I held off as long as I could. When boys came over to play, screens went off. I wanted to see boys running, jumping and climbing. I loved to listen to their inventions and creativity. I would rather have them make a mess or dive off my stairs, then see those precious faces zoned out in front of a screen. But by age 9, I caved.
The boys that came to my house didn’t always to know how to have fun with each other. Once they found out we had an xbox, they would ask every 5 minutes “now can we play?” I made them wait, but nothing ever was as engaging as the adrenaline and dopamine hit awaiting them in that screen. I didn’t want my son to be rejected for having a boring home, so I surrendered to the pressures of modern life.
But my concerns are still there. How are boys going to learn to interact in a social setting? Will they be able to feel content without the constant stimulation and dopamine release they get from screen time? How will they build healthy relationships with the opposite sex when their only exposure to girls is through youtube? What the heck am I going to say about oral sex, online pornography and sexting?
We are offering a free call for parents called Raising Respectful Sons: Sex, Tech & Connection. We understand the digital age that surrounds us and want to empower parents to give their boys the information they need to grow into self-assured, healthy and respectful young men. You CAN help your son thrive, even with cell phones, social media, online video games and that ever present screen.