• Sweden edition
 
Swedish teen sectioned due to gaming 'addiction'

Swedish teen sectioned due to gaming 'addiction'

Published: 24 Oct 2012 10:01 GMT+02:00
Updated: 24 Oct 2012 10:01 GMT+02:00

The boy was so focused on his game playing that he physically attacked his father whenever he asked his son to stop playing.

Police were also called to the family's home on several occasions, according to the court ruling authorizing the boy be committed to institutional care, the Metro newspaper reported.

The frustrated parents first contacted social services last year after their son's incessant computer game playing caused his health to deteriorate and resulted in a "non-functioning circadian rhythm".

After efforts by social workers proved fruitless, the parents turned to the courts in hopes they could get help for their son through Sweden's Care of Young Persons Act (Lag med särskilda bestämmelser om vård av unga – LVU).

According to the statute, young people, generally between 12- and 21-years-old, can be taken out of their homes by social services and housed in facilities run by the National Board of Institutional Care.

Around 20,000 young people in Sweden are placed in special treatment homes each year, either due to family problems or because of their own behavioural problems, including criminal activity and addiction.

In its ruling, the court found that the 16-year-old's parents lacked the tools to deal with their son's computer gaming problems and thus ordered he be sent to a treatment home.

While the boy insists he is not addicted to computer games, a judge with the Malmö Administrative Court which ruled on the case disagreed.

"If playing computer games results in a person foregoing everything else, it's comparable to an addiction," Judge Ola Brändström told Metro.

Psychologist Owe Sandberg, one of Sweden's most prominent experts in gaming addiction, told the paper that he is contacted daily by distraught parents who are concerned about their children's gaming habits.

"The reward system is the same for World of Warcraft as it is for drugs," he told Metro, lamenting a lack of recognition of the problem by authorities in Sweden.

Most calls concern boys who are 16 or 17 and have dropped out of school as a result of their gaming.

"Some have this crazy notion that they can support themselves doing it, and they totally lose a grip on their lives," he told the paper.

Sandberg thinks computer gaming addiction should be a medical diagnosis of its own.

The case isn't the first time a Swedish teen has been sectioned for computer gaming addiction. In 2010, the Växjö Administrative Court ordered a 16-year-boy be placed in treatment after computer gaming caused him to skip school for several terms and he threatened to commit suicide.

TT/The Local/dl

Follow The Local on Twitter

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

10:40 October 24, 2012 by Grendel_T_Troll
Yes, this is tragic.....being addicted to a game is bad enough, but to waste your addiction fervor on a turd like World of Warcraft is shameful.......
11:09 October 24, 2012 by camsasuke
Gaming on a mac? Rookie move!
11:35 October 24, 2012 by reader
"In its ruling, the court found that the 16-year-old's parents lacked the tools to deal with their son's computer gaming problems and thus ordered he be sent to a treatment home."

"Lacked the tools to deal with their son's computer gaming problems"!

The tools have been taken away by the nanny state! It is impossible to discipline or control wayward children and young adults in Sweden because you'll get arrested and prosecuted on the say so of an irate youth! The parents are never believed.
12:10 October 24, 2012 by smilingjack
from someone who grew up and spent every cent playing galaga, tron etc and having a 12yo son I can understand the love of video games. but unlike me my son plays them at home. he would play halo and cod around the clock. we at least bought him portal 2 which he lapped up. yes there were tanties when he was restricted. if your going to have children you need to realise they need to be parented 24 hours a day. having children comes with responsibilities like massively reduced "indulging". end of story. and dishing out discipline!

we have a large very botanic block and when his 2 hour a day ( on weekends ) limit was reached he had to do the 2km run around the block for an extra hour or an hour of shovelling mulch and watering. no problems at all. that was for a bonus 2 hours. OK there is the added time bonus of dual game play with me:)

havent played world of warcraft and probably wont now.
13:11 October 24, 2012 by fakeempire
As someone who has been a gamer for nearly my whole life, I am glad I never truly became addicted. I was taught to put my priorities first and my reward was gaming.

So when I was in grade school, I always made sure to do my homework first and my chores. Then the evening was to gaming SNES, and then as the year progressed, Playstion, N64, etc. In High school, same thing though with PS2 and PC. When I started working in high school, I still gamed on the free time, but I never skipped a day of school or work just to play games (though I did end up gaming when I was sick). I even made it to Assistant Manager at Gamestop through college in the states before moving to Sweden. So gaming has been a huge part of life. I even met my husband through a game online (Dota) and now we play a lot of games together. (Reason I moved to Sweden).

But, like I said, work and chores first, then gaming second. We both work 8 hours a day, then come home, make dinner, then game for an hour or two. Sure I put some chores off for a couple hours or a day or two, but we always manage our lifestyle and that is how we are. It works for us!

Gaming is a hobby to me, it isn't an addiction. Though I see how it can become an addiction. It is really interesting when something of a hobby grows to an addiction. When and how? Anyways, I am glad this kid is getting help.
19:33 October 24, 2012 by Grokh
this looks more like bad parenting than anything else.
21:52 October 24, 2012 by dizzymoe33
How about taking the computer away and disciplining him by doing chores around the house or go volunteer at a hospital or and elderly care facility or pick up trash from around the neighborhood?!

