Teen lives out my gaming dream, ruins it by not drinking enough

A 15-year-old from Columbus, Ohio was hospitalized after playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 for four days straight. The teen only left his room to take a quick shower and grab some snacks. Unfortunately, those snacks did not comprise liquids, and the boy collapsed a number of times as a result of severe dehydration.

The teen was taken to the hospital, where he was provided with an IV administering the fluids he neglected to take in during his long gaming session. He is expected to have a full recovery and no long-term effects to his health, but his mother has since confiscated his Xbox 360. I guess that’s better than nothing, but Modern Warfare 3 is rated ‘M’ — for those not in the know, that stands for “mature” and such games are barred from being sold to minors — so there appears to be a startling lack of good parenting decisions by the boy’s mother, from the point she purchased the game for her son, up to the point her son managed to spend four days holed up in his room with his Xbox.

Now that I’ve been all judgey — way to live out the dream of a man who is employed full-time and has a family, only to ruin it by not drinking some water, kid! I barely manage to squeeze in two hours of gaming a week. If you have the opportunity and lack of responsibility to get that amount of serious gaming in, at least show some modicum of appreciation (not to mention brainpower) by doing the most basic activities to take care of yourself during the marathon. As if it needed to be said, Dr. Mike Patrick, an emergency physician at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, suggests that gamers “get plenty of food and fluids, take breaks for physical activity, and put the controller down now and then to get some decent sleep” whilst playing video games for an extended period of time. So to all you kids out there, game as long as you like, but do so responsibly, and cherish the opportunity to do so. Though I suppose this might be one of those luxuries that is hard to appreciate until it’s gone.

[WCMH-TV via Gamespot]

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3 thoughts on “Teen lives out my gaming dream, ruins it by not drinking enough

  1. Hecubus says:

    I loved the title of your post!! I’m from Columbus, OH, and it’s been interesting to see the media firestorm over this story. There were news reports about the “dangers” of gaming and how parents need to advise children to stay away from gaming altogether. I also question the parenting skill of this kid’s mother–what was she doing for all that time?

    • Gadi says:

      Thanks! Considering I run a video-game (and sports and tech) enthusiast blog, I am definitely going to approach this story from a different angle than the sensationalist mainstream media. Video games are a relatively young, niche medium that has undergone significant evolution in a short amount of time, are not so well understood, and are often deemed mind-numbing, violence-promoting, or juvenile. Perhaps that is where the bias stems from.

      Imagine if an ill-advised child neglected to drink enough water while playing basketball for four days straight without sleeping. Would everyone clamor to blame basketball and urge parents to prevent their kids from participating in the sport? Don’t think so.

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