is video game addiction
a real thing?

It’s January, 2009. I’m sitting at the desk in my older son’s bedroom, putting finishing touches on a memoir about the fleeting beauty of ordinary life — a book I began in an attempt to hold on, just a little longer, to my two children as I  want to remember them in these years right before they grow up and leave home: tousle-haired, always hungry, generally happy, busy, and still (blessedly) around.

I’ve been writing The Gift of an Ordinary Day while living it for a while now, living it with a bittersweet awareness of just how good life is when we are fully present to its small mysteries and miracles. Despite the inevitable complexities of parenting adolescents, for the most part our family life seems rich and satisfying. And this winter, the end of the writing is in sight at last. I have only to complete a brief, upbeat afterword — a glimpse of Henry midway through his freshman year of college and a trip I’ve just taken to visit him — and the book will be done.

However, even as I’m revising these final pages, the plot of our family story is taking a new, darker turn. The irony is not lost on me. I’ve just spent the better part of a year celebrating and honoring our family’s life together and now, it seems, our family is falling apart. And I have no idea what to do about it.

One gray winter afternoon, I email my editor that I’ve finished, attach the final pages of my manuscript, and hit the “send” button. I bundle up and go outside for a walk, to clear my head.

And then I return to my computer and Google the words “video game addiction.” There isn’t much to be found. I read an article about video games and ADHD, which states the obvious: excessive video game playing, it suggests, is  directly related to increased hyperactivity and inability to focus in school.

I also read about a study on brain-imaging and video games in which PET scans are taken while a group of people play video games. The researchers note that the basal ganglia (where dopamine is produced in the brain) are much more active when the video games are being played than at rest. (Both cocaine and Ritalin work in this part of the brain as well.) Cocaine has a powerful, immediate effect that stimulates an enormous release of the neurotransmitter dopamine. The pleasure this brings rapidly fades, leaving the addict wanting more. Similarly, video games bring immediate pleasure and focus by increasing dopamine release. The problem, according to the researchers, is that the more dopamine is released, the less neurotransmitter is available later on to do schoolwork, homework, chores, and so on.

The study concludes, “Adolescents who play more than one hour of video games a day have more, and more intense, symptoms of ADHD or inattention than those who do not. Given the possible negative effects these conditions may have on scholastic performance, the added consequences of more time spent on video games may also place these individuals at increased risk for problems in school, college, and future work environments.”

Nothing here surprises me. But my search for help doesn’t turn up much more. And I’m still at a loss. A year ago our son Jack was an engaged, active high school student. He was writing papers, playing guitar, creating a movie-review blog with a friend, running track in the fall, playing basketball all winter and tennis in the spring. He was happy and busy and growing. He was doing well. But along the way his fascination with video games has been slowly but steadily turning into something else.

If there’s one thing I do know at this moment, Jack is not only at risk, he’s already in trouble. What’s more, nothing my husband and I have done over these last few months to try to help him control or moderate his gaming has made one bit of difference.

There are no more sports for him; he could care less. No extracurricular activities. No interest in anything except the figures on the screen and the controller in his hand. When asked about homework, he lies. When asked to stop playing, he gets furious, belligerent. He won’t stop, he insists, and nothing we do or say can make him. When we take his Xbox away, he falls apart, trashes his room, shouts, threatens us, and then, worse, threatens himself.

Meanwhile his grades go from A’s and B’s to D’s. Despite our attempts to reach our son and to reclaim some semblance of our old family life, he will have nothing to do with us. The real world, he insists, no longer holds any attraction for him. School doesn’t matter. Nothing matters, except getting better at Halo. He stays up till three, sleeps till noon, rarely goes outside unless forced to. The funny, sensitive, ambitious teenaged boy who used to inhabit this familiar, beloved 6-foot-tall body is gone. In his place, there’s a person I no longer recognize. While I’m upstairs reading about the effects of video games on my sixteen-year-old son’s brain, he is behind a closed door in the basement, gaming his young life away. For the first time, I feel at once scared of him and scared for him.

One day he admits to me, “I can’t even read one page of a book anymore. My mind just won’t do it, even if I try.”

Another afternoon, after an argument that has shaken us all, he comes to find me. “Why don’t you help me?” he asks, tears pouring down his face. “How can you see me this way and not be trying to help me?”

This was a long time ago now. But, even today, the memories are painful to revisit. They all came rushing back, however, as I read an op-ed piece in last Sunday’s New York Times entitled, as if the matter has been settled once and for all, “Video Games Are Not Addictive.”

