Still, Susan couldn’t deny she was seeing changes in John. He started getting more and more focused on his game and losing interest in baseball and reading while refusing to do his chores. Some mornings he would wake up and tell her that he could see the cube shapes in his dreams.
Although that concerned her, she thought her son might just be exhibiting an active imagination. As his behavior continued to deteriorate, she tried to take the game away but John threw temper tantrums. His outbursts were so severe that she gave in, still rationalizing to herself over and over again that “it’s educational.”
Then, one night, she realized that something was seriously wrong.
“I walked into his room to check on him. He was supposed to be sleeping — and I was just so frightened…”
This is a good article about a danger that we sometimes overlook as parents. In our household, with four kids and lots of jobs among two parents, we sometimes lose track of the amount of time that one of us is involved in media – video games, Kindle, computer time and even writing a blog. When we do, we definitely notice clear unambiguously negative effects. I personally find myself getting short and impatient with everyone around me – and my brain is not in the stages of development. I find that kids just look different after playing a long stretch of video games. They certainly act it.
An expert consulted in the article interestingly calls this effect “digital pharmakea”. That sends shivers down my spine. When that greek word is used in the Bible it is translated as among other things witchcraft, sorcery and poisoning. Yikes!
Let me be clear, I am not saying that it is witchcraft in itself, just that it is powerful and something to keep a close eye on.
The author does not mention it as he is not speaking from a Christian perspective, but the sheer amount of alone me focused time involved in all of these pursuits cannot be conducive to spiritual development as well.
What do you think? Do your kids have screens? Do they have media limits? Have you seen changes in your family when there is lots of screen time?