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Dear Dad and Mom,

I’d like to use this space to publicly thank you for being parents that were willing to take the hard road instead of the easy road.

Thank you limiting my access to computer games and Nintendo when we were growing up.

I realize it would have been much easier for you to let the Nintendo babysit us four kids. But you put our well-being ahead of your own comfort and taught us to read, write, make music, create radio shows, play in the backyard, and make movies. We’re the better for it today.

Thanks for not giving in to our whiny pleas for the newest video games that our neighbors had. Thanks for insisting that we would be better, happier, more well-rounded children by causing us to entertain ourselves instead of sit like zombies in front of Mario and Luigi.

Thanks for not being legalistic about Nintendo. We appreciate the rainy days in which you brought down the Nintendo from the closet top shelf and let us play our hearts out. But thanks even more for putting the Nintendo back up when the sun returned.

Thanks for allowing us to play educational computer games. But thanks also for the thirty-minute timer you set for us each time we played.

Thanks most of all for being involved, for caring about what we were putting into our minds. Thanks for giving us a childhood that some of our friends missed out on – the backyard romps in the clubhouse, the creek Kingdom, all the cassette tapes we made as we created our own sitcoms.

Thanks for the parameters and guidelines you set up for us. We didn’t understand or like them then, but they look like good parameters we want to set for our own kids now.



written by Trevin Wax © 2008 Kingdom People blog

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0 thoughts on “Dear Dad and Mom, Thanks for Shooting Mario”

  1. Bec says:

    Ahhh.. that reminds me of my childhood, and the couple of years that we were tv-free. Hated it at the time, but now I really appreciate it. So much rubbish out there, and we are so impressionable.

  2. Well, I am planning to do exactly the same for my daughter, who is currently only one year old.

  3. Biff says:

    Comparitivly speaking, I as a parent LOVE Mario. If the TV is on, I would rather it be Nintendo. There is nothing positive on TV except public broadcasting, and it with a few exceptions, has nothing but re-runs played for the 30th time and is somewhat biased to humanism. Even the educational channels on cable tend to be left leaning and at times very biased. I have not had cable TV in many years and would hate to see what the current programming is. Broadcast television is bad enough. I dont even want to turn it on.
    With video games you can at least control what games they are. I have a system in place for the amount of game or TV time allowed for my children and it has been in place since 1995. It is report card based and lasts until the next report card. All A’s equate to unlimited game time all week provided all homework and chores are finished. The first B reduces play or TV time to 1 hour a day on weekdays. 2 B’s or 1 C eliminate game or TV on weekdays entirely. 2 C’s … well I have never had to address that yet.
    Children today have so much to do. It takes us a couple hours to do my children’s homework and another hour to eat and clean up. School is hard and I think some relaxation and free play time is important, especially in weather like we are having right now when you cant go ride your bike. Games are also beneficial in a few ways. They build hand eye coordination, build confidence and can provide a social outlet.
    Please dont kill Mario for your children. Most kids will accept some moderation of their games and it is a parents responsability to provide it. From experience, I can tell you that as your children get older into their pre/early teens that you would rather your children be playing video games than watching MTV. I am not saying games should be babysitters either. There is no law preventing you from playing with your children for a little while. You may enjoy it. That is a great time for communication about whatever you like and it may not be dismissed as a lecture. Your children may look back to those evenings playing Mario with you as fondly as Trevin remembers his childhood. They may even realize that you were trying to do what Trevin’s parents were doing. Provide the best environment a parent can. Sorry about my spelling.

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Trevin Wax

​Trevin Wax is Bible and Reference Publisher at LifeWay Christian Resources and managing editor of The Gospel Project. You can follow him on Twitter or receive blog posts via email. Click here for Trevin’s full bio.

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