How Technology is Ruining Our Youth

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When I read the following article that was sent to me from Gregg Murset of I knew I had to share it with you. I agree with everything he has to say and I’m seeing where technology could become a problem in my own home. Our 7 year old granddaughter recently came to live with us and even though her parents are going to be following her in a few months we knew she’d be missing them and well, with them living in Sweden our unlimited long distance doesn’t cover international calling so Don fixed up a computer so she could chat with them using Skype. In addition to Skype we bookmarked a few sites that are kid friendly and educational. We thought we had the bases covered with monitoring her closely and only allowing her to be on the computer while we’re in the room with her. The problem is, she wants to be on it ALL THE TIME and we’re having to say now quite a bit. Then of course there’s her hand held gaming device that has age appropriate games but again, she wants to be on that when she’s not on the computer. We’ve had to set limits so she goes outside, colors by hand or plays with her non tech toys. I mean, how else is she going to be honing that great imagination she’s got or developing her artistic skills.

With all that said I’m sure you’ll find Greg’s article and infographic as interesting as I did.

The Demise of Guys? Over My Dead Body

I recently read the book entitled, “The Demise of Guys” and was totally shocked at the statistics reinforcing what I instinctively already knew in my head. As the author put it, “guys are flaming out”. Crashing and burning. Biting the dust.

Well, I for one, am not letting my guys ages 15, 10, 8 and almost 6 “flame out”. Nope…over my dead body is that going to happen.

These guys are growing up in a world that would have no problem if they just completely wasted all the potential they have wrapped up inside of them. Just chewed them up and spit them out. These guys need a man that has been down the road a little further than they have been, to help lead the way and educate them about all the pitfalls out there.  That is what a real man does right?

So why are guys going down in flames? Well, there are a number of contributing factors but the two biggest reasons fit into the same category: technology. Specifically, video games and online pornography.

The average young person will spend 10,000 hours gaming by age 21. What? With so many boys running around now with a gaming device in their front pocket, I’m not really that surprised. Every time there is a spare minute, out comes the video game and the time wasting begins. The author put this in context when he stated that it takes the average college student only half that time – 4,800 hours – to earn a bachelor’s degree.  Let’s see here… a college degree or hours of mind numbing gaming? Unfortunately, many guys are choosing the latter to their own demise. I’m not bashing the occasional virtual adventure on a winter day, but 10,000 hours?  Come on.

The pornography business is picking up speed at a staggering rate and destroying guys left and right as it barrels down the tracks. One in three boys is now considered a “heavy” porn user, viewing nearly two hours of porn every week. Really? Seriously?  Worldwide, pornography is almost a 100 billion dollar industry. This filth is peddled to anyone that will take a look, with the hope that they will take another look and yet another until they are stuck in an addictive cycle that destroys their ability to have normal interactions with others, especially those of the opposite sex.

Well, as disheartening as these statistics may be… take courage, I have a few simple solutions to consider:

First, boys need more to do. They need to be given more responsibility earlier on in life.  How about some jobs around the house for heavens sake? It’s hard to game or get in trouble on the internet while you have a lawn mower or a paintbrush in your hand!  Have them get off the couch or come out of their room, where they are more than likely gaming in seclusion, and do something productive.  They might cuss you under their breath when they are younger but I believe they will praise your name later in life.  Shoot, maybe even sincerely thank you face to face! Wouldn’t that be nice?  The men that have my respect are real men that know how to work hard.

Secondly, boys need some goals. A clear vision of what they could or should be doing with their time. If they aren’t gaming so much or looking at porn, that leaves a lot of time to do something worthwhile. So sit down with your son, nephew, friend, whoever, and help open their eyes to the many other meaningful things that they could be doing with their time. Read good books, learn how to play an instrument or take on a new language. Get interested in a hobby like hunting or fishing or enroll them in some other organized sport. Maybe it’s weight lifting or running or mountain biking.  Help them set some financial goals and teach them how to make good financial decisions. Help them understand that good things come to those that wait. Maybe it’s saving up for the car they might be dreaming of when they get into High School. As they set some goals and then make the effort to achieve those goals they will have an increased sense of self worth. Not some lame, fake, and fleeting self worth that comes from achieving another level on a video game or being momentarily aroused by yet another pornographic image.

You know what’s going to happen if we can keep them out of this technology trap? They are going to do better in school, have better social skills, be more self-motivated, learn how to work and make good money decisions. All in all, they are going to be more pleasant to be around. Bonus!

Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not saying to go on complete and total technology lock down. Don’t freak out and pile up the iPhones and start a bon-fire or anything. These little gadgets are totally amazing if used for the right purposes. We just need to make sure that these guys that we are raising are given some guidance so they aren’t the ones that get run over by this technological train barreling down the tracks.

The demise of guys? Well, for my 4 guys it’s going to have to be over my dead body.

Gregg Murset is the Founder of and father of 4 boys and 2 girls.

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About Dee

Dee Landrygives honest opinions and views on various topics, products and life. She also shares recipes and her life with her family and puppies.


  1. Mary Beth Elderton says:

    Wow–this is a bit of a knot to untangle! First off, I’m an older mom–my son is 30, my daughter is 19. During my son’s teen years I took in two other teenage boys. I’ve been around the block.

    I keep hearing that “technology is ruining our kids,” but I disagree. The fact that I am writing this on a laptop computer via the Internet in response to a post on a blog that I subscribe to by email really ought to be enough of a demonstration that technology is not “ruining” us. This reminds me of my grandparents fussing about how they didn’t have TV’s in their day and “kids today” (back in the 60’s) were being ruined!
    It is, though, without a doubt, changing things, and it is a huge disservice to a kid to limit his skill with technology. In our day rode in cars without seat belts. We watched TV.

    I’m also want to point out that gaming and porn are not the same things. They are not even related in any way other being available online. Porn is destructive. My daughter is a gamer and has multitasking, problem-solving, and analytical skills that are amazing.

    About kids and responsibility–I keep hearing about this, too, but I rarely hear about the parent’s responsibility. When my son hit 5th grade, the question was not whether he would do band but which instrument he would play. As a parent, my job was to buy the trumpet, make sure he could do the early morning and/or afternoon practices, see that he had the black slacks and white shirt for concerts. When it became obvious later that he would be a guitarist, my job as a parent was to see that he had the equipment he needed for the kind of music he played, to spend time at Guitar Center (sometimes hours!) to “allow” guitar music in the house. This chart says 260 hours–It seemed like more than that when the amps were cranked up. My son holds a 2nd degree black belt–my job as a parent was to pay for that, to see that he had the equipment, to provide transportation–I don’t know how to measure that in hours…it took years.. My daughter is a sax and bassoon player. As a parent I provided the instruments, often dropped her at 6:30am for band practice. She’s a gamer–I bought the consoles and games. She did jigsaw puzzles and built legos–that meant that I did, too.

    I don’t know whether computers are “rewiring” the brain. I do think that the ability to google information quickly exercises brain skills that are very different from those used to read a book. I can’t say whether it’s bad…just that it is different, and it’s a way of thinking that kids need to be good at going into the future.

    So…if a parent’s goal for their kid is to get him away from the computer long enough to mow the lawn, I’d say that is a pretty low expectation. If a parent wants him to master an instrument or a martial art…or any of the things on this chart… then the parent has to put in tremendous amounts of effort as well.

    As for young men being less innovative…that requires a hard look at what we are doing to our schools…and that’s another whole can of worms.

    • Dee says:

      Thank you for your comment.

      I do agree parents have more of a responsibility to actually be parents and raise their kids to be productive members of society. One problem I’m seeing, and not saying this pertains to you, is a lot of parents are using technology to babysit their kids Kids spend hours in front of the TV or game system rather than actually interacting with other people. Virtual realities and friends are replacing real life and this also pertains to some adults. I know myself I have more online friends than real life friends but that didn’t start until I moved from Chicago to Alabama and left all my friends behind. I still keep in touch with them and actually prefer a phone call over an email or chat because I miss the human interaction and having a regular conversation where we have 1 conversation rather than 3 going on at the same time.

      I’m no English major but so many are relying on spell check and not LEARNING how to actually spell words. Forget math, since they allow calculators in school we no longer need to know what 2+2 are. If a cashier at a store doesn’t have their registers to tell them how much change to give a customer they’re lost since they don’t know how to count change or subtract without the electronics.

      I have a niece in her 30’s who called and asked me to look up a phone number for her because her internet was down. When I told her to look it up in a phone book she was stumped and had no idea where to start. That’s sad.

      So yes, technology is here to stay and I think it’s great but it shouldn’t take the place of life and doing things in the real world once in a while.

  2. This doesnt matter to me. I just wanna see Anthrax/Slayer/Metallica with special guest Miley Cyrus. Now that’s a festival!