Re: DSM: Video games

From: Ardeshir Mehta, N.D. (ardeshir@sympatico.ca)
Date: Thu May 10 2001 - 13:46:52 EDT


Hi there:

Allan Saugstad wrote:

> > On the downside though, video games are also a way to escape from real
> > life. Even now, in my mid-30's , I find myself turning on a video race
> > car game or golf game for a little entertainment. I tune out the world
> > and focus on the fun of the game. After a long while of total
> > absorption, I finally finish and I really feel spent - and not at all
> > relaxed or rejuvenated - kind of like I feel after reading the newspaper
> > for too long or TV. It's not healthy for me.

Christopher Weeks replied:

> Must you feel relaxed and/or rejuvenated for an activity to be healthy? If I
> go for a long bike ride, neither of those words describe how I feel. "Spent"
> does a much better job. I might get wound up playing a computer game, but at
> least I'm feeling something different. I like a range of feelings. If I
> want to relax I go sit in the hot tub and listen to the birds while I read.

I agree here with Christopher. The same thing happens to
me after I finish writing a book -- I feel spent! So: does that
mean the time spent writing the book was wasted?

> My son's mother has two brothers who are mentally captivated by video games
> and turn mean when they get to playing their little Nintendo/SEGA/whatever it
> is, and she is afraid of that happening to our son. It didn't happen to me
> or any of my friends, but that doesn't mean that it couldn't to him. I tend
> to think that their "wasted life" is more a result of a messed up home life
> as kids, but who knows. Is this antisocial "meanness" the kind of
> psychological phenomenon that you feel from your computer games at all?

I haven't found my kids-- who are into video games in a
B-I-G way -- at all antisocial. If anything, one of them is
more social than I ever was (and I did not grow up playing
video games.) There may be other reasons for mean-ness.

Ardeshir <http://homepage.mac.com/ardeshir/education.html>

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