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What would you do in this situation . . . (PIOF)

I am really reeling right now, so this is going to be a bit of a vent, but I promise there is a question in there, LOL.

I have a set routine in the morning - I get up between 6-6:30, have my coffee, read my bible, do a bit of yoga, and relax and prepare myself for my day - alone. I'm one of those people that really needs that time. Now, my step son knows this. He, in fact, asked me repeatedly yesterday if I was going to be getting up early today b/c if I wasn't he wanted to get on the video game when he got up. I continually told him that yes, I was b/c daddy was working. Last night before bed, he asked again, and I told him to stop asking b/c he already knew the answer. Well, this morning I wake up at 6:20 and walk into the living room to see him up and playing on the video game! Needless to say, I was LIVID. I did not yell at him, but I did let him know that I was NOT happy.

How would you handle this situation?

Answer Question

Asked by jennijune_21 at 7:52 AM on Jul. 18, 2009 in General Parenting

Level 4 (56 Credits)
Answers (15)
  • Well, it depends on how old he is. I think regardless, I wouldn't allow video games but at a certain time of day. IMO, he shouldn't be so excited about gaming that he's waking up at crazy hours just to play...just bad habits and all that. To me, it really does sound like a round-about attempt to be with you. That possiblity does depend a little more on age, but a boy 10 and under probably isn't going to have the maturity to totally appreciate alone time and maybe saw it as an opportunity to be with you, especially since he kept asking if you were getting up. So I wouldn't punish him for invading your time- that may drive a wedge between you and it doesn't sound like he would understand. Instead, I would limit gaming to certain times, like a hour after lunch and dinner or whatever works for you guys. Take it as a compliment and tell him he needs to stay in bed until X. There are special alarms for kids who can't tell time too.

    Answer by mrs_pulley at 8:07 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • I hate when anyone gets up on my "morning time"!! I have a t-shirt that says "Don't ask Mom before her coffee!!"

    Sometimes people can't help if they aren't feeling well or have to go to the bathroom, but I still get cranky! Your step son knows how important it is to you because he kept asking you if you were getting up. Maybe you could ground him from the video game because he disobeyed you, after he asked repeatedly.

    Good Luck and try to have a good day anyway.


    Answer by Cindy18 at 8:14 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • Okay, I am like you in the fact that I usually get up early in the morning because I know its the only time I have before the kids get up. Its my quiet time to do whatever. I dont think its really fair though for you to invoke a wake up time for a child just so you can have your time. Is there a place that you can go that you are alone. Is there another tv he can play his game on? Now, I would tell this child that he may not play this game that early. If a child deliberately gets up at 6 am to play video games, then it sounds like hes overdoing it a bit. A lot of kids get up early, but I think I would encourage him to eat some cereal, then read a book or go for a walk. You could show him what you do in the mornings and encourage him to have some quiet time too. He will either be receptive or he will stay in bed...LOL. As much as I know you want your time, he is a child and overcontrolling him so that you can be alone isnt ok.

    Answer by momofsaee at 8:16 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • OP--do you have other children? I get the impression that you've never dealt with young children before--or it was so long ago, you don;t remember! I have been a mom for 8 years now, and I can't remember what it's like to pee in private--let alone have my coffee, read, do yoga, etc! Welcome to parenthood. Time to step outside YOUR needs and wants, and work your step-sons needs in!

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:23 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • I would have told him I am glad he got up early to get on the computer. He can play until it is my quiet time at 6:30. Then he has to go to his room and play or read a book until I come get him.

    Answer by micheledo at 8:27 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • Okay, first off, I know it sounds like I'm being a selfish bitch here - I didn't post this question to get bashed, but for advice, so I will give a little background.

    1) This house is EXTREMELY tiny - there are six of us in a 3-1 home. Don't tell me to move b/c we can't, I won't go into why. Can I go into another room? Sure, but that's not the point.

    2) Yes, he IS deliberately getting up SPECIFICALLY to play the video game - He only gets 1 hour a day to play (which is a new rule that he is NOT happy with). So for some reason he thinks that it won't count when none of the other children are up. Before this rule was set in, he slept about an hour later. He's 13 by the way.

    3) I have four children. My children ALWAYS come first. Do you think it's too much to ask for me to get a little time to myself? I get NONE, EVER, unless I get up at the crack of dawn.

    Answer by jennijune_21 at 8:30 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • if he's 13, you just need to enforce the rule. Don't make it about you- he just thought he could do something he can't. I promise you he can't comprehend how very important it is for you to have your own time. I don't think anyone without kids can understand how important that is at any age. Yelling at him or punishing him because he took away your time is ugly and will come off very poorly. You deserve to have that time 100%, but it is a luxury and you shouldn't put that on him. Make it about the game. I would take it away for a week and I wouldn't freak out at him. If he wants to get up early, you have no right to tell him he can't...but you can tell him he needs to be somewhere else...and really, there is going to be a point with 4 kids in the house where you're going to have to be the one to leave. So maybe take up jogging/walking or sign up for an evening class or join a moms group to get "you" time.

    Answer by mrs_pulley at 8:49 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • Ask him to please go read in his room for an hour. How much video game time is he allowed every day?

    Answer by rkoloms at 9:32 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • Personally? I would walk over to the wall and unplug everything, reminding him as I did so that it was clearly established that this was my time. Then I would have a family meeting whereupon we would write down the rules about things like when video games can be played, etc., daily routines to be respected, etc. and then have every member of the family sign it. If they choose not to sign, then they are choosing to not have access to family activities like video games, tv, etc...

    Answer by JPsMommy605 at 9:38 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • You get "YOU" time? Must be nice. Quit bitching about it, most moms don't get that. Also, be grateful that your stepson is alive and able to play videogames, irritate you, etc. I know many parents that would give anything to have their child alive to do just that. As parents, we have to learn to deal with NOT having our own lives. Get over it. I don't sweat the small stuff and a kid playing a videogame is small stuff, not having me time is small stuff. My me time is sleep and driving from place to place. I am grateful for the time I have with my son. Maybe if more parents were grateful for time with their kids, they would be less likely to bitch about every little thing.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:07 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

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