Video games are too addictive…


and I’m talking from experience here! I resisted having video games in my house for the longest time. A couple of years ago, my oldest son was on a campaign to have something, whether it was a Playstation or an Xbox or whatever. In the end, I caved and told him he could buy himself a system and he chose the Playstation 2. Then we had the negotiations over what games he could buy. We were very wary of anything with a Teen label and definitely forbade anything with a Mature rating. Gradually he built up a small collection of games, mostly racing games plus Kingdom Hearts 2 and Star Wars Battlefront 2. Then came the handheld game – I gave him permission for that too (I had held out longer on that because I felt that if he had a portable system he’d be taking it everywhere and not participating in anything)! He bought a Nintendo DS Lite and some games – Super Mario, Tetris, and a few others.

I have no interest in those Super Mario-type games, where the little character is jumping around from platform to platform, blasting coins or whatever out of the way, but I did have a go at Tetris. Hmmm, quite fun! Occasionally I would ask L to lend me his DS and the Tetris game, which he thought was hilarious – mum wanting to play a video game, har har, she’s coming over to the dark side!

He rarely plays with either system these days – too stuck into his computer – and he lent his DS to his brothers. I decided to play a little Tetris….not just the basic game, but the others that come as part of the package. Oh my, did I get hooked!

What worries me about this game is (a) how I can get addicted to it so fast, (b) how it’s such a time sucker, (c) how it disturbs my sleep if I play last thing at night, and (d) how I can continue to get visions of those little coloured squares popping up in my head at any time. Last night, I sat on the sofa at 9pm with that little screen in front of me and I didn’t put it down for three hours! I’m sure I saw a lot of Tetris blocks in my dreams.

This morning, I made my son laugh even louder. I gave him his DS Lite back and said, “Keep this thing hidden away from me for at least three weeks.” Now that the temptation is removed, I can get back to the important stuff, like knitting, reading, Taekwondo practice and sleeping!

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