Are we BU not to have any kind of games console?

(61 Posts)
CambridgeBlue Sun 12-Jan-14 07:46:12

Unlike virtually everyone we know with children, we don't have a Wii, an Xbox or anything similar. I always though DD(11) was fine with this but she told us last night that she feels bored and left out when we meet up with friends because all the kids play on them and she doesn't know how. She made us feel like the 21st century equivalent of people who didn't have a TV when we were young.

The reasons we don't have one are that they are expensive, we don't want one in our small living room but haven't got room for a second TV elsewhere but mostly because I don't like the addictive nature of them - even really young children we know are obsessed with playing on them.

DD has her own laptop, phone, iPod and a DS so she's not being deprived in the technology stakes IMO. If we had a console I know she'd want to be on it all the time and quite honestly I feel she has enough 'screen time' with TV, Internet etc. DH and I don't play computer games (don't understand adults who do really) so she'd mainly be using it alone unless she had a friend over (that seems to be all the kids do when they go to each others houses now).

We do find it harder now she's getting older to know what to do on a weekend evening - we don't watch stuff like the X Factor etc which is all Saturday night TV seems to consist of, and we seem to have exhausted all the films and box sets that we can watch as a family. DD seems to think other families sit round playing games on their console but I can't believe that's the case and even if it is, it's not for us.

Really interested to hear how other people spend their leisure time and whether it does revolve around computer games. Also keen to know if it's just the children we know who seem so obsessed with them or whether they really are a 'most have' like a TV or stereo was for our generation.

RedHelenB Sun 12-Jan-14 07:50:00

"Not for us" as in adults not your daughter by the sound of things, I watch some rubbish with my kids on tv sometimes because that's what they like to do. Now I have an almost 15 year old she has atarted to geet more into period dramas & the like. TBH the wii is the only console we all play on.

BohemianGirl Sun 12-Jan-14 08:06:15

We dont have one either. DS1 had an xbox - utterly vile thing - I was glad when it got the ring of death.

willyoulistentome Sun 12-Jan-14 08:06:21

We did have a wii but it went in the loft because it was a nightmare for us as we could not get our eldest off it. (Has AS. Too much intense interest in the dam thing).
DH and I would not watch X factor etc by choice but the kids do love them so we watch them together. Kids also have ipods. Much easier to hide until homework is done than a console.

FrameyMcFrame Sun 12-Jan-14 08:10:36

Would recommend Wii but it the others. Wii games are often physical and sociable and involve the whole family. Xboxes etc more insular and addictive

Purplepoodle Sun 12-Jan-14 08:12:51

We do have a ps3 but it's in the cupboard and has pretty much been there since dc1 was born (6 years ago)as OH games were too violent for kids. Dc's do t even know it exists and I have no intention of introducing them.

If her friends have things like wii then they are very user friendly, my elderly parents have one as gives them a bit of exercise. It's not something she would need to practise on.

Surely you could have a game night on Saturday night of board games or card games instead.

We only have a wii. The physical games are great, and you haven't lived until you've had your ass handed to you on a plate by a 4yo at wii bowling ��

tumbletumble Sun 12-Jan-14 08:14:41

We haven't got a wii or xbox. The DC (age 4, 6 and 8) play games on the laptop and iPad. DS1 plays on his friends' wiis when he goes to their houses. Last night we all watched Splash together (except DS2 who was in bed) until DS1 and DD got bored and went off to play in their bedroom.

Tbh if they desperately wanted a console we'd probably get one. They don't seem to mind not having one.

bruffin Sun 12-Jan-14 08:22:57

Ee have a wii and one tv. Most of the games dd plays are the danncing and singing ones. They are very sociable and lots of fun.
Why dont you understandvadults who play? Do yoi lack imagition which is why you are scared of consoles. I love a good lego game with lots of ptoblem solving.

HavantGuard Sun 12-Jan-14 08:28:13

Consoles are hardly new! How old are you???

Smoorikins Sun 12-Jan-14 08:29:46

We have three. A ps2, a Wii and an Xbox.

Thevps2 is used primarily as a DVD player.
The Wii is used for just dance, which gets kids (and me!) Up and moving.
The Xbox is really only used when my son has friends over.

They were used more than that initially, but you can set sensible limits. They don't have to be available 24/7.

MrsMarcMarquez Sun 12-Jan-14 08:30:30

Also Wii here.
Alternatives for Saturday eve, board games, pamper eve, I take DC to library to choose a DVD, craft? Learn crochet or something.

We have a Wii. 11 year old loves Just Dance with her friends over.

I often watch crap TV with the kids to be sociable. Plus you can watch Netflix on the Wii.

Taffeta Sun 12-Jan-14 08:35:27

We have a Wii u which is only ever used when we have people over. Not a rule, its just the way it happens. Eg Christmas we had an archery competition with BIL and nephews.

