As hard as I tried to avoid them, video games did become a part of my kids’ lives. It all started before my oldest turned 5. His then 8-year-old cousin and 23-year-old uncle opened up the exciting world of video gaming to him. He loved it and, of course, was a natural.
I held him off with “educational” computer games for as long as I could. Then someone gave him Madden 2002 for the computer for his fifth birthday. Now, this kid was not an independent, entertain yourself kind of guy. He required Mom or Dad to join him at the computer as he and his beloved Steelers stomped the Cowboys.
By Christmas, Dad was done. He could not cram himself into the computer chair with the five-year-old and man his side of the keyboard anymore. He was getting the kid a game system. And that was the end of it.
To tell you the truth, we’ve all had a lot of fun with it. Son-Number-One and I played a lot of Madden and Godzilla in the early days. After dropping him off at school, Daughter and I rushed home to visit Animal Crossing. When she went to school, Little Guy and I got deep into the Legend of Zelda – Ocarina of Time, with a little help from a walk-through I found online.
While they don’t need me to play with them as much as they once did, they still like me to join them sometimes. The Wii we got two Christmases ago (the procuring of that is a blog post for another day), has given us many more opportunities to play together. It even inspired us to try real tennis last summer and pick up the guitars gathering dust in a corner.
Just like anything else, oversight and boundaries are necessary. And while the negatives out there are a concern, some positives may result according to my fellow blogathoner at Blogging ‘Bout Boys. For me and my family it’s a matter of balance. Keeping that balance falls to me, but it’s a responsibility I’m willing to take.
Have you fought the video game battle? Who won?
Photo credit: BrittneyBush (flickr.com)