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11 year old addicted to Minecraft - Page 7

post #121 of 145

Im inspired by the creative and social potential of this game, but worried about its addictive nature. Do playdates now become 'minecraft playdates' and does that matter? If true interaction is involved then it seems to be a good thing. But what about old fashioned tag? Thats definitely better for your  health.

 

As for reading, i agree that it isnt better from the perspective that you are absorbing anothers creation. But its not completely passive. You are acquiring an enormous vocabluary, inspiring your imagination, and basically  improving your mastery of the language you are reading in.  Strong language skills are a definite asset in life.

I think reading can be addictive too, as can tv, but there's something about computer games that are particularly addictive.

post #122 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post

 

Personally, I don't think the problem is Minecraft but that kids are being required to go to school all day and do homework in their "free" time. They are just over scheduled. Even if a home schooled kid plays Minecraft for hours every day, he still has plenty of time to engage in physical activity, get enough sleep, and do other things with other people.

 

This is my experience too, 4evermom. My son plays Minecraft a lot- but as he doesn't go to school or have homework, he has a lot of free time. Yesterday he played Minecraft for about five hours in the morning- partly on his own, building a new adventure map, and partly on Skype with a friend. That took until noon. So then we had lunch, did some errands, went for a walk, drew comics together, read for a couple of hours, got our passport photos taken, went to a coffee shop, made dinner... and in the evening he played online for another hour or so, and built a redstone-powered tofu factory to amuse his (mostly vegetarian) parents, and then decided it was time to get back to the book we are reading together. So at least six hours of Minecraft but no conflict and a lovely day with some great conversations about all kinds of things. But if he'd had to squeeze in six hours of school and a couple more hours of homework? Hmm. That'd have made for a very different kind of day.

 

Anyway, I just wrote a blog post about our experience with Minecraft. Here's the link if anyone is interested: http://www.robinstevenson.com/wordpress/category/blog/

post #123 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post
 

I mostly read (didn't have a tv.) I'm not sure that that is necessarily healthier. It's equally sedentary and doesn't allow any opportunity to interact with others like Minecraft does. It's passive since you are just absorbing another's creation...

 

I have read quotes (can't find one handy) of how back in "the olden days" people used to look down on bookworms as slothful and lazy, too.

post #124 of 145

Yes. My own mother, who was an avid reader, was of this generation.   She grew up on a farm, and was sent to boarding school. She had read both the whole junior and senior   library by  3rd grade. To this day, she reads like lightening, and is not happy unless she has a book to read. She became an English teacher. But she got in trouble at home for reading so much, and was accused of being lazy....poor mom.

 

Now its obligatory to read for at least 40mins a night for my 3rd grader.  He likes reading, but not as much as computer games. I havent  introduced him to minecraft yet.....

post #125 of 145

Have an 11 and 7 year old, same problem, every free moment and every time I look away the homework is minimized and minecraft is on. I don't get what they see about it, but at least it's cheap, compared with game consoles.

post #126 of 145

I bought the minecraft game for my 10 year old nephew last summer.  At first it seemed harmless,, building little villages,,  houses,, etc...  at that point though I did think he was spending too much time infront of the computer.  As the months went along,,, I could see signs of trouble...  He only wanted to play minecraft...  he became obsessed with it...  the first thing he would do in the morning and the last thing he would do at night.    He started fights with me,,,  as to why he could not play it,, or why he had to get off the computer...  I was thinking,, ok,, the kid is ten...  so they all play on the computer..  he is just a little overly emotional.

 

Then the problems got worse... I think when we added the different servers,, and he started killing zombies,, or what ever he is killing and then collecting his gems,,,  or what ever he collects,,,,  he started to become too emotionally involved with the game,,, having freakouts if someone killed him,, or worse, If I were to take away his privilege for what ever reason,,   he would have a complete tantrum,

 

I was really starting to wonder about the effect this game was having on him....  watching it on youtube,,,  communicating with total strangers on his various servers...  but mostly about his behavior when his privilege was taken away.

 

I finally had enough!!!  His last outburst was so severe,,,,, screaming,, yelling,, throwing himself on the bed,,,  hurting himself.... I decided it was best for him NOT to have minecraft in his life anymore.  After a particular rough tantrum....  I said..  OK,, that's it...  I am deleteing your minecraft from the computer,, (I don't think you can actually delete it so I just changed the log in password)

 

He naturally had a fit,,  but to my surprise,,  he got over it fairly quickly,,,  I even said to him that he was a better person with out minecraft.. and he agreed!!!!!  I'm sure that I will stumble across another game or two that need parental monitoring...  and will deal with that when it comes,, but I am so happy that I had the intuition and foresight to realize that this game was damaging and the tenacity to remove it from OUR lives...  Everything is so much better now..  He plays with his 2  1/2 year old brother,, we watch movies together,,  we spend much more quality time together...  My advise to any parent about minecraft...  not about how much time they can play,,,  that is an impossible feat....  just say NO!!!!!  Explain to them that the game is damaging and that it is in their best interst not to play it...

