These days, whenever Abu is supposed to be doing a time-limited activity, I often use the Online-Stopwatch.com. Thus, instead of simply saying “You can play the computer for half an hour,” I tell him to start the timer for 30 minutes, and tell him that he’s supposed to stop playing when the timer goes off. This frees me from having to monitor him – because when he’s playing the computer, he often loses track of time, and can end up playing for 2 hours even if he was supposed to stop after 30 minutes.
Rabad saw this and insisted that she also wanted to learn how to use the online stopwatch. So I taught her how to go to Online-Stopwatch.com, how to start the countdown timer and so on. That made her happy and she started exploring the features of the website.
Just as I had finished explaining to her, meetu came in the room, and we started discussing some work stuff (related to wogma). Rabad continued playing with the stopwatch while we had our discussion.
After the discussion, I left the room, and Rabad followed me out.
“Daddy,” she asked, “Do you know what I was doing with the stopwatch?”
“I was counting how much time you and Mamma talk,” she announced, with what did look like an evil grin.
“I was counting how much time you get to talk to each other and how much time you spend with each other. So now whenever you or Mamma complain that children don’t allow you to spend time with each other, I will bring the computer and show you how much time you spend with each other.”
So now there are high-tech weapons deployed against us. It’s a losing battle.