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My Son And Scouting


MorningStar

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My son just told me that he doesn't want to go on his Scout camp out this weekend because they are going to do some hiking. He doesn't feel like it. He has had some problems with a few Scouts, but I think this has more to do with him wanting to stay home and play his new video games, which he has played more than enough since his birthday. He is not in good shape for a boy his age and it's concerning me. If he can't handle hiking now, it's not going to get any easier. He's 13.

I'm thinking about telling him he can either go hiking with them or he can go on a long walk with me. He then asked me tonight if he could have his library privileges back (he was really deceptive months ago about his library fines and intentionally hid them from me/lied). I don't really feel quite ready for that, but then I just realized something.

I could tell him he can have his library privileges back if he walks there and back with his brother. It's not terribly far, but we live at the top of a pretty steep hill and that will be a start. I just feel like it's time to get tougher with him about being healthy. I think I might require a weekly trip if he wants to play video games.

It's hard to know when to crack down, but my husband and I will be having a talk about this. We need to be better examples of good health too. How do you handle this sort of thing in your house? I want him to be involved in Scouting too, but I can't blame him for not feeling very motivated to go.

Edited by MorningStar
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My son just told me that he doesn't want to go on his Scout camp out this weekend because they are going to do some hiking. He doesn't feel like it. He has had some problems with a few Scouts, but I think this has more to do with him wanting to stay home and play his new video games, which he has played more than enough since his birthday. He is not in good shape for a boy his age and it's concerning me. If he can't handle hiking now, it's not going to get any easier. He's 13.

I'm thinking about telling him he can either go hiking with them or he can go on a long walk with me. He then asked me tonight if he could have his library privileges back (he was really deceptive months ago about his library fines and intentionally hid them from me/lied). I don't really feel quite ready for that, but then I just realized something.

I could tell him he can have his library privileges back if he walks there and back with his brother. It's not terribly far, but we live at the top of a pretty steep hill and that will be a start. I just feel like it's time to get tougher with him about being healthy. I think I might require a weekly trip if he wants to play video games.

It's hard to know when to crack down, but my husband and I will be having a talk about this. We need to be better examples of good health too. How do you handle this sort of thing in your house? I want him to be involved in Scouting too, but I can't blame him for not feeling very motivated to go.

Not everybody enjoys scouting. Is there any part of it he likes? Even if he doesn't do the scout thing he should do the YM thing i.e. service projects and activities. Do encourage him to participate. As for the physical fitness thing your on your own there.

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My son just told me that he doesn't want to go on his Scout camp out this weekend because they are going to do some hiking. He doesn't feel like it. He has had some problems with a few Scouts, but I think this has more to do with him wanting to stay home and play his new video games, which he has played more than enough since his birthday. He is not in good shape for a boy his age and it's concerning me. If he can't handle hiking now, it's not going to get any easier. He's 13.

I'm thinking about telling him he can either go hiking with them or he can go on a long walk with me. He then asked me tonight if he could have his library privileges back (he was really deceptive months ago about his library fines and intentionally hid them from me/lied). I don't really feel quite ready for that, but then I just realized something.

I could tell him he can have his library privileges back if he walks there and back with his brother. It's not terribly far, but we live at the top of a pretty steep hill and that will be a start. I just feel like it's time to get tougher with him about being healthy. I think I might require a weekly trip if he wants to play video games.

It's hard to know when to crack down, but my husband and I will be having a talk about this. We need to be better examples of good health too. How do you handle this sort of thing in your house? I want him to be involved in Scouting too, but I can't blame him for not feeling very motivated to go.

Would there be a bigger or different reason he may not want to go? Would your husband be able to go along? That might help. Hopefully he is being treated well by the other scouts. Or it may be that they also like video games as much and it might not be just your son that would rather stay home. If it's several of them I would band together with the other parents to see if there was a way to get the boys motivated to go.
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Not everybody enjoys scouting. Is there any part of it he likes? Even if he doesn't do the scout thing he should do the YM thing i.e. service projects and activities. Do encourage him to participate. As for the physical fitness thing your on your own there.

He wants to get his Eagle and he does enjoy some things. They only have one non-Scouting activity per month.

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Would there be a bigger or different reason he may not want to go? Would your husband be able to go along? That might help. Hopefully he is being treated well by the other scouts. Or it may be that they also like video games as much and it might not be just your son that would rather stay home. If it's several of them I would band together with the other parents to see if there was a way to get the boys motivated to go.

My husband wants to go along, but he has a separate activity for his calling with the 11-year-old Scouts. There have been bullying issues that are being dealt with. We had a meeting about it a month or so ago and they will be booting boys very swiftly for certain behaviors. Even if they are civil though, he knows a few of these boys don't like him for whatever reason. There are also kids who really like him.

