Ninten-Don't... How I watched my children turn into monsters

Discussion in 'NDS - Console and Game Discussions' started by Hadrian, May 7, 2008.

  1. Hadrian
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    Former Staff Hadrian Better than Craigslist

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    This is yet another article from the Daily Mail badmouthing our precious little NDS.

    Linky

    Ninten-Don't... How I watched my children turn into monsters the minute I bought them a computer game

    As my eight-year-old son Gabriel hit his five-year-old sister Honey on the head, ten-year-old Phoebe started yelling and the youngest, three-year- old Lucien, joined in the fun, a red mist descended over my vision.

    It was eight in the morning. No one had eaten breakfast. The curtains had not been opened. The beds had not been made. The dog had not been walked. Our habitual regime of a ten-minute morning music practice had been abandoned.

    The entire mood was one of anger, confrontation, pain and frustration.

    Welcome to a family of Nintendo-users. Or should I say user, since we had only one of these infernal devices.

    I finally buckled to buy a Nintendo DS Lite after considerable and sustained pressure from my children.

    What finally did it was a suggestion from my oldest child that without a Nintendo in her school bag, she would be unable to fit in at school. (Yes, I know - oldest trick in the book. And I fell for it.)

    It was that, plus reading a piece in one newspaper which suggested that if you regularly played Brain Trainer on your Nintendo, you'd bump up your mental acuity.

    And another piece from child expert Dr Tanya Byron, of all people, which, as far as I recall, actually suggested that regular use of interactive toys such as the DS helped your children to be caring and creative.

    I also had a sneaking and totally selfish wish to be Mother of the Year. Which I was, for about a day.

    When the pale blue, £150 Nintendo finally arrived last November, fresh from Hong Kong (I had bought it on the net), crammed with a 'bundle' of 20 games including Brain Trainer, Fifa 08, and Nintendogs, my children hugged me tightly.

    "Thank you, thank you, Mummy," they chorused. "We LOVE you!"

    Mission accomplished, I smiled indulgently at them.

    Then we were off, down a slope which became comprehensively more slippery the longer my family and the Nintendo existed under the same roof.

    At first, I decreed that the device would be a "family Nintendo", passed around lovingly by everyone as we all played Brain Trainer together.

    That idea lasted about a week. I found Brain Trainer utterly predictable and the children found it totally boring.

    Gradually, each child found his or her own Nintendo 'fix'.

    Gabriel became obsessed with playing the football game Fifa 08: over meals, on the loo, in bed at midnight.

    Phoebe just took virtual dogs for walks, while Honey zoned in on the My Little Pony game.

    The 'toy' caused endless rows, sessions of screaming and increasingly regular parental punishments.

    It was removed and placed in my desk. The children found it and hid it in their bedroom. I put it into my bag.

    They discovered it again. I devised a daily Nintendo rota.

    Then we lost the charger. What a great week that was. The musical instruments were resumed, the real dog was walked, the argument quotient in the house calmed down.

    Then we found the charger again. The children wept with joy. "You'd better behave with it this time," I warned. "Otherwise..."

    "Yeah, yeah," they shouted, skipping off happily. How long did that last? How long do you think - 20 minutes, tops.

    I'll admit, the Nintendo had its uses. I managed to achieve a longheld aim of getting a short haircut for Phoebe via the simple tactic of allowing her to take the Nintendo to the hairdresser's.

    She was so engrossed that she failed to notice the flashing blades and ended up with a wonderfully short crop.

    Having a Nintendo to hand is also jolly useful when you are on a train with a child and want to read a book, write a letter or call the office.

    Hand over the Nintendo and without any effort, you have a window of about two hours of peace, with your child doing something quietly constructive.

    Except, it's not. What is constructive about playing football on a tiny screen, or washing a virtual dog, or watching a hideous pink pony trot around a pink palace decorated with shells?

    Fighting to get onto the machine was bad enough, but it was worse when they were forcibly dragged from it.

    Our Nintendo had taken the guise of a small but toxic drug which, little by little, was poisoning my children.

    When they had had their fix, they were even more frustrated and discontented than before.

    Interestingly, Dr Susan Greenfield, writing last weekend in the press, seems to suggest the same thing.

    A specialist in brain degeneration, Dr Greenfield has a new book out which predicts that young people are headed for a mass loss of personal identity, thanks to the amount of time they spend in the interactive realms of things like Nintendo.

    "The time is well nigh," she said, "to explore the impact of these technologies."

    Well, I don't want to explore the impact any more. I know what the impact is on my children.

    I have first-hand evidence that using a Nintendo turns my delightful, curious and funny children into argumentative demons full of aggression, wholly uninterested in anything apart from playing, and then playing some more.

    At the same time that all the children started crying and yelling before breakfast, I spotted Phoebe's cello and I realised that she had not got it out of its case all week.

    Yet she had notched up probably around eight hours on the Nintendo. There and then, I made my mind up. The Nintendo had to go, and to hell with my children 'fitting in'.

    But how to get rid of it? I mused on the idea of giving it to my sister, a mother-of-five, but rejected that on the grounds of child cruelty.

    I considered selling it on eBay, but rejected that on the grounds that I didn't want to waste any more of my energy on the hideous thing.

    In the end, last week, I walked into my local branch of Cancer Research UK and gave it away.

    "Would you like this Nintendo?" I said. "In perfect condition, with a bundle of 20 games. Plus charger."

    The lady behind the counter smiled broadly. "What a fantastic gift," she said.

    I returned to stunned disbelief from the children - "You did what?" - and floods of real tears.

    Since then, however, our domestic life has been transformed.

