X Box Live is dominating my sons life!!!!!!!

(41 Posts)
emsylou Fri 09-Mar-12 21:20:12

I am at the end of my tether over my sons obsession with his xbox and playing online with his friends from school. He is 14 years old and has very little interest in anything else apart from gaming on his xbox with his friends online. I am about to have a baby and really want to get some rules and boundaries down around this so he is not sneaking on it everytime my back is turned. Has anyone else had issues with teenagers and xbox live usage and what is a reasonable amount of time to play?? at the moment he only has one evening a week where he dosent play it, he plays for two hours a night the other nights and on the weekends it is hard to get him to do anything else!! To make matters worse...his friends from school are on it all the time...it is like their virtual socialising!! It is not a healthy past time and I would really value some advice on this one. Thanx x

tralalala Fri 09-Mar-12 21:29:25

we have an hour a day rule here. with one day off a week. if he breaks it he loses it for a week. no excuses. (give him a timer). works a treat (especially fter he lost it twicw).

tell him in a positive un confrontational way as poss. and come up with some other things to do. And dont be on th4e internet yourself for hours otherwise he will just think you are being a hypocrite.

Xmastreat Sun 08-Apr-12 10:43:16

My son is 12, loves his Xbox! he has made friends with children all over the world, france, Ireland! I am always ear dropping on his conversations and i have listened to them talking to him so I know things are cool there smile I only allow him on the Xbox at the weekend, school holidays are a pain but I've enrolled him in a sports group durning the day and he has time in the afternoon to play on it,
I ensure he done all his homework and household task before going on, i feel like I'm playing the role of the wicked stepmother but I no its for his own good.

Dee03 Sun 08-Apr-12 12:45:15

I have 3 ds who all have xbox's.
Eldest ds (15) lives on his 24/7 and it drives me nuts
Middle ds (13) only goes on his occasionally as he goes out with his mates
Youngest ds (10) is on his a lot but he does also socialise outside the house too

emsylou Wed 18-Apr-12 16:30:14

apparently there are timer controls where you can put a pin in and put a time limit on the xbox so it goes off after a certain amount of time. I mentioned this to my son and he freaked out. He says i dont understand and I think he might be right, the teenage boy is a mystery to me! will keep on trying to get him to find a balance!

Pommymumof3 Sat 21-Jul-12 07:40:05

My son is addicted to it too (10 yo)
Its awful he literally bursts into tears of rage when I tell him to turn it off....
I have now limited it's usage to weekends only...
It just can't be healthy.....sad

DoingItForMyself Sat 21-Jul-12 08:03:14

My 12 y/o was totally addicted to his, would play for 7 hours at a time some weekends and still said he hadn't been on it long enough! I tried limiting days/hours but he would mope around practically in tears because he had 'nothing else to do'.

Then he discovered skateboarding, all his x-box mates also now skate too and they go out for hours on end doing something physical and in the fresh hour! Still googles skateboards and parts for about 3 hours a night and its all he talks about (addictive personality!) but at least its something active.

Maybe you could try and find a skate park/bmx track close by and see if it appeals? Otherwise you may have to wait for girls to become his new obsession. Sorry!

gymboywalton Sat 21-Jul-12 08:05:38

for goodness sake!!! you are the parents!!!
REMOVE the x box!!!!!

take it away so that they can't play on it 24/7
sell the bloody thing!!

sad faces like it's something you have no control over-you totally have control- just get rid of it!!!

DoingItForMyself Sat 21-Jul-12 08:35:19

But gymboy, when all his friends are on it, that's like taking away his friends - its like grounding him for no reason! It sounds simple but actually when one kid in a class is the only one who doesn't have/play a particular x-box game they feel excluded. There's a middle ground somewhere its just finding it.

gymboywalton Sat 21-Jul-12 08:42:03

if a child is spending 7 hours a day glued to a screen then i would have no issue removing it-even if it meant he was 'excludued'

i have a 12 year old son and it is just not allowed in our house. i wouldn't allow the bloody thing in the house in the first place.
we have a wii and a computer and ds is allowed limited time on them but that is that.

he is popular and has friends and a healthy active life.

Wolfiefan Sat 21-Jul-12 08:46:44

You don't need to take it away. Just limit the time he spends on it. Does he have hobbies outside the home? They would act as a healthy distraction.

Tomjoules Sat 21-Jul-12 08:55:35

And be aware that evenif you put a pin on it, there is an easily found solution on you tube that teens can use to get round it in moments ...

keithlemonsbackdoors Sat 21-Jul-12 13:20:13

I feel your pain, we've been there.

My advice? Break the bloody thing. Of you can't bring yourself to do that, take the fuse out of the plug so he thinks it's broken.

