I got my first PS3 right after my son was born creating my PSN as daddydrago. I had these grand ideas that this was going to be our thing- start them young and they turn into stars right? Things didn’t turn out liked I hoped, or so I thought.
While he was an infant I played a lot of Kingdom Hearts and he seemed to love every minute of it. He especially liked the fight scenes because of all the bright explosion of colors. I would just sit him on my lap and play—his eyes would be glued to the TV and he would cry when I’d turn the TV off.
Starting around 17 months my son started to become a different person. He was no longer affectionate-no more hugs, no more kisses and worst of all no more communication. So of course, he no longer expressed enjoyment in watching me play games.
Fast forward to 2 years old and we have a diagnosis of Autism.
Any man wishes to have that special connection with his kids and here was my first born son who I could barely interact with meaningfully without tantrums or him stimulating his senses by spinning around or messing with his feet or hands.
Fast forward almost another 3 years to us buying the PlayStation Vita and throw in Lego Batman and Lego Harry Potter and I now have what I have always wished for- mutual enjoyment of something with my son with no tantrums and his undivided attention to us and the task at hand (except when he can’t do something and needs help lol). It started with him just sitting super close and looking over my shoulder saying “you do”, then turned into “my turn!!”, then if I even thought about pulling out the Vita he would snatch it. Then he stated making the connection with the PS3 as being the same as the Vita and it was over. I mean he’s always been aware of the PS3 because of Netflix but now he can play games? It was like Christmas had come early for this boy. Within this past month I have downloaded more games (for him and me to play) then probably I have this whole year--- a full 100GB gone. I have played more Sonic and Disney Universe than anything else combined. His new found passion this past week has been playing as the Avenger characters in Little Big Planet 2. I have had to stay up after he goes to bed to play any of my games, especially DC Universe, but even then I find myself playing his games in order to get him more money and open up new characters and levels as a surprise for him when he wakes up.
He’s always been a momma’s boy and would cry when she would leave but now he cries when I leave, saying “I want my daddy!” I have even gotten my very first hug since he was an infant as a result of our new found love connection with the PlayStation and considering mommy is absolutely the only person who he lets hug him without freaking out and pushing away, this was huge for him to do this!!!!
So thank you PlayStation and Sony, you have given me the opportunity to know my son on a whole new level. I am now considering buying him his own Vita and getting a TV for his room since we have 2 PS3s. I have always been a PlayStation fan (and avid XBOX hater) since the very beginning but now I will be a PlayStation lover for life (and still an avid XBOX hater).
Reminds me of this one from a few years back.
Glad you two play together.
This post couldn’t have come at a better time. This very week my son was diagnosed with autism as well. I kept telling myself that if I knew what was going on with him, that I would be fine with what ever his doctors diagnosed. When they said autism though I couldn’t help but get upset. I am not new to autism, my younger sister is autistic and growing up with her I saw what she went through, how people treated her and no one ever really gave her a chance. Knowing my son may have to face the same struggle, is an overwhelming thought.
This post reminded me that there will be good times along the way.
One of my sons favorite activities is to draw on the Vita and I think I am going to go draw with him some more right now.
Great Post, and Thanks!