Fortnite Detox Plan for Parents
I know my sons are obsessed with Fortnite. And when I say obsessed, they could literally play morning, noon and night if I let them. I wish I was kidding, but I’m not. They could actually play from the time they wake up, till the time they need to go to bed – and this would be without taking a good, solid break. I’ve always known they were obsessed, but last weekend my son Alex didn’t eat lunch on Sunday because he “didn’t know” what time it was. He completely missed lunch. It’s a problem. And I hate it. I hate it with all my being. I need a Fortnite Detox Plan in place and I need it to be solid and one that they will actually follow.
Fortnite Detox Plan
Here’s the thing with our family rules at home when it comes to playing Fortnite:
- They can after school – after homework is done – before they head to swim team (which is 5 nights a week from 5:45-7:30PM). My kids have a pretty packed schedule, so – I tell them – as long as homework is done – they can be “rewarded” by playing.
- GRADES NEED TO BE HIGH. If grades slip, they’re off for good.
- They need to let me know who they are playing with when they’re on. I’m still worried about them talking to strangers online – even at their age – when they should know better.
How you know you need a Fortnite Detox Plan in Place:
This is what worries me about Fortnite as a parent and love to see if you feel the same way about your kids when they play:
1. My kids become zombies. And I’m not saying this to be funny, they literally become zombies. They sit there staring at the computer or TV and it’s a deep trance.
2. With the headsets on – they can’t HEAR ME CALLING THEM! This drives me BONKERS!
3. They fight with each other over wins. It’s nuts… it’s as if these wins actually mean something in the course of the world or universe.
4. It’s all they think about even when they’re NOT playing. Huge red flag.
I’ve actually had it. I’m done with Fortnite. I actually hate Fortnite (I’ve blogged about this before here) I’ve truly let them play because they’re good kids and I’ve seen it as their reward, but it’s gotten out of hand. All of them had “v-bucks” listed on their Christmas lists this year. ALL. OF. THEM. I mean, it’s crazy! I never imagined that it would be something that they all really just were this laser focused on. It’s crazy too because we live in a world where there are professional gamers making millions of dollars a year playing on Twitch. I mean – there’s a guy named Ninja making (apparently) $500,000/month playing Fortnite. Kids are thinking that they will and can be the next Ninja. It’s like them wanting to be a professional athlete “someday”… if they just “train” hard enough – they can be a professional gamer, too. And listen – I’m not ANYONE to dampen a dream. I never thought in a zillion years that I would be a blogger someday! I remember my mother-in-law actually being confused when people would ask her what I did for a living and till this day she always jokes with me that she doesn’t know how to explain to people what I do. So I get it – there are unconventional ways to make a living… but my kids are tweens and teens, this isn’t something I’m thinking about for them or worrying about for them now.
I’m focused on them – making good grades in middle school, being part of some after-school activities with some friends and keeping up with all projects that need to be done. That’s really what their “job” is right now as kids.
So… Fortnite Detox Plan.
How’s it work? What is there to do to get a Fortnite Detox Plan in place?
Here’s what you can do:
- Start cutting back on the amount of time they can play. For my kids personally – it’s probably about 2 hours a day. I’m cutting back to 1 hour.
- All Fortnite Games MUST be stopped by 8PM. No playing at night. Actually – I just read that kids playing video games before bed actually makes them have a very restless sleep. Reading – still and always the best thing to do before bed.
- We have “cut the internet” in our house. It stinks because I suffer, too – but it works. If the kids aren’t listening to me and won’t stop – I turn off the internet. Done. Everything just is shut down.
- Hide the gaming boxes. We did this this summer to our son Ben. We took his XBOX and hid it. He couldn’t play and it killed him, but he lost play time because of behavior.
As parents – we’re the drivers of our family. If Fortnite is getting out of hand – get a Fortnite Detox Plan in place.