Articles rise_of_the_kidult

Published on September 8th, 2005 | by Alex and Brett Harris

Kidults: Peter Pans That Shave




This is part 1 of 5 in the series Rise of the Kidult

There are only two major differences I can see between Peter Pan and most kidults. The first is that Peter Pan looks as young as he acts and the second is that Peter Pan can fly. However, once those differences are out of the way I can easily see most adultescents crowing gleefully with Pan, “I want to always be a little boy and have fun!”

To put it bluntly, nearly 20% of Americans ages 18-28 are no more than Peter Pans that shave. The sad truth is that American adolescences are preoccupied with fun and consequently grow into adults who—you guessed it—are still preoccupied with fun.

A culture’s priorities can be measured by looking at two things: how it spends its time and how it spends its money. The fact that our culture throws time and money after fun is proved in many areas, but for the sake of brevity I’ll focus on just one: gaming.

In America last year over seven billion dollars were spent on video and computer games, more than double what it was in 1996. 239 million games made it into the computers and gaming consoles of American households in 2003 and a recent study by Purdue University and Boston College showed that American eighth-graders spend an average of 17.5 hours per week playing video games; boys average 23 hours a week and girls 12 hours. Furthermore, the girl’s average should be expected rise as game developers continue their recent strategy to create games that specifically appeal to female gamers.

If our obsession with video games is indicative of our culture’s priorities we can conclude that American adolescents will grow into adults that spend large amounts of time and money on “fun” activities and products. That being the case, we can also expect that there are myriads corporations and advertisers who prefer that adolescents stay the way they are: tractable, exploitable, pre-adultish—living at home, spending their money on toys.

David Morrison, President of Twentysomething Inc. admits, “[Kidults] are the optimum market to be going after for consumer electronics, Game Boys, flat-screen TVs, iPods, couture fashion, exotic vacations and so forth. Most of their needs are taken care of by Mom and Dad, so their income is largely discretionary. Many [kidults] are living at home, but if you look, you’ll see flat-screen TVs in their bedrooms and brand-new cars in the driveway.”

Here’s the hard fact: The entertainment industry doesn’t want us to grow up. Their affluence depends on our immaturity.

Unfortunately, millions of American teenagers have gone along with the program. Where are they today? They’re adultescents. They’re Peter Pans that shave. And they’re still playing video games.

Peter Vorderer, a professor of communications at the University of Southern California, shares, “The thought for a long time was that the kids who played games would grow out of it. But that seems not to have happened. Instead we have seen a continuous increase in the average age of the gamer.”

According to industry estimates, that average age is now 29.

Mr. Vorderer continues, “[The fact that gaming] is a primary tool of youth and adolescents means it will have tremendous impact on how the next generation or two plays itself out.”

That’s exactly what we’re doing Mr. Vorderer: playing ourselves out.

Note: Before I realized that gaming made a point in-and-of-itself I was planning on including two steps we can take to avoid the trap our “culture of fun” has laid for us. Those steps will be shared in my next post: Peter Pans That Shave (Part 2). For now, please discuss the following questions:

1) Do you think the level of fun most teenagers are accustomed to is maintainable once they have shouldered adult responsibilities (i.e. full-time job, marriage, family, etc.)? Why or why not?

2) Have you noticed any of the subtle and/or obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun? Explain.

3) How much is too much when it comes to video games and other similar activities? What are your standards?








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About the Author

are the co-founders of TheRebelution.com and co-authors of Do Hard Things and Start Here. They have a passion for God and for their generation. Their personal interests include politics, filmmaking, music, and basketball. They are both graduates of Patrick Henry College in Purcellville, Virginia.



  • Zoe_Pooch20

    I have noticed some very obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun.

    Ex.1:Toys R Us commercials.”I don’t wanna grow up,I ‘m a Toys R Us kid.There’s a million toys at Toys R Us that I can play with!” ❓
    What kind of message does that send to little kids?That it’s okay to juststay little and expect your parents to take you to Toys R Us whenever you see some toy you want?!

    Ex.2:Video Games.I’m not saying it should be against the law to play video games.I like to play them myself,but M and X rated video games//Which have become more prominent in this day and age.//just see to tell adult and older teen guys and girls that it’s just okay to act like a little kid.

    (Oh,and,yes.That picture IS disturbing.//Where in the world did you find it?//)

  • 1) I think the level of fun can be compared from teenagers into adulthood, but the style and interests vary, and change so one is not always comparable to the other. As a teenager, going to a movie or maybe spending a weekend at a friend’s house was the extent of my fun. Now its more like going out bar hopping on the weekend and maybe once or twice seeing friends during the week. However, one set of responcibilities are exhanged for another.

    2) No, but that might not be saying much.

    3) I play about 10 hours of Xbox a week- but it is sporatic. Sometimes weeks go by without even turning my Xbox on, then I play for several hours a few days in a row, and then nothing for weeks. As long as one activity doesn;t control or overlap another on a regular basis, I don’t think it is a problem. Moderation is key in everything.

    4) Yes! Very. hee hee

  • (1) I think that in fact, many developed countries with a substantially high cost of living have a “have fun and for as long as possible” mentality. As a college student, I see it quite frequently on campus and having been raised in a Christian househould and church enviroment where responsibility comes with age, I find it hard to relate to those who choose to lack objectives and the sense of obligation to themselves and others. That being said, I don’t believe that the level of fun that teenagers are accustomed to is maintainable once they have entered into adult responsibilities. That is attributed to the fact that time is limited and in order to effectively fulfill duties to God, family, and community–one has to devote self completely. “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth.” (Rev. 3:15-16) If fun still maintains such a high priority in life, then responsibilities are neglected to the magnitude to which they deserve. It’s not to say that fun shouldn’t exist–it’s just that it moves to a lower tier of importance or perhaps changes completely. When I was child, I naturally thought like a child and found things such as creating mud in flower beds to be fascinating. But growing up and being raised in Christ, I never took interest to the life of partying, clubbing, and involving self with worldly “fun”. Instead, it takes on a new meaning. Fun could be a walk on the nature trails, time spent with the youth group, talking and learning about other peoples life stories and personal testimonies etc.,

    (2) There are some very obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun. For one, many big time brands such as McDonald’s and Coca-cola are looking to revamp their marketing schemes. These brands sell something more than just retail items–they sell glamour, their name, and the illusion of fun. What’s interesting about this is that they are considered “classic brands”, ones that have a degree of popularity and “cherishedness” that qualifies them for this. Looking at these brands, one would notice that they have been around for possibly more than 50 years. However, instead of maintain a “classic” older look that would appeal to the earlier generations–they’re going for a “hip” new look. Additionally, the marketing of high-tech gadgets to the 17-25 age group maintains that fun can be expensive and “sophisticated”.

  • 4.) At first I thought it was Michael Jackson, but on second look, I realized the nose was too big. But yes, it’s rather disturbing.

    Excellent post, BTW.

    Marshall

  • I find that picture disturbing!

    I was shocked to read that the average EIGHTH GRADER spends 17.5 hours a week on video games! What a waste of time!

  • elien

    how much is too much?

    i might need u to discuss this with my boyfriend. though he doesnt spend money buying games, he downloads them off his campus file sharing network and plays for hours on end. once a new game comes out, he takes a day off school and or work to play ALL DAY AND ALL NIGHT—- UP TO 17 HOURS STARIGHT. NO FOOD. NO BATHROOM BREAK.

    it annoys me a great deal that when we are talking on the phone, all i hear is on ocasional grunt from him and videogame musice in the background. it worries me that he said, “once i’m 65, i’ll still be playing my games. i can be all disabled, but i know my fingers will still work for the controller.” what kind of father would he be to our kids if he were to play video games all day? what ever happened to fathers teaching their kids to swim or ride a bike?

  • Mary

    Hmmm, I guess I shouldn’t be bothered by my husband’s 1 hour a week playing football;)

    1. There’s no way they can maintain their current level of spending time & money and not be heavily burdened with debt and on the verge of divorce. It’s really tough to get married and expect to be able to maintain the lifestyle you’re used to with your parents when you make less money than them and starting with pretty much nothing. We were young – 20 – when we got married and were pretty mature for our age, but it took awhile to realize how much things really cost and how much time things really take.

