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  1. #1
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    Tough Topic: Is Anyone Else Dealing With Kidís Internet Addiction?

    At the risk of mockery due to over sharing, my 12 Y.O. Is in pretty rough shape.
    We have a specialist and all of that, but it is still really difficult. I have read most of the laymanís literature about dopamine and addiction, so no stranger to the back end. And I am over 10 years sober myself, so I have some empathy.
    We have reduced him to 1 hour a day, with the opportunity to earn another hour, but that is not enough, he is a junkie. He exhibits all of the classic behaviors, and I know them well. Including pretty severe depression. He is not remotely interested in any of the things he loves, and canít be persuaded to participate in them. Hopefully DH biking this summer will help, he will do that.
    Really just curious if anyone else is going through Ďkid problemsí during the pandemic, and how you are coping.
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  2. #2
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    My son is 18, very quiet, more or less antisocial except for internet gaming. He has always been solitary and close to us. He spends all his time online with some exceptions for going running, on bike rides, music or reading.

    Over the years, I've talked to him about addiction issues and pointed out that his behavior is addictive. At various points in the last 5 years, we have talked with him, explained that he was doing too much time online and took his cables away. There were tears. It sucked and is definAtely one of those times when parenting required discipline on OUR part.

    He is a great kid, helps around the house and yard without much eyerolling, has gotten straight A's, consumes 400 page books in 1 day, doesn't lie or weasel, plays violin a few times a week as well.

    So now, we let him spend as much time as he wants online. I still talk about addiction and being aware of the behavior with him occasionally, but in the long run, he's got to make his own decisions.

    Being the parent sucks sometimes, so here's some heart. I think the internet, like television used to be, is a source for concern and is a good place to focus on learning how to deal with ourselves.
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  3. #3
    jgb@etree Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    At the risk of mockery due to over sharing, my 12 Y.O. Is in pretty rough shape.
    We have a specialist and all of that, but it is still really difficult. I have read most of the layman’s literature about dopamine and addiction, so no stranger to the back end. And I am over 10 years sober myself, so I have some empathy.
    We have reduced him to 1 hour a day, with the opportunity to earn another hour, but that is not enough, he is a junkie. He exhibits all of the classic behaviors, and I know them well. Including pretty severe depression. He is not remotely interested in any of the things he loves, and can’t be persuaded to participate in them. Hopefully DH biking this summer will help, he will do that.
    Really just curious if anyone else is going through ‘kid problems’ during the pandemic, and how you are coping.
    We had gotten pretty relaxed with our son (11) and screen time enforcement in the first month and a half of the lockdown, until the effects became obvious. VERY obvious.

    Prior to this we had set limits and closely monitored things but it was never an issue. He plays lacrosse year 'round and spends winter weekends skiing, and summer weekends on the beach/boat so he's usually too busy. On a rainy day, we'd double or triple his time (normally 1hr/day). Never a problem. Until now.

    As long as he was doing his school-from-home-work, and spending a few hours outside each day we were just letting him play when he wanted, rationalizing it to ourselves as giving him an opportunity to socialize as Fortnite and NBA2k20 seem to have become the ways that the kids are 'virtually hanging out' while they can't see each other.

    But the anger, frustration, and not even fucking close to age appropriate tantrums that ensued were too much. We dropped the hammer back down 2 weeks ago, and he's been struggling to adjust. But he's starting to come around. I have all of his devices setup on a different network subnet, and I can (and do) just shut down that network's access to the internet as needed, or normally, on a schedule.

    It's tough. Stick to your guns. Don't give in to the whining. Easier said than done sometimes, but it's what's right for the kid(s). Good luck.

  4. #4
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    Checking in here. 7 y.o. that is all about any screen he can get. The specific addiction rotates somewhat frequently, but the intensity of the want/need is massive. Yesterday morning the Mrs. was pulling him off of the computer and he got violent with her, which triggers big dad to drop the hammer because I'm not going to have a kid that thinks violence against women is ok at all. That was followed with all day whining for some form of screen time.

