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Table of Contents Featured Articles

Lure & Cost

Andrew Doan MD PhD

12

Tom Neven, Bob Hoose

18

Maxine Tolbert Trigleth

23

Video Game Addictions Symptoms & Signs

26

Hooked

Everything is Possible

In Every Issue

Love Shouldn’t Hurt Connections Local Youth Groups A Note From...

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Recipe

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Jenna Lucado Bishop

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Concerts Dear Christeen Craft

21 29 30

Publisher Christeenianity, LLC - Audra Hughes Contributing Writers - Jenna Bishop, Andrew Doan MD PhD, Bob Hoose, Audra Hughes, Tom Neven, Elisa Nodine, Maxine Trigleth Graphic Designer - Ezrah Khan, Audra Hughes • Sales - Audra Hughes Editors - Audra Hughes, Robert Hughes

You may submit articles or your letter to Dear Christeen either by mail at 5321 FM 311 #1, New Braunfels, TX, 78132, or via email at Info@Christeenianity.com. If you would like to receive a Free copy of the NLT New Testament Bible, please email your name and address to info@Christeenianity.com, or call us at 1-888-932-3552 National Runaway Switchboard 800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) National Teen Dating Abuse 866-331-9474 Connections Crisis Hotline 800-532-8192 TX Abuse Hotline 800-252-5400 Teen Pregnancy 866-942-6466 Alanon/Alateen (SA) 888-829-1312

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l

Lo c a l

You th

Grouinpysour area

Baptist Catho lic of God s ie l b m e Ass Inter deno mina tional rist Church of Ch Lutheran Methodist BUL Bulverde e Non Denominational CL Canyon Lakels NB New Braunf UC Universal City SA San Antonio Presbyterian SB Spring Branch

First Assembly of God 13435 West Ave, SA Awaken Youth Church Derek Johnsen – YP | 210-496-9977

Bulverde Baptist Church 1331 Bulverde Rd., BUL BBC Student Ministry Paul Brand - YP | 830-980-7577

Cranes Mill Baptist 10215 Fm-2673, CL Higher Ground Youth Ministry Ben Hollan - YP | 830-899-7936

First Baptist Church 733 Cross St., NB Cross Street Ministries Ricky Gobert - YP | 830-625-9124

First Baptist Church 32445 Us Highway 281 N., BUL First Baptist Bulverde Youth Group Terry McCown - YP | 830-438-3754

First Baptist Church 1401 Pat Booker Rd., UC Vertical 220 Jim Lokey - YP | 210-658-6394

Oakwood Baptist Church 2154 Loop 337 N., NB OSM; Brent Isbill - HS YP Brandon Best - MS YP | 830-625-0267

Shearer Hills Baptist Church 12615 San Pedro Ave., SA CORE Student Ministry Rev. Jeff Martin-YP | 210-545-2300

Southeast Baptist Church 2414 S. WW White Rd., SA The Warriors Linda Willeford - YP | 210-333-6304

Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church 386 N. Castell Ave. NB, TX Life Teen Julie Krug - YP | 830- 625-4531 ext. 202

Northside Church of Christ 16318 San Pedro, SA Ignite Andy Glenn - YP | 210-494-1907

Community Bible Church – Brooks City 314 Galway SA, at Rogers Middle School F.Y.I Faithful Youth Ignite-Chris & Alissa Bozeman | YP c_a_bozeman@hotmail.com & alissapalacios@hotmail.com

Community Bible Church - Main 2477 North Loop 1604 East, SA Next + Gen Students Robbin Goslin - YP | 210-477-5209

Community Bible Church - Bulverde 7100 Hwy 281 North, SB Inside Out Mike Andrews - YP | 210-275-0343

Living Word Church 5800 Culebra Dr., SA Amped Youth Robert Garza - YP | 210-461-7452

Abiding Presence Lutheran Church 14700 San Pedro Ave., SA Youth Group Mike Ceyanas - YP | 210-494-8884

