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By February 17, 2014 0 Comments Read More →

Video Game Addiction: The Way to Heal

FatherSonAs I shared with you my concern with my first son’s video game addiction. I thought I might share as well how my husband and I have been dealing with it, hopefully successfully.

Beyond limiting screen time which has proven challenging with the Olympic Games and a son who went through knee surgery ten days ago, I have looked up the internet to find a specific way to block League of Legends from his computer.

It seems quickly pretty obvious that the best way to get rid of an addiction is to make sure the substance, whatever it is, is not readily available.

My search led me to find this website www.banvideogames.com.

After I contacted Josh, he took control of my son’s computer with my assistance and he blocked the ports necessary to play League of Legends. The whole process took less than 15mn. And Josh told me that we had other options if Alex succeeded to reset the ports.

The relief was huge! For those of you who have teenagers, you know how easy it is to be behind their back to make sure they don’t do what they are not supposed to do! At least now whenever he is on his computer I know he can’t play League of Legends. And it seems that these online role playing games always use the same ports, so for now at least, none of these games can be played. they can be downloaded but they can’t be played.

Before the knee injury at soccer leading to surgery the following days, my son had not played for several days and he was back to himself. What amazes me most is how much calmer he is when he does not play. The atmosphere at home is radically different as well: less tensions, more talking, more interactions.

In summary here is what we have been doing to help our teenage son:

  • limit & control screen time ( this was particularly important in the first five days)
  • provide alternative activities ( that fell quite short with soccer injury on the first day of resuming soccer practice! As a result, we had to be creative and my developer agreed to give him programming lessons. Yes I know that is screen time, but I’d much rather have him learn to program games than have him play games. At least programming will be useful for him in the future, and while he is stuck in a wheelchair…. )
  • have him see a psychologist (A third party is very helpful when we deal with a teenager)
  • ban video games from his computer (this a very important step for the long term success of addiction removal)

I wish I had been aware earlier of this problem. I hope this post will help you raise your awareness as well. If you want to know more about the symptoms of game addiction, about what makes a game addictive, I found this site to have valuable information on the subject.

Let me just add that it takes a great determination on the parents side to put in place the measures I have mentioned above. It was not easy with a 14 year old, and I guess the older the child the harder it is.

How hard it is to help a teenager it is really worth it! Any child deserves more than being a gamer, wasting his youth and jeopardizing his future in the process. Banning computer is  a delusional strategy with more and more schools using technology as a teaching tool. Sites like banvideogames.com are therefore a lifesaver for parents. We need the help of tech savvy people to protect our children from the all too powerful marketing strategies of these online games who have firms like Microsoft behind them.

I hope you will share this site with fellow parents. There is much more to life than video games!

T

Posted in: Parenting Oh My!

About the Author:

Anne is the author of Happily Ever After In The Real World and the founder of EZcouple.com. She focuses on long distance relationships and life improvement.

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