    In some ways I get it. We all need an escape right now. I don't have issues with kids playing games together and if they're being social. My 10 y.o. plays D&D online on weekends with her friends and they're talking and laughing for 3-4 hours straight. They don't have issues stopping for breaks or when it's time to quit. The 7 y.o. rages at quitting time. We've tried setting time limits, leaving a timer next to the screen, warning him when time is getting low or dinner is getting close. Doesn't matter, it's always 'one more thing'. If we cave and let him do that, then it's 'but I need to do this thing too'

    We've been sticking to our guns and are hoping he grows out of this. It was a lot easier when we could talk him into going outside with a bike ride to the neighborhood playground, or to go meet up with friends. I'm worried about the lasting impact here since we're still holed up and online school is about to end.
    Fat fuck bubbas are not erosion.

  5. #5
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    We have fraternal twins now 20 yr old. one of them, there was trauma a birth (not fun) and the result was pretty inense Learning disability, very, very slow reader and some comprension / retention issues. Tested out at about 80 iq. Went to private school since 2nd grade. He doesn't leave his room very much period. Constantly plays online games; often he's still up playing when I'm getting up for work. Has never had more than a (very) parttime job at smoothie king.

    I cut him an awful lot of slack with the LD; and i have NEVER had an ounce of trouble from him. No drinking, no drugs, nothing.

    But I am worried. Very worried.
    "Can't you see..."

  6. #6
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    Subscribed. No issues yet, but we just got the 10 y.o. a phone since 1) he's going to be left home alone for a few hours occasionally this summer and needs a way to contact us if there's an emergency; and 2) we want to let he and is buddies ride shuttle laps alone, need a phone in case of crashes/flats. No non-smartphone options available with our carrier.

    Suggestions for parental control software? Don't need anything too fancy, just want to set time/usage limits, restrict him to wifi-only, and keep him from wandering onto Pornhub.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dantheman View Post
    No non-smartphone options available with our carrier.

    Designed to be used as little as possible.
    https://www.thelightphone.com/

  8. #8
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    Some days we do better and some days we do worse with our 9 yo, but definitely notice that the more screen time she has, the worse her behavior gets (she doesn't yet have full blown intern issues, mostly because she has virtually no access outside of Facebook's messenger kids app). This whole pandemic forced us to give her faster/more screen/internet access than we would have planned otherwise.

    Because of this thread, I went downstairs and told her it was time to do non-screen things.
    "fuck off you asshat gaper shit for brains fucktard wanker." - Jesus Christ
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  9. #9
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    Iíve seen positive results from kids that go to outdoor school like Outward Bound. Not sure they even have that now.

    You could try dirt bikes!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKIP IN7RO View Post
    Designed to be used as little as possible.
    https://www.thelightphone.com/
    Only works with T-Mobile, Verizon and AT&T. We're on Xfinity Mobile.

  11. #11
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    lotta screen time in our house too
    (it sounds like your kid is dealing with it differently tho)
    we've been much more permissive in this regard


    i can only suggest a technology free extended camping trip to demonstrate that life can be lived happily without the glowing screen
    do you have enough free time to get away for a week?

  12. #12
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    I think almost everyone has that addiction these days. Including myself and my wife. Damn smart phones.

    Good luck with controlling your kids. I was never able to. Probably the best you can do is try to get them interested in doing other things, like sports.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dantheman View Post
    Subscribed. No issues yet, but we just got the 10 y.o. a phone since 1) he's going to be left home alone for a few hours occasionally this summer and needs a way to contact us if there's an emergency; and 2) we want to let he and is buddies ride shuttle laps alone, need a phone in case of crashes/flats. No non-smartphone options available with our carrier.

    Suggestions for parental control software? Don't need anything too fancy, just want to set time/usage limits, restrict him to wifi-only, and keep him from wandering onto Pornhub.
    There was another thread for this, but I really like google family link. Very granular level of control of the child's device via your device.
    Fat fuck bubbas are not erosion.

  14. #14
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    Is there a thread for adult addiction?

    This covid has Fucked me up. Reading too much. Watching videos I never used to watch stupid videos. Now we got riots to watch all night. I wish I had a dad to turn off my internets.

    My Kids are on more. Then we cut back. Schools out and no activities so what can they do?
    Been having more play dates and meet ups. The kids are not social distancing or masking. But fuck it.