Concordia Lutheran Church 16801 Huebner Rd., SA Fusion Bill Tucker - YP | 210-479-1477

St Paul Lutheran Church of Bulverde 29797 US Hwy 281 North, Bulverde Life 180 Meredith Price – YM | 830-980-2813

Bulverde United Methodist Church 28300 Hwy 281 North, SA Bulverde United Youth Group Bethany Graham - YP | 830-980-7745

Coker United Methodist Church 231 E. North Loop Rd., SA Catalyst Student Ministries Mary Anne Waldrip/Wes Jones - YP 210-494-3455

First United Methodist Church 572 W. San Antonio St., NB Methodist Youth Fellowship Terri Hartman - YP | 830-625-4513

Gruene United Methodist Church 2629 E. Common St., NB Gruene United Methodist Youth Jake LeBlanc - YP | 830-625-7200

Hope Arise United Methodist Church 23203 Bulverde Rd. (Johnson HS), SA Hope Arise Youth Ashleigh Pepper - YP | 210-646-1164

Northern Hills United Methodist Church 3703 N. Loop 1604 E., SA R U In John Kublank - YP | 830-708-8705

Believers Christian Fellowship of S.V. 36200 FM 3159, NB Believers Chrisitian Fellowship Youth Jenni Taylor - YP | 830-885-2224

Cowboys for Jesus 8499 FM 32, Fischer BullZI Jerry Hoyt - Pastor | 210-389-6235

Crossbridge Community Church 19000 Ronald Reagan (Reagan HS) Ablaze Chris Dillashaw - YP | 210-496-0158

Journey Fellowship Church 16847 IH 35 North (Exit 174B), Selma Journey Fellowship Youth Group Taylor Rogers - YP | 210-651-1463

Oak Hills Church 6929 Camp Bullis Rd., SA Oak Hills Church Student Ministries Brett Bishop - HS Dir | 210-807-5208

Life Hurts God Heals Denise Whistler | 210-289-1682

Riverside Community Church 20475 Hwy 46 W STE 180, PMB 417, SB Young Life John Hinkebein - YP | 830-980-4600

Summit Christian Center 2575 Marshall Rd., SA Emerge Mark Treiber - YP | 210-402-0565

Tree of Life Church 5513 IH 35 S., NB Remnant Dustin Martin - YP | 830-625-6375

Trinity Church 5415 N 1604 E., SA 412 Philip Shelley - YP | 210-653-0003

River City Community Church 16875 Jones Maltsberger, SA Real Life Student Ministries Nick Fox – YP | 210-490-5262

San Pedro Presbyterian Church 14900 San Pedro Ave., SA Youth Ministries Ben Schultz - YP | 210-488-6217

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by Andrew Doan, MD, PhD

I know too many lives

ruined by internet games... college students who fail because they play games all day.... 15% of women are putting down “Neglect from World of Warcraft” as a reason for divorce... the average man is playing 40 hours/week of World of Warcraft and there are 12.5 Million Players!!! These companies are making the games addictive as World of Warcraft makes over 1 Billion annually. Microsoft announced that they are giving X-BOX 360s to college students when they buy a PC with

Question: How shall I refer to you in the story? I can use your real name or your gamer alias, or even a pseudonym—whichever you’re most comfortable with.

Windows 7... hmmm giving Camel Cigarettes to kids?! The gaming industry has a 95% infiltration in our homes, 50% of kids have unregulated access/play, and peer-reviewed studies show 10% addiction rate... leaving 5 Million Kids addicted to games! Gaming industry yearly revenues: $15 BILLION Dollars... more than movies. This will only get worse with “Avatar-like” graphics, body suits for gamers to feel “immersed in the world”, soft-porn virtual images in game, and 3D glasses. My goal is to educate parents and families on

the dangers of the “video pacifier”... how Mario Brothers may lead to full addiction as a young adult if kids get hooked to the digital rewards and accolades.

I found approval when I was the best Pong Player... and then when I was Mario saving Princess Peach. I could be a hero again and again as a child.

high that WOW gave me... the continual rewards and approval from my clan members over the slow and demeaning process of being a medical student... intern... resident... etc...

