Thursday, May 27, 2010

Disappointing Playdate

Poor Britt... He was all excited for his big playdate yesterday. He couldn't wait to ride the bus after Kindergarten let out to his friend's house and to play. Well. It turns out the best part of the playdate was the bus ride. Why? Because he didn't actually get to play with his friend. Rather, his friend played a video game while Britt watched him. The whole, entire time. Is that sad or what?! And Britt did not enjoy it one bit, which made me sad for Britt, but it also made me glad he likes to play for real instead of playing video games.

Brady and I don't believe in letting our kids have video games. Therefore, they don't! Have any video games, that is... That's why we live out in the country, after all, so our kids can go out and play and create adventures for themselves. Britt's favorite thing to do these days is to play cowboy in the barn. He loves to climb hay bales and fences and run around pretending to be some character from his imagination, partaking in a gunfight or a swordfight. Some people might find this inappropriate, but I'd rather have him making his own games than sitting down in front of a screen. He'll get plenty of screen time throughout his life, I'm sure. At least when he's playing, he's getting a little exercise and fresh air.

To be honest, I was a little shocked that Britt was disappointed. I thought he would be thrilled with the opportunity to play a video game. But watching someone play and playing it yourself are two different things, for sure.

I have to admit it is nice to have our beliefs validated. Frankly, I think parents use their kids' video games as babysitters. Is it any wonder there are so many children who have short attention spans and grow up feeling uncared for? No. No it is not. Between television and computers and video games, where is there time for human interaction? Even without video games, I feel like I barely spend one-on-one time with my B's. However, my kids are with me, talking to me, most of the time I am with them, whether I'm folding laundry, cleaning stalls or unloading the dishwasher or driving in the car, and that's something they wouldn't do if they were parked in front of a screen.

I had a parent tell me once that their kid "needed" a DS so they wouldn't be left out when they went to a friend's house. I thought it was complete crap when I heard it then, and I still think it is possibly one of the biggest jokes I've ever heard. Frankly, my kids can just feel left out if it comes to that, because what they should be doing when they go to a friend's house is playing for real. Isn't that rude? To go somewhere to spend time with someone and they end up giving their attention to a screen? Ridiculous! Which is actually exactly what happened yesterday, isn't it?

So my kids will just have to continue to be deprived in this way. Because in other ways, they are spoiled rotten. They each have a horse, they have room to roam, and they have each other. Who needs a video game? Not the 4 B's, that is for sure!

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