Well, Christopher Ferguson and Patrick Markey, I beg to differ. I can assure you, my son Jack would differ, too.

“Is video game addiction a real thing?” the two of you ask at the outset.

Yes, guys, it most definitely is.

Before we go further though, it might help for us to agree on a useful definition of addiction.

I made quite a few calls to therapists as our son slipped further into his online world. Most weren’t taking new patients. Others dismissed my concerns. One asked Jack some questions from a book, diagnosed ADHD, and wrote him a prescription.   The first day he took the medication, he came home from school and sat at the kitchen table with his calculus textbook open before him for a couple of hours, carefully, happily working his way through complicated math problems, certain that all of his own problems had been resolved by this miraculous new drug. The next day, back in the basement, he discovered that amphetamines enhanced his gaming prowess. Two weeks later, several pounds thinner, gaunt from lack of sleep and still gaming, he had to acknowledge that Vivance wasn’t the answer after all.

Eventually, on the advice of a friend, I found my way to Victor. He wasn’t taking new patients, he explained over the phone. He was kind, though, and I think he could tell I was desperate. He didn’t hang up. Instead, Victor asked me to tell him what was going on. I poured out the whole story. Finally I asked: Do you think my son is addicted to video games? “I do,” he said quietly. “And I think you are right to be very concerned.”

Victor made room for us. And in our first meeting with him he offered his own definition of addiction: Any compulsive behavior that is creating mounting negative consequences in a person’s life, but which the person continues to indulge in, even despite those increasingly painful and destructive consequences.

That was it. So simple, and yet so profoundly workable. Before we left his office, Victor gave my husband and me something else to ponder.

“It might be helpful,” he suggested, “if you can think of the addiction as being separate from your son. It’s an entity; it’s not him. This entity has entered his body and is fighting viciously for control. It’s extremely powerful, and it will stop at nothing to win. But it is not Jack. Jack is still in there, even though you can’t see him right now. Try to remember that.”

And then he offered a warning, which he delivered without an ounce of judgment. “It sounds to me,” he said, “as if your son has what I call the ‘hot wire,’ which is another way of saying he’s predisposed to addiction. This may well be just the beginning of a very long battle, for all of you, but especially for Jack. And you should know, video games probably aren’t going to be satisfying to him on their own for very long. He’s going to want a more powerful drug.”

Difficult as all this was to take in, it also made perfect sense. My husband and I weren’t crazy. Our son was in the grip of something that, for the moment, was far more powerful than he was. We couldn’t fix it, but we could learn more about what he was up against. We could make sure he knew we were on his side. We could get help, for him and for us.

Victor’s words that day proved prophetic. Jack’s path to adulthood has not been easy. But I can write this part of his story, with his permission, because today he is a sober young man of 24 who believes that an important part of recovery is a willingness to share one’s own story in service to others who are on the path.

I think what disturbed me most about that article in the Times last week was how dismissive the two authors are of the very real struggles of those who have what Victor calls the “hot wire” for addiction. At this moment there are thousands of families who are living out some variation of our son’s high school story. These families are not helped by pronouncements such as, “Playing video games is not addictive in any meaningful sense. It is normal behavior that, while perhaps in many cases a waste of time, is not damaging or disruptive of lives in the way drug or alcohol use can be.”

One might as well say the same of sex, gambling, dieting, using pornography, shopping, or eating – all of which fall under the rubric of “normal” behaviors that, when they become addictive, do indeed disrupt and damage lives, sometimes irreparably. Just the way video games do.

The other day, I asked Jack for his thoughts on the matter. As a veteran now of many twelve-step meetings and as a mentor to troubled adolescents, he’s heard a wide range of stories of addiction and recovery. While it may be tempting to label “real” addiction as chemical in nature, and to make less of addictions for which withdrawal doesn’t involve some kind of intense physical symptoms, he feels this is a huge mistake. It disregards the intense mental and emotional struggle endured by every person in recovery – whether from drugs and alcohol or from behaviors that are out of control and that are indeed ruining lives.

What’s more helpful is to acknowledge that there are individuals who can abuse both drugs and alcohol without becoming addicted. There are plenty of young people who can play video games at the expense of their school work and social lives, and yet still decide one day to just get up off the couch and go do something different with their time. There are those who manage to put in hours in front of a screen while still maintaining good grades and friendships and extracurricular interests. And there are those who are simply wired differently.