    2. Media, media, media. Nothing subtle about it. It seems that the American economy is centered around entertainment and narcissism (sp?). Companies come up with an idea and sell, sell, sell. They only make money if people buy, so they create a market by convincing us of our need for their product or service.

    3. I think an hour or 2 a week or maybe 30 min a day to unwind and relax is acceptable without interfering with other responsibilities.

    4. I find BOTH of the pics disturbing.

  • Elien: You might be pleased to know that you can now base your objections to your boyfriend’s extended gaming sessions on medical evidence. A 28 year-old man just died minutes after he finished a 50 hour video game binge.Read About It Here.

  • BTW, as one who plans on working for DoD full time playing around with military simulations (after 4 years in the Army)….I should add that it can be OK to spend time on wargames and such. Just not too much time. :)

  • 1) I’ve seen marriages end over this. My best friend was married just over a year and it was heck from the first month. He loved his wife with everything he had but she could never understand why he insisted on paying bills with his paychecks instead of taking her out on the town every night. It got to the point to where her father came and apologized to him saying that he felt responsible because he spoiled her when she was growing up.

    2) I can’t say I’ve picked up on the subtle ones, but watch commercials, read billboards, etc. and you’ll see the emphasis on fun. Even the Ensure and Depends commercials try to convince you that you can have fun by using their products.

    3) I must say I’m a bit biased. I grew up playing video games. Everything from Atari 2600 through all the Nintendos and now on to XBox. I’ve even spent time working on arcade games and jukeboxes for a living. Over the years I’ve dramatically decreased the time spent, but still have my splurges. For example, I managed to get a 4 day weekend recently. Took the family swimming, out to eat, etc. Still managed to log in around 20 hours of XBox time. Is that good, not for most, but a couple years ago that number would have been twice that or more. I limit my kids to 1 hour a day of tv/games during the week and 2 hours a day on weekends.

    4) Actually, no. But then I’m a cop so I see weirder quite often. 😉

    BTW, tis my first visit to the site… quite nice. Gotta add ya to my blogroll.

  • Lauren Hammerstrom

    That was a great post =)
    Its funny how people like to spend their time. For instance…Tonight I was babysitting for five kids. I’m not including my little brother, because he is mature enough to manage himslef. After they ate dinner they said “lets watch a movie, lets play playstation…” I said to them, “wouldn’t you want to go down stairs and play?” them answering “of course not we want to play the playstation.” I had said that there is proabably better ways to spend your time, and they got very affended. “What else is there to do…?” They said.

    I think a major part of the increase of gaming is that people are being less creative and not using their God given brains (except turning them to mush by watching a screen all day) I get frustrated with my friends who go to movies all the time and never spend any time actually getting to know each other. Have you ever felt like that before? I know when I lived in a small town in Oregon we didn’t have the electronics so we would actually GO OUTSIDE and play woods or swing or do something else. Why do you think that people are loosing the desire to go outside or do something other than electronics?

    God Bless!
    Lauren

  • 1) Do you think the level of fun most teenagers are accustomed to is maintainable once they have shouldered adult responsibilities (i.e. full-time job, marriage, family, etc.)? Why or why not?

    I think that depends, mainly, on what kind of job that they have and what kind of money they make. If they get a professorship and are not absorbed with research, they could probably maintain SOME of that time but that is certainly not the majority. For the majority, it’s absolutely not.

    2) Have you noticed any of the subtle and/or obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun? Explain.

    Yes. I mean, it’s the same message they’ve been feeding to our parents -the whole anti-aging, “regain your youth” garbage. The only difference is that they figured out they could make a preemptive strike in the business. For instance, just look at how everything today is rated “M for Mature Content” or “R.” Teens naturally think that participating in these “mature” -rated things makes them cool and the trend continues into the 20’s, etc.

    3) How much is too much when it comes to video games and other similar activities? What are your standards?

    Too much is when your first inclination is to play a game, etc. instead of picking up your Bible, going to church, doing something you’re supposed to do, etc. If it is that much of a priority, it’s idolatry – nothing less.

    4) Do you find that picture disturbing? (If you don’t know which picture I’m referring to the answer is most likely “no”)

    Disturbing is such an understatement. Suffice it to say I thought Johnny Depp looked better as Willy Wonka than this guy as Peter Pan (both look gross, either way).

  • 1) To get a family to function requires sacrifice (I see this in my parents pretty often). One member of the family can’t do his/her “own thing” all the time. Once a person has a family or spouse to take care of, they can’t go around acting like they did when they had less responsbility.

    So, to answer the first question, no. A responsible adult will probably not have enough time to spend on that “level of fun” they had when they were younger because they’ve got, to put it bluntly, more important things to do.

  • BTW: Yes, that picture is AWFUL. I am curious though, where you got it.

  • Hey Hannah, it is awful isn’t it? Google search “Peter Pan.” It’s the first link.

  • Hmm….makes one wonder what kind of person would dress up like that.
    Very, very creepy.

  • 1.)

    No. The level of fun is NOT maintanable after marriage. Thus, the result is often divorce.

    2.)

    Yes. Absolutely. It’s evident especially in the way useful electronic devices (iPods – my Dad takes sermons, lectures, and the entire audio Bible with him on long car trips, for when he is alone for hours), with words like ‘Hey hey, let’s get stupid, yeah yeah, hey now!’

    3.)

    Too much is when it actually becomes a part of meditative thought. For example, my older brother likes video games. However, he doesn’t meditate on them. The goal is to meditate on God’s word, and the beautiful things of the world that he has created. When we start meditating on this game or that game, we’ve let games take the place of God and his word, and that is indeed idolatry.

    4.)

    Wow. That is a very scary picture. I think I saw that… thing… walking down the side of the highway once.

  • I find your take interesting, as I’ve written on this topic, myself…and surprise, have one twixter back at home.

    If I don’t get distracted I think I would like to revisit the subject and comment on some of your ideas- sort of a comparison in how the different generations view each other.

    Good work-good blog, guys.

  • John Hudlow

    Definitely a disturbing picture. I think that picture could also fit in a post about people who are not embracing their gender role properly…

  • Mrs. Nehemiah

    One of the ways I’ve seen recently that our culture encourages (or accepts) this peter pan syndrome is church “youth” groups
    My daughter was mailed a pamphlet from our church recently about our “youth group” the ages for members are 12-22 Twenty-two?!?!? EXCUSE ME! When I was 22 I had been married for 4 years and had three children. I was an adult in every way and “youth group” had no appeal to me! What possible commonalities could a 22yr old have with a 12yr old? Frankly I find this even more disturbing than that freaky picture! If this same 22 yr old wanted to work as a teacher of 12 yr olds in our sunday school he/she would have to fill out a background check. but here they have not only access to young people but the permission to act like and interact with them

    well I may have gotten a bit off track here

    I hope my(homeschooled non-youth group attending) daughter may find some nice young man like you to court her some day (not soon!)

    Mrs. Nehemiah

  • Crystal Simone (17)

    #1: For most people, it won’t be feasible to maintain the level of fun they have as an adolescent into their adult years. Most jobs aren’t fun. Changing diapers isn’t fun. Life often isn’t fun. Unfortunately, that’s a reality that many people don’t want to face.

    #2: Our culture doesn’t do subtle. Today’s culture blatantly encourages looking and acting young. Paris Hilton and Lindsey Lohan are perfect examples of this. I’ve heard no mention of them going to any college or making an attempt at growing up at all. Of course, they are the worst case scenario for this epidemic, but they are a good example nonetheless. What’s worse is that, because of their celebrity status, they are few to no repercussions for their behavior. It’s disheartening to see what our society holds dear.

    #3: Any more than 10-15 hours per week between the computer, T.V., and videogames that DOES NOT apply to education is too much. period. If someone spends more than that surfing the web for a research project or something of the like then that’s a completely different story.

