Need help now?

Computer Addiction

Discussion forum for parents in Australia


Computer Addiction

Hi everyone! I have a 14 year old  son and had difficulty controlling him with computer usage. He doesn't go out and normally stays at home. He doesn't like to socialize and if he goes out, he doesn't participate in a conversation unless asked  but that's it.


Anyone here who has the same experience ?  How do you manage it?

Super contributor

Re: Computer Addiction

Message contains a hyperlink

Hey @arnokenway, thanks for sharing your story here. I think limiting the use of technology can be a really tricky topic to navigate with young people. It can also be really frustrating as parents to try and set boundaries but also allow our children to use technology for enjoyment. There is an article here on ReachOut which talks about why people use technology but there are also several articles that detail suggestions. Let us know if you find any of these helpful.


I will tag some other members to share their similar experiences @ssonnier @taokat @hippychick @sunflowermom @softballmum @Zoesplace @Caz01



Prolific scribe

Re: Computer Addiction

@arnokenway  My 15 year old son is the same. He has been for about two years. Actually both my 17yr old and 15 yr old son like computer games. I have talked with them a lot about the amount of time that they spend on it and they say it connects them to their friends. I know that as teenagers, friends become a lot more important than parents. I just wanted to let you know that you arent alone and that I am going through the same as you. 

Prolific scribe

Re: Computer Addiction

Hi @arnokenway


I had really serious problems with our son regarding excessive and uncontrolled use of the computer. 


I tried several solutions including time limits. I found one device that is Australian made and solves a lot of the problems. Just search "parent power". They are an Australian business and have found a very effective way for a parent to wrestle back control of times and usage of different devices. 


I tried a number of solutions and devices and found this to be the simplest and most effective to use. 






Re: Computer Addiction

We are dealing with very similar issues with my 15 year old son. He is not interested in doing anything with friends other than gaming and that is remotely. Although he plays sport, it is very much second to the screen. He is socially awkward and that is getting worse with angry outbursts if we enforce limits on usage. I have sleepless nights trying to work out strategies to change behaviour but it is really hard as he doesn’t want to spend any time with us.

Re: Computer Addiction

Gosh, I hear you.

I took am always looking for help/advice.

Our son is 16 and he is on the spectrum, has ADHD (takes medication for it), suffers from anxiety (another medication) and social awkwardness, has major bouts of depression (suicidal) and now (grade 11) is out of mainstream schooling and does distance education from home with me.

His long hours of pc gaming crept up on us over the past two years. He found it helped him to calm his mind and so we sought advice from the 'professionals' and were advised that gaming was the 'least of your worries'.

So at weekends he will pretty much game from 9am to 9pm stopping only for toilet breaks and lunch.

School days he will only game when he doesn't have a school lesson and finishes classes at 2pm. Then games through to 9pm stopping only for a shower and dinner around 6pm. At 8pm he takes his anti-psychotic meds that allow him to sleep. They take a couple of hours to kick in so he rests in bed with food/snacks for a couple of hours on his ipad watching Youtube.

He used to play sports including, soccer, oztag, tennis and he was a runner, Parkrun and crosscountry.

Now he does nothing, absolutely nothing.

People ask why we don't just 'make him' get off the gaming... ie take away the internet, force him outside and to do activities.   All I say is 'walk in our shoes for just one day, and see where it gets you.'

As most of you would understand, the meltdowns are horrendous and when your child is a teenager, almost a man, they are not fun to witness. Neither are they for your other children. 

I can see that his self-harming is definitely used as a way to blackmail us. The issue I have is that I can't ever put it to the test because let me tell you, I never want to experience the feeling of "I wish I hadn't forced him because now he's dead". I would much rather have our son alive than dead. He is more than capable of anything when he is completely stressed and agitated.

I know he is addicted and I spend many sleepless nights worrying myself sick about his mental and physical health.

He is overweight or anything but I know it is terrible for his body to sit and game ALL day.  There is so much more to life but I just don't know how to help him to see it.

I usually manage to calm my mind by thinking it could be much worse... I know, it hardly seems possible but there are plenty more hours in the day/night that he could be gaming than he already is.

So far, any advice offered has been of no help but I always am willing to listen.

Peace to you all in the similar situation





Star contributor

Re: Computer Addiction

Message contains a hyperlink

Hi @Fake@arnokenway@Frustratedmum,

Just wanted to check in and see how things are going? It seems like regulating gaming is something that many families are struggling with, particularly with the-ever-changing world of technology.


Just reading through, I haven't seen it posted here but it might be useful- if you are based in Australia, ReachOut offers 1-to-1 over the phone support sessions where you can explore any concerns you have with your teenager (12-18) and lay out an action plan. 


Hope this is helpful Smiley Happy


Check out our community activities calendar here

Re: Computer Addiction

Greetings @Fake,


I identify totally with all that you have scribed. Being the school holidays my son is constantly on technology. playing games or on his phone. Awake all night and sleeps all day. My son also has ADD, depression and anxiety and has previously self-harmed and been suicidal. Is currently on anti-depressant medication.


I understand about the meltdowns. I am a solo parent and actually called the police last year when things were really bad and I don't wish to do it again (only as a last resort). I also understand about judgements from others....if only we could turn the internet off without the repercussions.


All I can suggest to you is to try and focus on the positivies through it all. I know its really difficult. At least your son attends to his schooling. He showers, eats his dinner and takes his medications. He also obviously has a parent who loves him dearly which is obvious through your message. All we can currently do is try and educate our sons about the importance of good nutrition, hygiene, exercise, hobbies the hope that one day they may realize.  Is there a family member or friend you could ask to call him up and offer to take him out for his favourite food (as well as a walk)? Can you talk to your family doctor or a psychologist (if your son is seeing one) about this issue?


If its any help to you....a lot of us are in similar shoes.....even parents whose children DON'T have teenagers struggle with this problem.


All the best. Look after you.

Frequent scribe

Re: Computer Addiction

Hi Sister , I am agree with you !!!!Smiley Happy

Frequent scribe

Re: Computer Addiction

Hi arnokenway! This is a very common problem seeing in almost every child these days. Due to this many children suffer from depression and also get angry because of this. Even doctor become helpless to overcome this addiction.