Jack has been sober from drugs and alcohol for a year and a half. And yet, around Christmas time, I sensed that something in his life was amiss. A few weeks later, late one night, I saw that his green light was on on Facebook, and I sent him a message, “How are things?”

“I’m trying to get my life under control,” he typed back. When I asked him what he meant, he replied that he’d just removed all his video games from his computer and his phone, having finally decided that even now, after years of attempting “moderation,” he had to face the hard truth.

Much as he loves playing video games, much as he’d hoped he could allow them to always occupy one small part of his otherwise rich and full life, the power they have over his mind is simply too intense to fight against. He could keep kidding himself, and keep playing DOTA, or he could, once again, take a good honest look at reality.

Jack told me he’d Googled “How to Quit Playing Video Games.” The first things that came up, he said, were pretty lame: articles about playing in moderation, with clueless tips such as “limit your screen time” and then “call a friend to hang out.” No help there. But things have changed a bit since 2009. Further down, he found what he was looking for: some tough talk by someone who had been there, a former gaming addict willing to say the words no passionate, competitive gamer really wants to hear:

You can’t limit your time; you can’t use it as a reward. You must quit cold turkey, 110%. You must make that decision. You must make the decision not to touch them at all ever again. I’m not talking about making this decision like you make other decisions, which you aren’t really serious about. I mean, you seriously have to mean it.”

They say that when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. Cam Adair’s story of addiction and recovery from video games was the impetus Jack needed to make this change in his own life. It was not lost on him that his first addiction, video games, has also proven to be the most complicated and persistent, and for that reason the most difficult of all to finally confront.

Fortunately, he discovered that he is far from alone. Cam Adair’s GameQuitter’s site is full of stories like Jack’s and Cam’s. Equally important, this online forum provides both the support and guidance every recovering addict needs to begin to shape a life of both abstinence and freedom, a life built around new routines and healthy habits.

It’s been three months. So far so good.

Is video game addiction a real thing? Here’s where the authors of the New York Times article went wrong: They went to a couple of researchers for their answer. What they failed to do was ask an addict.

for my reflections & inspiration

your comments

  1. Elizabeth Stubbs says:

    Thank you, Katrina, for this very honest rebuttal. I hope the authors of the NYT article read and consider your words. I also want to acknowledge from the point of view of a parent, that this must have been incredibly painful to write. It brought tears to my eyes for you and for Jack both. It was not easy being the parents of small children and neither is it easy to witness one’s adult children learning the hard lessons of life.

  2. I always find so much wisdom in your posts. Like this:

    “It might be helpful,” he suggested, “if you can think of the addiction as being separate from your son. It’s an entity; it’s not him. This entity has entered his body and is fighting viciously for control. It’s extremely powerful, and it will stop at nothing to win. But it is not Jack. Jack is still in there, even though you can’t see him right now. Try to remember that.”

    I hope you send this to the NY TImes. It’s fabulous! I totally agree with you about the hot wire because I have one as well. I have been addicted to exercise, yoga, dieting, and have to be very strict with wine because I could easily become addicted to that too. Those of us with addictive personalities can become addicted to anything!!!

    It’s easy to get down on yourself with this kind of personality, but I am not sure if the gene is “addiction” or a “hot wire” but rather, a need for comfort. I think some of us come into the world with thinner skins or more anxiety or a different brain, and finding healthy sources of comfort and healing become a lifetime quest. Jack is so lucky to have you by his side. He is truly a healer in this world and I am always excited to hear what he is up to. Your son is going to help so many people. xoxo

  3. What a beautiful piece today. I needed EVERY single word. You have a powerful gift of intersecting the personal with the universal story, which is why I keep coming back to you to give me the words I need to make life work. Please thank Jack for his courage and his willingness to share. It will make a difference today in another person’s life because I now have the empathy needed to understand another soul—my brother, and his addiction.

  4. You are absolutely right — I see this in my college student patients. They are so involved with the gaming world, they barely sleep, eat, they don’t shower or do laundry and stop going to classes or studying so end up failing classes. The most extreme example was a 21 year old man so intensely upset about losing in a game in the middle of the night that he experienced chest pressure and several hours later came into our clinic because it was mostly gone but not completely. His blood tests and EKG showed he had suffered a heart attack — he was sedentary, overweight living on junk food and had elevated blood pressure that probably spiked when he was under the intense pressure of gaming. The NYT article is naive at best and misleading at worst. If what I see in compulsive “gamers” isn’t negative consequences, I don’t know what are.

