One Parent is Too Rigid, Other Parent Lacks Follow Through: Setting Up a Schedule for Video Games
Precious Chong blogs about co-parenting alongside her ex and his new fiancee
Wes and I have had a recurring argument over two things. But really it’s just one thing. Well, it is two things, but I’m going to talk about one of them today.
It’s over the amount of video games that Jack plays.
Yes, I know. He shouldn’t play any video games. It’s bad. It’s violent. It’s not good for his brain development.
But…He loves them. He is obsessed with them. He loves them so much that he likes to watch YouTube videos of 19-year-old nerdy boys playing them while they make dumb jokes.
Jack can play his DS on Fridays and Wii on Saturdays. He can watch YouYube videos on Thursdays. Or is it Sundays? Sometimes he wants to play Wii on Fridays if he’s with me on Saturdays. And if we go to the movies or he’s at a friend’s house, he might play them there. Or maybe if I have an audition and he has to come with me I’ll let him play a game on my iPhone. Or when we go on a plane. Or when he had to be in my friend’s wedding in Boston.
So, I’m not always perfectly strict about it and therein lies madness.
“Jack told me that you forced him to play video games with Dylan Sunday morning,” Wes says to me on Monday.
“I didn’t force him.” I say. And then I freak out, because a) I’m on the PMS train, b) it’s February in Toronto, and c) I’m tired of Wes picking on every little thing. We’ve been copacetic, Jack seems happy, things are relatively stable, why rock the boat with every little thing?
Before video games, Wes and I used to argue about how much TV Jack should watch.
Let’s just say,Treehouse was a good friend of mine and Jack’s for a while.
I watched a lot of television as a kid. Too much probably. But I loved it. I watched it close. Real close up. Once so close the TV fell on my head. I didn’t get hurt but you get the idea.
I loved the Brady Bunch, Gilligan’s Island, the Adams Family, the Muensters, Bewitched, Happy Days, Charlie’s Angels, Three’s Company, Taxi etc. Television was my window into “normal.”
Why would I want to rob my child of that? Although, truth be told, his friend Monty is now banned from playing at our house because I let them watch Tremors on Netflix.
Oh well, live and learn, I guess.
Precious Chong is a writer and actor living in Toronto. She’s also a professional stilt walker and is the daughter of cult movie hero Tommy Chong.
Photo via Precious Chong