If you’re a parent or grandparent of a middle schooler, I don’t need to define Fortnite—the video game sensation. For the rest of you, it’s the latest in an onslaught of worries facing parents, educators, and medical professionals. One recent article lamented that some 5th graders had signs of carpel tunnel from hand overuse. Not to mention the worries about gaming addiction.
Sigh. Today’s kids do not have it any easier with all the advancements in technology. They are responsible for higher academic expectations—many requiring computers while at the same time their use of computers and video games has to be carefully monitored. A world of porn and potential harm lurks menacingly behind those screens.
So, are today’s kids doomed to a life of online addictions? No. But a few will, just like every generation copes with addiction—alcohol seemed to hit my parent’s generation. Mine has dealt with drugs.
But my generation wasn’t doomed any more than Generation Next is. Choice is still an option. Parents can offer some alternative activities to balance the Fortnite scales.
Yet, I’m wondering if Fortnite is a pressure-release valve for what kids deal with in school, from peers, social media, and life’s demands? Probably so. As we wonder if “This too shall pass” there is a sense that with technology, the answer is “No”. Instead, it will just morph into something new. Let’s ask God to give us wisdom and direction in raising our kids, and protection that goes further than parental control software ever can.