XBox Live has taken my son hostage....

Discussion in 'Smartphones, Computers, Gaming and Networking' started by Guest, May 11, 2007.

  1. Frankly, from someone who knows about addiction, my 12 year old son shows all the signs when we remove him from his XBox/Live setup...

    How do you parents handle it???
  2. CJ

    CJ Well-Known Member Admin War Zone Member

    I don't know if kids can have the same type of "addictions" that adults have. I certainly am of the school of thought that addictions are a combination of personality/physiological/habit. I guess try to nip it in the bud so you're not supporting the development of an addictive personality. We're trying to get rid of a binkie for a three year old so I feel your pain to a degree.
  3. From experience... binkies only need to replace that item with the anticipated increased approval/love from a parent to be gone.... while XBox kids, usually need a threat of punishment to remove them from their boxes. I even spent $180 for a new custom skateboard to get my son out of the gameroom and back into the street. :)
  4. Colton

    Colton New Member War Zone Member

    Instead of XBOX 360, how about some quality entertainment like reading "How To Kill A Mockingbird" or "The Great Gatsby" to him? ;)
  5. Thanks Colton.... but my son has read those books and would be bored beyond belief if I EVER read any book to him from now on... he's 12 and an AP student. Thanks anyway.
  6. Ken McDaniel

    Ken McDaniel Active Member War Zone Member

    In my house, the Xbox 360 and XBL account are mine and the kids are not allowed to touch it.
  7. You are a wise man Ken.... (do we have a thumbs up icon here?)
  8. Drew

    Drew Well-Known Member War Zone Member Top Poster

    So all you have to do is annex the 360 from him. :D
  9. Actually, I need to pull the power adapter box when I don't want him on it since it is upstairs in the gameroom, next to his bedroom, and my bedroom and the family room is downstairs. It isn't unusual for me to wake up and go into the kitchen to make coffee and hear his voice in the gameroom saying something like.... snipe him... or get the jeep(not the real term) or don't kill yourself.... argh...

    I probably need a remote controlled kill switch for the network or just stick to my rules and punishments for the XBox for him. ;)

    The tough part is that we gave him the Xbox 360 and LIve for Christmas and so he thinks that it is his to do with as he pleases in his spare time...?
  10. cjd

    cjd New Member


    We had family reading when I was 12, and it was a blast. Because it was beyond just reading a book, it was challenging books that brought about discussion. And it wasn't for long periods. It was, however, in the only room with A/C... ;)

    However. If that's what he does in his spare time, how he chooses to spend those other moments. If health and grades are good, chores are done, beyond having a talk about your concern, I don't know that there's a problem. It bothers you, clearly, and I'm sure he knows this.

    I can think of worse ways to bother you. ;)

    If other areas of importance are neglected, that's a different thing altogether. I wonder what he would think a good solution to be. Could be an interesting question. "Your grades are bad. I don't want to take your XBox away, but I'm tempted. How do you propose we solve this?" ;) An AP kid should be able to handle that one.

  11. Shane

    Shane Active Member

    As long as he isn't turning into an anti social kid that keeps his grades up and stays out of trouble, I don't think you have much of a problem.

    Just keep an eye on him because some very nasty stuff is said on XBL from racial slurs to bad language.
  12. Ken McDaniel

    Ken McDaniel Active Member War Zone Member

    Well, my daughter is fanatic about her Nintendo DS play. She is scheduled X amount of hours to use it, above that it gets put up. I suggest putting him on a schedule. If she gets rude about it, she loses hours. My wife even has a chart in the kitchen which shows hours remaining or taken away.
  13. Thanks guys for all the great suggestions!

    As some of you have suggested, there are worse things for him to do with his time. I guess my primary concerns is his compulsion to go on XBL the second he enters the home, and the language and speaking tone I hear him using while playing Halo. I can't but help worry that yelling "Freakin' Kill Him" repeatedly doesn't somehow desensitize you to killing... and I've told him to stop saying freakin' too... but I can't be in the gameroom all the time.

    We do have a limit per day and per week and restrict when he can play, and do like being able to use it as a disciplinary tool, but, he never immediately comes when we want him(needs to finish a game) and is always in a rush to get back playing from times we get together as a family(like dinner for instance). Family movie night has all but disappeared and when we make him do stuff with us, he is grumpy as all get out... until of course we tell him he can go and play again.