A lot of the boys are athletes, so the hikes aren't a big deal for them at all. I think my son is actually embarrassed to do any physical activity in front of them, so maybe we should concentrate on getting him more into shape before he does something like that. He wouldn't go to the stake skating party either because he's never skated and wasn't about to learn in front of those boys. :(

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He wants to get his Eagle and he does enjoy some things. They only have one non-Scouting activity per month.

If getting his Eagle award is important to him then he has to put out the effort to do the things required. One of them is hiking. My scout and his group did a fifty miler this summer. He came home tired and sore footed but enjoyed the experience.

My problem with him is he doesn't like Sunday School class. I am thinking about keeping him with me in Gospel Doctrine or taking him to Gospel Essentials Class.

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Aaahh, that's tough. I really feel for him. It sounds like you and your husband are very caring parents. I'm thinking you are doing the right thing in preparing him physically first rather than force him to go.

Thank you. There are some things you just have to tough it through, so I'm trying to decide how much is too much to be expected from him. At least they split the Deacons into three quorums. I don't think he has any of the bullies in his class. He does have to deal with them at Scout activities. You know what would be funny? If we hid a new book he really wants at a destination point. That would motivate him to hike. Hahaha!!!! He is obsessed with reading, which I love. I just want him to move his body more though. I don't care that he's not an athlete - I just want him to be healthy.

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I was on the young end of my age group and petite to boot, plus never had much energy due to an undiagnosed sleep disorder. It only made it worse to be pushed into stuff I felt that it was yet again proving what a wimp I was. Otoh I would go on hour long rides by myself and loved it.

Try and find out what type of exercise your son likes and have him set up a program, maybe for earning hours on his vid games or other rewards. Kids are much more likely to follow through on things they've planned than are imposed upon them. Just hold on to veto power and encourage to start slow with rewards for small things first, then having to work harder (my daughter's therapist's idea though it didn't really work with her due to too many complicating and unpredictable health factors for both her and the 'coach'...me.

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I got an email from his Scout leader. He said last night when he expressed his desire to not go, he pressed him a bit and he just blurted out, "I just want to stay home and play games!" AH HA!!!!

The Wii is now in a shoebox in my closet. He is the patrol leader. This is a way lame reason not to go and the leaders are working hard to make a better environment for him. If he doesn't go, my husband is making him go on a 5 mile hike with him. If he had said that the boys are treating him like crud and he can't stand the thought of spending the weekend with them, that would be different.

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I got an email from his Scout leader. He said last night when he expressed his desire to not go, he pressed him a bit and he just blurted out, "I just want to stay home and play games!" AH HA!!!!

The Wii is now in a shoebox in my closet. He is the patrol leader. This is a way lame reason not to go and the leaders are working hard to make a better environment for him. If he doesn't go, my husband is making him go on a 5 mile hike with him. If he had said that the boys are treating him like crud and he can't stand the thought of spending the weekend with them, that would be different.

Even though that is what he said he may actually have some anxiety about going on a hike, especially if it a particularly strenuous and he is not in very good shape. I would suggest you find a way to make physical activity fun as a method of encouragement rather that using physical activity as a punishment. You may just have to find the sport or activity he enjoys. A word of caution: If you use physical activity as a punishment, that is how he may view it for the rest of his life and will avoid it.

Also, forcing boys to participate in scouts usually results in boys that are a pain in the neck of the leaders and that end up hating scouts.

Edited by Saints Alive
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Thank you. He is becoming obsessed with his games though and doesn't show much interest in anything active. He doesn't want to ride his bike, wouldn't go to the skating party the stake had, etc. He just wants to escape into video games when he has a responsibility to do. He accepted the calling as 1st counselor in Deacons/patrol leader and he needs to follow through. He says he wants his Eagle, so he will have to push himself to do things he's not in the mood to do. We have to do that to ourselves our whole lives.

I have seen too many boys become interested in nothing because they only want to play video games. We have to nip this in the bud. We had a primary party recently and my friend's son chose to sit and do nothing when kids were playing pool, jumping on the trampoline, etc. He then discovered the Primary president's son playing a game downstairs and preferred even to just watch him play.

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Thank you. He is becoming obsessed with his games though and doesn't show much interest in anything active. He doesn't want to ride his bike, wouldn't go to the skating party the stake had, etc. He just wants to escape into video games when he has a responsibility to do. He accepted the calling as 1st counselor in Deacons/patrol leader and he needs to follow through. He says he wants his Eagle, so he will have to push himself to do things he's not in the mood to do. We have to do that to ourselves our whole lives.