    #4: I agree w/ someone above (i swear i saw it earlier, but i can’t find the person now…it’s late though) who finds BOTH pictures disturbing.

  • Lizzie

    That picture is scary! I see what you mean by the video/X-box games though. Even computer games such as World of Warcraft, Civilization, etc, can be very addicting and time spending. Great article and God bless!

  • Natalie Short

    Hey, I just stumbled across your blog in a link from Ladiesagainstfeminism, and I wanted to chime in. I do think that many people are too obsessed with going out and being seen (all that ‘spensive stuff) and that those behaviors have a negative effect on their subsequent ‘adult’ lives. I also know that I’ve been married for two months now, and in many ways I am having more fun than I ever had. True it’s work, but gosh is it wonderful. My husband and I still go swing on playgrounds and walk tightrope style on the curb when the fancy strikes. Being an adult isn’t all blah -just different. Of course we were always pretty responsible kids…maybe that’s the difference

  • seth d h

    Wow! Could you guys get anymore convcting? I know it is 2007 and I am still sporting a playstation. I used to be really bummed about it until I was walking through the mall and a plays. was being sold of $25 with two contrllers and 5 gmaes! Then I thought, “well, if that’s what It’s worth, I wonder if it is even worth my time?”
    My main problem with people saying that video games are bad is
    1) They portray anyone who plays v .g as white glasses bearing geeks never seeing the light of day (which is usually not the case)
    2) It’s addictive. for some people, the case is true but most of the people I know could stop at any time.
    And that’s where we end up: The Question: If it’s addicting to some people, should I stop playing? maybe I’ll get hooked too!
    Well, with what I can come up with, in phillipians 4:8: It says” whatever is true, whatever is noble whatever is right, whatever is lovely, dwell on those things. And quite frankly, blasting zombies with a bazooka is not what I would define “right”
    And finally, I learned a while ago, that if I was “sneaking” (for lack of a better word) time on my game or if I was feeling guilty and afraid of being caught, that was just as bad as playing an x rated game, even if it’s something as harmless as tigger’s honey hunt” So remember “where you’r treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

    (The pict, was that my brother on halloween?) :)

    FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT!

  • Pip W

    While I want to answer all 4 questions I must first tell you- I am 33, married happily almost 12 years, mother of 2 homeschooled daughters ages 11 and 8. We are all gamers in our household. We also all love the Lord and the church. We don’t attend “youth” groups, etc. because we believe them to be a waste of time for our children (read: they pick up terrible habits, and learn things children have no business even knowing). With all that I will now answer:
    1-As teenagers my husband and I both played vid games on and off, him moreso than me. I believe we actually play more often now than when we were younger. We don’t watch TV at all, and no we are not hiding in our home away form people. We play MMORPGs and we actually meet and know real people from around the world. We see this as an untapped ministry area- there’s alot of lost kids/teens and adults blasting away monsters and they don’t have any direction in life whatsoever. They also don’t have parents who would stop them because most parents don’t want to seem “uncool” or are just waiting for their children to move away so they too can “have fun.”
    2- Our culture- in every age, has been set against the things of the Lord. This is just a new shiney bauble to distract people from worshipping hte Lord. It’s nothing new– Solomon said there’s nothing new under the sun- it was true then and it’s true now. Keeping perspective is what’s most important when bombarded with all of this all the time. There’s a simple solution: turn off the TV. Most people get all their information from the television. We have been without it on and off most of our adult lives. Our children don’t even like TV when they visit their grandparents homes– they would rather engage them in conversation or play outside.
    3- we visit with our friends- many of whom we are in cinstant prayer for, almost daily. The thing about “evangelizing” is you can’t just go up to some stranger and tell them the gospel and expect them to believe it. There are many people who would just turn away and hate Christians all the more. I know before I was a believer this is how I felt– I didn’t know these people- and I didn’t want to knwo anything about their God because they really didn’t take the time to get to know me. That’s what we do. We know them- we share our lives and they share theirs. They know we are believers and feel free to share their lives anyway.
    4-I read this man’s website- poor thing- he needs prayer really. He is a fellow believer with wrong ideas about gender. And there’s also the creepy Peter Pan thing (don’t even get me started on the cult of Pan!).

  • For someone who was planning on naming their first son after the author of Peter Pan, (James Matthew) that picture almost changed my mind… almost. I definately understand the point though. One hundred years ago teenagers were learning how to raise a family and make a living. What are we doing? Getting the high score on Zelda? (Not that I have anythong against Zelda, but seriously, my brother has beaten it over five times.)

    Sometimes I can’t wait to grow up.

    But I still wish I could fly…

  • Leanne

    Anything is wrong if it becomes all-consuming! But Pip W is right – the gaming community is an untapped market for evangelism. Before anyone rolls their eyes at me, consider this: Today’s teens and young people primarily communicate through their computers…today, we have instant messaging, MySpace, e-mail, and…gaming! Online gaming is more than just an addictive waste of time. It is social networking! It is the 21st century equivalent of getting together at someone’s home and playing Monopoly. Social networking in all its forms is not going to go away, just as the telephone was not a passing fad!

    As for adults spending their time gaming…my husband is 30 years old and is an avid online gamer. If he has other things that need his attention, he takes care of them. He does not neglect work or any of his other responsibilities to play World of Warcraft (his game of choice!). He will not cancel plans to see friends or family in “real life” in favor of playing his game. However, when all the work is done…the bills are paid…the dog has been fed…and we make the decision to be “on our own” for the evening (I am, by nature, an introvert, and I need some “alone” time periodically!), then he spends some time gaming.

    Yes, our society is very “fun oriented.” But who wants to go back to pioneer days when the only thing there was to do was work, leaving little time for relaxation or recreation? It’s all about maintaining balance. “Fun” in any form should not overshadow one’s relationships (with Christ, family, or friends!), nor should it be an excuse to hide or to avoid work and responsibilities.

    And yes, the guy in thepicturelooks really creepy…

  • Jennifer

    Well, I have to say I am a wife and mother of two, happily married for 9 years, and my husband and I love to play video games. It is a hobby we enjoy doing together. However it does not interfer with our parenting/lives. We normally play when are children are in bed. I am a SAHM and even though I am home all day I do not play. I am spending time with my children (I’m a homeschooling mom). However, I have seen video games destroy peoples real lives who spend all of their time playing versus persuing a real life/relationships. I love video games and have since I was a child and see no harm in them if there is moderation. A piece of pie is good, but the whole pie will make you sick!

  • Game Boy

    Problem with gaming is it’s a useless skill with no real reward at the end of the day.

  • Lydia McGaughey Sherman

    I am writing a book about my mother and father who homesteaded in Alaska in 1948. Mother was only 19, and Daddy was 23. After reading their letters and looking at the pictures of them building a house in the snow, I wonder if any 19 or 23 year old today could survive in that situation! They are all playing video games and going out for pizza, socializing, etc. My parents were so very brave and strong, but there were other young couples doing the same thing. Each couple got 160 acres and had to clear it and build on it, and they all helped each other when it came to rasing the roof on the houses. Their leisure time was just being thankful to breathe the air. I still weep when I see pictures of my mother with her happy smile, peeling a log, at such a young age. She thought it was an adventure, and it was something different. All seven of us kids had the privilege of growing up on that homestead. Is it somewhat our fault though, that the next generation has nothing to do but play games? Growing up in a neighborhood with only a social life and not real adventure, is not very motivating. Perhaps these video games take them away to something so fantastic that is different from the pointless lives they lead. I don’t like to see them playing these games all the time; it is disturbing. But what will we have them to do?

  • Bev

    Well, 60s activism turned us from “we the family” into “me the child.” Feminism in particular was very anti-family. And without spouses & families to support, people these days have more disposable income & free time to waste…

  • Lydia McGaughey Sherman

    “Who wants to go back to pioneer days?”

