Q: I am 14 years old, and currently debating my choice of friends. They all play first-person shooter (FPS) games, while I choose other kinds of games. They often tell me how great their games are but criticize mine. When they clamor for the new Call of Duty, I freak out over the new Sonic… Read more »
Posts Categorized: Ask the Mediatrician
Q: My 13-year-old son began playing Call of Duty at home beginning in January of this year. We monitor his gaming and have him turn it off after a certain amount of time. He is now asking to “stream” with one of his favorite online players who does this on YouTube regularly. I am concerned… Read more »
Q: My youngest daughter is friends with two girls whose mother has been reported missing. The circumstances don’t look very hopeful. I have a background in helping children cope with grief and loss (and teaching others who are helping children cope), but other than advising them to stay away from social media, newspapers, and internet (which… Read more »
Q: My kids (10 and 7) have been invited to a number of Halloween-themed parties this year that are being held at their schools and at the homes of a few of their friends. Several of these parties will have scary movies, scary music, and in one case (the school’s) a dramatic reading of a… Read more »
After reading a recent article in the New York Times about the connection between media violence and aggression in real life, Dr. Michael Rich felt compelled to respond, writing the following letter to the editor: Asking whether video games “cause” violent behavior is asking the wrong question. As a parent, I constantly make risk-benefit analyses… Read more »
Q: Hello, I am the mother of a 10-year-old boy. We don’t allow violent video games in the house, but we do allow him to play first-person shooter hunting games (Duck Hunter, Cabela’s, Big Buck Hunter, etc.), which he loves, especially as he takes a hunting trip with his father every year. My fear is… Read more »
Q: I have 4 boys (ages 11, 9, 9, and 7), and I am rather strict about limiting their screen time: We don’t allow any during the school week, and on the weekend, we allow the boys 1 hour per day. I have also told my oldest son that when he is at someone else’s house,… Read more »
Recently, I answered a question from a mother asking whether she should purchase the video game Call of Duty for her son. When the answer was featured on Thrive, the Children’s Hospital Boston blog, it ignited controversy and spurred many gamers to comment. Here is my response.
Q: My boys, now 15 & 17, are so different. I’ve noticed that my two kids can watch the same violent programs and, depending on each child’s nature, they respond differently. Is it true that after viewing violent programs, some children will behave more aggressively while some children become more fearful? If yes, can you explain how that happens? Any chance that some children are not affected at all?
Answer from Dr. Michael Rich, The Mediatrician