I have seen too many boys become interested in nothing because they only want to play video games. We have to nip this in the bud. We had a primary party recently and my friend's son chose to sit and do nothing when kids were playing pool, jumping on the trampoline, etc. He then discovered the Primary president's son playing a game downstairs and preferred even to just watch him play.

We have had to limit video game time. It can become an addiction.

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My son just told me that he doesn't want to go on his Scout camp out this weekend because they are going to do some hiking. He doesn't feel like it. He has had some problems with a few Scouts, but I think this has more to do with him wanting to stay home and play his new video games, which he has played more than enough since his birthday. He is not in good shape for a boy his age and it's concerning me. If he can't handle hiking now, it's not going to get any easier. He's 13.

I'm thinking about telling him he can either go hiking with them or he can go on a long walk with me. He then asked me tonight if he could have his library privileges back (he was really deceptive months ago about his library fines and intentionally hid them from me/lied). I don't really feel quite ready for that, but then I just realized something.

I could tell him he can have his library privileges back if he walks there and back with his brother. It's not terribly far, but we live at the top of a pretty steep hill and that will be a start. I just feel like it's time to get tougher with him about being healthy. I think I might require a weekly trip if he wants to play video games.

It's hard to know when to crack down, but my husband and I will be having a talk about this. We need to be better examples of good health too. How do you handle this sort of thing in your house? I want him to be involved in Scouting too, but I can't blame him for not feeling very motivated to go.

I am one who does not believe that children always know what is best for them. At times this will result in a parent demanding or forcing a child to act. It is true that you can bring a horse to water, but you cannot force him to drink, but often simply bringing them to water is enough that a thirsty horse drinks.

Exercise is vital. I strongly encourage you to read a book entitled, "Spark" by john J. Ratey, MD. This book reveals all the scientific research of exercise and the brain. After you read it I think you would conclude that you tell your son to go to scout camp and may even throw out the computer games or at least remove them until such times that he learns to get daily exercise, DAILY, not weekly, not every other day, but daily. He will thank you once he returns to a position of good health.

Our children and everyone of do not have the luxury of a lifestyle that demands that we exercise daily. As a result, we must schedule it into our daily life. It does not matter what we did yesterday, today we have to exercise.

Shut off the TV, the computer, and put away the mobile phone. You are out the door and exercising today.

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Thanks, Storm Rider! He came home to find the Wii had disappeared and was very sullen when I told him he could choose to go camping and play when he gets home or go hiking with Dad and not play video games. Later he tried to choose doing nothing all weekend and his dad said that wasn't an option. The Scout Master needed and answer and he said, "When I walk out this door, I'm choosing for you." He hadn't given either one of us an answer - just gave us excuses about not feeling like it and being tired. He finally said, "Fine! I'll go on the camp out!" He will be expected to have a good attitude while he is there too. He earned a bunch of money helping someone with a major move this summer and he is asking me to order a Nintendo DS for him. Yeah, fat chance. I told him just because he has the money for one doesn't mean he's allowed to have one.

I agree that he needs to exercise every day. He does have gym class all week days, but who knows how much standing around he does? I often let him make his own choices, but it felt wrong to let him skip out on this. He needs this for the physical activity and so he will bond with some of the boys.

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Thanks, Storm Rider! He came home to find the Wii had disappeared and was very sullen when I told him he could choose to go camping and play when he gets home or go hiking with Dad and not play video games. Later he tried to choose doing nothing all weekend and his dad said that wasn't an option. The Scout Master needed and answer and he said, "When I walk out this door, I'm choosing for you." He hadn't given either one of us an answer - just gave us excuses about not feeling like it and being tired. He finally said, "Fine! I'll go on the camp out!" He will be expected to have a good attitude while he is there too. He earned a bunch of money helping someone with a major move this summer and he is asking me to order a Nintendo DS for him. Yeah, fat chance. I told him just because he has the money for one doesn't mean he's allowed to have one.

I agree that he needs to exercise every day. He does have gym class all week days, but who knows how much standing around he does? I often let him make his own choices, but it felt wrong to let him skip out on this. He needs this for the physical activity and so he will bond with some of the boys.

The book I mentioned discusses some of the shortfalls of most PE classes. What they focus on is teaching young people how important exercise is and that there is no team competition to exercise. You are only learning to compete with yourself i.e. give 100% effort to keep your heart rate up for a defined period of time. This exercise has a direct impact on how well one learns, feels, senses, etc. It is pretty amazing what the body can do when we treat it properly.

He sounds like a good kid and is just having the same type of experiences that we all do. I know few adults that are disciplined enough to exercise every day as they should. It is so much easier to learn it in your youth and then carry it forward. I wish you and your son well. This is a great lesson that he is learning and it will not be easy.

