Wednesday, October 16, 2013

"Losing" the iPad

So, the past few weeks have been difficult ones with Preston. He has been EXTREMELY whiny, complaining and arguing about anything he can, and crying a lot. Initially I thought he just needed to adjust to his school schedule and it would die down but it hasn't and I have been going crazy. Yesterday morning I really lost my mind. From the time he woke up he was a disaster and wasn't doing the things he is supposed to no matter what tactic I tried. He flipped out, I flipped out. It wasn't pretty. So, while he was at school I decided we needed to figure out something more drastic to stop this endless cycle. When I picked him up at school in the afternoon his assistant teacher brought him out to the car and told him he had a rough day, which made me sad because he is usually ok once he gets to school. As we started driving away from the school Preston asked if he could play iPad when he got home, which he usually does. I told him no and he went crazy. Crying, kicking, the works. And I realized we need to get rid of the stupid iPad. It is all he cares about and while I have never loved that about it, it has also been a life saver so many times that I couldn't part with it. But it got to the point where it doesn't even matter anymore. When we got home he screamed in the car and wouldn't get out. When he finally came in he cried and cried and cried. After ignoring him for awhile I held him and we talked and he calmed down. We made a list of all the things he like to do (and I did my best to draw pictures next to them) so that when he thinks he is bored he can figure out something to do (that do not include iPad and tv). I put the iPad up in the closet and we are going to leave it there for awhile. I know I can't blame all the problems on the iPad, but it really is the source of a lot of problems. If he doesn't want to go to school it's because he wants to stay home and play iPad, etc. Yesterday he did his school book while the girls did their homework, he helped me in the kitchen and he played chutes and ladders by himself (he is my worst independent player so that was big). This morning he got dressed when he was supposed to and although he has asked a few times to play the iPad, he knows I'm going to say no so he doesn't flip out about it. I'm hoping this trend continues, but we'll see. I'm definitely feeling hopeful!
And because we need pictures in a post (I unfortunately didn't take any of his huge fits yesterday), here are some of the girls at our school spirit night last week at Red River BBQ.


the Holyoaks said...

Reading your post made me breathe a sigh of relief. Electronics are such a huge cause of contention in our house. Sometimes I even understand those people who get rid of their TVs--not that I'd do something so drastic, but only because it would be a punishment for me.

I'm not glad you are having these struggles, but it is nice to know that we aren't the only ones and that my kids aren't abnormal.

Good luck with your "lost" iPad. A couple of years ago we cut out morning TV and it was incredibly painful. But now the kids are used to it so it's no problem. Now we just have to work on all the other electronics issues we have.

Candy said...

Good for you! It is hard but worth it. It is a real thing that kids get addicted to electronics. It is similar to when grown ups get addicted to slot machines. It stimulates their brains different than everything else. :)

apewinterton said...

Way to go, Marci! I'll bet taking away the iPad will pay big dividends. I've tried TV before (on a temporary basis), and it worked wonders. Taking away something like that seems like a great "re-set" button.