 

I think they will secretly agree with y ou....

 

Good luck

 

Tim Mullally

post #127 of 145

I just wanted to chime in and add my 2 DD's to the mix (ages 8 & 10).   They love mine craft, as do most of their friends.  

 

My girls only play on their iPods - which is the first thing they are grounded from when behavior problems arise or homework isn't getting done.   

 

I was getting a bit worried about it, until DD 10 came home tonight and asked for instagram and snap chat.   Suddenly I'm not too worried with mine craft when compared to what's coming ahead.

post #128 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miss Muffet View Post
 

I just wanted to chime in and add my 2 DD's to the mix (ages 8 & 10).   They love mine craft, as do most of their friends.  

 

My girls only play on their iPods - which is the first thing they are grounded from when behavior problems arise or homework isn't getting done.   

 

I was getting a bit worried about it, until DD 10 came home tonight and asked for instagram and snap chat.   Suddenly I'm not too worried with mine craft when compared to what's coming ahead.

So true....

post #129 of 145

Add me to this club. My 6th grader loves this game. He started making money off it somehow.  He has his own server and sells rank. Hopefully it is legal and it doesn't come back to bite him (us.) Haha

post #130 of 145

@Tim     I agree with you...after I took it away from my daughter, it seems like it was a relief.

 

Good luck,

StressedMom

post #131 of 145

I understand exactly where some of you are coming from, we have had to ban it at home, yet our daughter still gains access via other sources. For a while she did stop, her school work picked up, homework was being completed, she struggled less every day, things were great!... yet recently we noticed all of this slip again,  and after investigation... Yep Mine-craft, she has been watching it on her phone, she downloaded a copy on her PlayStation, and she plays on her boyfriends phone or tablet "at school" (shocking) She plays for one day when she stays with her father at the weekend, and yet we keep hearing awww let her go it's only once a week! Well that's not really the case it's a whole week of getting a hit however she can. Now her homework is dire, detentions galore for not completing work, yet she tells us she goes to homework club. We deleted it from her PS3 completely, yet after looking on there today it was back.. Now we told her if she was found with it on there again she would lose the console, if this is not an addiction problem then I don't know what is. I see some people that don't have a problem with their children playing, and that's great if they can walk away with no repercussions, but for all the parents who's child's education and social life is being destroyed for this supposed harmless fun, you have our sympathy and understanding. On a constructive note the game is amazing for building a child's imagination, engineering skills, but the scales in our case don't merit us allowing it to continue. 

post #132 of 145

As a parent who has four very tech-savvy kids from 11 to 20, I just want to remind those of you who have chosen to enforce strict limits as your strategy for coping with Minecraft's allure that your kids will grow up and leave home and they'll either have had the opportunity to learn to self-regulate this sort of thing, or they won't. And personally I don't believe that strict parental limits do anything much to teaching the skills of self-regulation. As the post above shows, strict parental control tends to give the activity more allure, and to encourage increasing deviousness in pushing and undermining limits, but even if they don't do that the risk is that when parental controls drop away -- say when your kid goes off to college -- that they have no understanding of how to create and manage a balanced life. 

 

I've always worked with my children rather than against them on these sorts of things. My two oldest especially tend to be obsessive in their interests and often get locked into activities for long periods. We always talked about issues of balance in their lives, and helped identify what constituted a healthy balance *for them,* what their desires were, and brainstormed and tried out many many ways to attain that balance. If they wanted to try out a rule or limit or habit for themselves, we'd give it a week and I would help enforce the rule while for that time if they wanted. Then they would evaluate whether it had been helpful. Week after week we would discuss, I'd let them decide whether a strategy was working for them or not, and they'd carry on or change course based on that. Kids aren't stupid: they know they're not keeping up if they're failing to hand in assignments or not completing chores or staying up until 3 am to finish a game. The main reason they don't learn from those experiences is that they may be in a situation where they're denying they have a problem in order to win a power struggle with their parents. In that case they can't admit there's a problem, or they'll lose ground in the control battle. 

 

There were times when my kids were younger teens when I had to non-judgementally let things go well beyond my comfort zone. But with support and problem-solving facilitation that gave them the chance to learn how to self-regulate. 

