I do now see the value of the Pokemon game that I did not see before because I got so caught up in the anti-hype, if you will. That's my regret. Live and learn. I do not want to do that to the rest of my children. I do see my ds incorporating TV shows that he watches into his own creative play. I also see him use various household items in ways they were not intended and I find that very cool. I like the idea of going to second hand stores if I'm purposely taking my ds to buy a toy.
Unfortunately, right now I don't have any choice about whether or not to take him with me to the store that sells toys when I need to get something else. I'm the only adult home right now so my ds has to go on all those errands with me. I don't always buy him something, either. Most of the time we just look for a little bit. I tell him I'm not going to buy him anything and he's fine with that. So, it's not an issue of him getting upset every time we go out because he doesn't get something. It's an issue of, when I do agree to get him something, reconciling respecting his wants with my values, if that makes any sense.
Despite pressure from the playgroup, I absolutely felt uncomfortable directing my child's play. I wasn't worried about him becoming a violent person-- I could see my homebirthed, EBF, family bedded child was a dear. I was able to seal myself from what I saw as hysteria about getting into a child's face wrt to play. We actually stopped going to playgroup at one home (my oldest was about 6 at the time, and we were involved in an off-shoot grouping that came about from our LLL meetings) when the parent told the children they could not play 'monster' at her house becuase it was too scary and violent. The children were not harming each other, and it wasn't the least bit dangerous. That was just so over the top for me. I could not see forbidding play the children themselves created.
I think it's wonderful you are thinking about this. It's a great topic, imo.