(photo: Samantha Sophia/Unsplash)
My eleven-year-old daughter is the one who wanted me to write this article. I'm going to tell you precisely how it all went down but first some personal history.
When my father brought home Intellivision (you probably had Atari), we were so surprised. Well first, because who ever heard of Intellivision? And second, because we weren't allowed to watch television. I think you had to have a partner or more to play most of the games, and I can recall loving all of them. The solo card game with the Computer Dealer was how I learned to play Poker! I can also recall going to the arcade and loving "Centipede."
When my 14-year-old son asked for a video game system, I took my time to think about it. The last time he had asked for anything besides books was five years ago when we were at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and of course, requested a wand. This wasn't just about him getting a toy, but how having this gaming system would affect the family. And after careful deliberation...my husband and I unanimously voted no. And I am thrilled with that decision. Here's why:
After hours of high school homework, what does my son do besides read? He composes music, plays with his sister, dreams up new roller-coasters, talks with me, looks at abandoned projects and jumps in...why would I want to change all of that? The arguments for it are plenty: hand/eye coordination, social aspects, family activity, and the most compelling: because it's FUN! Yes, but board games are too. And he'll most likely play these video games more than he will play Monopoly when he eventually leaves the house. These last few years before College are sacred.
(photo: Lea Bohm/Unsplash)
Okay, so why would my eleven-year-old daughter tell me to write this as the topic for my article? Because she is so grateful I said no. She calls it the best decision we ever made. And she wants it out there as a choice. When they're discussing a book she's reading (as what happened over breakfast today), or impromptu dancing, she glances over to me and smiles. Actually, if I'm going to be honest...they are both smiling.