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Computer gaming
  • Trying to regulate the time spent on computer games has become the bane of my life. The more my son plays the more monstrous he seems to become. Trying to get him to come to a stop is always horrid. I use timers but he still carries on and I dread it every day. I worry that spending hours in virtual conflict must affect him and it does seem to make him more obstreperous. I wish I'd never let the games machines into my house but I did under duress from my family. Now, I wonder if I can get rid of them without becoming the evil monster. I know he's nicer when he's been away from them, a lot calmer, but he will hate me if I take them all away? The Xbox controller has already gone- that's contentious enough. I'm not sure whether to be brave and just go cold turkey or keep hitting my head against the same brick wall. Which is the lesser of the two evils?
  • RhanHRhanH
    Posts: 981
    Hi I’m not sure that I have the answer, however we share a similar problem and I find the easiest way to extract our daughter is to enter her world first..... so, we agree how long she can play for and what she may like to do after. Then we give a warning that there’s 10 min to go, then 5, at about 3 mins we try to sit with her and gently ask about what she’s doing, then I ask her to show me and then I start asking about what she’s going to do next based on what she said before she started... these questions are gently drawing her back into the real world but at the same time building a relationship as I’m showing interest in something that I don’t personally enjoy but need to understand!

    It seems to work for us at the moment!
  • Thanks RhanH. I will try your method. My son smashed the computer keyboard to pieces, so he may have already solved the problem.
  • jacksj65
    Posts: 2
    This is something I struggle with a lot. I know it is unhealthy to spend too much time gaming but in times (days/weeks) when my daughter isn't gaming it can be replaced by more harmful activities. She tends to get wrapped up in watching Youtubers who have various problems with mental health and self harming and talk about it constantly. She identifies with them in some ways and it builds into her beliefs about herself. It's so difficult to regulate this now that youtube can be accessed on so many portable devices and even televisions.
  • June67
    Posts: 633
    Yes a huge problem for us too, although eldest now seems to be loosing interest and regulating his own use much of the time. Youngest can't cope at all without it unless we are cooking together or playing a game. We are trying to find a balance which lets him have some time and then I get to do the cleaning as long as someone else is sitting in the room with him. I agree that entering their world is often the best way to reconnect and draw them out, if I join in I can often ask what shall we do next and sometimes get an answer. YouTube is a bigger problem but at least his not wanting to be alone means I can keep an eye on what he is watching and talk about it with him. He currently 'needs' to fall asleep whilst watching videos of people playing video games or families having fun together (living life vicariously perhaps) not ideal but at least he is going to sleep. One day he may even do so in bed!
  • MarSet
    Posts: 3
    We have this problem too and its horrific, We set time limits of 2 hours on a school day and 3 when he's not at school. the 2 hours during the week day covers from him getting in from school until I dish tea up, I struggle every day to get him off even with the time warnings and he always turns it aggressive often banging his controller on the coffee table. Ive had to start turning the xbox off at the socket at least 3 times a week.
    It really is a horrible situation to be in and I have no answers for you :(
  • Claire14
    Posts: 1
    I have found that my son responds to the machine telling him time is up- far better than me or timers! XBox one can be controlled from microsoft family. You can do curfew and time limits. We have finally got him to agree to an App on the phone that also controls time- he had such a hard time putting it down in the middle of certain games. Can recommend trying those- Screen Limit works on all platforms

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