    For the sake of teaching and character, it may be necessary to employ children in some kind of pioneer experience during their youth. They need to know how to build and how to plant. Technology may not always be reliable. We should not be too dependent on it, or when there are times of trials and lack of prosperity, our children will be able to cope with real life. Games are not real life.

  • I am very glad that I have played video games once, and although I have played a good deal of computer games, they have only been the free internet sort. I like your idea, Lydia, as I rather support much of the old-fashioned way of life. I’d enjoy a challenge like that of your parents.

    2) Have you noticed any of the subtle and/or obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun? Explain.

    What I right away thought of was the beauty craze. TV commercials advertising wrinkle removing creams, hair-color restorers, make-up, whatever. The push to look young.

    Great article guys.=)

  • Sir,

    First off, great article. The problems that my generation faces are great, and we are being brainwashed. The intellectuals of my generation will have a vast array of problems and enemies to face.

    I would like to state for the record though that not all video gaming that takes place is poison. Much like attempting to compare common TV programming with high art play’s, caution must be taken with talking about video gaming.

    Video games in large are pulpish and contain nothing of cultural value. However, there is a growing segment that is drastically different. Take the Civilazation line or the Total War line. Both are reinactments of history and cultures, and thusly more valuable in content than Doom 3. As parents (I am speaking hypothetically since I am not one) is to pay closer attention to content vs. medium. Sunning video games as a whole medium would be likened to shunning music because of Gangster Rap. We need to cultivate and encourage “High Gaming”.

    The internet couldn’t be more of a parent’s aide. If in doubt, with Google an exact disection of any video game is available and ready to be read. From that each family can choose for themselves. Unfortunately, less parents are willing to actually be parents these days and expect others to do it for them. I’m not accusing anyone of it, just noticing a growing trend around me.

  • Aria

    Wow, just a tad judgemental? So you see no point in video games, and maybe there isn’t much of one aside from being a way to relax. Young adults are under more pressure and stress these days than ever before. Yet we are also acoomplishing more. Young adults are creating, striving, achieving, and sometimes choose to go home at the end of the day and play video games. It’s stressful to always feel like everything you do much have a purpose to someone else.

    Even the violent games have a purpose. With so much more going on in our lives, anger can build up at the end of the day. Most of us can’t be shielded from this. We can either let things boil up until we snap and hit someone, or we can go lay the smack-down on some digital avatar. If taking anger out in a video game prevents even one person from taking that frustration out on another human being, then something good was achieved.

    It’s expensive to live today. Housing costs are going up while the typical salary is not. Credit standards to get into apartments is insane, and deposits on rentals is at an absurd amount. This isn’t 1950 when housing costs related to the typical income, nor is this 1800 when you picked apiece of land and started chopping trees to make a home. If you want to get to work, more than likely you will need a car (with the costs of gas, insurance, registration, maintenance, etc.) or to set aside a good amount for public transit (before moving to where I am now, I was spending just shy of $900/mo on transit, as well as three hours each way, to get to work). More work is demanded out of fewer hours for less pay, and workers do it under fear of their jobs being outsourced.

    It’s little wonder that most young people can not afford to live on their own, and expecting a young person to live on his own supporting a wife and child is not realistic in most areas of this country. Unless you want that young family to rely on welfare, you ought to be thankful that they are staying “children” longer and living with parents while working their way up in jobs than jumping out at the age of 18 to marry and start a family without the means to support that family.

    Before you go off slamming the choices of adults you can’t understand, you need to go out into the real world and shoulder real-world responsibilities. See how difficult it is to get a job, how discouraging it can be to work your ass off for years to get up to $13/hr, your two college degrees mattering for nothing in the end, degrees that have set you in debt for the next 20 years. Take what remains of that $13/hr and try to make rent, pay utilities, buy some food to eat. When you’re out of money and hungry and feeling hopeless and depressed and want to die, then tell me that living at home with mom and dad while you work your way up in the world is such a bad idea. Even Moses knew that if you worked people to the bone, they got less done. So a young adult living at home is more relaxed, does a better job at work, gets promoted a bit quickker, gets to move out (relatively) sooner.

    Yeah, try being an adult in this world before telling us what we’re doing wrong with our lives. Then maybe you’ll understand that it’s not as easy as your sheltered upbringing leads you to believe it is.

  • Lydia McGaughey Sherman

    Create pressure to do various things that have no real meaning in life, and then create video games to answer the problem. It is similar to psychiatry. The schools create the culture for depression and then the psychiatrists fill the need. The workplace can be just as bad, when it becomes just another level of the public school, with its time schedules and boring , meaningless work. After work, what better relief than to drain the brain with video games.

  • I’m probably reiterating but…
    1)No, however many men and women enter marriage or the job market expecting fun. These people either grow-up very quickly or they divorce for a more fun spouse and try to find a fun job (funny how people forget the job part when looking for the fun part).

    2)Yes, primarily in womens make-up and clothing styles. (I’m a fashion major) The classic cuts of dresses, pants, and shirts that convey the message of maturity and elegance are quiet out of style, currently. (unfortunately, they’re usually pretty modest)

    3)For myself, I cannot play computer games much at all. They were an idol in my heart not long ago so I must handle them with kid gloves. For my family and friends, I hate them. I’ve lost so much of my life to them, I hate watching those dear to me lose their lives to something so pointless! But when they want to waste their lives, what can I do? I have enough trouble centering my own heart on Christ so as not to waste my own life.

    4)Is that a man or a woman? Either way, they should have found a different costume for the party.

  • M.J.

    I am going to have to respectfully disagree. I don’t think that the video games, cell phones, etc. are causing the problems, I think making these things such a big deal is. While yes, they are problems, they are not to blame for the culture, the choices people are making are the problems. It is easier to waste time these days, it has been made eaiser, but we have a choice, no one is forcing us!

    I have many, many, christian friends play video games and do not go out and shoot people, run people over or many other things you “play” in a game. Some are more mature in their faith than I am! Heck even the youth pastor and pastor of our church both play video games!!

    I believe that it is the people, who are causing the problem, it is their choice to blame them, to reenact them, to do anything other than play these games for enjoyment, talk for hours on a cell phone, it would be OK to talk on the phone for hours if you were bringing someone to Christ or witnessing, right?

    “Everything is permissible for me, but not everything is beneficial, everything is permissible for me, but I will not be mastered by anything.” I Corinthians 6:12.

    People are being mastered by these things, not “possessed” as some seem to think, they are allowing their minds to think that it is OK to do these things, which is sad, but they are “choosing” to believe this with their own mind and their own heart. Look around you, look on the news! We are at war! There is death and blood and gore everyday! So it is not only in games or on TV that we see this, it IS in real life. When we as younger people are going to step out into that big world out there adn have to deal with these things happening all around us!

    The man you referred to, the one who died from “playing for 50 hours” made a bad choice, there was nothing forcing him to stay there for 50 hours, it was his choice. It was his time to die, God wanted him then, at least he left doing something he loved.

    I think it is easier to blame the worlds problems on video games, cell phones, TV, being spoiled, etc. than it is to face the real problems in our lives. Yes, teens don’t want to grow up! Some have had a terrible a childhood and know that their future isn’t looking to hot either. Some are scared and don’t want to let people down, but however they choose to live their lives, IS their choice and God is there the whole time! Sometimes people have to hit rock bottom. Sometimes God takes us there.

    I don’t play video games, I think they are the biggest waste of time you can buy for thirty bucks, I would much rather pick up my guitar, but biblically I see no reason why you shouldn’t. As someone said before, it is also another way to witness to others, as someone with purple hair and the fact that I don’t exactly “blend in” has given me some amazing witnessing opportunities, and if someone can get the conversation going by discussing games, cell phone carriers, or the size of their tv, then go them! Why give that up??

  • L H

    It appears that all of the comments come from the young adults’ point of view.

    It’s understandable that you believe that it’s too expensive to move out and support yourself when you can live with your parents and save money. But how often do you think that it’s not fair to THEM, even if they insist it’s okay?

    Your parents did not raise you to be a child, they reared you to be an adult. How dare you take advantage of them by taking their hard-earned money that they should be saving for their retirement or taking a long-deserved vacation!

