. a gamer not playing games for three years after playing 12 hours a day every day will relapse and build back up to 12 hours a day within days of starting gaming again)

In the few genuine empirical studies I've seen on the matter they either failed to find all signs of addiction in 'addicted' gamers, or found that gaming was being used a coping mechanism (as the good doctor points out) due to some other stressor. I've also seen awful, trumped up studies for which the 'scientists' should be shot where they've desperately tried to shoehorn gaming into these categories whilst completely failing to understand the severity of the categories in genuine addicts ("Oh, he wants to play games instead of doing nothing, must be an addiction!"; a genuine addict would gladly kill you to get his fix, it's not a mere case of wanting the fix, it's a willingness to behave irrationally to get the fix).

Far too many things are classified as addictions these days by people looking to cash in on the scaremongering or the juicy clinician contracts to deal with the false problem.

Since we don't have the case history of the young man in question, and since the case is reported from the extremely biased subjective viewpoint of a close relative, we can't really comment properly on the case other than to make vague guesses at the causes. My advice would be to try and get the child to open up to academia only if that's what he wants to pursue. Far too often I see parents who've decided that they want their child to be an Ivy League trendsetter and view any deviance of the child from this desire as a problem with the child; if your kid isn't interested in your goals for your kid then that likely just means that maybe you shouldn't be setting his life goals for him.

My advice to the parents would be to start an open dialogue with the child. Ask him what his interests are and why those are his interests. Ask him what things he doesn't like and why he doesn't like those things. Use this information to help (not nag, help) him to find a life path that he'd actually like to follow. Maybe he'd like to work in games design?

Dastardly:

You can't solve this, and that's the hard truth. But by knowing the cause, you can figure out how best to support him in solving this. My feelings? That "support" will likely take the form of withdrawing some of that support. People don't learn the lessons they're taught. They learn the lessons they're forced to experience.

Once he's 18, you don't have to kick him out the door... but consider charging him rent. Consider having him share household expenses and responsibilities. Do it a step at a time, to avoid overwhelming him and causing him to shut down. Tie freedom to responsibility, and build his sense of agency (the idea that the things that happen to him are a result of his choices, not some outside "force").

Again, these strategies are fine strategies of coercion, but why coerce? Just because you, the parent, think something is right for your child doesn't mean that thing is actually right for your child.

In my experience it's far better for a parent to lend support than force it. If a child isn't ready or willing to do what you think is best for him it may simply be that what you think is best for him isn't what's actually best for him.

Would you rather your child be successful or happy?

...You're saying that the parents should just let him play games and fail at school because that's what he wants to do?

Sorry, if they let him continue to do that he'll either realize his mistake (not likely) or completely fail at life (probably).

You can spout all the definitions of an addiction you want to. I'm not going to say this is an addiction in the sense of a cocaine addict. I'm just going to say that he plays videogames way too much, for whatever reason.

Here's what the parents should do - Unplug the computer and router, and make him do his homework on a computer near them. His grades will go up, his "addiction" will go down. He'll hate them now and thank them later.

believer258:

...You're saying that the parents should just let him play games and fail at school because that's what he wants to do?

Nope, I'm saying they should start an open dialogue with him. Taking the route of presuming Ivy League uni path to be the best way forward and then judging his success based upon their goals for him isn't what's best for him.

In order to actually find out what is best for him they need to speak openly with him, not naggingly and not aggressively. They need to find out what he enjoys and why he enjoys it and then try to find a way to incorporate those activities into a life path that he'd actually enjoy.

Success comes from proficiency in and enjoyment of a particular pursuit. If you force someone down a particular path they'll eventually drop out once you're no longer around to force them to pursue that path.

It might be that he's scared of his school days coming to an end, or scared of his potentially poor test results. Trying to remove the coping mechanism without dealing with the underlying cause never forces the person to face what they're hiding from, it just makes them miserable. This is why they need to start an open dialogue and find out if there is anything making him miserable, or if he just flat out hates the subjects at school.

believer258:

You can spout all the definitions of an addiction you want to. I'm not going to say this is an addiction in the sense of a cocaine addict. I'm just going to say that he plays videogames way too much, for whatever reason.

Fine, that's not an addiction. It's good to be precise.

Strazdas:
it was a fine article untill he started to talk about drugs. giving drugs to a kid that wants to play games so he wont play them? i would like to see any doctor that does it in jail NOW.

