Thank God For Zelda.

So my husband works in the video game industry which means he likes to try to keep up with as much of the gaming world as he can with the little free time he has. (That job takes 60 hours out of some of his weeks, so his free time is minimal.) He and Wesley recently started playing Zelda on the Switch and it’s the first time Wesley has really gotten into a game. It’s a cool game too, it’s like a quest so he shows me all sorts of cool things he can do or places he’s discovered.

IT HAS ALSO BECOME THE BEST BRIBERY TOOL TO HAVE EVER EXISTED.

Yesterday we got home from school and we had two hours before his soccer game so I said, “Do you reading and your homework and you’ll have time to play Zelda before the game.”

AND HE DID IT.

Now, he ended up watching Donnie play instead of playing himself, he finds that just as cool because Donnie has achieved different levels or tools or something.

And then AFTER the game?

“Take your bath and brush your teeth and you’ll have time for Zelda before bed.”

AND HE DID IT.

Y’all do not understand how mundane tasks have KILLED our family recently. Wesley will turn in a request to brush his teeth into World War Z and he becomes possessed by demons and pitches tantrums the like of which you’ve never seen.

Now? ZELDA IS THE MAGIC.

It also gives him and Donnie something to bond over the few hours they have together every week. It’s become very cool to watch. Wes doesn’t really get into football which Donnie was really hoping he would, but Zelda? They talk about it ALL THE TIME. It’s the CUTEST.

I don’t care if bribery is bad parenting. I don’t care if Zelda is rotting his brain. I don’t care if video games are the end of the world. I’m just grateful this game has given us peace and joy and DEAR UNIVERSE: I HOPE HE NEVER WINS IT.

8 thoughts on “Thank God For Zelda.

  1. You have found his Currency. The thing he wants to do,Zelda and hang with Dad. This is not bribery. You are helping him learn time management,and have put the ball in his court. Young children in his age bracket, do not want to do anything that looks like homework, or anything that has to do with personal hygiene. They will grow out of it when they find themselves attracted to someone else. My 13 year old granddaughter still complains about having to take a daily shower.

    • MrsDragon says:

      I concur. Bribery would be “if you do this, you get that” (more analogous would be giving him a set amount of time on the game or buying him a game I think). This is helping him with time management via natural consequences. He has two hours, these things must be done, but this is the thing he WANTS to do. By quickly doing what must be done, he has more time for what he enjoys.

    • Becky says:

      I was also going to say this – this seems way more like an allowance than a bribe. You’re paying him for doing what he’s supposed to do with a thing that holds great value to him. As the mother of a 9-year old boy, I can commiserate than being clean or getting education hold far less reward-value than video games! And as the mother of an almost 15-yo girl, I can also concur that personal hygiene improves when there is someone other than their mother they care to pass sniff test with!

  2. Jo says:

    My 8 year old is the same way. I see it as a lesson in getting a job done! More adults could benefit from delaying a reward and doing something good first. Good job momma!

  3. Julie says:

    I agree with everyone! Having been in education for over 25 years and often working with children who have instances in their lives which challenge them, I wanted you to know that what you are doing isn’t bribery. Some call it a “promise”. Telling a child in the middle of a tantrum at the market that if they stop they can get a sucker would fall more under bribery. You are teaching him about choices. If he chooses to get the work done quickly, he has made a choice to enjoy some free time. It takes you out of the equation.
    And does this make you feel any better about hygiene?
    This morning as my 10 year old daughter lay sleeping I wondered to myself….”Ya think I can put deodorant on her right now without her waking up??? It would save me the headache of discussing it later….”
    🙂

  4. Kelli says:

    I do the same thing but I don’t consider it bribery. I consider it teaching my kids “time management”. If my son gets packed for school and has his shoes on and IS ACTUALLY READY TO LEAVE, he gets free time to play on his phone. When they get home, they immediately get free time to shake off school, but then they need to get some other stuff done before playing again.

    But bribery works, too. 🙂

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