View Full Version : Too much time on internet!!

03-25-2016, 03:37 PM
This is kind of a spin off of the Free time thread. A little background: DS is 11.5 and has always had a specified amount of time for video games each day. At this age, he usually plays on the Play Station rather than the Ipad. He is an avid reader and often reads on his Ipad. Except for the summer and some volunteer work, he does not do any structured activities. He is not a "sports guy" and has always needed A LOT of quiet/down time after school. He is an only child...

We have noticed over the past few months that he has spent more and more time on the internet. Sometimes he is reading science or political articles, but he also spends time reading things like "stupid things people do" etc (I kind of made that up, but you get the picture!). Recently he has found a forum of people who really like a certain author.


-My gut feeling is that his internet time is too much, but I struggle with what constitutes "screen time." How do you differentiate between reading books and articles on the Ipad and other surfing? Does this book forum count as screen time, because he is actually discussing books and writing some stories himself? AAAAAH!!

-When he was younger, he used to play with Legos, build things, play in the woods etc.... but it is so hard to find things that grab him now. If it were his choice, he would read, play video games and look at the internet. I have been requiring him to pick some sort of exercise on the weekends- walk the dog, shoot baskets, kick the soccer ball... but sometimes it is a fight and I hate having to constantly push this. FWIW, last year he spent hours outside after dinner.

-To make things worse, he has a very difficult personality. He has some great qualities, but is also very rigid and argumentative.

-I just installed Mobicip as an internet filter and it also keeps track of what sites he is on and for how much time. This is a start, but getting him to do other things is exhausting.

Sorry this is so long- I guess I am looking to know that I am not alone, and maybe for some suggestions of what has worked for your family.

03-25-2016, 03:49 PM
You are absolutely not alone! We used to joke in our neighborhood that once the kids went to middle school, you never saw them outside again. I assumed it was homework, but now that my DD is that age, I see that she'd just rather stay in her room texting, reading, listening to music, or online. She does have a fair amount of activities though. But nothing active (she's in theater and stays late for practices). I've noticed a bit of laziness and lack of energy from not having a physical outlet. Sorry I don't have any answers!

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03-25-2016, 04:06 PM
I've been wanting to get that new Circle device that controls internet time on various devices. I don't know exactly how well it works, but I wonder if it would take some of the fight out of it. Maybe you could give a certain allowance for each of the various activities and then when it's up, it shuts off. Then it's up to him to find something better to do. My oldest is only 10 though so I realize this is probably over simplifying the issue. Just a thought.

03-26-2016, 09:39 AM
I'm not sure whether I'd consider reading screen time, but I'd be concerned that he isn't doing any physical activity, does he hang out with other kids much? If so, what do they do.

My DS is 10, he plays outside afterschool for at least an hour most days, as well as playing on the way to and from school as he walks with a buddy.

He also plays travel hockey so that keeps him busy.

He gets to either be on the computer playing minecraft or he plays xbox (usually sports games with friends on xbox live) for at least an hour each day, usually after the sun goes down. He also plays his tablet in the car and around the house/if we're sitting and watching a hockey game on tv.

I don't worry about too much screen time for him as I know he balances it out by playing outside and doing sports.

03-26-2016, 05:13 PM
Op, how much time do you think he is on a screen, per day?