I grew up in the era of television. A lot of television. I am an avid reader now, but I admit that I still watch just as much TV. Reality TV, crime stories, whatever floats my mindless needs at the time is OK with me!
As a mom though, that doesn’t float for my kids.
Now I know some of you may be calling me a hypocrite or saying I need to lead by example. Don’t worry, I do. I don’t have a chance to watch TV during the day, and if I do, that might one one-hour once or twice a week. So not a whole lot. What my children do see a lot of is me reading.
Now, I’m not a parent that puts limits on TV. I never have been, and I never will be. Honestly, my kids are so busy they don’t really have a lot of time for TV. However, if they had a TV in their rooms, our whole family dynamic would not only be quite different, but it would be ruined. They would spend more time in their room, which would result in less time having them talk to the rest of the family, sitting down as a family unit, and just spending time together. I can’t tell you how many times we’re all standing around in the kitchen or in the family room and our kids are talking about funny things that happened at school or at practice. There would be so much less of that.
I have a teenager and he spends enough time in his room texting on his phone. A TV in there would just be another excuse for him not to spend time with the rest of the family. I find it best for that not to be an option.
A TV in their room would become a crutch. My kids actually had a TV in their room until my oldest two were around eight and three. I can’t tell you how many times they were watching TV instead of sleeping (they shared a room) or taking forever to go to sleep because they were having too much fun watching TV. It was a headache, and I can’t think of anything good that came out of having one in their room.
There is already a huge “sedentary” problem in our culture. Having a TV in our kids’ bedrooms makes this more of a problem and it keeps them isolated. We don’t want our kids isolated. We want them with us. Spending time with us. Around their families. Our kids will try to isolate and distance themselves more and more as they get older and as parents, we want to cultivate happy and healthy kids as well as strong relationships.
As much as I wish TV in the bedroom was the only problem we may face, next up we’ll be discussing iPad usage. Just kidding!