I read an article from 2007 that was showing that playing video games has altered some children’s personalities as well as their choices and behaviors. The article went on to say that some experts believe that playing video games is as addictive as using heroine. The article said that almost 90% of American youth play video games and as much as 15% of them are classified as addicted, this is almost 5 million kids.
From the article, Joyce Protopapas of Frisco, Texas commenting on her 17 year old son, Michael, said: “We went to therapists, we tried taking the game away. He would threaten us physically. He would curse and call us every name imaginable, It was as if he was possessed.”
The article goes on to state that there was an anonymous website created for gamers who are wanting help. A posting by an thirteen year old who stated that after playing video games for twelve hours he was suicidal and was thinking he was addicted. The website also had numerous postings from men who had lost everything because of their video game habits.
The AMA will be deciding later this year as to whether it will classify Video Addiction as a Mental Disorder. It seems that the article has quotes and opinions from quite a few mothers that would agree that media addiction should be classified as a mental disorder, and also taken more seriously in the addiction arena.
While this article is only one example, we’ve shared many examples of media addiction, specifically video game addiction and it’s impacts on kids. Do you think if the AMA took this big step, it would have an impact on parents?