I was a Vietnamese Refugee who was raised in a mainly white, blue collar neighborhood, when being Vietnamese was definitely “not cool”. The incessant “chink” jokes, persistent “rice picker” teasing, and the strong need to “fit into” a social group in real life made me an emotional mess who needed approval.

As a graduate student & medical student, the MMORPGs and real time strategy games with internet play was HIGHLY ADDICTIVE, because I found the digital accolades of winning in the game, conquering other people as the Zerg, Protoss or Terran, fulfilled my needs of “approval”. Then with World of Warcraft (WOW), I fit into a group that wanted me to raid with them... that thought my Level 70 Mage was cool... and people who needed me. To be an eye physician and surgeon, it took me 17 years of post-high school education to achieve fellowship training as an Eye Surgeon & Physician and MD with a PhD in molecular neuroscience. The world of WOW was a quick fix... made me all powerful... even Godly with every quest, every raid, and every level gained! In the real world, it took 17 years of work, stress, and challenges to be an eye surgeon. I enjoyed the quick

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Me: You can use Alias MudPhud AND use my name Andrew Doan, MD, PhD, MudPhud = MD, PhD

How would you classify addiction? Addiction is an insatiable physical and mental hunger for a particular activity, drug, or item that provides incredible mental rewards and highs.

What made you a “video game addict”? Why do you think you became one?

Here is my secret... I need to tell my story and the stories of other broken lives who were not as lucky as me. This is a recent interview with a newspaper in Canada featuring Internet Addictions and Gaming Addictions.

How did you come to realize you were an addict? When I became agitated, angry, chronically tired, always thinking about the game when away from the game, gave up things I enjoyed for gaming, becoming verbally abusive and physically intimidating towards my wife. My wife left with our son, who was 2 at the time, and daughter who was 1 at the time. I laid on the bed, within two years of graduating from The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and ready to kill myself as I lost my ONLY emotional ties to the real world. I had no other friends as I devoted over 20,000 hours of gaming over a period of 8 years! That’s analogous as holding more than two full-time jobs over the same period.


The second wake up call was my carpel tunnel slowed down my surgical times when I operated on cataracts. I quit in 2003 after my wife returned and I had so much pain that it felt like my right forearm was on fire all the time. I developed carpel tunnel from all the clicking of the mouse playing the Real Time Strategy games.

What did you feel like when you were playing video games during the times you were devoting the most time to them? I felt euphoria and highs! But it took more hours to get them as I got used to the game... so I had to play more and more to feel better.

How did you feel when you didn’t have access to your games? I really didn’t have friends, my wife hated me, and so I always wanted to go back to the game where I felt GODLY!

What was it like to go through the 12 steps of recovery? What would you say to someone who is considering taking that first step? I tried to do it alone and thought I had the “power” as I was an agnostic/atheist before my wife left me. I could NEVER control it without God. She agreed to return 6 months later if I went to church. I said okay. I went through the 12 steps of recovery with the guidance of church leaders.. without knowing that I actually went through the steps. It was a slow 4-5 years process. This process also made me realize that I need God in my life. For the Lord is my most perfect accountability partner. Humans are imperfect... they will relapse and fail you... the Lord he will never fail and the Bible is solid in the moral blue prints needed to succeed.

to college students who feel like they may be going down the road to addiction? I am high energy, extremely intelligent, and highly motivated individual who is usually very energetic all the time. I can survive and function with little sleep. These hypomanic qualities help me be an outstanding eye physician & surgeon... These hypomanic qualities also helped me survive my insane schedule during my MD-PhD years and first two years of residency. I was LUCKY... I was lucky I have high energy... If you don’t have my energy... which I think 90-95% of the people I know do not... then game addiction will destroy your lives and things you love. People who know me... usually say it is rare to meet someone with as much energy. So do NOT mess with game addiction... it will destroy nearly everyone.