    The children have swung back into their old habits of reading, playing the violin, walking the dog, occasionally fighting, cooking and making things.

    Do they mourn for the lost screen-based world of the Nintendo? Actually, I think they've forgotten all about it.

    Sigh. lol at the £150 from Hong Kong with 20 games...pirated?
     


  2. Sendoh

    Member Sendoh GBAtemp Regular

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    Makes sense until you see past her rhetoric and cum hoc ergo propter hoc fallacies.
     
  3. Veho

    Global Moderator Veho The man who cried "Ni".

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    Wait, what? [​IMG]


    I AM BORG NOW BECAUSE OF TOO MUCH PONG [​IMG]

    (Resistance is futile.)
     
  4. azotyp

    Member azotyp GBAtemp Maniac

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    If she would buy one nintendo for every children they would live peacfully and maybe play some multi with each other [​IMG] The greatest cruelty is really one nintendo for whole family [​IMG]
     
  5. DBlaze

    Member DBlaze I don't know what i'm doing.

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    She's the one who bought the DS. So it's her own fault, she could've just kicked the kids outside to let them play there.

    Oh well. [​IMG]
     
  6. wilddenim

    Member wilddenim Candy!

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    In a way, I do understand her. I've seen children turning into monsters just because of DS Lite. I should know - I've got twin goddaughters.

    But I disagree about it being ''personal identity loss''.
     
  7. Bob Evil

    Member Bob Evil The Department of Home-Made Insecurity

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    Silly bitch ... who has 4 kids, then only buys 1 DS ? [​IMG]
     
  8. ZPE

    Member ZPE GBAtemp Fan

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    Bad parenting IMO.
     
  9. Bob Evil

    Member Bob Evil The Department of Home-Made Insecurity

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    Yep ... anyone who can blame a toy for bad behaviour, is a sucky parent, at best ...
     
  10. wilddenim

    Member wilddenim Candy!

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    If you have 4 kids and have 4 DS Lite - the chances they would be on it for hours. Resulting into argument to put the DS away for meals.
     
  11. MagNetCZ

    Member MagNetCZ GBAtemp Fan

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    God, call it the DS at least, "interactive realms of things like Nintendo". I know she means the DS but it just hurts reading that [​IMG]. Anyway, yeah, one DS for four children isn't that much of a smart move indeed. Also I don't think the children were all that great and perfect before anyway if they turned into such "monsters", I'd say she damn exaggerates stuff along with believing everything they write in the press.

    And for the losing identity thing, I wouldn't say so, it's more like you just start building it in another way [​IMG]. Ah well, still dunno why people feel the need to write such stuff.

    EDIT: Checked out the photo in the article, the two kids on the right have the devil in their eyes [​IMG] and the mom looks silly.
     
  12. warmijwilfaain

    Member warmijwilfaain War Mage MILF

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    Heh, reminds me of my dinner times lol
    Except I now have DS Phat and PSP [​IMG]
    Oh well [​IMG]
     
  13. layzieyez

    Member layzieyez GBAtemp Fan

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    My daughter is only 3 (well almost 4) and she likes the Crayola Adventures game. I don't have any problems with her playing either mine or my wife's DS. When she's old enough, I'll get her one for herself with all the semi-educational games I can think of. I don't think the mother of those children has ever played a single video game or owned a video game console. She probably doesn't even work. She seems to just be spouting out what "experts" say without any firsthand experience. She'll probably believe anything you tell her as long as you say you're an expert.
     
  14. MagNetCZ

    Member MagNetCZ GBAtemp Fan

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    Exactly.
     
  15. Akoji

    Member Akoji +5 internets to psyfira for avatar.

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    I don't know why, but I got the feeling that she's an hardcore Christian mom, but after reading further im not quite sure, but she's one stuck up mom. Continue to live in the 60's mommy.
     
  16. berlinka

    Member berlinka You have sustained a lethal injury.

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    Totally agree. Those kids look like little monsters who pester other children in the neighbourhood. I just guess this, but I can imagine that the mother is far too soft when it comes to her parental duties and I bet she loves their little angels, but doesn't know what the evil ones do when they're not under her supervision.

    If I look at my nephew and niece, I see two fine kids and they have a fun time with the DS and are very lovely children.

    I get very angry when I read about parents who blame something or someone else for their childrens bad behaviour.

    What a c*nt!
     
  17. Veho

    Global Moderator Veho The man who cried "Ni".

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    It's weird how there are no comments to the article on the Daily Mail page. Usually, troll flamebait like this would have enraged gamers' comments on one side and blithering theory-supporters' comments on the other side clogging up the server within a day.


    Oh, and I agree wholeheartedly with the above comments. Those kids are a bunch of spoiled little bastards, and the mother is an irresponsible incompetent moron when it comes to parenting.

    Wait, the kids are such a bunch of disobedient little brats they have to be forcibly removed from a gaming console instead of obeying their parents [​IMG]
    [sarcasm] But Nintendo will ruin them.

    And what is worse, thousands of "concerned mothers" will take this as rock-solid truth and organize some "mothers against Nintendo" group.

    Retarded.
     
  18. CRXsi

    Newcomer CRXsi Member

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    I read all I needed to when the dumb broad admitted that she bought it so her kid could "fit in" at school. Maybe if she spent more time engaging the kids than writing her blog, they would be such little a-holes.

    Did you check out the "nice little bob" the daughter ended up with? Hope she didn't pay for the butcher job.
     
  19. eldaddio

    Newcomer eldaddio Advanced Member

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    What's 'Brain Trainer'?
     
  20. Bob Evil

    Member Bob Evil The Department of Home-Made Insecurity

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    Those brain training games, like Dr. Kawashima's ...
     

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