Parents’ Dirty Little Secret:TV

There is nothing better than Friday afternoon and we can watch TV or play computer games all we want when we get home from school. You would think one of my kids said this, but it could have just as well been me. The reason is the TV is an excellent baby sitter when I need or want time to myself in the house. On other days of the week and more family oriented weekends we don’t allow them to watch TV much at all so these spans of screen time freedom have become even more precious for me and my kids. A time when I can write an entry into the digital sphere, or put the laundry away, or just lay flat down on the ground on my back and listen to my spine going supine, cracking and releasing. My kids sit together quietly enraptured and needing nothing else from the world and most importantly, me.
TV is a very seducing crutch for us parents and I make sure I consciously avoid it as much as possible or at least keep track of whether I may be abusing it to avoid doing the job of raising my kids. I think most parents would be surprised how much screen time their kids are getting if they consciously monitored it and wrote down all the hours. I often have to catch myself from letting them watch too much. It’s a secret we keep from even ourselves. And I’m not even opposed to TV, but I see that it eliminates the possibility of other more enriching or socializing activities or interaction with me. There’s only so much time in a day and so many days to make a life. So, yes, when I turn off the TV It usually means that my life may be more of a pain in the ass, but that’s what I’m here to do, and the least I can do is ‘be there’ and not let the TV serve as a substitute. But today I can because it’s Friday, it’s afterschool, and we ain’t got nothing else to do…


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