  5. As a parent and an educator I have seen the truth- this addiction is real. I read studies in the early 90’s about video games and altering brain waves. I decided my kids would have limited access. I stuck to my guns until high school graduation. Thankfully both were able to balance gaming and school and they both enjoyed a lot of sports which kept them in balance. My stepson, on the other hand, has the addiction element and his behavior changed drastically in middle school and through most of high school. He was very intelligent and could phone it in and still get decent grades, but his inability to concentrate or complete assignments were in direct correlation to his video game addiction. His parents removed the computer and all the hand held games and he still found a way to get around it and coerce his sister into letting him use her computer. His behavior was that of a junkie, and only after his own realization that he was going down a dangerous path, did he take steps to remove these games from his life. Thankfully he went to college and found other outlets for his energies, but recently decided to be tested for ADHD because he still finds it very difficult to concentrate and he wants to be able to do well in his career. Thank you, and your son for sharing your stories. More parents need to be aware of the effects of too much gaming or screen time on their children’s brains- and futures.

  6. So so powerful, Katrina. Thanks to you and Jack for opening up. This in an incredibly important and underreported issue for young men and the people trying to raise them. Sharing now…

  7. Katha Chamberlain says:

    Thank you for sharing your journey. Real Life is not always pretty but the grittiness means we are able to be real with each other. That is the only way we can make sense. Hang on to each other and together we can be our truest selves.

  8. Brilliant piece, Katrina! so honest and true.

  9. Your article annoys me to no end.You put a label on your sons behaviour (video game addiction) to take the heat off your own parenting! He is gaming in your house in a room he calls his and then trashes it and threatens you when you take his game away! Are you kidding me! Where is his respect for you as his parent? Certainly if you or his dad are not capable of kicking his ass ,take your realestate (his room) back from him and make him get a fricken job.No outside intervention needed mom! Quit the Molly coddling because of your guilt of finding your true self while he was growing up.As a single mother of 4 grown sons I am outraged by your clinical evasive attitude .End of rant.Good luck ,

  10. Oh, Danyle – I just couldn’t let this go. You are a horrid, intolerant, my-way-or-the-highway type of person/mother. Your judgmental comment to a mother who has suffered watching her son struggle with addiction is disgusting, to say the least. I’m sorry you are a single mother who has obviously become very bitter, and it is on full display. Please get the help you need to solve your anger issues.

    Thank you Katrina and Jack for sharing this very personal story in your generous attempt to help others!

  11. Debby Kelly says:

    Katrina, thank you for your honest thoughts on your struggles.

    I am sorry that one of your readers decided it was okay to attack you as a parent. If only we could remember what so many of our own parents said to us, “if you can’t say something nice, say nothing at all”. The immediacy of being able to respond can result in unpleasant comments.

  12. Kevin Adair (Cam's Dad) says:

    Thank-you Katrina for your willingness to share your story – I know first hand how difficult that is but I also know it’s what we must do to expand the conversation about this important topic. Getting this message out and bringing hope and change to other afflicted families will ensure that the pain our families endured serves a greater purpose.

  13. You can never know what it is like until you’ve walked a mile in another’s shoes. How can you be so judgmental? You don’t know everything these parents have done or tried. An addiction takes over your entire life and the lives of those who love you. Sometimes it’s just the luck of the draw. You were lucky and yet you have no empathy for someone else’s struggle.

  14. Thank you. Very interesting writing and comments.

  15. Oh Katrina, this gives me such pain and pride. I caught the shadow of that headline in the Times and it shocked me, and I am so glad that you are shouting it down. How I wish this response was printed in the Times. Please offer it to them. I am reminded of alcohol, and the industry behind it, and the medical voices that are exploited in the name of “healthy, daily use.” There is a huge gaming industry, and many dependents, and many self-serving claims of educational benefit, and now even college sports gaming teams. To the claim that this addiction is not chemical, I’ll just point out that we ourselves are chemical and everything we do is chemistry. The denials are wrong, blind, and dangerous. How brave of you and Jack to carry this light of truth, which will help and heal. Stand up and keep shouting.

  16. Mary Erlain says:

    Thank you Katrina & Jack for your openness on this issue and your willingness to share your story in the hopes that it will help others.