Agreed, it was a deeply irresponsible suggestion. I presume the doctor is a psychiatrist since my experience of them when I was studying psychopathology was that their answer to everything was "MOAR DRUGS!" despite the fact that there has been proven widespread biasing towards pharmaceutical treatment in anti-depressant studies.

Strazdas:
to games and whatnot. letting people sort it out on themselves is the way to go.
to put a person in a electronic-free enviroment forcibly in todays society would not only traumatize him but alienate him so he would never want to do with you anything anymore.

Precisely. Everyone here seems to be a big fan of tough love (I smell internet-tough-guyitis) in lieu of any genuine education in psychology. Such drastically draconian measures work only as coercion and completely sever the necessary attachment bond between parent and child and can lead to some pretty severe personality defects down the line.

Force never solves anything it just causes resent. I prefer the knowlage aspect I would show my kid WHY you cant just sit around playing games all day rather than just taking them away at least then he understands what he or she needs to do. Personally ever since college I hardly play games even half as much I have to much on my plate I do tend to watch alot of shows and read alot on my computer however

The kid clearly has his own demons which he needs to sort on his own. I know at university sometimes games interfere with my schooling, but when it comes down to mid terms and exam time I know what I need to do and put the x box away.

Also if you are spending your only social interactions online, then there is clearly an issue and he needs to sort it our himself. He does not need therapy, he needs a job or priorities.

Like most addictions and problems people have, someone needs to get into the psychology of the addict.

Get him to open up and talk about why he loves gaming.
like most addictions it is mostly 2 things:
he's trying to scape from something
he sees the now benefits of gaming and does not see the eventual benefits of school, IRL friends or anything that isn't about gaming.

perhaps talk to some of his IRL friends, or even other gamers in the area that he can talk to about gaming. Just something or someone that he has a connection to offline. Let them do something outside of the house: movies, kickback, play cards, etc.

Unfortunately the problem starts somewhere and that is with the parents. As parents there are a number of things that could have been done:
buy less video games, let the child have more freedom outside of the home, be supportive of activities the child may be interested in, not buy the child a laptop, and have a computer station that is both open and secluded.

There are also a number of things the parents could STILL do including:
put the modem and wireless router in their room on one of the power strips with a switch, and just turn the switch off at 9:30pm (can't hack it if there is no power) and turn it back on in the morning. regulate the Wi-Fi.

but now the child is 17 and lines need to be drawn:
The main one is giving the child an ultimatum: get your grades up and go to college; get a job and start paying rent.

DO NOT restrict gaming; the child needs to realize that his gaming is a problem and he cannot do that if the parents say it is a problem; because in the child's eyes, his parents see gaming as a problem and they are wrong. He cannot begin to get out of his addiction until he sees that it is a problem and wants to get help.

My friend and his room-mate were addicted to gaming. They didn't know it, but I saw it. They had a PS3, 2 TVs and decided that they needed another PS3. They were living in a garage. I went with them when they went to buy another PS3 and told them that this was one of the stupidest decisions they could ever make. I told them that there was no reason for them for have 2 PS3 when they basically lived in 1 room (the garage was split in half so it was like 2 rooms). Their justification was that when 1 was gaming the other would want to game as well, but play a different game. I told them that their reasoning was weak and irresponsible, they even wanted me to get a PS3 when I told them that I couldn't afford it and I was content with my PS2 and all of the games I haven't finished yet. They ended up leaving the store with a PS3 and 3 (new) games. Eventually 1 lost his girlfriend and the other lost his boyfriend and both lost their jobs because they would game until sunrise and couldn't wake up for work. Eventually ended up not being able to afford renting out someone's garage and went homeless. I think they eventually went back to living with their parents (they were almost 30 when they made that decision).

They came to realize that gaming destroyed them because they couldn't maintain their real world lives and gaming at the same time. They eventually sold their PS3s and got their lives back together got new jobs and a new place to live. But they didn't realize that there was a problem until they had realized that they had set themselves up to fail. I told them there was a problem, and to them I was wrong. They still talk about gaming occasionally, but never got another system.

BGH122:
[quote="Silva" post="6.304141.12195968"]
Would you rather your child be successful or happy?

I'm pretty sure most parents will say successful.

/bitter

 Pages 1 2 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here