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DS 12 only likes gaming for fun

16 replies

cakedup · 17/02/2018 21:48

I know i'm to blame, I think I've been too relaxed with letting DS game for long periods. He absolutely loves gaming. He hates school (dyslexic) which is a constant source of stress for him. So when he comes home, a part of me feels he should be able to switch off and do something he loves after spending all day doing things that he hates.

But it's got to the point that it's all he ever wants to do in his spare time at home. He has a room FULL of stuff that goes unplayed/unused. When I do tell him to get off the computer, he literally doesn't know what to do with himself. He is usually happy to play board games with me. But if I'm busy, then he'll just mooch around, lie down and daydream, huff and puff, and literally count the hours until he is allowed back on. Or sometimes he'll follow me around talking non-stop.

I'd be interested to hear what other pre-teens and teens get up to in their downtime at home?

OP posts:
ineedamoreadultieradult · 17/02/2018 21:52

Apart from school does he do anything else? My DS 10 is the same he doesn't really do anything when he is in the house apart from play on the Xbox and do his homework but that's because when he is out of the house apart from school he does football, cricket and swimming multiple times a week sometimes more than one on the same evening. Therefore I let it go. Can he be encouraged to join some clubs? It's easier to withstand the pull of the Xbox if there isn't one available.

cakedup · 17/02/2018 22:02

ineedamoreadultieradult yes I think I would be more relaxed if DS was more active like your DS.

DS hates team sports. Even at school during breaks he'd rather play on his phone with his friends, not run around with a ball or play table tennis like the others. He does Archery once a week after school which he loves. I couldn't really afford anything else on that level. He does like swimming, so I try to take him to that at weekends but he's got one friend he goes swimming with so it depends a lot on that friend's availability. It was easier when he was younger, we would be at the park all the time! But he's too old for playgrounds now.

OP posts:
cakedup · 17/02/2018 22:06

I do really need to get some ideas on how to get him more active. I just don't feel he has a good balance at the moment i.e. too much screen time, not active enough.

OP posts:
ineedamoreadultieradult · 17/02/2018 22:07

Would he like geo-caching? It's active and you use your phone so he might not be so resistant.

VandelayIndustries · 17/02/2018 22:13

Things my dc have enjoyed include

Climbing wall
Roller/speed skating

PrincessHairyMclary · 17/02/2018 22:20

How about some form of cadets? Army and ATC don't take until 13 but St Johns and Sea/ Navy take from younger. You may even have police or fire in your area but they aren't as common. He will make different friends and the activities range from sports, flying glider or doing aerobatics in planes, visits to stations, take exams which can lead to extra BTEC qualifications, adventurous activities, going to stations both in the U.K. And overseas.

No guarantee he would want to join an armed service but will have some brilliant experiences a long the way. They often meet twice a week about £3 a session but they often have access to extra funds if you can't afford it. Uniform etc is provided free and extra sports and trips etc are heavily subsidised.

SheSaidNoFuckThat · 17/02/2018 22:27

I'm having same issue with my DSs 12 & 14, they're just not interested in anything other than consoles when they're not at school. They do see their friends but they're then gaming at each other's houses instead.

We have suggested cadets/boys brigade etc but they look at you like you've grown an extra head!

Keen to see other suggestions, sorry I can't help

Wh0KnowsWhereTheT1meG0es · 17/02/2018 22:37

Cooking? Mine are 12 and 14 and both reasonably happy to go to the supermarket (with or without me) and cook or bake.

cakedup · 17/02/2018 23:17

I've heard about geocaching ineedamoreadultieradult and love the idea of it. Only thing that worries me is a0 the mobile data needed and b) I am notorious for getting lost. Both DS and I are dyspraxic and awful with direction. I fear we'd spend the entire day getting lost.

VandelayIndustries DS might enjoy climbing wall actually. What does Warhammer involve exactly?

PrincessHairyMclary I don't know too much about cadets, love the sound of all the different ideas, however I really am not keen on the military aspect of it. Is it very boot-campish? I just know DS won't like that kind of thing!

Just nice to know I'm not alone SheSaidNoFuckThat! Although I do at least prefer it when DS games with friends rather than alone.