 

Your kids will encounter plenty of things in life that hold immersive or addictive allure. I think some mis-steps while they are young are worthwhile because the stakes are much lower in childhood and the teen years than they are during college or adulthood ... provided the mistakes are made in a context of support rather than control. No matter what course you take with gaming, I would encourage you to make sure your kids are empowered to make their own choices and learn from the repercussions of those choices.

 

miranda

post #133 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post
 

As a parent who has four very tech-savvy kids from 11 to 20, I just want to remind those of you who have chosen to enforce strict limits as your strategy for coping with Minecraft's allure that your kids will grow up and leave home and they'll either have had the opportunity to learn to self-regulate this sort of thing, or they won't. And personally I don't believe that strict parental limits do anything much to teaching the skills of self-regulation. As the post above shows, strict parental control tends to give the activity more allure, and to encourage increasing deviousness in pushing and undermining limits, but even if they don't do that the risk is that when parental controls drop away -- say when your kid goes off to college -- that they have no understanding of how to create and manage a balanced life. 

 

I've always worked with my children rather than against them on these sorts of things. My two oldest especially tend to be obsessive in their interests and often get locked into activities for long periods. We always talked about issues of balance in their lives, and helped identify what constituted a healthy balance *for them,* what their desires were, and brainstormed and tried out many many ways to attain that balance. If they wanted to try out a rule or limit or habit for themselves, we'd give it a week and I would help enforce the rule while for that time if they wanted. Then they would evaluate whether it had been helpful. Week after week we would discuss, I'd let them decide whether a strategy was working for them or not, and they'd carry on or change course based on that. Kids aren't stupid: they know they're not keeping up if they're failing to hand in assignments or not completing chores or staying up until 3 am to finish a game. The main reason they don't learn from those experiences is that they may be in a situation where they're denying they have a problem in order to win a power struggle with their parents. In that case they can't admit there's a problem, or they'll lose ground in the control battle. 

 

There were times when my kids were younger teens when I had to non-judgementally let things go well beyond my comfort zone. But with support and problem-solving facilitation that gave them the chance to learn how to self-regulate. 

 

Your kids will encounter plenty of things in life that hold immersive or addictive allure. I think some mis-steps while they are young are worthwhile because the stakes are much lower in childhood and the teen years than they are during college or adulthood ... provided the mistakes are made in a context of support rather than control. No matter what course you take with gaming, I would encourage you to make sure your kids are empowered to make their own choices and learn from the repercussions of those choices.

 

miranda

Thanks for that, but we did allow our daughter limited access, Fridays, weekends, to see if that would help and it did not. She is not our only child, we have plenty of experience to go by, our eldest two have not had the problems that we are experiencing now, one in university, one completed university. We have tried many approaches and as I said previously did get somewhere, she started doing well at school and completed all of her home work on time and well produced, not rushed like it was and is now.  The game is causing this,because when she stopped playing and watching she did well again, she is allowed to play any other game, they do not have the same effect, which speaks volumes, every child is different we know this all to well from the others, it is not a healthy state of mind to be obsessed by anything, life is about variety, about taking in the world outside not one sucking your brain out from inside.

post #134 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaseMcMillan View Post
 

I understand exactly where some of you are coming from, we have had to ban it at home, yet our daughter still gains access via other sources. For a while she did stop, her school work picked up, homework was being completed, she struggled less every day, things were great!... yet recently we noticed all of this slip again,  and after investigation... Yep Mine-craft, she has been watching it on her phone, she downloaded a copy on her PlayStation, and she plays on her boyfriends phone or tablet "at school" (shocking) She plays for one day when she stays with her father at the weekend, and yet we keep hearing awww let her go it's only once a week! Well that's not really the case it's a whole week of getting a hit however she can. Now her homework is dire, detentions galore for not completing work, yet she tells us she goes to homework club. We deleted it from her PS3 completely, yet after looking on there today it was back.. Now we told her if she was found with it on there again she would lose the console, if this is not an addiction problem then I don't know what is. I see some people that don't have a problem with their children playing, and that's great if they can walk away with no repercussions, but for all the parents who's child's education and social life is being destroyed for this supposed harmless fun, you have our sympathy and understanding. On a constructive note the game is amazing for building a child's imagination, engineering skills, but the scales in our case don't merit us allowing it to continue. 

 

Seems like the problem is with the lying and sneaking and not doing her work, not with the Minecraft.

 

My almost-12yo loves Minecraft.  We do impose restrictions on it because she's not yet great at self-regulating.  But when/if she violates those restrictions or ignores what needs to be done, I blame her,  I don't blame the computer.

post #135 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post
 

 

Seems like the problem is with the lying and sneaking and not doing her work, not with the Minecraft.

 

My almost-12yo loves Minecraft.  We do impose restrictions on it because she's not yet great at self-regulating.  But when/if she violates those restrictions or ignores what needs to be done, I blame her,  I don't blame the computer.