You say you haven’t played games since 2008 - do you think you will ever play video games again? Do you want to? After quitting in 2003... I relapsed in 2007 when one of my residents I was training placed the WOW CD-ROM on my desk... I installed it and lost another 1400 hours over 2 years, equivalent to sixty 24-hour days! I cannot play video games. I am too busy with life. Since quitting WOW, I am a full-time eye physician surgeon, have started businesses, created www. eyerounds.org, achieved accolades and responsibilities as the Chairman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology Young Ophthalmology Committee, the American Academy of Ophthalmology Congressional/ OPHTHPAC Commit-

The first step is complete acceptance and surrender. People must recognize and be willing to accept that they have a problem.

How did your faith help you through your addiction?

tee, and Deputy Editor in Chief for the American Academy of Ophthalmology Online News and Education Network. I also started a new Eye Practice in our home town to serve Rescue Mission patients who do not have health insurance. I diverted my energy into positive, real life, and lasting rewards, including writing a book to provide first hand insight into the addicted gamers’ mind, the dangers and cost of gaming addiction, the steps to recovery, and a call to action on all parents & individuals to use technology responsibly and not use it as a digital pacifier when life is tough and stressful. I am too busy with real life stuff, along with devoting time to real world relationships, to ever go back to gaming. The lure and the attraction is strong, however. I purchased Starcraft II 2 months ago... I installed it... I never played it... But I know... for me, the highs of gaming online is too much of an addiction that I cannot touch it. I have too avoid gaming.

Would you recommend the OLGA site to other video game overusers/addicts? Has it been helpful for you? Are there any other resources you would recommend? Absolutely! It is good to know one is not alone. It has been helpful for me as I am able to help others understand the addiction and provide hope to others... which is also part of the healing process for an addict.

Is there a healthy way to play video games? If so, what is a healthy amount of time to devote to games per week? Games can increase problem solving skills, allow friends to play together, and be a great form of entertainment that is interactive. The amount of time devoted to games should be less than 1 hour a day in my opinion. Life is too busy and there are too many things to do to devote more than 1 hour a day. For me, 1 hour is even too much with my full plate.

See above...

Do you have any words specifically 13

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A note from Jenn

a Lucado Bishop

A Perfect Plan

Some of th attention. Othersem embarrass you. Others of th make you laugh, give you things. Some of them em protect you. Some of them watch your gameswhile others make you cry. Som leave you. Others hold you. So give you know you. Other , and others watch TV. Some loe may yell too much or talk too me of them s of them know of lit ve you. But no matteGod. Others love money. Sometle. Some of them r w ho Maybe you know you are, you have your dad. Maybe one: Dad. you don’t. Maybe you wish you didn Whoever he is an ’t! d w hatever he does, Because God desi dad will affect w gn ed yo u to ne ho yo person you were created to be. ed a perfect love from a perfect u become. You know why? dad to grow you into the But why would G od do that if he Perfect plan. Bec knows no could fill the needause when earthly love fails you, earthly dad is perfect? Cruel jo he ke in your heart for perfect love becaavenly love finds you. God knew ? Nope. use he is the perf only he You didn’t choose ect dad. your earthly fath How? Believe in er , but yo perfect family. Jesus Christ. Because of Jesus’ u have the chance to choose God sacrifice on the cr as oss, you can join father. God’s By joining talking about grhieas family, you share in the greate the pearly gates t grandma’s pearls or Uncle H st inheritance you will ever kn ank’s gold weddi and gold streets ! I’m not ng band. I’m taow of heaven! lk in g about First John God.” See, you 3:do1 says, “The Father has loved you, wondering if n’t have to wait in the spirituaus so much that we are called ch heaven is your ho l accept it. me. Because of hiorphanage, hoping that God willildren of s love, he claims adopt you as his… if yo u’ll So will you fatherly love. let God be your dad? You wer e created to know and have his pe rfect, No matter how w on de rful (or terrible) yo never messes up, ur will ever receive: never gives up; so why don’t yoearthly dad is, he will let you dow u a seat at God’s di n. nner table. look up? RSVP to the best invita But God tion you Until then, he will be waiting for yo u to call him, “D ad.”