Wh0KnowsWhereTheT1meG0es That is something we could do together. He couldn't manage it alone. He is a very fussy eater but won't ever say no to cake so would be a nice thing we could do together actually.

OP posts:
Wh0KnowsWhereTheT1meG0es · 17/02/2018 23:37

One of mine is dyspraxic and extremely fussy too, shopping and cooking together has definitely improved his relationship with food. Knife skills leave something to be desired but we're getting there!

VandelayIndustries · 18/02/2018 09:15

Warhammer is a sort of card game I suppose. Like they play on the Big Bang Theory.

Scoobygang7 · 18/02/2018 09:21

Warhammer is a table top game. You buy build and paint miniature models. It's played in a group using dice rolls like dungeons and dragons.

This is the shops website

They have things on a weekend and some evenings. Also staff are happy for people to come down paint and build their own models in shop.

(I only know so much as my ex was very much in to it)

NorthernSpirit · 18/02/2018 09:43

I limit screen time as it’s like an addition with kids. This is worth a read

How old is your son? Remember you’re the adult, you make the rules.

ladybee28 · 18/02/2018 23:14

DSS is similar, OP, when his dad's home – Xbox full-time.

When it's just me and him at home, though, he's usually used up his play time allowance for the day (DP works afternoons / evenings) and I've started to get him into other stuff.

Books (am I very old-school with this?) were my first go-to - after a few trips to the bookshop he's now found a series he's into and will read for an hour or so at a time.

Then we found some step-by-step manga drawing tutorials on YouTube and he spent hours following those and drawing along. I've now got him into working on his own comic book, creating backstories for his own characters. As long as I show lots of interest and excitement at regular intervals, he's quite happy drawing and putting it all together into storyboards. I got him a couple of cork boards for his room to stick them all up onto and move them around.

YouTube tutorials are actually pretty great for all kinds of stuff - chemistry experiments you can do with stuff around the house, how to build things...

Painting was another winner – a couple of big sheets of canvas outside and some chunky paintbrushes. He did a big painting of the world one of his Xbox games is set in, so that's up on his wall in his room now.

We've also recently got into a game where I give him a prompt word and sending him outside to find materials to make it with (an elephant, an alien, a hat). I'm still finding bits of stick and old leaves all around the house, but that's ok with me!

Training the dog to hit the deck when he pretends to shoot it was another hit –although she now does it whenever anyone points at anything–

It took a while for us to get to this point, though – I'm (again, perhaps, old-school) actually a massive cheerleader for boredom in kids. The first few months I gave DSS a couple of ideas and left him to do what he wanted with them. He didn't do much... until one day I was on the couch reading and he came and sat next to me with his book (with a GIANT huff - ha!), and the next day he picked up the sketchpad, and off we went.

Let him huff and puff and count and daydream if he wants – the other options are there. If he gets bored enough of being bored, he'll find something to do....

Scragyanny · 27/02/2018 20:58

Cakedup, I am/have exactly the same! He does one club guitar which he's been wanting to give up for a while. He finishes this week but only on condition he does something else, so he will be starting swimming again. I'm going to try increasing this so he does more out of the house where the lure of the xbox isn't so strong😆. Some good ideas on here but have tried most and with a very stubborn boy, it often isn't worth the arguments and effort to actually get him out and ruin a day! Geocaching is great if they're willing to go for a walk and explore (unfortunately not my DS). Cooking works usually, as does the random games of squash or badminton or cinema. If I want to get him out other than that I usually resort to bribery and a promise of McD's, crepes or hot choc and still have to deal with moaning and whinging until we get back home! We live remotely in woods, so when the weather's ok, I can usually convince him to go den building or whittling, but even this he gets bored of unless I can get a friend round too.

OutyMcOutface · 27/02/2018 21:01

Well I would normally suggest books but if he is dyslexic this may be stressful for him. What about music lessons? He can spend some time he normally would at home having a lesson (or it could provide a nice break to a stressful day if the school offers them during school hours) and the rest of the time normally spent playing video games could go on practice, listening to professionals playing his chosen instrument etc.

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