October 23, 2007

A Letter From A Mother To Her Son

Dear Jerry,

I'm such a dummy. I've been telling you that you should be charge of determining the right amount of video game time for yourself, that you should be able to regulate that amount on your own, and then when your view of enough doesn't match up with my view of enough I get angry and snap at you for no good reason. I'm sorry. Please forgive me--I'm still learning.

I know it's not fair for me to say I'm letting you make your own choices and then get mad at you for making them. The other day, when you said that I was giving you too much responsibility and that it was too much pressure, I think you might have been feeling me pressuring you to bend to my will, rather than feeling the pressure of making that decision. You said you didn't think you could be in charge of regulating your own video game time, but I think you're wrong. I think you are quite capable of determining the right amount of time for yourself to play video games. The only problem is, I'm pretty sure what's right for you will be way too much for me.

I have to admit something. I'm prejudice against video games. I know there are things you're learning from them. I know you're being creative and solving problems and I know playing video games makes you really happy. I've been trying to tell myself it's okay for you to play a lot, but my prejudice is getting in the way. It's making me cranky.

So, here's my solution:

During the week, let's have no video games until after 4 p.m. That way we can do other things during the day. We can branch out, see the world, play some games, explore interesting subjects and hopefully end each day with a deeper understanding of our universe. Once we've done that I don't think the video games will bother me so much.

I'm sorry I had you doubting your ability to chose what's best for you. You're quite capable of making that choice. I'm just not quite capable of giving it to you yet.

Thanks for understanding. I love you.

Mom

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