If you have a kid or know anyone who does then you’ll understand the nightmare that is screen time. Bill Cunningham attempts to cut through the fear of video games and screens in this article.
gaming is a solid fixture of childhood. Of course, parents already know this. That’s what makes us uncomfortable. We’re not sure how to raise our children in a world that looks so unlike the one we grew up in. There are no clear best practices.
I grew up playing violent video games. On the surface, I looked like a basement dwelling weirdo but my exposure to video games—especially online games—gave me access to people I would have never met on a platform that rewarded me for teamwork and how I showed up as a person. Video game culture was one of the only places where I was given responsibility and treated like a full human, rather than just a kid.
We enforce limits and restrictions. But I don’t think these screen-time rules are just about our kids’ well-being. There is also the issue of our grown-up comfort levels. We’re hoping to minimize our doubt, insecurity, and anxiety by maximizing the number of moments in our home lives that resemble what we’ve seen in the movies and on TV sitcoms, what we’ve read in magazine articles and self-help books.
I would add to this the dark mirror that our kids represent. They follow what the adults in their lives model. Consider how many times you pull out your phone every day. Perhaps we are offloading our shame onto our kids.