DS (10) got an XBox for his birthday. He uses it in fits and starts, when he wants to play Minecraft or FIFA with his friends and cousins online. He will buy Live membership for a month to play with them, and then let it lapse for a few months and not bother with it.

DH and I don't play computer games.

So in reality, the consoles actually encourage interaction with others here.

uselessinformation Sun 12-Jan-14 08:36:42

Ds got a wii when was 11. He is my only child and we have one TV which is in the small lounge. I like to see him playing on it and enjoying himself, I work on the computer, knit or read in the same room. We negotiate around TV programmes that are on.I also join in with him occasionally, it's not my thing but he'll soon be grown up. I also watch some TV programmes that I wouldn't necessarily choose, but we are spending time together and I'll have many years to watch only what I want when he has left home.

LtEveDallas Sun 12-Jan-14 08:39:11

We won an X Box Kinect a couple of years ago. I could count on my fingers the amount of times DD has used it - we are just not a 'gaming' family.

DD is only 8 though. Maybe it will be used more as she gets older. Lots of her school friends play minecraft etc, but DD isn't interested in joining them for now.

paperlantern Sun 12-Jan-14 08:39:38

depends on her social group.

now if your dd had fallen in with a group that go drinking down the park I would say yabu to buy her a beer.

on the other hand if her social group are a wii playing lot, I'd be pretty happy with that. if she doesn't she will feel a little left out and unable to host as well as friends.

of course it's up to you whether the evils of game consoles are worse than your dd dealing with feeling a little left out. I got a wii second hand with a heap of games for £30 so not really that expensive and really doesn't take up much space.

Tbh we do often sit around as a family and play console games eg Disney infinity and big brain academy. although I am slowly noticing modern board games like ticket to ride taking over. now the cost of them and the space they take up is mind boggling

Taffeta Sun 12-Jan-14 08:39:48

Oh and re Saturday nights, it varies. We all watch the Voice and Strictly but not Britains got Talent, X Factor or any others.

We sometimes go out, or have people over. We never play on the Wii or XBox as a family unless we have other people over.

LumpySpacePrincessOhMyGlob Sun 12-Jan-14 08:40:22

Dd has a wii u and it is fabulous, our first console of any kind. My friend bought her daughter a second hand wii with a load of games bundled in. All the games are active and social.

I have never understood games consoles until I played lego city undercover. It. Is great. grin

MotherOfInsomniacToddlers Sun 12-Jan-14 08:41:36

We have a wii and its pretty much only used when we have people over, And the kids (mine are 1 and 2 so they don't join in) and adults all play together so it's a very social activity really. Think there's a time and place for them

CustardOmlet Sun 12-Jan-14 08:43:22

We have an xbox 360 that is a glorified DVD player and a Wii in the garage. DS is too young to use a console but I'm looking forward to playing the Wii Olympic Games with him when he's older. We only ever used it as a group activity and it's good for horrible weather.

hallowisitmeyourelookingfor Sun 12-Jan-14 08:43:27

We have a Wii which has been loved and used to death over five years. This Christmas we upgraded to the Wii U and its proven very popular so far. Dds are 8 and 9, don't go on it every day and we play with them on it too sometimes. The games can be very sociable and physical, and some are educational.
I think your main concerns can be eradicated though. The Wii has come down in price massively in recent years, I don't know how much they, but in terms of consoles, they aren't in the same league as the new Xbox or PlayStations. Also, people will be selling their Wii on pretty cheaply as they upgrade, we gave our one away to the people who live next door who have grandchildren to stay quite often.
And re worrying about her getting addicted, well it will certainly be a novelty for a while but it will tail off. And if it doesn't, you just limit her to half hour or whatever a day.
I don't think YABU exactly but you do sound a bit stuck in the dark ages for not considering it!

JumpingJackSprat Sun 12-Jan-14 08:44:34

We have a wii and dss has games like super mario brothers and the lego games which are brilliant for co-op play. He doesn't have all the other gadgets you r child has and I can't see how they are any better than a console. You can better control the time spent on a wii and everyone can play it. I think you're being a bit precious. You can pick up s second hand wii for about £50 with games.

paperlantern Sun 12-Jan-14 08:45:25

I will add it's about balance. it's a rare day we don't do some form of physical activity eg trip to the park or swimming.

MincedMuff Sun 12-Jan-14 08:46:59

I have a ps3, my dc are younger then yours though Op 8 and 6.

Yes they play on it sometimes but they play together in 2 player games or take turns. I find when they're on heir iPods they are much more goggle eyed iyswim. When they're friends come round yes they do play on it I suppose in your daughters point of view if she's going round her friends and that's what they're doing she will feel left out of she doesn't know where the x button is.

Can she not have a cheap console for next Christmas?

I have a few games but I haven't played on a game for years, ps3 does have other stuff on it apart from games we use love film a lot and it plays blue ray disks for the odd blue ray film, we also use it as a DVD player since the last one broke.

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