Fantasy World: Why Are Boys Not Becoming Men?

 I just wanted to start some conversation around an article I saw Rick Warren tweet out  from a few days ago…

Is the overuse of video games and pervasiveness of online porn causing the demise of guys? Increasingly, researchers say yes, as young men become hooked on arousal, sacrificing their schoolwork and relationships in the pursuit of getting a tech-based buzz. Every compulsive gambler, alcoholic or drug addict will tell you that they want increasingly more of a game or drink or drug in order to get the same quality of buzz. Video game and porn addictions are different. They are “arousal addictions,” where the attraction is in the novelty, the variety or the surprise factor of the content. Sameness is soon habituated; newness heightens excitement. In traditional drug arousal, conversely, addicts want more of the same cocaine or heroin or favorite food…

The consequences could be dramatic: The excessive use of video games and online porn in pursuit of the next thing is creating a generation of risk-averse guys who are unable (and unwilling) to navigate the complexities and risks inherent to real-life relationships, school and employment. –

I don’t know how much of a shock it is that video games and porn aren’t good for guys. The alarming part for me was the consequences stated in the article (second paragraph above).

It does, though, make complete sense that fantasy addictions would make us unable to live in a real world… or at least less effective at it. After all, if we pretend enough, we begin to convince ourselves it’s reality.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not necessarily saying that video games are bad (porn certainly is), it’s just when taken to the extremes, I can see how the consequences would be big.

Those are a few of my thoughts. I’d love to hear what you think in the comments…

[For 10 things we SHOULD do everyday, see this post.]


  1. Jeff Schwandt

    The keyword is addiction. These two addictions hamper & discourage the development of real relationships, responsibility & self-sacrifice.

    The only safe addiction is addiction to Jesus (cue Carmen “A2J”), but even there, the addict has to be sober-minded and watch his doctrine closely. Theology matters.

    1. haha… Carmen flashback! Thanks a lot! :-) Yeah, it definitely removes real relationships from the equation. I think we’re doing that more and more across the board. Relationship still matter, but we’re continuing to look for ways around them. Good thoughts, Jeff.

  2. Why Are Boys Not Becoming Men? Because men are not leading them, coaching them or challenging them. We can’t allow the fantasy world to be the world of choice, if we give boys real challenges they will rise up and meet them. That’s the way of the Father…it should be ours as well. Good thoughts bro’!

  3. John Mason

    I think, time has come for to take care. We have need to realize their dreams and opportunity. The boys have need a guideline for their relationship, addiction etc. Thanks for this nice topic.

  4. Thanks Jonathon, I’m going to link this information into an article I’m writing about Kindness in marriage. The more these practices happen the less strong our marriage become because they become a substitute.

  5. I hadn’t seen this article yet – but as a father of 3 boys (6 and under) – it encourages me to keep on the track that we have taken with limited TV and computer. We absoultely cave at times…. but my wife and I have commented, and committed, to not make the TV and computer a tool to occupy our kids so that we can do house / yard work – or even excess internet time… I agree with Jay, they need to be taught. My father always tells me “You’re raising men, not boys”.

  6. As a father of a teenage son, this is the #1 issue I talk about constantly with my son Chris. It’s a constant battle for him, and it takes great discipline on his part not to get sucked into the fantasy world. What’s more, my wife and I can set up boundaries for him (and me) by using programs like Safe Eyes, but soon that will be a role he will have to embrace for himself.

    Bottom line…it’s a challenging time to raise teenage boys; not to mention being a teenage boy.


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