Do as I say, not as I do

Reading Dee Dee's recent forum post on teenage computer addiction got me thinking about my own boys, who are now 6.  They're certainly showing all the signs of computer addiction, or at least how I would imagine addiction manifests itself in kindergarteners: they'd spend the whole day online if I let them, when they're not online they complain they're bored, they're losing interest in spending time outdoors.

To be fair, my son did break his right arm last week so he can't write or draw, which is one of his favorite non-electronic pastimes.  He's also banned from "boyish pursuits", and since his twin brother no longer has a partner in crime he can't enjoy those things as much either.  And I've felt so sorry for the injured boy that I've let them both go online for longer than I usually do.

But that's not the issue.  I have no problem being the mean mom and shooing them away from the computer once their 30 minutes is up.  What has always bothered me (or made me feel guilty) is the fact that *I* spend so much time online.  How can limit their online time and justify mine at the same time?  I tell them I'm working, but I'm not exactly bringing home the bacon with my blogging activities.  I feel a sense of purpose and fulfillment when I blog, but how does a child know the difference between mama surfing on Facebook and him going on Webkinz?  it's hard not to feel like I'm setting an inconsistent example.  And during the weekends my husband does a lot of coding -- some of it personal, some of it for work -- so they constantly see us at our computers.   

Does anyone else feel they're setting a bad example by constantly being online?


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