    The saddest thing is the oldest should be swapping spit with some pimply greasy young thang and hoping for a handy.
    ďLife has become immeasurably better since I have been forced to stop taking it seriously.Ē
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  15. #15
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    Iím way way too much. But, Iíve had injuries that laid me up and others that still slow me down. Iím grateful for the distraction and wish I didnít need it.

    My gf got hooked on news during the lockdown. Itís bad. news addiction is the worst.

    My 26 yo niece is morbidly addicted. Itís sad to see how she is now.

    Good luck to parents

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJSapp View Post
    There was another thread for this, but I really like google family link. Very granular level of control of the child's device via your device.
    I'll check this out, thanks.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ::: ::: View Post
    lotta screen time in our house too
    (it sounds like your kid is dealing with it differently tho)
    we've been much more permissive in this regard


    i can only suggest a technology free extended camping trip to demonstrate that life can be lived happily without the glowing screen
    do you have enough free time to get away for a week?
    The real kicker is that the ONLY thing he was looking forwards to was his three week camp in Colorado, which has no devices at all. It really would have been a godsend right now. But it is all cancelled.
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  18. #18
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    yeah, camps getting shut down sucks. But even if they were open, I wouldn't send my kid to one right now.

    Good luck rideit.
    "fuck off you asshat gaper shit for brains fucktard wanker." - Jesus Christ
    "She was tossing her bean salad with the vigor of a Drunken Pop princess so I walked out of the corner and said.... "need a hand?"" - Odin
    "I'd eat a bag of Dicks and wash it down with a Coke any day." - iceman

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4matic View Post
    I’ve seen positive results from kids that go to outdoor school like Outward Bound. Not sure they even have that now.

    You could try dirt bikes!

    Dirt Bikes work very, very well.

    6 year old is limited to 2 hours of school related screen time and then rips an hour of trail/track working out that aggression. Usually he just continues playing outside but sometimes he tries to come in and watch a screen (but gets handed a book).

  20. #20
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    My 21yro has some of this, not so much gaming but heavily into Bike forums and Car forums. On the flip side he also dabbles in bitcoin and has a Robinhood funds acc.... so on second thought he seems about like the average poster on tgr.
    Move upside and let the man go through...

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dantheman View Post
    Subscribed. No issues yet, but we just got the 10 y.o. a phone since 1) he's going to be left home alone for a few hours occasionally this summer and needs a way to contact us if there's an emergency; and 2) we want to let he and is buddies ride shuttle laps alone, need a phone in case of crashes/flats. No non-smartphone options available with our carrier.

    Suggestions for parental control software? Don't need anything too fancy, just want to set time/usage limits, restrict him to wifi-only, and keep him from wandering onto Pornhub.
    Old school flip phone with no browser. Get one of the carriers for old people that don't want all that new fangled stuff.
    Quote Originally Posted by leroy jenkins View Post
    I think you'd have an easier time understanding people if you remembered that 80% of them are fucking morons.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deebased View Post
    Dirt Bikes work very, very well.

    6 year old is limited to 2 hours of school related screen time and then rips an hour of trail/track working out that aggression. Usually he just continues playing outside but sometimes he tries to come in and watch a screen (but gets handed a book).
    Ain't NO dirtbiking in Teton County, WY....
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    Ain't NO dirtbiking in Teton County, WY....
    Mosquito opened today. Munger next month. Big holes can get a little rowdy for a kid. Or an old man like me!

    But yes, dirt bikes- same price as a MTB from what I hear.
    The market is dominated by fat skis largely because young toughs want what they see in videos: organ donors hucking into heliski bowls. -Seth Masia

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by liv2ski View Post
    Old school flip phone with no browser. Get one of the carriers for old people that don't want all that new fangled stuff.
    With Xfinity adding a line for him is free, not paying extra for a line from Senior Citizen Cellular.

  25. #25
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    Are you all sure this is really a tough topic?

    The internet is a major part of life now. It's not really something that should be completely controlled from a time perspective. Do your best to filter out adult content, but the internet is equal to reading books and learning.

    Gotta bring in sports though to balance out some sort of active relationship with the mind/body.

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