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THE ARMOR OF GOD Ephesians 6:10-18 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

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belt of truth breastplate of righteousness feet fitted with readiness shield of faith helmet of salvation sword of the Spirit

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Find out what makes game play addictive and the physical effects it can cause.

H O O K E D The Addictive Power of Video Games by Tom Neven, Bob Hoose

It was a dynamic air show any boy would love. Displays of cool military equipment. Periodic fly-bys of vintage aircraft and modern jets. The main event, a performance by the Air Force’s Thunderbirds flight team, commenced with F-16 fighters taxiing close to the crowd, engines roaring. Enthusiastic oohs and ahhs erupted from everyone — except for one boy, about 12, whose attention remained fixed on his hand-held Game Boy. “Jason, put that down!” his mother ordered, exasperation rising in her voice. “Look at the jets!” “Hold on, Mom,” he responded, never looking up. “Just let me finish this level.” Interactive Isolation Just let me finish this level. Does that phrase sound familiar? Do your children seem to spend an inordinate amount of time immersed in video games? Do they get jittery if they haven’t played for a while? Does real life take a back seat to screen life?

a treat or to keep the kids busy during vacation. Both vetted the games they let Kyle play, careful to avoid occult, violent or sexual content. But they never imagined how the games themselves could dominate a player’s life. “Christian parents understand the issue of morality,” Kurt told Plugged In, “just as they don’t let their kids go to the raunchy movies. The problem is that most people aren’t aware of the addictive nature of these games, so they’re letting their kids become enslaved to something thinking that it’s harmless.” That’s why, in a way, they blame themselves for Kyle’s addiction. “We noticed our once-active son being enticed away from normal, healthy childhood activities into a digital universe,” they write. “Board games remained on the shelf. Outdoor activities decreased. Even relationships with friends and family were affected, dominated by game chatter or conflict over why he

The scene at the air show is not made up. That boy displayed classic signs of video game addiction. Kurt and Olivia Bruner would recognize the symptoms. Their son Kyle became addicted to what his parents first thought was a harmless activity. As they relate in their book Playstation Nation: Protect Your Child from Video Game Addiction, it started small. They rented video games only as

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couldn’t play ‘just one more level.’” A Different Kind of High Seeing their son sink ever deeper into his need for video games, the Bruners uncovered numerous studies showing that, for some people, games have the same effect on the brain as habit-forming drugs. Researchers at London’s Hammersmith Hospital found that playing video games floods the player’s brain with dopamine, a mood-regulating hormone that induces pleasurable feelings. The scientists likened this hit of dopamine to that observed following intravenous injections of amphetamine or methylphenidate, a drug used to treat ADHD. In fact, children awaiting major surgery who were allowed to play video games before the procedure required less anesthesia to put them under and less pain medicine afterward. So it’s reasonable to ask, “Can a person overdose on electronic games?” South Korea boasts thousands of Internet cafes. One proprietor said, “I’ve seen people who play games for months, just briefly going home for a change of clothing, taking care of all their eating and sleeping here.” That lifestyle isn’t just unhealthy; it is potentially dangerous. A 28-year-old Korean man died at one of those cybercafés after nearly 50 straight hours of playing online computer games. Fortunately, this new form of addiction is being recognized as a legitimate threat. Europe’s

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first detox clinic for video gamers opened in Holland in 2005. Hyke van der Heijden, 28, a graduate of the Amsterdam program, started playing video games 20 years ago. By the time he was in college he was gaming about 14 hours a day and using drugs to play longer. “For me, one joint would never be enough, or five minutes of gaming would never be enough,” he said. “I would just keep going until I crashed out.” The Significant Seven what makes games addictive

