I love “Love, Rosie”

sam-claflin-lily-collins-first-love-rosie-posterYesterday I went to the cinema ( I know bite me I go far too often) . I went to see Love, Rosie, I didn’t really know what it was about so I had no expectations at all and I have to say I loved it. In essence it is about missed opportunities, best friends who love each other but get caught up in life. It really was a true gem.

I left the film pondering ex-relationships, things left unfinished from my past and perhaps even some missed opportunities. Life and love to me is intriguing one chance meting, one missed meeting, a miss-communication and life changes and take a different course- fascinating.  I often feel so sorry for the young people now, because. lets face it getting away from an ex-partner is far more difficult then it was in my day. In my day you just left the area and  bingo you never saw them again. No mobile, no Facebook, Twitter, Instagram,  no one knew anything about you so no gossip to spread or share. I did manage in my youth to leave a trail of devastation behind me and never really had to pay for it. I often wonder what might be different if my life was been played out in modern day times.

Anyway what is my point!  Yes I do have one.

This all got my thinking as to what would be the one piece of advice I would have given my younger self. That bit of advice would be to complete things, to end things on terms that were clear with friends and partners. My life feels like one long list on unclear unknowns and unfinished. Something I probably could have never got away with nowadays but never the less it is important advice.

 What advice would you have give your young self? 

Teens & Video Games: Finding a Happy Medium

teens and gamingVideo games are a prevalent part of our culture. The video game industry is ringing up around $12 billion in annual sales. In addition, studies have found that teens spend up to 7.5 hours a day glued to some type of screen — be it a video game, tablet, smartphone or television.

In order to help ensure that your teen’s adoration of video games does not take over his or her life, it’s important that parents set some ground rules. While you don’t want to necessarily eliminate them from your child’s life all together, you do want to be sure that there is a level of responsibility and accountability tied to gaming. Manage how much and how often your teen is playing games and find a happy medium. Consider these tips:

Talk about Impact

Video games are impacting our culture big time! Empowering Parents suggests speaking with your teen when he or she is not holding a controller, and let your teen know, in a calm and non-confrontational way, that you are a bit concerned about the amount of time he or she is playing games. If there are specific issues you are worried about, bring them up in a neutral way. For example: ”Your grades have dropped in English and Math from B’s to low C’s since you started playing ‘Call of Duty.’ I think the two are connected.” Try telling your teen that you understand that video games are a lot of fun, but that you are setting some new rules in regard to their use.

Devise a Plan

While you might want to drastically cut back on how much time your teen spends playing video games, it can be more helpful and effective to take a less heavy-handed approach. Instead, let your teen know one new rule regarding the games, and what the positive and negative consequences will be for following it. Start off by telling your teenage gamer something like this: “Starting tomorrow video games will need to be shut off for the night by 8:30. If you are cool about this when I remind you, we’ll stick with this plan. But if your grades keep dropping or you get mouthy with me when it’s time to turn off the games, you’ll lose video game privileges entirely for the next day.”

Be Aware

It’s important to know what types of games your teen is playing. Depending on your comfort level and how mature your child is, you might let him or her play Rated M games like “Halo” and “Grand Theft Auto,” or you might prefer less violent games like “Guitar Hero” or “Madden NFL.” Regardless of what types of games your allow your teen to play, I Keep Safe suggests keeping the video game system in a family room or living room, rather than in your teen’s bedroom.

Play

Playing video games with your teenager can be a great and fun way to spend time together. Depending on which games you are playing, there can be plenty of opportunities for talking, interacting and even problem solving together. As a way to compromise with your teen about video game time, say that a certain amount will be spent with part or all of the family. For example, if you recently purchased your teen one of the new Xbox One game systems, you can look into buying some Kinect games that get everyone up and moving together, or you can find titles that you can enjoy together. These include active fitness games and hands-on games like “Guitar Hero” or “Just Dance.”

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Films, Films and more Films

Gone Girl not my cup of tea

imagesSo this weekend was full of hankies, Vicks and films, two films in fact that I have wanted to see for ages. One was “Gone Girl” and the other “The Maze Runner” (I loved the book).  I wanted to see “Gone Girl” because I had heard so much about it (good and bad) I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.

While the rest of the audience gasped and laughed and came out the cinema gushing with praise, I was there going “what the **** was that?”. I picked it apart with my husband at length. It was a good story, had lots of subliminal messages (that I liked) , had good acting and a great twist (even though I had figured it out)  . I should have liked it, except I didn’t. It made me feel uncomfortable, I found it cold, calculated and void of any human emotion (which perhaps it was meant to be), I thought it had unnecessary scenes in it just to shock. I just didn’t dig it. Then it struck me. I see films as a way to learn and heal and grow in fact so much so I got trained in cinematherapy. I think in films, we see on the screen a part of ourselves that needs to change and we learn through watching. I want to come out of the movies and feel I have learnt, grown or healed a little. Watching a film for mindless entertainment is not my thing anymore. And in “Gone Girl” there wasn’t a little bit of me that felt connected to the story or the characters therefore I wasn’t learning and it bored me. It wasn’t a bad film it just didn’t engage me the way I want to be engaged. End of really.

Now The Maze Runner on the other hand I adored – so much in fact I have already seen it twice. Watching it makes me ask myself questions like, “could I survive that?” , “How would I respond to that?”, “What role would I play here?”.

So I guess the moral of the story is we love the films that resonate and hate the ones that don’t.