    If you don’t make enough money in one job to meet your needs, then do what generations before you did, and what real adults do now, take a second job. If you spent more time working than you do playing, you will soon learn skills and develop a reputation for being a hard worker. Then things will take their natural course and you will earn more because you are WORTH more.

  • Midori

    On the subject of video games:

    If you doubt the harm of vicariously killing people, maiming them, or committing other un-Christlike actions, check out the recent research on “mirror neurons.” Scientists are discovering that when you watch someone cry, scream or dance, your brain experiences them as if you were the one crying, screaming or dancing. AND, those brain pathways are reinforced every time they’re used. We become what we watch. (2 Cor. 3:18).

  • I’ve been addicted to WoW, an online community RPG. I quited after awhile. As I lived on without anything to do I began to write, read, and do other things more often. Now I try to participate it many writing activities. I love writing and sharing, so this is why I use the computer.
    As for the picture… I didn’t find it disturbing, no. 😛

  • Noelle

    1. No way! Working at a job, taking care of kids, cooking, doing chores, teaching homeschooled kids, etc…that’ll take way too much time to even think about playing computer games!

    2. Well, there’s always those advertisements for makeup and stuff that are supposedly “anti-aging”. Yeah, right, like you can actually get younger by using a certain kind of make-up.

    3. I think you should not be playing computer games and such every day. Limit it to a certain time limit a week, or something like that. I’m not allowed to play on the computer for more than two hours a week, and that’s only on Saturdays.

    4. Very!! I shudder every time I look at it! Actually, it looks more like an old, ugly Robin Hood.

  • laura

    1 Unfortunatley, you can’t have everything, and a boss and family are not quite as understanding towards people who put more emphasis on being selfish and having fun just because “I owe it to myself” than their job or family as they are to themselves.
    2 The culture is totally focussed on fun and conveniance. It’s all about you, we’re told. You have to enjoy being young and having fun becuase you are gonna get old and uncool and society will be focussed on your kids. The problem is, we won’t realize that once we’re not young, we can’t be selfish anymore and now we need to make a big deal about being young to our kids.
    3 I think it’s alright to play video games if they are used in moderation. However, when they become an obsession, we need to realize it and be willing to admit it.

  • laura

    Oh yeah, and the picture doesn’t disturb me, but I can’t tell whether it’s a guy or girl.

  • Alexander Kaehler

    AUGH!!! (hits head on computer desk) So… meany… posts that …I want to… comment on! I wish there was a “quote” option, so I wouldn’t have so many bruises on my forehead x_o

    2. Somebody commented on question “2” that wrinkle removers fitted into this catagory (I agree). The first thing that popped into my head mas some sage proverb on those daily inspirational things that, although I can’t remember, said that wrinkles mere a sign of maturity, wisdom, and love. So do wrinkle removers imply that the users are childish, foolish (stupid), and spiteful?

  • Ariana Felix

    Wow!

    1) Of course not! If they could, my dad would play the game! I find it heartbreaking to think that our world excuses this shamful irresponsible behavior.Where are the strong morals this country was basd on? What does the Goverment think our country is going to be like if men don’t take responsibility and start working to make a change?

    p.s-Great blog,funny picture.:)

  • Taurnil

    Throughout my life I have found real things much better than cheap imitations, which is what video games are. It is no secret that most teens like the violent Halo-style first person shooters. I don’t play these, and find them boring compared to airsoft and paintball. Paintball requires you to fully engage your mind and body instead of brainlessly tapping on buttons. It also requires a lot more responsibility than video games as you have to properly orginize the games and clean your gun. Also unlike video games, paintball does not induce violent behaviour, on the contrary, to me and my fellow paintballing friends (all Christians) it is just a friendly game.
    My point is that while there are some good uses for video games (I totally agree with Pip W on it being a great ministry area) there are so much more and better things to do, even for fun.

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  • Tabitha

    In my family video games are not allowed in the house, because they are expensive and harmful without adding to health, wealth or wisdom. The nearest thing we ever had was a “Lego Star Wars: the Original Trilogy” for PC, and that too was banished because of behavioral problems that it causes in little boys.
    M.J.: We are all ultimately responsible for our own actions, but do not underestimate the effects that too much technology can have on a person. I know firsthand that IM conversations are magnetic, that a computer game being played draws the attention of everyone else in the house, that our mother can tell on arriving home that the little boys “…didn’t get enough sleep last night, from the way they’re behaving- or they sat and watched movies all day.”(It was the latter) AND that, not ten minutes ago, I turned around to see my 3year old sister putting lipstick in her mouth, having been too absorbed in this page to notice her picking it up. I hope lipstick isn’t toxic!
    And you said,
    “The man you referred to, the one who died from “playing for 50 hours” made a bad choice, there was nothing forcing him to stay there for 50 hours, it was his choice. It was his time to die, God wanted him then, at least he left doing something he loved.” This ranks among one of the most shocking and misguided statements I have read in recent memory.
    Tell me, would YOU like to die doing something worse than useless? I personally would much prefer to face my Savior if I had been executed in a Communist country for preaching the gospel.
    And it sounded alarmingly like you were advocating suicide.

    You also said,
    “People are being mastered by these things, not “possessed” as some seem to think…” It seems to me that this is what these articles are about. People are being mastered by the technology. They aren’t trying to say that people are possessed.
    Then you said,
    “Look around you, look on the news! We are at war! There is death and blood and gore everyday! So it is not only in games or on TV that we see this, it IS in real life. When we as younger people are going to step out into that big world out there adn have to deal with these things happening all around us!”

    Actually, this is true. This is WHY we don’t need to see these things on TV or play with them for fun. This is serious. Violent movies tend to cause thoughts among my little brothers that this is all in fun and you can kill someone without really hurting them… Incidentally, when we sat down and watched an R-rated movie one day, they all had the time of their lives. I feel rather proud of myself that that movie didn’t make me literally sick, though I do recall feelings of illness. I didn’t know it was an R-rated movie till afterward, but I did know it had ruined my entire week and that I never wanted to see anything like it again.
    War and killing are NOT fun and they have NO place in entertainment.
    I’m convinced that all my brothers would grow up better if none of them ever watched a minute of TV or played a video game again for the rest of their lives. That goes for the rest of the population, too.

    Aria: I see no point in playing video games, since the only point to be seen in them is money for the manufacturers. Relax, you said? I was at a friends’ house once and played a video game of theirs about snowboarding(by the way, I was an unbelievable loser). I don’t think it was more than an hour, but my thumb was sore for days afterward from the tension.
    I personally find it more restful to go to bed at the end of the day, rather than playing games. Too, the screen can give some people headaches.
    And you said:
    “With so much more going on in our lives, anger can build up at the end of the day. Most of us can’t be shielded from this.” I want to ask you- ever heard of the term “punching bag”?
    And when you said”It’s little wonder that most young people can not afford to live on their own, and expecting a young person to live on his own supporting a wife and child is not realistic in most areas of this country.”
    Dear, it wasn’t meant to be easy. But, with God’s help it can be done. You know, that verse in Philippians. It’s true. By the way, did you ever fell 160 acres of old-growth forest single-handedly with only an ax or maybe the assistance of a wife and saw? No, I thought not. What about transforming the timber into buildable lumber and getting your crops planted and harvested and your house built before winter, while protecting your family from all the perils of the wilds?
    Oh, and if you save money-start young, don’t spend those thousands gradually on video games and movies- it makes things a lot easier.
    Now, I’m sure we wouldn’t consider you a child just because you lived with your parents. Far from it! The noun “child” is referring to the childlike behavior, the wasting of time, money, and other valuable commodities, the inability to behave as an adult. The absence of the marks of manhood. Irreverence, irresponsibility and general immaturity. That’s what they’re talking about. The situation you described is not what this article is about. I’m sorry, you sound very discouraged. I’ll pray for you. But I want to tell you that if I ever get married I will expect my husband to take full responsibility for providing for me and any children that God sees fit to give.
    Then you said,”Yeah, try being an adult in this world before telling us what we’re doing wrong with our lives. Then maybe you’ll understand that it’s not as easy as your sheltered upbringing leads you to believe it is.”
    Let me tell you, they’re trying to tell US who are still young so we can do what we believe to be right. And if they’ve been sheltered, then I was born yesterday. They’re not saying it’s easy! Where did you read that? I’m not getting angry, just wondering how tears can be infused into typewritten sentences. That’s the whole point! They’re saying that we should do the thing that isn’t easy because it’s right. They’re saying that it’s NOT easy!! But we should do it anyway!!
    Sorry for being off topic here.