  17. Lauren Seabourne says:

    A motto from a 12 step program states that addiction is a cunning, baffling, powerful disease. Taking the time to understand not only your son, but also addiction, is what more people ought to do. Addiction is a family illness and it runs deep. Thank you for sharing, and for being the type of mom that would never give up, even when times are tough. To some, it might be far easier to kick their child’s ass, but it doesn’t make the addiction go away. Thank you, too, for choosing to share these glimpses of your life (past and present) that will no doubt help others.

  18. THANK YOU KATRINA for your courage to share your story. I am so thankful that Jack and your family has been able to find the peace you deserve.

  19. Fox River says:

    There was no research or real world observation for the NYT piece. In fact I think that whole thing has turned into a big shock marketing tool to try to get people to read the news, as the internet has indulged personal choice beyond the bland format they offer.

    Myself and many people on the stop-gaming reddit thread read that article and were confused. I can assure you, as someone who has been struggling with this, that gaming addiction isn’t much different in cause than alcoholism, drug addiction or anything else. There are hundreds of thousands of us or more that are trapped.

    Psychology is full of arrogant people just in it for an easy paycheck and unable to see more than the next stepping stone in front of them. But people do have the power to observe the world around them, like Katrina .

    I met a professional who knows what is going on and he told me about the veterans coming home from war who live in their parents’ basements. If people still don’t believe it, you can google “filthy gamer room”– warning the pictures are quite graphic, as there are people that will even use the bathroom into containers to avoid stopping gaming.

    I’m kind of furious about that NY times article, it was so badly written and seemed to rely on absolutely no evidence, research or anything other than a guy’s opinion. Shame on them and thank Katrina for sharing and being so honest.

  20. Denise Veggerby says:

    I admire your courage and tenacity to help your son. I have thought about what you wrote all day and interestingly my husband and I just finished listening to “Brain Hacking” on 60 Minutes. The cell phones and video games are profoundly affecting children as well as adults. Your son has my respect for conquering his demons. I admire your family more than ever and keep up the wonderful work. love, Denise

  21. It takes a great deal of courage to expose the pains and trials of one’s life as a person but most especially as a parent. I certainly know the pain of watching my own child suffer and always wish I could go back and perhaps do things differently. I credit Katrina and her family for all the support and compassion they gave Jack. But also for the love they gave to one another. Never giving up on Jack and loving him as hard as they could surely helped him find his way. I credit him for his own courage and strength and now his wisdom in helping others. His words in Katrina’s previous blog post is testimony of his strength and gained wisdom from this dark time. It’s a gift he now has, and some of that gift is a direct reflection on the love and support Jack was given by his family and those that guided him along the way.

    I agree that the NYT should see this article. It offers much wisdom, pain, bravery and guidance. It’s a very important piece to share.

    Thank you for your honestly, your courage, Jack’s courage and honesty, and for your gentle and loving heart that offers healing and compassion. Thank you Katrina. Thank you Jack.

  22. Dearest Katrina:
    Please, please do not let the hurtful comments settle in and take up any space in your soul. After having spent so many years reading your heart on the page, there’s no doubt in my mind that more loving, concerned, caring parents then yourselves could possibly exist. In sharing this post, you gave a direct, to-the-point snapshot of an extremely difficult season, which for the sake of necessity and brevity, could not possibly give the back story of intense love, respect, and honour that has always been your family’s foundation. It takes courage and a great deal of selflessness to expose our own stories of brokenness for the sole purpose of bringing healing to others. Your family’s story, in its full range of expression, has helped and inspired thousands upon thousands. Keep writing with courage and honesty Katrina (and Jack! :). You are world changers!!!!!!! With love, Melody

  23. Maria vidakis says:

    I too feel so very sad to hear any negative comments, after such a raw article. I enjoy you Katrina, I appreciate your words, I feel like you are having coffee with me in my kitchen! I am sorry you had to live that experience with your son. He sounds like a wonderful young man! Can you please consider coming to Montreal to do a book signing?

  24. thank you. It is very real and does destroy family life and school and normal social interaction. Unfortunately the teens that have the most trouble interacting socially and at school are the most vunerable. It’s their escape. It’s where they are popular.

  25. These voices of ours. born of experience. steeped in awareness. embodied in knowing.

    Thank you.