Studying the research and looking at the way video games had come to dominate young Kyle’s life, the Bruners identified seven different hooks1 programmed into games that keep players riveted to the virtual action. Not all seven exist in every game, but the more that are present, the greater the chance of players becoming hooked. They are: Beating the Game. To conquer a game, one must spend untold hours navigating increasingly difficult levels. “Sports are made for winner, loser, game over, you move on,” Kurt explained. “Board games are made for winner, loser, pack it up, it’s done. Video games are designed to feed a never-ending and growing appetite for more and more and more.” That can require searching every nook and cranny of screen space for hidden bonuses, leading to the second addictive quality … Exploration. Some titles, like the classic “Myst,” are entirely about traversing and studying imaginary worlds. That’s a powerful draw made stronger by the inclusion of secret levels, which have been built into video games since the earliest edition of “Super Mario Bros.” Mastery. Programmers build feedback into the game (hand controllers vibrate, for example, when your player is “shot”) so that players get visual and physical responses to what they’re doing onscreen. Psychologically, this fuels the learning process, making the player even more eager to master elements of the game. The High Score. Of course, beating the high score has been an incentive since the earliest pinball machines. But video games are different in that the higher you go, the more difficult the game becomes. Players spend countless hours trying to get a new

high score, even if the one they’re besting is their own. Story-Driven Role-Playing. Everyone wants to know how the story ends, whether it’s a children’s fairy tale or a plot-driven video game. Some games let teens control an onscreen figure, but roleplaying games go much deeper by allowing the player to create and become the character in a story. Being so personally invested makes it that much harder to quit. This is why more and more games are constructed around a foundational story. Competition. Boys in particular love to lock horns in spirited contests. With multiplayer options, teens take on both the game and other gamers for bragging rights. Some committed fans go so far as to schedule activities and sleep patterns to accommodate a network of online partners or opponents. Relationships. Fantasy role-playing games let teens create personas much different from who they are in real life. For example, an overweight, athletically challenged boy can become a muscle-bound superhero in an online world, thus making friends with people who would not normally associate with him. Pressure to keep up with online peers also produces powerful incentives to keep improving. Pushing Teens’ Buttons The psychologically addictive elements of video gaming become even more troublesome when you consider that they affect young people precisely at the time when their developing brains are being hardwired for life.

over everything.” There are also physical effects of prolonged gaming. Repetitive-motion injuries. Headaches. Nausea. Or worse. The Korean gamer likely died of a heart attack brought on by game-induced hypertension as well as dehydration and exhaustion. While fatalities are rare, physical trauma isn’t. TV host Jane Pauley once featured a college student who spoke of routinely playing 30 hours at a time. For the show he was hooked up to medical equipment as he began playing a video game, and within 30 minutes his blood pressure maxed out at 190/144 — significant hypertension — and his pulse rate exceeded 120 beats per minute. Should Video Game-Loving Families Go Cold Turkey? Not Necessarily In moderation, some titles can provide a fun diversion for people wired to handle them well. Researchers also point out positive effects that can come from gaming (problem-solving skills, coordination, real-life applications, etc.), particularly if families use multiplayer games to bond with adolescents. The Bruners are quick to stress that not everyone who plays video games will have a hard time putting them down, though they do believe as many as one in three gamers will eventually get hooked. In those homes, “game over” may be the wisest strategy.

“I observed in Kyle behaviors and agitations that reminded me of pornography, even though morally there was no problem with what he was playing,” Kurt said. “But spiritually there was a profound issue of enslavement to something that will never bring satisfaction. These are the childhood and teenage years, when your children are acquiring tastes for what they’ll enjoy in life. So there’s a dampening of the ability to enjoy music, to enjoy art, to enjoy reading, to enjoy all these other things because their games take precedence 19

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“One thing is clear,” the Bruners write, aware that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, “the pattern of addiction associated with electronic games is real, and a threat to the well-being of your child. Other families will make choices very different from our own because every child and family dynamic is unique. But choices must be made.” Or your family’s Grand Canyon vacation may be punctuated by the blips and beeps of a tuned-out teen striving to finish just one more level.

g a m e o v e r

Originally published in the October 2006 issue of Plugged In magazine. Copyright © 2006, Focus on the Family. Used by permission.