As a side note, I am stunned by how many young men in their 20's that play computer games. My own son loves to play them, but his wife keeps him on a short leash. He can only play for 30 to 45 minutes per day.

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You will want him to keep doing physical things...maybe bike together as a Family. If he goes to camp, the hike will happen if he has friends going. I have learned that no reward should come until after the task is done. Both my sons did alright dispite the fact that they did "not" go all the way in scouting.

Edited by Bill “Papa” Lee
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I have two cousins who are all screwed up from their video game addictions, so I'm pretty cautious about my kids' use. After one of my cousins lost his mom, my grandma pretty much raised him and was too tired and felt too sorry for him to restrict his game playing. He is idle, selfish, and has a sense of entitlement you wouldn't believe. My grandma lives in an apartment now and when he's up the creek, he stays with her and does nothing but play games, doesn't clean up after himself, and doesn't help her in any way. She feels like she is failing her daughter if she kicks him out, but my dad got really tough with him. He was even willing to help pay for his college, but that didn't happen. When he borrowed my grandma's car, he smoked in it and my dad really laid into him that time - told him he was never to use her car again.

My other cousin, he has nothing going for him and I swear he lost brain cells with his video game playing. My heck. I told my boys that I'm tough when it comes to video games because I do not want them to turn out like my cousins or the "men" who don't spend meaningful time with their kids or help their wives because they're playing games. There is always something better to do, but I don't mind it in moderation.

I taught one of my piano students about Chopin yesterday and showed them this. I said, "See? This is what people were capable of composing and playing before there was TV." :D

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The book I mentioned discusses some of the shortfalls of most PE classes. What they focus on is teaching young people how important exercise is and that there is no team competition to exercise. You are only learning to compete with yourself i.e. give 100% effort to keep your heart rate up for a defined period of time. This exercise has a direct impact on how well one learns, feels, senses, etc. It is pretty amazing what the body can do when we treat it properly.

He sounds like a good kid and is just having the same type of experiences that we all do. I know few adults that are disciplined enough to exercise every day as they should. It is so much easier to learn it in your youth and then carry it forward. I wish you and your son well. This is a great lesson that he is learning and it will not be easy.

As a side note, I am stunned by how many young men in their 20's that play computer games. My own son loves to play them, but his wife keeps him on a short leash. He can only play for 30 to 45 minutes per day.

My husband plays once in a while and went through a phase where he played too much, so I had a little chat with him that went something like this, "I ASKED YOU TO DO ONE THING TODAY WHICH WAS TO WASH THE BEDDING AND YOU DIDN'T EVEN DO THAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT!!!!!!" We had a newborn and I was planning on having family over for his blessing the next day. I got about two hours of sleep every night and he spat up like you wouldn't believe. That ended that phase. He then played Xbox sometimes and after he started going to the temple every week, he came home one day and said, "I learned something today. When I play Xbox with the kids, that's not really bonding. We're not talking to each other." Hallelujah!

Gaming is a source of contention for quite a few of my friends.

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My husband plays once in a while and went through a phase where he played too much, so I had a little chat with him that went something like this, "I ASKED YOU TO DO ONE THING TODAY WHICH WAS TO WASH THE BEDDING AND YOU DIDN'T EVEN DO THAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT!!!!!!" We had a newborn and I was planning on having family over for his blessing the next day. I got about two hours of sleep every night and he spat up like you wouldn't believe. That ended that phase. He then played Xbox sometimes and after he started going to the temple every week, he came home one day and said, "I learned something today. When I play Xbox with the kids, that's not really bonding. We're not talking to each other." Hallelujah!

Gaming is a source of contention for quite a few of my friends.

Some people game too much and some of us spend too much time on discussion boards. I really don't know which is worse.

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Excuse me while I cheerlead a little bit. One of my favorite sayings is "Now shall I walk or shall I ride? Ride, said pleasure, walk, joy replied". Other than the temple and a few testimony meetings, I have felt closer to our Heavenly Father while afoot in the wilderness than just about any other place, and I feel that the reason my daughter turned out as well as she did was that a couple of weeks each summer, as well as several Friday nights throughout the year, I took her and her brother into the Sierra or the local SoCal mountains.

If you really want to get to know your kid, get them fifteen or twenty trail miles from the nearest road. No games, no cell phones, nothing to do but talk to each other all day long. It's amazing what your kid will tell you, and scouts is a great place to infect them with a love of the outdoors. Just take it from there.

Edited by Buzzard
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Just make sure you pace yourself to the kids, my dad would do the same thing, but would plow ahead so there was no talking.....and much resentment at times for being pushed so hard that I couldn't enjoy the surroundings and just felt overwhelmed.

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