  26. My mother once told me, little children, little problems, big children, big problems.
    My kids did not have the same kind of issue as Jack, but they did have their own challenges. My daughter has ADD and developed a bad case of Fibromyalgia at age 20. She took off her Junior year for medical reasons. She also developed depression as a result. It has taken her a long time to get to a more pain-free life. Our son was doing extremely well when he, too, suffered a medical issue as a junior in college. Again, he took a semester off to figure out his next move. There were also other issues along the way. Of course finding jobs as young guyadults in this economy has been another problem. Being a parent can be exhausting…

  27. My youngest son performed poorly in several high school classes and also happens to enjoy video games, so I thought I’d share my thoughts. First, I know how difficult it is to worry about a child who is no longer motivated and so appreciate that you’ve shared this sensitive story. Was/is my son addicted to video games? At this point, they are an inextricable aspect of his life. His social life is connected to them as he considers those he games with friends. In fact he has known some for more than five years and has met a few personally. His decision to study art in college–digital art in particular–was inspired by video games. He holds a part time job which keeps him active and helps pay the bills. He also takes painting commissions. His goal, however, it to work for a company that produces video games. He is a gentle, highly intelligent, soft-spoken young adult whom will always be disorganized (except with his art), reads, (but only nonfiction, and only when necessary), and prefers to make and paint models rather than be involved in any kind of sport. We tried, he had the experiences. Music as well. I guess this is a long way of saying, we’re all different. My son isn’t interested in alcohol, or drugs. Neither are his friends. They’re nerds. And they’re okay with that. One of his friends did get a job designing characters for video games and in the first year of his employment is making $70k/year. The industry’s art is what drew them in. To me, it’s no different than someone who is a physically active person and needs to play sports, or watch sports–all sports. I think the key is recognizing when behavorial change occurs, and we didn’t observe that in our son, thankfully. This is a long way of saying that video games have been an extremely motivating and positive aspect on my son’s life. I just wanted to provide a different perspective.

    • Katrina Kenison says:

      Hi Kelly, and thank you for your comment. I’m in complete agreement — I don’t think video games are inherently “bad” any more than I would say alcohol is always dangerous. It’s all about the relationship between the person and the behavior/substance — whether it’s healthy and moderate, or whether it’s obsessive and is endangering mental and/or physical health. Yes, we are all different and it sounds as if your son is finding his way. Good for him, and for you, too, for allowing him the space to do so.

  28. I think you may have just helped my family in a very important way. Just this morning, I emailed all my son’s teachers in a desperate attempt to try to figure out why he is failing his sophomore year in high school. He has no gaming systems, but he has rigged an old smartphone and a laptop to play Clash Royale. This is a kid who was raised on “Mitten Strings for God” principles. (One of my life’s great literary treasures.) Once upon a time, he ran track and had friends over; now all he does is hide in his room when he’s not in school and sleep, and sleep, and sleep. Teacher conferences are tomorrow night. I read this at the perfect time. Thank you, Katrina.

  29. Check out a book that just came out…..’Irresistible…The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked’ by Adam Alter. He talks about an addiction treatment center called reSTART that is for people addicted to gaming. I haven’t finished reading the book yet but it is very interesting.

  30. “I have become a mother which is an unspoken agreement to be forever vulnerable.”
    (When Women Were Birds, Terry Tempest Williams)

    I hope it will be okay to take this conversation in a different direction… voice & vulnerability among women.

    No doubt this author is accustomed to provoking the kind of response she received from Danyle (above), particularly given the tenderness of this topic. In fact, as a parenting blogger, I’ve been on the receiving end myself. And still, the residue of Dayle’s rant lingered in me.

    Perhaps because it took aim at a precious gift—this author’s transparency and vulnerability and offering to others.

    Parenting adolescents into adulthood feels so precarious, particularly now, and no doubt Danyle feels it too. We all want the “right” recipe. The honesty in this post helps me tweak that recipe in my home, and for that I am grateful.

    But Danyle not only takes aim at the author’s parenting, but also her livelihood, mocking her work as an author and editor.

    What alarms me most is how Danyle’s words might silence the voice of others—those who reach out to say: “Here’s where I struggle.” “Here’s where I got lost.” “Here’s where to look.”

    More than ever, I want to uphold voice, transparency and connection among women.

    Be strong.

    Thank you Katrina.

  31. Carrie (Cams mom) says:

    Your story in many ways felt like my story. Thank you for being brave and sharing your truth with video game addiction.

  32. Elizabeth says:

    Wow. So powerful. Thank you, and Jack, for your transparency.

    Much love,


  33. I’m in the eye of the storm right now with my 17 yr old (soon to be 18). It’s heart breaking and sickening and just plain frightening .

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