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What’s uNepar You July 23rd, 2011 Christmas In July BarlowGirl , TX First Baptist Pfluger ville July 24th - July 26th , 2011 Shift 2011 Stude nt C Stellar Kart w/ R onference Westover Hills Ass obert Madu embly of God San Antonio, TX th 2011 July 27 , ul All Things Bright and Beautif Owl City w/ Mat Kearney ter ACL Live at The Moody Thea July 28th, 2011 Austin, TX Tenth Avenue No rth Six Flags San Antonio, TX th 11 July 29th - July 30 , 20 Jesus Jam Fest 2011 enth Time Down Rapture Ruckus w/ 7ev Texas Ski Ranch New Braunfels, TX August 3rd, 2011 Underoath Backstage Live San Antonio, TX 21

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®

Who we are:

The Christeenianity Foundation is a non-profit 501 (c)(3), Christianbased, outreach program designed as a resource for both teens in shelters and teens in the community at large. By incorporating a biblical foundation and principles in everything we do, we strive to minister the message of God to everyone involved with our organization.

What we do:

We organize, coordinate and support groups of teens from throughout the community, to participate in outreach projects and events designed to benefit abused and neglected teens who are currently in the care of shelters throughout our community. These outreach projects and events include everything from, taking sheltered teens out to movies, parks, Christian concerts, etc., with our community teens participating as chaperones, guides and general helpers. In cases where the sheltered residents are restricted from leaving the facilities, we implement “inshelter” events in order to maximize our outreach.

Why we do it:

There is a huge number of severely abused and neglected children in our community. They are residents of shelters across the city. In some cases, they are being “rehabilitated” to the point of just being able to enter the state system. Most of these children have been rejected or displaced and can’t comprehend that they are loved, and most have no hope for the future. There are NONE in our community that need to be shown the love of God, and provided with hope, more than these lost children. By incorporating and facilitating the participation of teens in the community for these outreach events we are providing them an opportunity for service work and charity directly supporting their disadvantaged peers. Our hope is that we instill, in both groups of teens, an overwhelming basis of understanding God’s existence, love and compassion.

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Video Game

Addiction

Symptoms & Signs Psychological

Symptoms

• Lowered interest in school achievement •F  eelings of anger and frustration when not allowed access to the video game •F  eeling depressed or anxious when not playing the game (especially for a prolonged period) •T  hinking about the next gaming session when not online • Dreaming about the game •E  xperiencing calmness, peacefulness, or euphoria while playing (especially if these emotions are not experienced otherwise) •L  oss of interest in previously enjoyed activities

• Downplaying the impact of the excessive habits (“It’s not as bad as alcohol addiction”) • Justifying excessive use (“Others play more than I do”) • Excessive frustration or anxiety when “the server is down” • Distorted perception of time (e.g., suddenly realizing that several hours have passed in what seemed like just one hour) • Feelings of guilt when unable to join clan or guild members on a quest • Difficulty abstaining from video games for more than a few days • Experiencing a loss of personal control while playing • Feelings of guilt or regret after spending much more time than intended with the game

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Physical

Behavioral

Symptoms

Symptoms

• Sleep difficulties or significant change in sleep patterns • Decreased personal hygiene • Poor or irregular eating habits (e.g., waiting until extremely hungry before eating) • Headaches • Dry or red eyes

• Decreased academic performance •L  ess time spent on homework and studying • Decreased work performance •A  ggression towards those who prevent or attempt to limit access to the video game •F  requently playing the game while neglecting important responsibilities

• Sore fingers, neck, or back • Poor physical health or weight gain

•S  pending more and more time with the video game

• Carpal tunnel syndrome

•P  laying at the first available opportunity (e.g., as soon as getting home from work or school)

Are you

•A  n inability to quit despite attempts to do so

an

• Saying up late into the night to play •E  ating meals while playing or skipping meals entirely •W  hen not playing, discussing the video game in online forums

?