Seriously.

emsylou Mon 06-Aug-12 18:35:00

i love the varied responses...thanx! yes he has other interests..he loves camping, he has a telescope and enjoys everything to do with the solar system, he swims etc, i have a 5 month old baby that dosent sleep well at night and we live rurally with a very limited bus service, this is not helping the x box useage...we did do the pin for a while but it caused loads of arguements so im giving him responsibility at the moment to see if he can manage it himself. Tomorrow we are getting him a new bike this will help with mobility. watch this space....thanx !!!!!!

usualsuspect Mon 06-Aug-12 18:37:36

Just leave him to it, 2 hours a night doesn't sound excessive to me.

usualsuspect Mon 06-Aug-12 18:40:18

Hes talking to his mates online, a bit like what MNetters do for hours.

I share yor pain!

TheCunningStunt Mon 06-Aug-12 18:43:18

Turn the modem off?

usualsuspect Mon 06-Aug-12 18:43:59

It's not his fault you live in the middle of nowhere.

My DCs are 14,13,8 and not allowed Xbox or ps3 during the school week.
Max 2 hours during holidays and weekends.

You are the parent, can't you just set down the rules and if he doesnt follow them, take it away for a week?

If I left my 8 y/o ds2 to "self police" little big planet on the ps3 he would play for 12 hours.

The pin causes loads of arguments? Tough. IMHO.

stephrick Mon 06-Aug-12 18:54:45

My 14 yo DS also spends alot of time on internet and gaming X box, but use this to your advantage, I pop up every hour asking what he is doing today, has he contacted his pals, at least 1 day out of 3 he goes out with them, better than nothing.

bonnie34 Sat 25-Aug-12 17:57:28

I have joined Mumsnet today just to find advice on this topic!

My 14 year old boy would spend every minute of the day gaming on the computer if I allowed him, and one of his friends has spent his entire summer, yes, all day, every day, bar the odd visit to the doctor, on his. Sometimes other Mums make me feel like a bossy dragon preventing my teen from 'developing his independence', hence my relief at some of the sensible comments, especially Gymboywalton.
I spent some time reading various web-sites on addiction and it does seem to be potentially quite a problem. Surely its common sense that we should protect our children from new exposures and at least limit them (remember thalidomide drug). I found advice recommending a maximum 'screen time' of 2 hours a day. I have actually found myself encouraging my son to watch tv more because a) it is time spent with the family b)there are some great education programmes amongst the drivel, even if it is 'social'education showing such things as body language (missing from the gaming situation). The above mentioned child who spends all day on the computer is now diagnosed with aspergers, where such things as body language is not well understood. Could there be a link with excessive gaming?

vivimum Fri 14-Sep-12 10:29:49

Advice honestly from a mum who has been there...
.. unplug the lot and sell it!!
any comments or thoughts like 'they grow out of it' and 'at least you know where they are' is not helpful as my husband had assured me this was the case!!
Although Every child is different and parents tend to know their own child best, its very easy when you have a baby to give in to that extra time gaming and end up with an addict.
All their friends would soon come out for a real game of football if more parents pulled the plug... talk to his friends mums!!!!
At 19 my son is totally barred from x box..they do not grow out of it!!! i wont allow one in my house...he is restricted to an hour a day for internet and has at last become more sociable, active and pleasant to be around.. its been hard work and very traumatic for us to get here so just follow your instinct!!
I really wish I had but with a new baby myself the x box was a great distraction and as his older brother went through 'a stage' I presumed it would be the same for him. Online was the biggest mistake as his brother never had that so lost interest.. do yourselves a favour and dont go there!!

Balderdashandpiffle Fri 14-Sep-12 11:15:39

My son has grown out of it, he's 15.

He went from going on it a lot, to not using it at all.

It's called growing-up.

Fosterangel Fri 14-Sep-12 11:18:36

Our 15yo foster son would be on X-Box Live all day every day if he could. Like all teens he desperately needs to be "doing" something all the time and it is so easy just to pick up the controller and start up X-Box as soon as he wakes up and immediately see who is about for company. It is sort of a habit and gives instant results. Husband solved this by turning off the internet at 8.00pm week nights and we do not have it on in the day at the weekend. Luckily, he is in his GCSE years so we said we were doing this to help him study (bit lame but all we could think of a the time and actually we do want him to do well!). Having no X-Box winkled him out of his bedroom and out to find his mates. It costs us more when he goes out as he needs money for bus, swim, etc and lunch if he goes out but we prefer this. It is up to the adults to set the limits (and up to the teens to moan like mad that we are so horrible and mean until they do discover that there is a world outside of X-Box!). I am actually monitoring the length of his thumbs as I am sure they will grow enormous with all that X-Boxercising on the controllers!!

What would you like him to do in tge two hours he would be xboxing? Surely all his friends will be occupied on it so no scope for playing out. As long as he is getting all his homeowrk and chores if he has them.done, why drag him.off it? What are you wanting him to do instead?

HungryHippo89 Fri 07-Dec-12 14:54:24

My DP obviously missed the "growing out of it part" he is nearly 30 and he still goes on it every chance he gets ...

