I’m not very technologically advanced. My kids are though. They know their way around all the devices their father and I often curse. I remember a time when these things didn’t exist. I also remember when they slowly started making their way into our lives, taking over almost every aspect of our daily routine. Now I wouldn’t be without my iPhone, my iPad, or my iPod. These things make my life easier and give me a source of entertainment. They also make me a tad bit crazy.
My kids are all addicts. They love to play games, watch Netflix and snap countless “selfies.” I do try to limit their exposure. I make them play with each other and with toys that don’t talk back to them. They play hide and seek, house, classroom (Natalie’s favourite) and use their imaginations quite a bit. Just last night I watched Jack whiz by me wearing my bra, with Natalie holding onto the straps yelling “Giddy up Horsey!” That’s normal kid stuff right? So, my kids aren’t total techno-zombies…Yet. However, they do wait patiently for their turn with the screen. When they get the chance, they will always choose to play Nose Doctor on the iPad (a game in which you pull boogers out of a cartoon nose), or create dancing elves with their pictures.
Since I love lists, here is my list of reasons why I hate my iPad, iPhone and iPod.
1. The games the kids download and play on my iPad have annoying sound effects that make me crazy. Seriously, have you ever listened to Angry Birds? It makes my ears bleed. My son LOVES playing this game, which I don’t understand because it is completely ridiculous. Using a sling-shot to fling ball-shaped birds at ball-shaped green pigs? I’m lost. But he (along with my husband) thinks it is great entertainment. He refuses to turn the sound down, so I’m stuck cooking dinner while listening to birds squawking and screaming. It makes me mental. After 10 minutes of it, I feel like stabbing the iPad with a kitchen knife.
2. I believe that the games my kids download are actually made to annoy parents. In fact, I am sure of this. There is no other reason on earth that anyone would create a “game” that actually talks back at parents. My daughter found a delightful game where she talks into the iPad and a cute little kitty repeats back what she says, in the most ANNOYINGLY high-pitched voice in the world. At first she would say silly things, and then she moved on to making farting noises. Ha ha, really funny. Now, when I ask my daughter a question, she gives her snide reply back via this obnoxious kitten. You don’t know hulk-like rage until you ask your kid to clean her room, only to turn around and face a screen with an animated cat squealing “I don’t want to!” Let me tell you, there have been days that I’ve wanted to punch that cat. I have plotted that furry bastard’s demise for months now! I have also deleted this game over and over and over and you know what? That damn cat always comes back.
3. These games keep me up at night. Thanks to iCloud (something I use personally), all of the games that my kids download end up on my phone. I have a phone filled with kiddie games. Now, in the middle of the night my phone will ding with an alert that one of their games needs attention. For instance, last night *ding* an alert to let me know that a patient is ready to have his nose picked. What in the hell? Are you kidding me?
4. The kids fill every device in the house with “selfies.” If they can get a hold of it, they will take a picture with it. My phone is filled with really bad “selfies” taken by all three of my kids. Funny faces, ugly faces, happy faces, close-ups of their mouths, their noses, and just recently their butts. They will take a picture once, and then make sure to hit the button 35 times more. Now I have not only 1 picture of their snot crusted nose, but 35. Awesome.
5. They will fight cage-match style over time with these devices. I’ve seen Natalie drag her brother by his head across the living room after a spat involving the iPad. They fight on a regular basis, but when you bring in an iPad, THERE WILL BE BLOOD!!
6. Eventually they learn to use these devices for evil. Natalie has been particularly interested in photography and capturing nice pictures of things she loves. Her dolls, the dog, her sister and brother. This is a great form of self-expression. See, I’m a good mom. Look how artistic my daughter is. Wait, now she’s following me around taking pictures of me. I’m getting annoyed. Yesterday, she busted into the bathroom and took a picture of me on the toilet, and ran out yelling, “ha ha! I’m going to post that on Facebook!” I worry about the day when she can actually follow through with that threat.
I know the logical solution is to take the itoys away. It would have been better if we never let them have access in the first place. Or, maybe I could sit and regulate everything they are doing with these things. I could turn them into proper learning devices like all those good parents out there. But I’m probably never going to do that. Sometimes we all need a little peace, and if I can get 20 minutes without someone screaming, crying or asking me for something, I’ll take it. Even if it means that I may see my bare ass on Facebook one day.
One of over 500 pictures I found on my laptop. Note to self: Don’t leave your laptop sitting around. EVER.