•L  arge amounts of money spent on new games, expansion packs, micro-transactions, and computer upgrades •O  ccasional gaming “binges” of 10 or more hours nonstop

Relational

Symptoms •L  ying to others about how much time is spent with the game •D  eclining social invitations so that game playing can continue • Less time spent with family and friends • I ncreased concern expressed by others at the amount of gaming time •A  loss of real world friends, but an increase in virtual world friends

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now a Do you k

addicted

?

gamers

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•B  laming others (“I would probably play less if you wouldn’t nag so much”) •R  elationship difficulties resulting from excessive play www.Christeenianity.com


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Christeen Dear Christeen, Dear Christeen­–My son recently began high school, and he is having some problems adjusting to the new environment. We knew it would be a big step from middle school to high school, especially since we were moving and he, therefore, didn’t have any friends to look forward to seeing at his new high school. But I’m really starting to worry about him. It seems as though all he wants to do when he gets home from school is play his online video games. It is becoming more and more difficult for me to get him to do his homework, eat dinner, and go to bed at night. Could he be forming an addiction to video games, or am I just being overly concerned? Is there anything I can do?—Freaked Parent in Poteet

Dear Freaked Parent—It really is very hard to adjust from middle school to high school, especially when everyone in the new school is a stranger. It could be that your son is using video games as an escape from his uncomfortable situation. An article on webmd.com titled “Video Game Addiction No Fun” (I will include the full link at the end) suggests that this is one of the main mental and/or emotional issues at play in many cases of video game addiction. The website lists some symptoms to watch out for if you believe you or someone you know has become addicted to video games: · Spending more and more time on video games, · Thinking about playing when you are in school, at work, etc., · Using video games to avoid negative situations or feelings, · Lying to loved ones about video game use, · Having negative emotions/being upset when attempting to decrease video game use So if your son is exhibiting most or all of these symptoms, then you may have something to be concerned about. The article suggests documenting things like how frequently and the lengths of time your son plays video games, any issues that arise as a result of video gaming, and how your son responds when you place time limits on his gaming. But, above all, the article suggests that it is extremely important to obtain professional help if a problem is believed to exist. I truly hope that this helps you with

your question. “Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good.” Titus 2:7. Here is the full link to the article: http://www.webmd.com/mentalhealth/features/video-game-addiction-nofun–Love, Christeen

Dear Christeen–Lately I’ve been having a problem with my girlfriend. Every time I go over to her house to hang out, all she does is play her stupid video games. All I do is sit there, and when I try to talk to her, I usually get no response. I really like her, but I’m really getting fed up with it! I’ve even told her so, but it seems like she just doesn’t care. She would rather just sit there and play. One time I got so mad I cut off the game in the middle of her playing and she kicked me out and wouldn’t talk to me until I apologized. I just don’t know what to do. Please help!— Frustrated in Fair Oaks Ranch Dear Frustrated—Although video game addiction is found primarily in boys and young men, there is no reason why it cannot affect girls and young women as well. If you are worried that your girlfriend has become addicted to video games, then I strongly suggest that you talk about it with her parents or a school counselor. Although it might sound silly at first, video game addiction can be a serious problem just like any other addiction, and can require professional help and/or treatment. However, if you don’t think she is addicted, you may try sitting down and talking to your girlfriend when she is not playing video games, like in the lunchroom at school for instance. Talk to her out of care and love instead of anger, and tell her that you are upset because you want to spend time together when you are at her house, and you feel like she would rather play video games. Tell her that it hurts your feelings and that you wish she would turn the video games off for a little while and talk to you. If she responds negatively, then it may be time to take a break in the relationship. It is very one-sided if you are making an effort and she is not. “The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.” Psalm 103:8..Love–Christeen

Do you have an opinion on this or a question to ask me? Write to me at www.christeenianity.com. Just click “Dear Christeen” under the “Discussion” tab, and tell me what YOU think!

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Christeenianity July 2011  

July 2011 issue of Christeenianity

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