Parents when you spread your legs to have some fun and make a baby by doing that guess what time to grow up and teach the kid some boundaries and responsibilities!!!
Today's headlines
Swedish expert slams Norway terror alert
Terrorism expert Ranstorp and a policeman in Norway. Photos: TT

Swedish expert slams Norway terror alert

A Swedish terrorism expert has come forward criticizing the way Norway has handled its recent terror threat, saying the day the threat began was a "total problem in intelligence". READ  

Swedish nurse reported for patient 'death wave'

Swedish nurse reported for patient 'death wave'

A nurse in southern Sweden has been reported for abuse at a senior care centre after she allegedly waved to a colleague with the hand of a recently-dead resident. READ  

Pandas Plopp and Polly born in Swedish zoo
Plopp and Polly, the offspring of Pandora the panda. Photo: Kolmården

Pandas Plopp and Polly born in Swedish zoo

A pair of red panda cubs have been born in central Sweden, a wildlife park announced on Monday. READ  

Green Party ranked 'most gay friendly' in Sweden

Green Party ranked 'most gay friendly' in Sweden

The Green Party's views are 88.6 percent "LGBT-friendly", a Swedish LGBT rights group claimed on Monday, making the Greens the most gay-friendly of all Sweden's parliamentary parties. READ  

Man held on suspicion of murdering wife
Police on the scene. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Man held on suspicion of murdering wife

Updated: Police arrested a man in Copenhagen on the suspicion of killing his wife, whose body was found at the couple's home in southern Sweden during the weekend. READ  

Arlanda, Stockholm
Lightning bolt grounds flight to New York

Lightning bolt grounds flight to New York

Swedes bound for New York learned on Monday morning that their plane had been cancelled after it was hit by lightning during Sunday's thunderstorm. READ  

Elderly Swedish man stripped of his 35 cats

Elderly Swedish man stripped of his 35 cats

The County Administrative Board of Skåne has decided to confiscate the 35 cats of an 81-year-old man who was forbidden from having more than nine of the furry felines. READ  

Wild weather set to strike Sweden anew
Photo: TT

Wild weather set to strike Sweden anew

With Sunday's thunderstorm reported as the worst of the year so far, Sweden is bracing for round two on Monday as meteorologists predict more of the same. READ  

Swedish youth suicides hit 25-year high

Swedish youth suicides hit 25-year high

Last year 1,600 people in Sweden took their own lives - and for Swedes aged 15 to 24, the numbers haven't been so high since 1989. READ  

Floods replace Swedish heatwave
The Viking Lines ferry pictured was ripped away from the dock as a result of the storm. Per Gustavsson / TT

Floods replace Swedish heatwave

The Swedish summer was washed away on Sunday as thunderstorms caused chaos in Stockholm, including torrents of water flooding down stairways at metro stations. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
People-watching, June 26th - 28th. Get inside Stockholm's hottest nightclubs
Gallery
Top ten Swedish taboos
Society
Seven-year-old Swede cycles to Berlin
Politics
'Gaza conflict needs help, not empty rhetoric'
Society
Swedes voted 'most beautiful' in the Nordics
Blog updates

27 July

Approaching Stockholm (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I woke up in the comfort of my own little cabin on Eva and Rolf’s boat, it was 7:30am and I was feeling a bit groggy after a couple of beers with all the lovely locals the night before. The previous day had really taken its toll on my body and I was very stiff and..." READ »

 

24 July

Sharing our Pride: Celebrating Love & the LGBT Community! (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"It’s mid- July in Stockholm, and with much of the city on vacation, things can seem a little quiet – the streets, the bus, and the grocery store. One thing that has not paused for a summer break, though, is preparation for Stockholm’s Pride Festival, which will take place from July 28 to August 2...." READ »

 
 
 
Business & Money
Sweden demands EU clarity on Bitcoin tax
National
Swedish organic sales enjoy 'amazing' growth
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
Society
What's On in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching July 23
National
Swedish cops elect not to shoot 'angry elks'
Business & Money
New alcohol retail rules threaten micro-breweries
Gallery
People-watching Båstad
Business & Money
Sweden falls to third in global innovation index
Society
Swedish ornithologists keep webcam watch
Photo: Andreas Nordström/Image Bank Sweden
Gallery
Top ten Swedish beach hot spots
Tech
Swedish Wiki vet sets new content record
Photo: Fastighetsbyrån
Lifestyle
In Pictures: The Local's Property of the Week
Photo: Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching July 15-16
Photo: Ola Ericson/Image Bank Sweden
Society
What's On in Sweden
Photo: Lisa Mikulski
National
Hope springs eternal for expat pet shop owner
Gallery
Princess Estelle steals limelight at mum's birthday
National
Swedes risk infants' lives by covering up prams
National
Swede runs for office just using Bitcoin funds
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

730
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se