As said before, before "We have tried many approaches, and as I said previously did get somewhere, she started doing well at school and completed all of her home work on time and well produced" We would both like her to do well at school, she is a good child, only time we have any problems is when this game is involved, really, she is never in any other trouble, "she is allowed to play "any" other game, they do not have the same effect" She does, she is up there now playing..  She's a kid, that can't stop feeling the urge to use, regardless of consequence for doing so.. Sounds like addiction to me. Games are not bad, I worked in the industry for years, hell they paid me to play games, some of the best years of my life, I don't blame "games" but I can see a real problem with this one.   :( 

post #136 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaseMcMillan View Post
 

Thanks for that, but we did allow our daughter limited access, Fridays, weekends, to see if that would help and it did not. 

 

I understand that all kids are different, and that parents have different approaches and no one knows individual kids better than their parents. Heck, I have four kids and they're all very different. But if you thought I was suggesting simply allowing limited access to see whether your child still messes up, then you completely misunderstood the point I was trying to make. What I was trying to explain was that I believe kids should be a full participants in any limit-setting and should be the primary people making judgements about what their goals are and whether they're being achieved. A teen should be analyzing how all this is working for her, learning how and why certain strategies work best for her, brainstorming new things to try, learning to identify exactly what it is about certain activities that makes them so difficult for her to self-regulate, and figuring out what type of support and accountability she needs to achieve her goals. She should be made to feel successful in solving this problem for herself, with her parents on her side. That's the only way she'll gain the skills of self-regulation. Having top-down parental regulation and pushing against it is only going to help for as long as her parents can control her, which isn't really that long. And when parental support drops away, that's at a time of life when the opportunities for mistakes and the repercussions of failure tend to be much greater.

 

Your dd may very well not be able to achieve a healthy balance with Minecraft in her life at all. If I were you I would focus my energy not on keeping it out of her life, but on helping her come to that conclusion herself. 

 

Miranda

post #137 of 145

I think this thread must trend high on google searches for kids addicted to Minecraft or something. I have noticed a lot of first time posters responding to this thread and I'm not sure if they've explored the AP philosophy behind mothering.com.

 

FTR, my kids like Minecraft, but it hasn't caused any problems for our family.

post #138 of 145

Ive been following this thread, and havent noticed that much (did i miss something? I guess i did) Im very interested to hear from people themselves 'addicted to minecraft', or not.....

 

Im wondering whether i should introduce my 8yo to coding, rather than waste time with the computer games... he thrives on visual patterns, but suffers in a auditory environment. He might be really good at coding...i dont know....

post #139 of 145

Regarding the self regulation thing, I have a very lax limit of 2 hrs with screens per day. I give a warning when it's almost over. If the 7 year old fails to stop there are consequences, like the next day he loses time, or he is prone to fits after too much screen time and if he loses control he has to take a few days off. Then he blames me for letting him get that far. It is a teachable moment about self control and consequences, but it's also teaching me he wants the help regulating it because he knows he can't do it alone. For my son a balance is ok, it doesn't hurt his life outside of that. For others it does and fully quitting is in order. If you listen closely if they need the help they may be asking for it already, but unable to stop something alone.

post #140 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post
  We always talked about issues of balance in their lives, and helped identify what constituted a healthy balance *for them,* what their desires were, and brainstormed and tried out many many ways to attain that balance. If they wanted to try out a rule or limit or habit for themselves, we'd give it a week and I would help enforce the rule while for that time if they wanted.

 

miranda

I like this approach very much. Trying to figure out what balance works for each individual is the art of life.

 

But i find balance is compromised when you introduce the  rigidity of the modern work/school day. If you unschool, then fine. But what of children going to school.(and parents working fulltime) I dont think that school itself represents balance for the individuals in it, but is doing its best for a large number of children at once, at the cost of the individual. Screen addiction, like any addiction, is a way to compensate a life that is already out of balance. So i am wondering how to solve that  big dilemma which goes beyond the issue of minecraft.

 

I think the addictive nature of  screen games combined with the restrictiveness of modern life for children is  the molatov cocktail so to speak. Then throw in that 10% of kids have adhd,(one wonders why such a high statistic) which i find actually predisposes them to addiction, because of their propensity to 'over' focus. (i find that highly subjective anyway, but it is a diagnostic criteria)

 

But still, im going to try my best to have this conversation and to restore balance in my kids lives. (for eg, i wish they did their lunch break free exercise first thing in the morning, and not after lunch. Who wants to run around while youre digesting? See, that imbalance right there. My formerly very active and social kid tells me he would rather read a book during the lunch break-who is this child?! Not my child....)

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