  • Tabitha

    Oh, I didn’t realize how long that was.
    And I apologize if I was too forceful.

  • Patrick

    Dear Tabitha,
    In regards to your cynicism, I find that “forceful”, may not have been the best choice of words. You stood up for what you believed in, and I must respect that.
    However,
    in my experience with people, I find that those of us who get our point across regarding technology, might do so better if IT WASN’T OVER THE COMPUTER! Did you consider this?
    Now, in regards to your article,
    I am not appalled at your point of view. In all seriousness, there are two sides to what you have to say. Regrettably, America is in the stranglehold of an overwhelming tide of technology. In your point-blank statements concerning technology you alluded ,that all technology is evil. Wrong, and you know this…hopefully.
    Second, I don’t imagine this means much to you. You seem to be the person of reason, but your reasoning comes with a price. You stand on your hill and you shout, and when people stop to listen, they’d best agree, or suffer the price of dangerous allegations such as “it sounded alarmingly like you were advocating suicide,” which is something no one in their right mind would do. And P.S. wow. I mean wow. The disdain in your voice was palpable. I hope I never treat anyone like that.
    Thirdly, and lastly, convince yourself of this, if your’e ever willing to except your wrong;
    you choose to write these comments concerning blogs. But if people didn’t buy video games, why would anyone sell them? There are so many things in this world that can kill a man. And an anomally, like the “50 hours” subject, is nothing more than a ripple in the ocean. If you want to change with world, which I doubt you will, then do so privately. You catch more bees with honey than vinegar, and you change more minds with wisdom than the saliva-filled jibberish, sprayed at the computer in hopes that you will alter the face of things (don’t doubt that that is what you are trying, or you have submitted your opinion) If you wish to scare people, or intimidate and insult them, then i have no problems reminding you that in this lost world of ours, Christians are not all rebukers. Learn this, and reply.
    In serious hopes that we never meet,
    Patrick

  • MJ

    Tabitha…

    “This ranks among one of the most shocking and misguided statements I have read in recent memory.
    Tell me, would YOU like to die doing something worse than useless? I personally would much prefer to face my Savior if I had been executed in a Communist country for preaching the gospel.
    And it sounded alarmingly like you were advocating suicide.”

    How did you get advocating suicide from “It was his time to die,” God knows when we are going to die, and it might be when we decide to go crazy playing video games or when we just happen to be over sea’s on a mission, but its not what we were doing in the moment of our death that is going to matter, it’s going to be the life we had led up to that point, And to answer your question. I want to stand before my lord with a life that has been *his* not my own, for longer than a quick mission trip to another country, I want my life to be a mission, whether here or over sea’s.

    Passing a judgment like advocating suicide was a bit too hasty, and would advise getting to know someone or at least holding back the comment until you can speak to them privately, before making such judgments.

    My point was, that he made a choice, a bad, one, but a choice, God gave us free will as a gift, we should use it but WISELY but being imperfect humans, we don’t always make the right choices. We should always strive to, but we don’t always live up to it. This gentleman, made a choice that might not have been a good one, but does that make him a bad person? I think Christ will still accept him with open arms if he feels so inclined, I don’t think our God is a God that will tell someone that he cant love them because they played video games for so long and that could have been doing better things with their time. If you watch movies all day and your parents come home and see that, do they still love you? Yes! They do! Because it’s not just that moment that they base their love upon, its a life time, so you made a bad choice, buck up and move on!

    Is it possible for everything we do in the day, to be constructive, like writing a book, or creating a work of art, making a song? You can try, but even if you do all of those things in a day, how are they going to further your walk with Christ? IF witnessing to someone through a video game can do that, then who are any of us to stop Gods hand in the situation?!
    We can look at technology and say “Wow! God you instilled that idea in someones head, gave them the strength, wisdom and patience to follow your plan, whether they knew you or not! You really are amazing! Thank you!” Or we can look at how people are misusing it and doing terrible things with it!
    In some cases its a matter of how you wish to view it, is the glass half empty, or is it half full? We can look up free devotions and sermons, resources for problems that you might need help on in life, getting help from other believers on faith issues ( I am assuming like this site) keeping in contact with friends, school projects for us home schoolers, or, we can look at pornography, video games, computer games that aren’t all that wonderful. Again, its a choice.

    I do acknowledge that yes, it has a strong pull on the attention span, and is hard to pull away from, nothing is forcing us to be there doing it either. But so many other things are hard to pull away from as well, I get engulfed in a book and can’t pull myself out, I can be a stronger person about it and set the book down or I can’t. it’s a choice, a hard one sometimes, but a choice. That is where the beauty of Gods grace and mercy come into play, he is there when we make good choices and bad ones too. And will forgive us if we chose wrong. I am not telling everyone to go out and sin away because you have a safety net. I am saying when you are trying to walk the road and you stumble, Gods there to wipe you off and get you going again. Because we can’t do it ourselves.

    If everyone had the opportunity to go to a Communist country when they felt like sharing it would be an entirely different world but, we can’t all do that some because of physical reason, and many other things that can hinder a person. But you can still have that fire, the drive to share with everyone, and that is when people here in our towns also need to hear the gospel just as much as those people in Communist countries, if not more. Everything we need to share with people has been given to us.

    From experience, if you start talking to a non-believer about Christ with a holier-than-thou attitude, they immediately tune you out of just walk away. But if you have had the chance to talk to them and gotten to know them, learned how they feel about certain things, then they are more likely to listen to you when you bring it up and respect your opinion. I do understand that we don’t always have the privilege to do that, but it tends to be more successful. I am also a big believer in using your daily life to show people Christ, we are supposed to be a living example. To me that is the best way to show someone the heart of Christ when you let it shine from your actions, and your words. So if you don’t like video games for what ever reasons and you have friends who like to play them, you go over to their house or ask if you play them, various different scenarios that could come up! And would you look at that!! You can share your beliefs! With out making them feel like you are rattling off the do’s and don’ts of the world. If you start throwing out judgments and telling people everything they are doing wrong, you will get nowhere! And if you do then it could be from guilt, which our faith is never meant to be a guilt trip! We could just use the resources that are are around us!! God has a purpose for *everything*

    Try this…

    http://www.dare2share.org/culturecommission/archives/

    It talks about using songs, movies, and yes, even video games to bring up Christ.

    I love the no video games in the house rule! I love it, love it, love it!! My parents have the same rule and when I have children, it will be the same for my house. They drive me nuts! If I go to a friends house who has them and then starts playing them, I want to break the T.V. into itty bitty tiny little bits!
    People, when playing them can be unresponsive and sometimes just major jerks, I have some friends who aren’t that way, they play for a few minutes and if they are needed they nicely put down the controller and go where they are needed, like I said Youth Pastor and Pastor play them! But again, they have the *choice* to respond well or not. We all have the choice to have a bad attitude when we wake up and snap at people if we didn’t get enough sleep the night before, or we can bite our tongue and deal with it. Because we have the CHOICE!

    And I have one last question, would this be a different discussion if it was a Christian video game? If it was “labeled” a “Christian” video game? Would you view it differently? Would it be as big of a waste of time?

    P.S. I don’t think lipstick is toxic!! Gotta admit, it looks good enough to eat! ;P

  • Shane H

    I do not feel gaming is “Bad” or any thing.
    I use to play 12 hrs a week and then I stepped back and thought for a second, Is this really how I want to spend my time all week? And I realized I wasn’t spending much time with the lord. So I gave it up pretty much, because I now play 2hrs a week usually.
    So I just want to say watch how you spend your time.

