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By Kerry Gallagher

Listen to an NPR journalist and mom of two boys talk about her experience parenting her kids through their love of video games. She talks to experts like clinical psychologist Kelli Dunlap and Michael Rich, who directs the Center on Media and Child Health at Boston Children’s Hospital. Some key takeaways:

Dunlap explains that games can help adolescents process their emotions. “You can use games to improve your social connections, to practice feeling emotions that we normally avoid like guilt or grief or shame. A lot of games bring those feelings out in us, and they give us a space to play with those feelings,” she says.

Rich says parents should take stock of their child’s time spent outside gaming, like homework and chores. “Do they play outside? Why kids play games varies. Shy kids might find it easier to socialize there. Maybe it’s a stress outlet.”

Learn more about the role of gender, resilience, and toxic behaviors in video games by listening to the 6-minute audio clip or reading the article here.

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