Where is Nancy Reagan When You Need Her??

My son has become a statistic.  I suppose, looking back, it was practically unavoidable, but I’ll admit, I still didn’t see it coming.  Recent stats say this it is most common in 12-17 year olds.  It happens to over 10 million people per month – – almost 35% of internet users.  The risk is higher in families where other members are already users.  None of these numbers, however, prepared us for the gritty reality.

H-T has discovered YouTube. 

His older brother, of course, was the pusher. Up till now, he had kept his habit to his own corner.  But he could sense the potential in his kid bro — he was primed for the kill.  After all, you can only watch Spongebob reruns on Nickelodeon so many times before the high wears off.  H-T was jonesing for a new fix.

At first, he was simply impressed by the number of video game cut scenes that he could find.  Before long, he had discovered rare dinosaur videos (a longtime passion), and old Sonic the Hedgehog tv episodes.  Mild experimentation had turned into social use, however, when H-T advanced into fan-made anime, clips from sci-fi classics, and blurbs from the Simpsons.

I’m devastated to report, that as of this writing, H-T seems to have lapsed into full-blown YouTube addiction.  All the signs are there.  He has begun to neglect the tv remote.  His video game scores are dropping.  He is withdrawing from his online friends. 

Just Say No to YouTube

So what is a mother to do??  I want my son back, but if I take the tough love approach, do I risk pushing him even further into his dependency – – perhaps into dancing cat videos? I read recently that YouTube is banned in Iran.  What do you think?  Could I find a laptop case that would look good with a burkha?


7 Responses

  1. hmmmmm….I understand the addition. Consider getting him a video camara so he can start recording some things of his own–you can even turn it into an educational event like he has to record himself as a weatherman or as a news caster. I hear there’s good money in that as a job 😉 just a thought, if you can’t beat him, join him!

  2. No I say everything in moderation. He needs to diversify and play different things. Get him involved in other things…because it is an addiction if he stays on one thing only. Be supportive and try not to shout at him all the time. It might be hard…but if you do other activities with him, in time he will start to appreciate it.

    “The human whose name is written in this Death Note shall die.”
    What is the top rated anime of all time? Will Death Note
    continue to spread through this world? © Anime-Underground

  3. Topsy-If you find a way to help this addiction, let me know…Remodel Man is addicted and I’m just not sure taking priviledges away from a 38 year old man will work. Besides, he can probably find a new dealer at work or something. 😉

  4. RG – LOL!!! 😀

  5. Wow, you made it to 12? My boys are 5 and 3 and they are both self-proclaimed “YouTubers”. In fact, Little E (5), will say, “Mommy, I’m tired of watching Spongebob. I need to get on my computer because I’m a You-Tuber!” I brought this on myself though, looking for train videos for them to watch. Fortunately they are not old enough to spell much yet but I dread the day they can! And I agree with SpinDiva and Lycanine – making it fun and moderation are the keys to success.

  6. My 8 year old has been using youtube and google for a year. Every day, he finds new magic sites and looks at different tricks and then demands that I buy them. He recently shopped for new swimming pools and proposed several. He also tried to find some “hidden rooms” and couldn’t seem to find any vendors on the net.

    On youtube, he watches magic.

    He has a mac with a built-in mic & camera. He spents endless time making videos and using the built-in special effects. We’ve had 2 sessions at the local apple store (its $99 for free classes once a week for year! Private classes!) where we’ve had them teach us to use imovie. So far, no Oscars but he has added music and a voice over to one of his peformance.

    The wii sits neglected. He doesn’t even really know how to turn on the TV. This is true.

  7. Sigh. Sadly, I have to admit that I am also an addict. I thought I was making progress. While I would “fall off the wagon” occasionally, I had begun to wean myself from my drug of choice. I would proudly tell people on the street that I was “6 days clean” and then “24 days clean.” I was getting all prepared to boast that all important “one month clean” and then the unthinkable happened…

    My hubby bought me my iPhone. Eeek! Since the iPhone comes preloaded with direct access to YouTube (it’s a one touch icon on the homescreen), one can only imagine by relapse. “The Evolution of Dance,” “The Harry Potter Puppet Parody” and “I Like Turtles” are just a tap away…

    :o) lol, great post! My sons (8 and 3) haven’t yet qualified as “YouTubers” but they do watch the occasional video. Well…to be honest the 8 yr old will watch an occasional video… the 3 yr old just kinda “tags along.” :o)

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