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  • kailey

    shane i agree with shane i used to play on the computer about 24 hours a week now i only do it when i’m babbysitting or when i go on this website.

  • kailey

    why are we all judging one another? isn’t it useless if we are all judging one another its not like we are going to get any were. respect the other persons fellings. if they are wrong who is the greatest judge?(if you don’t know the answere is God).

  • 1. I think that teens, as well as kids have way too much fun and not enough responsiblity.
    It would be impossible to keep up that lifestyle and be a good parent of employee. They would be too busy with themselves.

    4. I find the picture very creepy!

  • Video games are sometimes a substitute for reality. You know, a 20something guy will feel better if he can vanquish night elfs by the dozen, even if he’s incapable of providing for himself. Overcoming fantasy battles makes them feel like they can overcome the real ones. *LIE!* I have nothing against video games, but when 20 year old men start using them as an escape or as a substitute for what he really should be battling like oh I don’t know….demons! it’s not a worthy substitute.
    ^^^ I’m not saying this because I believe it but because I’ve experienced it myself by escaping into books and movies and wishing all the time that it was me killing all the orcs or that it was me saving the princess or whatever.
    Just don’t let anything become your alternate reality. God has no substitute, and there’s no replacement for the battles he wants you to fight.

  • Emma

    I used to be upset that my parents wouldn’t buy me a gaming system, but I recently borrowed a gane boy from a friend and i never did anything else but play. Now that I see how easy it is to become obsessed with it, i’m glad they didn’t. If i’d gotten a game boy or an X-box or anything, then I wouldn’t be reading as much and I wouldn’t be developping any interests, other than gaming.

    and yes. that pic is incredibly disturbing.

  • Hi webmaster!

  • Hello,
    4) I think that picture is disturbing.

    My brother and I have a Nintendo 64 and my brother is wants a Game Cube for his birthday. We only get about 2 hours a month each to play video games. I think it’s okay to play a little bit, as long as it isn’t a bad game like Grand Theft Auto.

    Great work on the blog,I liked this post and the comments so much, my contacts almost dried up!! :) God bless you!

  • Irina H.F.

    I would totally agree with what you said about video games. When i first started babysitting, the kid i watched had A) a tv in his room and B) a nintendo game cube. The irony, though, was when his dad told me that he and the kid’s mom were starting to wonder wether they had made a mistake in getting him a tv in his room. I didn’t say anything at the time, but now i would say, ” Well, DUH!” where ARE parents brains nowadays?!

  • Irina H.F.

    P.S. that picture is REALLY creepy!

  • Why? Why? Why?!!!
    That picture is going to keep me up all night! (Crying for my mother. JK)
    This article was very interesting. My family doesn’t own any PLaystations Or X boxes. We never have, and I think we are better off for it. I babysit for a lot of kids and one particualr family just recently bought their son a play station because he was, get this… “spending too much time on the computer.” Now he gets both computer and PLay Station Time, and it was amazing to see the change in his behavior over the next few monthes. The games are rather violent, some even to the point of being disturbing.
    Just wondering… are there any other people who DO NOT own any play stations or X boxes?

  • Marci

    1) The level of fun is maintainable, in a sense. I hope my career is fun, and I plan to make it so. I hope I’ll have fun with my husband and kids (if I have them, lol). The truth is, most teens aren’t having as much fun as they think they are. Anyone who has seen the sunrise when camping on sand dunes in the middle of nowhere knows that playing video games could never compare. So the TYPE of so-called fun will not be maintainable if teens choose to live responsible lives, but the joy of what they do will surely increase.

    2) Yes. I think most logical people are aware of the pressures that advertisers put towards staying young and having fun, and erroneously equating the two, but I think one of the biggest problems is song lyrics to the music that most teens listen to. Since recording artists are technically not supposed to be selling music, but creating it, people tend to have their guard down more and to be less skeptical about the message sent by them.

    3) Too much of pretty much anything is bad. Even if you spent all your time reading the Bible, instead of hanging out with your kids, spouse, friends, etc. that would be wrong. Addiction to anything, whether its meth or gaming or missions work, is wrong.

    4) I scrolled past the pic as quickly as possible to avoid looking at it, so I’m not sure, lol.

  • Rachel M

    Banana, I don’t own an X-box or playstation either.
    3) too much video games are totally bad. My friend got this game for her DS where she gets to be a lawyer and she has been talking about it almost constantly. It has gotten to the point where she is referring to her character’s experiences as her own. I would call that obsession. It seems to me that many young people play games when they could be doing more productive things, like reading or actually interacting with others about meaningful issuses.

  • Rachel M

    oh, that picture is very, very disturbing.

  • Hannah Peck

    Woohoo! Great article! It’s sooo true, I know people like that! There are people like that in my extended family! It’s very disturbing (and yes, so is that creepy picture). I’m so grateful to my wise and insightful parents who have always discouraged video games. I love reading and writing and being outside and playing musical instruments, interests I’m afraid I probably wouldn’t have if I’d been submerged in “stupid”-fying video games.
    Anyway, great article. This website has been a huge blessing to me. Thanks guys!

    P.S. Banana, I’ve never owned an X-box or playstation either, neither have any of my siblings. :)

  • Anne W.

    Wow!!!! Great article… The picture was creepy…. I think that I almost threw up.

  • Elizabeth

    You are so right! When I see kidults, I get so sad. Why are kidults even around?! It’s really hard to respect a kidult, because he/she acts like your little brother/sister does! When I see those people I think “oh, great. he’s going to want me to do something, and I have to obey because he’s technically an adult. even though he doesn’t act like one.” I also think how sad it’d be to be him/her. People generally don’t respect them, or accecpt them into their group. It’d be terribly lonely, and very depressing. That picture gave me creeps! I’ve never seen a kidult to that extreme, and I never want to!

  • Elizabeth

    By the way Banana, I have never owned any type of thing even close to a Playstation or Xbox! Neither have my siblings (which I have six.) The closest thing to that kind of thing is the computer! And all we play on that is educational games! :)

  • Renee Louise

    Banana – Our family doesn’t have a playstation or Xbox. We have a computer, as well as a few games (Rollercoaster Tycoon, Age of Empires, Sim City 4) and a Nintendo DS and a Nintendo Advance (games: Sonic Chronicles, Mario Kart and Super Mario something-or-other) .
    When it was new, we played the DS a fair bit, but now it’s ‘old news’ and only gets pulled out when we’re bored!
    I would spend most of the time on the computer. My sister and I have played internet games, but we somehow picked up a trojan and consequently are now banned from them! I think that has been a good thing, because they were beginning to take over our lives.
    Now, I read blogs, read the forums on here and also http://www.shaunti.com and email my friends. I don’t have a mobile (cell, we call them mobiles here in Oz) or an iPod. I love reading, and read just about everything I can find!! I probably spend an hour (sometimes more) a day on the internet, extra on weekends.
    BTW – the picture….. well, it’s frankly not disturbing because you see people like that all the time. We saw a man (no, was it a lady??) and couldn’t decide who ‘it’ was. It’s sad that people just aren’t content with who they are anymore! They want to look younger, dye their hair, have surgical implants, change their gender…..
    Why did I get picked to live in the 21st century??!

  • Georgia

    Why do we want to look and act younger? In the Bible, Jesus said that when we were children, we acted like children, but now that we are older, we need to act older. What’s up with plastic surgery and the like? We want to look younger, but why aren’t we happy with the body that Christ gave us? God, the One who put the stars and moon in the sky, created us. So why aren’t we happy? He created us in His image! And why should anyone have surgery to ‘beautify’ themselves? Let me tell you, how many people do you know that actually look good after being surgically altered? I mean, look at Michael Jackson! Very few people actually look good after surgery, and why we do it, I have no idea. We’re only children for a while, then we need to grow up and live in the real world. We’re not here to play Nintendo. Did God put us here to play the latest video game? Did He say, ‘There shall be light and video games?’ Heck no! We’re here to serve God. Period. We need to grow up in the Spirit and live like Jesus. No ifs, ands or buts.

