Disgusted by his son’s choice to play with an iPad over playing outside, a dad from Guelph, Ontario has decided to ban all technology in his house that wasn’t made before 1986—the year he and his girlfriend were born.
“We’re parenting our kids the same way we were parented for a year just to see what it’s like,” said Blair McMillan, Canada’s tech-free dad.
Now, Mr. McMillan, his girlfriend, Morgan, and his now iPad-less son, Trey, do things like read novels, consult encyclopedias, go for walks, and talk to each other—activities that were likely once prevented by raging addictions to Candy Crush Saga and selfie-taking.
“I remember the day before we started this, I was a wreck and I was like ‘I can’t believe I have to delete my Facebook!” Morgan said. Now, however, she’s proud to report she’s read 15 books since the family started the challenge in May, and hasn’t once cheated on the tech ban. (To be fair, Morgan, you could use your laptop at home, only it would have to look like this).
Mr. McMillan is also happy with tech-free livin’, despite a few weeks of creepy withdrawal symptoms. “The strangest thing without having a cellphone is that I could almost feel my pocket vibrating and I wanted to check my pocket,” he said. Still, he points out, “It’s so nice to be able to go out and nobody can get a hold of you.” He also says the tech ban has brought his family closer together.
The family plans to stay tech-free until April 2014. Hey, Trey: have fun getting this ol’ hunk o’ junk for Christmas while all your friends get Google Glass.