However i don't personally see the problem with it for children as long as homework is done, they have had their tea (and socialised with the family a bit), done their jobs and showered ... what's wrong with them playing on it for a few hours before they go to bed .. however if they take the piss, sell it and buy yourself something nice smile

LineRunnerWithBellsOn Fri 07-Dec-12 15:36:11

My son was on it all the time when he was 13, to a ridiculous degree, and now at nearly 15 he hardly uses it, and in fact I am ebaying loads of his games and accessories at the moment.

Actually we have done a bit of the ebay listing together and it has been a relief fun!

Smudging Fri 07-Dec-12 15:49:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sandra442 Sat 29-Dec-12 01:24:36

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VestaCurry Sat 29-Dec-12 01:30:40

Crystal meth - bloody hell!!!!

Sandra442 Sat 29-Dec-12 01:36:35

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DadDancer Sat 29-Dec-12 05:03:15

ha ha sounds like there are few gamer phobics on here, and whats this business of 'growing out' of games all about? People of all ages play games these days, even my 60 year old parents. I tend to spend about 2 hours a night on xbox as i prefer it to watching tv.

Like everything else as long it is done in moderation, then there shouldn't be any problems. Also it can be made into a multiplayer family activity too if you are worried about your kids spending too much time on their own in their bedroom.

My boys are 2 and 3. This thread has disturbed me greatly. Sorry I don't even know what an xbox is ( I am 42 and a fullime professional working mum in PR ). WE don't have a pc in the house. WE live in rural italy. The children have bikes, footballs and do swimming, etc etc..

You are the boss not him.

What would your parents have done if you at 14 years old spent 7 hours in front of a screen daily? Is this normal in the uk for teenagers now?

ps What is an xbox?

tehtoby900 Sun 29-Sep-13 19:20:46

As a kid I'd say the Xbox is a great way to interact with your friends. However it's really easy to become addicted to it cough me I used to spend up to 12 hours on it and then the next day do just the same.
After a while I realised this was getting out-of-hand so I unplugged the Xbox from the TV and now everyday I'm out meeting people in REAL LIFE and doing REAL THINGS.

hugoagogo Sun 29-Sep-13 19:34:02

ds (also 14) is obsessed with his xbox, he has the timer set on it for 12 hours a week and how he divides that up is up to him, it is blocked from the internet 9pm-7.30am too. Thankfully he really only plays fifa and that is "rubbish offline".
He moans about it, but it saves arguments and gives him a little control.

As for people growing out of it hmm both dh and I play games on the xbox/laptop/wii and we are in our 40s I don't see much likelihood of either of us giving it up any time soon.

anon2013 Mon 30-Sep-13 15:37:22

2 hours a day sounds reasonable to me.

FabMumDebs Wed 23-Apr-14 23:10:00

I bet he's the lowest level out of the entire school. He just get bullied

Chloe1992 Thu 07-Aug-14 21:50:55

I agree with gymboywalton. You are the parents - dont allow it! My son is 9 years and we have no x box or play station. A find it soul destroying that so many parents are prepared to allow their children on this mind numbing rubbish for soo many hours. It's basically a cheap babysitter in my view. My son does trampolining, karate, swimming, BMXing and also plays musical instruments. And when he has friends round and they all turn up with their iPads and tablets I tell them they can have them back when they go home! I'm not prepared to have children round to play/socialise and have them all zombied out on computer games! They have bikes, skateboards, tennis rackets, cricket bats, scooters, footballs, diablos etc to play with and if its bad weather they have Lego technic, mechano, loom bands, top trumps, match attax, games, they can turn the house into a den if they want to! And if they want to watch a DVD they can do that. And as a parent you have to lead by example and spend time with your kids! We go on bike rides together, on walks together and take picnics. Kids love walking through woods and splashing through streams if you can be bothered to take the time. I've spent hours stood at skate parks with my son! At the end of the day do you want your kids to have childhood memories or not?

marylou1975 Fri 03-Oct-14 11:12:20

my husband got a xbox 360 for our teenage son when he was 12 ,he was a bit of a loner kept himself to himself , had very few friends maybe 1-2 and even then he couldn't be bothered unless I took him to see them so we decided on an xbox for him , we never knew what was coming , it quickly become an obsession , the only time we would see him was when it was dinner time , he would then scoff his food quickly to get back on the xbox , at night we had to shout at him to get off the thing , he would come downstairs and go straight on his laptop watching himself play games via you tube , he's 18 now and has no friends , stays in all day , expects me to cook and clean for him , he relies on me so much that it has become a burden . my son hits me if he doesn't get his own way , I lie to my husband about the bruises , he would throw him out if he found out , that scares me , my son would not survive . my son bullies my other 2 children as well , hits them very hard . xbox has destroyed my sons life don't let this happen to you sad

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