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  • jes

    This installment was written almost 4 years ago and I believe kidults are still comletely and utterly oblivious to the way they have been suckered into the peter pan lifestyle. ok, maybe they haven’t been suckered into it, it seems as though they have willingly and eagerly bought their tickets, packed their suitcases, and boarded their one way flights to neverneverland, 2nd start to the right, straight on to oblivion.
    I’m surrounded by them. Grown adults my age (late 20’s) with jobs and families of their own, spending HOURS and HOURS of their lives on video games, watching tv and movies, etc. Double income families, children in daycare, so they can have toys, and do they ever!! We recently cut off our satellite service and the response I got was “geesh, no need to go to extremes!” I for one gladly did it, it was very tempting, and I could see the impact it was having on my family. I’m not just pointing fingers elsewhere, I have been shamefully guilty of it up until recently and am only now beginning to see Wendy’s wisdom!

  • Michaela

    my computer wouldn’t show the picture:(

  • Haley

    i really don’t play video games that often, but my friends play it whenever they can get their hands on a remote, so i could see my friend nikole spending almost a full day every week on video games. maybe more. i honestly think those people are wasting their lives away, which makes me very sad. they might have done something important, but they’re sitting on their couch doing nothing.

  • Haley

    no offense to the people who happen to love video games, but i prefer the real world and living on planet earth. nothing against technology. *sigh* being quiet now.

  • It’s my son’s birthday shortly and I feel that your post has made my mind up regarding what I am going to get him.

  • Greta R.

    I completely agree that too many young people are wasting their time with gaming/media. When I was growing up my sister and I had a Super Nintendo which we were allowed to play on a limited basis. It was fun, but my parents were smart to monitor it’s use as it does become quite addictive after a while. In answer to your questions…

    1) Do you think the level of fun most teenagers are accustomed to is maintainable once they have shouldered adult responsibilities (i.e. full-time job, marriage, family, etc.)? Why or why not? My answer to this is an emphatic NO. Too many young people are in for a shock once they finally get married. Money that could have easily been blown on new games, a mall shopping trip, fast food, music, and movies must now go to other things such as bills, home repairs, or various unexpected expenses that arise. Also, the hours of time that could have easily been spent playing computer games will become time that is meant for your husband/wife and children. Some fun time is perfectly acceptable and good for families, but quality time spent with each other is far more important than personal entertainment and can be quite fun in itself!

    2) Have you noticed any of the subtle and/or obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun? The message that you “only live once so have as much fun as you can with no regard for consequences” is everywhere. I see adults taking on this attitude as well as teenagers. It disturbs me.

    3) How much is too much when it comes to video games and other similar activities? What are your standards? The Lord has been convicting me in this area lately, so I am working very hard to limit my media time to when my baby girl is sleeping that way I am not taking attention away from her. When she is awake I want to be able to talk to and play with her as much as possible. Kids grow up fast and it would be awful to miss special moments because I was too distracted with my Facebook account or a tv show.

    4) Do you find that picture disturbing? Unfortunately the pictures will not show up for some reason. :-/

    I do not want my daughter growing up feeling like “fun” is the highest value. Fun comes in many forms and I want her to find joy and fun in building relationships with other people, taking walks, being creative, reading… This blog is excellent for me to read as I am purging the “Kidult” out of myself and thinking of how I want to raise my own children.

  • Kristina

    Definitly noticed how our culture pushes us to be irresponsible and just have fun. Even from my parents I have noticed it, for my birthday they were going to buy me a big screen tv, to replace an old tiny one my brother gave me once he got a bigger one. After reading this and pondering about it, I realized I didn’t want or need a new tv and asked if I could just put that money into savings for my future. They thought the idea was ridiculous and asked me why I would want to do that when I can spend my money on whatever I want right now and in the future worry about saving.

    I will try to be more responsible now and use my money and time wisely, and maybe I will even rub off on my family. Thanks for the article!

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  • Tex

    Oh how I wish my brother would read this!!! He’s a gaming freak! It’s wrotted his brain and destroyed his maturity, it’s been so bad lately that my parents are now looking at Military School!!! Please pray for him!

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  • EmilyC.

    kinda scary… that pic. The first thing that comes to mind when you say peter pan, is how my dad used to want to be like him(when he was, like,4. Just FYI.) He stopped after he jumped of a bunk bed, and a slide, on an attempt to “fly”. He ended up in the ER both times. Happily, he moved on to star wars, and is now a happy adult.

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  • Joseph Owecke

    This really struck home to me as I have a cousin who is graduated from college but still living at home. Excellent post!

    In response to your questions I think that video games in and of themselves aren’t that bad. I personally enjoy them and to say otherwise I would be lying. The main key to video games though is not to get addicted. Some of my friends their whole lives revolve around the games. I think as long as you prioritize and just use the video games to kill some time, relax, and hang out with your friends its ok. Once they start to get in the way of school, work, God, family, or whatever, that’s when it’s time to stop.

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  • Lilia

    I don’t think it’s the videogames or TV, themselves, that are the problem. I think it’s the way we’re conditioned to think about them. When my dad came home from work, he wouldn’t let us watch a movie if the weather outside was good. Instead, he’d play soccer or kickball with us, or take us on a hike in the woods. Even if the weather was bad, we’d play hide and seek or card games inside. When my parents were too busy to play with us, we came up with our own entertainment. My sisters and I made our own musical theater, invented storylines, arranged furniture into a set, pulled together costumes, and created our own songs when we were 4-9 years old. I don’t think we would have thought to make our own musicals without watching Disney movies every Friday night for inspiration, but we were taught not to only consume, but to create.

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  • Corinna

    Scientifically, it’s been shown that action in the frontal lobes (associated with higher cognitive function) is put on a moratorium while watching TV.

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  • McKayla R.

    this reminds me of my uncle. he is 35 and is still living with my grandma. sure he has a job but he bought a CUSTOM MADE PORTABLE XBOX!!! what a waste. either way i love this site. can you email me some material. i have a middle school bible study that i run for my school and some of my ideas arent as fresh as i would like them to be. By the way the pic of the peter pan is VERY disturbing. a little creepy. looks like a dude who has 0 friends, Sorry creepy dude :)

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  • Amber

    1) Do you think the level of fun most teenagers are accustomed to is maintainable once they have shouldered adult responsibilities (i.e. full-time job, marriage, family, etc.)?
    No

    Why or why not?
    Job, family, and marriage come before fun, if your playing most of the time, then there is little or no time for the important and consturctive things in life

    2) Have you noticed any of the subtle and/or obvious ways that our culture pushes us to stay young and have fun?
    Ever heard of Forever-21 (store) that’s an example (I always thought it would be monotonous to be 21 forever). Peer pressure is also a constant factor in “be young, have fun” mindset. Commercials, ads, etc….

    3) How much is too much when it comes to video games and other similar activities?
    What are your standards?
    No more than an hour is the rule in our house.

    4) Do you find that picture disturbing?
    Both pictures are disturbing 😛

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  • Genesis

    I don’t think video games are good or bad, they should be played moderately. If a child is allowed to play all the video games he wants they will most likely become his life, yet if a child is completely forbidden from video games, he may rebel and they may take over his life.

  • Kelly Lundgren

    The only x-box at our house, is a box with x’s all over. (How fun!!!!)

  • Logan

    I think it’s important for us to be concerned about our productivity, but I think you do Peter Pan (and us) a disservice by equating him with the type of persons that you do. If you read Peter Pan, you find that he has incredible virtues: He is absolutely fair, appreciative of good effort, and intelligent. He fights against that which feeds disrespect and that which robs people of individuality. He loathes laziness. True he is selfish, forgetful and incapable of certain relationships, but one thing to take away from J.M. Barrie’s story is that there is still something to be loved in Peter. A mother has that love. And hearts are healed with that love. What better work is there than that?

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