    Anyway, he recently got enough money to buy a skateboard, and although never thought I'd say this... I am glad to see him going outside with his friends to the skate park on weekends. :D

    Thanks again for the help.
  14. CJ

    CJ Well-Known Member Admin War Zone Member

    merc, I for one think that compulsion towards violence comes from OTHER areas besides video games and you won't find a stronger detractor from this same concept than my brother Drew. You've been listening to Jack Thompson too much.
  15. cjd

    cjd New Member

    It wasn't long ago we were discussing this after some study or other, the results of which are worth considering here. People (generally, kids particularly) KNOW it's a video game, and violence there is not necessarily connected with any sense of reality. Parsing memories later, there is a clear delineation between reality and video games as far as what took place where.

    Movies and TV on the other hand, people had a really hard time separating memories and identifying which were movies, which were real.

    Both increased aggressiveness in how people responded to things relative to time after the event.

  16. Who's Jack Thomson?

    I am a believer of changing behavior by changing thought, and it is from that basis that I worry about people who enjoy thinking about killing and encouraging others to do so too.

    At the same time, I do no think it is a black and white type issue and can easily believe that someone who enjoys killing and taunts others to do the same in a video game, is much less problematic than someone who thinks of doing the same in real life. The scary part for me is the difficulty that some teens have in seperating games from real life, and I can't help but repetitively playing games which tout rape and killing as somehow having some negative impact on a growing childs personality and thoughts?

    That said, video games are just one more thing which parents need to overcome or put in proper perspective, for their children, in this time of their learning about ED and homicide teen bombers before puberty hits.

    I know I probably worry too much about my kids, but, better worry too much than not enough, IMO. :)

    Thanks again for the help.
  17. Shane

    Shane Active Member

    As long a the kid is brought up properly, you have nothing to worry about.
  18. Ken McDaniel

    Ken McDaniel Active Member War Zone Member

    Shane is absolutely right. Before video games we roamed around on our BMX bikes getting in fights and throwing rocks at each other. Oh, we played sports too. Voilence is ingrained in our culture. Video games are just yet another extension of that culture. The answer to the question is probably not so much how to limit it, but rather how to use it to our advantage.

    Merc, you ever thought about taking your son to a paintball field?
  19. Saurav

    Saurav Active Member War Zone Member

    Well, I've spent a year or so being obsessed with playing Halo myself :) Playing online against other people is pretty different from playing the game by yourself. For me, it was a much bigger adrenaline rush. And I tend to get pretty competitive with this kind of stuff, so every time I ended up against someone much better than me (which was often), that would seriously 'upset my equilibrium' :) And then I'd play till midnight and go straight to bed... and if I'd lost the last 5 games or something, I'd have a hard time falling asleep. And it doesn't help when you're tired - your focus is gone, which makes it more likely that you'll lose, which pisses you off more so you play more, but you keep playing worse... And it was also a bad time at work, and I basically spent a few months straight where I'd come home from work, play Halo, stop when my wife said dinner was ready, play Halo, go to bed. My wife told me later that I was pretty much gone, and she knew not to try and talk to me. Which is pretty sad.

    So, I had to consciously change the way I played Halo, or it was just stressing me out more than being something I was having fun with. It's just a game, after all. Eventually, I found a group of friends to play with, and that was much more fun. It was still competitive, but you don't have that same feeling of "God I hate you" if your ass is being kicked by someone you know. Well, 'know' in an online gaming friend sense. And I also made sure I logged off about 30 minutes before bed time. That changed it from being a means of relieving the stress at work, instead of adding to it.

    So anyway... telling a team-mate to snipe someone - that's strategy and learning how to play with others instead of trying to get all the kills yourself :) There are good things you can learn from playing with people. Maybe keep an eye on whether he's getting too emotionally vested in the game. I still don't think it'll turn him into a murderer :) I never felt like going over to someone's house and shooting him. But it did make me grumpy and not fun to be around, and that wasn't good.

    End of ramble.
  20. Yup, he's done it a couple of times, although he still doesn't own his own gear for it. They'll occasionally shoot each other with airsoft guns for fun, and he's been target shooting with me a couple of times too.. although he can't handle the recoil and gets frustrated. He also does the LaserRage thing about once a month or so. On top of that, he plays full contact football and Lacrosse whichs keeps him in bruises year round. ;)

    Now, he is in trouble again with XBox since I just got notified via email that he purchased new Halo maps (again) and some 1000 pt package from MS which cost my CC an additional $17 total. He claims he thought that the downloads were free.... argh. No XBox for him for three days and he is gonna work off that $17 too.

    I wonder if I take the CC card off the account if he will still be able to do what he likes on XBox?

    Thanks again for the suggestions and help.

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