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video game.addiction

Posted by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 7:18 PM
  • 25 Replies
I just found out my 10 year old has aspergers. It's really a relief to finally have a reason for her behavior. My biggest problem is her tantrums, she has always been addicted to playing video games, she loves them, they are one of her obsessions. If she isn't playing them she is talking about them. Two weeks ago I had a counselor tell me to take them away, so I did. But now she is having fits everyday about wanting them back. I offered her a hour a day time limit, but this names her furious and we have hour and a half kicking and screaming tantrums every night. What do I do? Is it wrong to take away something they love so much and am I making things worse?
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by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 7:18 PM
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kajira
by Emma on Feb. 14, 2013 at 7:35 PM
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Yes, I think it's wrong.

I'm an autistic adult who's video games are my "thing" - as a teenager, my "video game obsessions" is how I ended up finally making friends. It's how I stay int ouch with my friends now. I *still* play video games. I play video games wiht my husband, and my children.

There's nothing wrong with video games - however, I would make her a deal that if her school work is done and her chores are done, her free time can be however SHE wants to use it, if that means her video games, so be it.

If you really are pushing outtings, or social activities, make her a deal that she has to keep up with 1 activity per week outside of the home for being able to use her freetime as she wishes.

That is not unreasonable.

Taking something away in the manner that you did? Omg, Been there, done that, I ran away from home because of that as a kid - it wasn't just unfair, it's trying to mold an autistic kid into becoming something they *can't* become and taking away the ONLY thing that matters to them for no reason other than some idiot therapist feels you let them play games to much.

How about you take away their books, or cars, or their pets and still see if it's such a nice idea.

kajira
by Emma on Feb. 14, 2013 at 7:37 PM
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Also - you can use games for education and a lot of games can teach social skills, especially if they are multiplayer games. Get her involved with groups of kids who play similar games, it gives them something to talk about and encourages socialization.


haybreez02
by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 8:09 PM
Thank you for your response... It breaks my heart to see her hurt for them.
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Mi_Chelly
by Bronze Member on Feb. 14, 2013 at 8:31 PM
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Video games are very much an outlet for my son. But then our house is very game based. Games are used as social and creative time. My husband and I (along with our older NT teens) play MMO games. Our ASD son has been growing in the social world thanks to the help of his iPad and the games on it. I couldn't take games away any more then I could take his other obessions away. It would cause nothing but melt downs. 

On the same token, certain games are limited (wii, N64, PS3, PC) during the week, mostly since nothing gets done when those are allowed. Plus the PC the kids use is needed for the teens to do homework on, so games are not allowed. Weekends, all games are open. 

We also do a lot out of the house, weather permited. We do crafts and reading when weather does not. When we lived in Germany, we had nature trails and out door markets to roam. Haven't found much here in Idaho yet, but we walk around the base or go to one of the base parks. (Note, he does take his iPad out with him, since he is not one to "play" and he can only walk the edge so long before he gets bored, so he takes a break, plays on the iPad, goes back to walking the edges of the playground, rinse and repeat.)

MomOfOneCoolKid
by Gold Member on Feb. 14, 2013 at 8:36 PM

I agree with kajira, although I would try to save face a little. That is, I would say, I'm sorry that I took these away, but we have to have some balance.... I would say, make the balance generous. For example, after x amount of time on homework (10 minutes of homework per day per grade) etc.

haybreez02
by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 8:38 PM
My DD and I just made up a contract of when it's ok to play and when it isn't. And that homework and chores must come first. I hope this helps.
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Charizma77
by Carissa on Feb. 14, 2013 at 8:38 PM

My sons addiction is movies. We do not take them away, we monitor how often he can watch them but we don't use them to discipline (by taking away) although we have let him have extra time to watch as a reward.

Charizma77
by Carissa on Feb. 14, 2013 at 8:38 PM


Great idea!

Quoting haybreez02:

My DD and I just made up a contract of when it's ok to play and when it isn't. And that homework and chores must come first. I hope this helps.



goobergrl6
by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 10:23 PM

My 7 yo is OBSESSED with Minecraft at the moment. I like it on one hand because he interacts with other kids because of it. We made him his own server and only invite kids we know mostly from our homeschool group. Then when we see the one kid he plays the most with they TALK about it. Which is awesome because he does not talk to other kids much. HOWEVER we notice that the more he plays the more agressive he gets with one of his brothers and the more bahavior problems we have. We also have an ABA therapst with us 20+hrs a week and he has to work for time at the end of her session each day to play some. When she is not here we have started a timer sysatem. He can play for X ammount of time and then he has to do something else for X ammount of time. Usually he is ok with this. Sometimes he has a small meltdown when the timer goes off for him to stop but it is A LOT shorter then it used to be. He also must have all his school work and chores done before he can play. 

smarieljlee
by Sara on Feb. 14, 2013 at 10:53 PM

I had to limit computer/video game time. I tried to give my dd a set schedule, 3 half hours a day. That was just too much. It interfered with everything! It was a true obsession. I felt bad, because I had never limited an obsession before. But this was a tangible device that she could not live without. It created turmoil. Especially when it was time to do things she needed to do. 

I then took it down to 2 times a day. That didn't work. Once we went to 1 half hour things got better. A set time every day. It took a week or two, but she is now okay with it. She is actually more flexible because of it. 

One thing that helped was actually her idea. We made a deal. If I yell she gains 5 minutes on that half hour. If she yells, she loses 5 minutes. She gains and loses here and there. It has helped with self regulation. It's a point system that teaches her(and me as well) to be accountable. 

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