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Through the course of my one year experience with my son, I have developed several theories such as the 4N and Power of No to better help me raise my son.
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Barack Levin

Author: Barack Levin

DSI Addiction

Posted by Barack Levin on 1st April 2011

I am seriously contemplating if my decision to buy my son a DSI device was the right decision. We limit his play time to 20 minutes a day and it has been this way for about a year now. Lately, we started to find out that he is possessed with his DSI. I already wrote another post about his “forgetfulness” when he holds the device in his hand. Yesterday, we had another incident.

My wife took the kids to my girl’s gym. My son is not allowed to play there so he left his DSI in the car. On the way back from the gym, he was excited to start playing with his DSI and forgot about everything else. He did something that even as a toddler he never did. He ran in the parking lot and was almost run over by a car. Both my wife and I see this incident as a warning sign. We called him over at dinner time for a talk. We told him about our decision: “You are too pre-occupied with the DSI. When you hold it or about to play with it, it is as if everything else melts away. We can not agree to this behavior. Today you were almost run over by a car just because your mind was already thinking about your DSI. We decided that this can not go on anymore and this is your last warning in this matter. If we catch you one more time delving into the DSI device and forgetting about everything else, we will simply take it away from you indefinitely. You are a big boy now and can make your own decisions. Your actions will determine if you can have the DSI or not”. He nodded (well, he has no other options anyway).

We hope that this is the end of this story.

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dsi addiction (18)

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Bargaining Power

Posted by Barack Levin on 28th February 2011

My son is allowed 20 minutes a day on his DSI. To be very honest, most days he does not even have the time to play the full 20 minutes. There is just so much to do in our house and by the time he gets to his room it is already bed time. Over the weekend, he came up with a new thought that is very typical for this age. He knows some basic math and he told his mom:” I only played 5 minutes yesterday on my DSI so I am aloud to play 35 minutes today”. Indeed, he was right in his calculations. The 15 minutes from yesterday plus the 20 from today, do equal 35. But that did not really help him. My wife told him: “The 20 minutes is per day and not accumulative. You have not used them today. Too bad. Tomorrow you will have the same 20 minutes to play”. My son answered: “But it is not fair. These 20 minutes belong to me”. He was trying to bargain his way our of it. I was proud of him because he used real adult like arguments and not whining or screaming to get his way. His logic was, these 20 minutes belong to me and I can stack them up if I wanted to. But here he had one slight problem with his argument and my wife’s answer was the final blow: “You see dear, in this house, you do not make the rules. We do. These are the rules that we put down for the DSI and they will not be changed”. That was the end of the conversation. My son knows that when he hits that wall he has no reason to continue arguing because it will not change the facts. He was visibly upset of course but I think that it is our responsibility, as parents, to supervise our kids and put boundaries to their behavior.

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This is the difference I am always taking about

Posted by Barack Levin on 9th October 2010

My son’s friend got for his birthday a shiny brand new DSI game device. I was talking to his mom today and she told me he woke up this morning at 5:30AM and played with the DSI until breakfast. I also know that he has been playing with it since he got it about a week ago. And when I say playing, I mean he plays with it for hours and that is in addition to the Wii system he has and the TV he watches.  He is not my kid – so it is not my problem but I have been asked more than once what do you do in such a situation.

Here is what I did. My boy also got a DSI about 6 months ago but unlike his friend, we set the rules first. The first week he was allowed to play 20 minutes a day. After all, he was very excited about getting it and I did not want to spoil his excitement. The second week he was allowed to play only 15 minutes per day. From the third week onward he is allowed to play 10-15 minutes a day. There are days where he gets to play and days where he does not have time.

I have set up these rules because I do not want to have a new problem on my hand with these devices. I do not want him to be hooked on them and forget that family comes first.

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