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I'm a 30-something wife and mom. My boys are my pride and joy. Together, we are navigating being a forever family post international adoption.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Rights vs Privileges (and Video Games as Currency)

Buddy has been on a video game ban for the last month.I have talked in the past about consequences fitting actions. I do still believe in that.


Junior High has been a big adjustment for Buddy, and we are seeing some major attitude issues at home. Judging from his last report card, the school is experiencing the same thing.

I don't put this all on Buddy. His school is focusing on teaching kids to be more responsible and take ownership for themselves and their own work. They are pretty much teaching kids this:

Buddy is not there yet.

I'm not saying the school is bad or wrong. They just don't get it. They don't understand that Buddy is developmentally not in a place yet to accept the responsibility of being the leader of his academic team.

His report card was disappointing. His grades were fine. Good in most cases and even great in some. But the comments on his attitude were concerning. So we have pulled out the big guns. A video game ban that will continue for an indeterminate time until attitude at home AND at school improves.

Everything I have read about parenting children from hard places tells me this is the wrong thing to do. The consequence does not fit the action, The punishment isn't clearly defined. We are extending school life into the home.

But, at the same time, video games are Buddy's personal currency. So we have started using it as a form of payment for good behavior. And lately, there hasn't been that much to pay him back for.

Hubby and I talk about Buddy's sense of entitlement as "POB", which refer to an article about Post Orphanage Behavior we found pretty helpful. It's "POB" when Buddy expects video games to be a right, not a privilege.

So, for now, no video games. And his behavior has actually improved in the last month. It makes me wonder: is he better behaved when he doesn't play video games, or is he working hard to show that he deserves to have them back?

Only one way to find out. But I'm not quite ready to test it, so we will be video game free for a bit longer.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for linking the POB article, Alysha. I know I've read it before but, five months in, it was a good reminder... A reminder to pray for more and more grace each moment!!