We’ve recently cut our cable, you know, one of those decisions you agonize over and three weeks later, you barely remember what the fuss was about?
We weren’t huge tv watchers, but admittedly were regular Thursday night viewers of the NBC line up, CBC Newsworld for DocZone , Tele Quebec for Saturday Morning Cartoons and both PBS channels for whenever we were bored.
So let’s re-preface this whole post by saying that a) I’m irritatingly hypocritical and b)I am an authority on nothing.
I’ve lived a large part of my life without cable, at times without tv at all. Yeah, I was that girl at the bar that smugly stated that she didn’t have a tv, but marathon sprinted to Justine’s house to watch 90210 on Wednesdays and eat chicken fingers.
So basically, I think that screens for MY kids are the devil. And I can say that very easily, because the empirical data is there to support my statements. My kids act like the devil before, during and after they’ve been exposed to screens. And the longer they go without screens, the less demonic they tend to be. Therefore screens = the devil. Right?
I rationally know that I can’t shield them to screens and /or technology forever, but honestly? Judging by the state of my attention span after a day of social media, I can’t imagine the effects of that on my 6 year old. And the argument that if they don’t learn now, they’ll never learn is b.s. If I can learn to internet, so can my kids.
But again, let’s remember that I am authority on nothing…
So back to me (for a change). Throughout or short experience as parents, we have experimented with more screens and with less screens. The compromise that we’ve settled on as a family is as follows: screen time only on the weekends, and capped at 2 hours spread out between Friday, Sat and Sunday. This doesn’t include special movie nights if we have a dinner play date or are invited at friends’ houses.
Would I be happier if my kids finger knitted and made dioramas instead? Absolutely. Do I concede that if I demonize screens I’ll just push them towards it? Kinda like when my mother was a food tyrant and I hid in the neighbor’s closet eating Pirate Cookies? Definitely.
So compromise it is.
And since cutting out the cable, I’ve found some really great, educational online ressources for kids. been researching TV links for kids online and remembering how great TVO was when I was a kid, I went onto their website . Blown away by the fact that you can watch all the programming online AND a lot of the shows are in 12 minute episodes, which is perfect.
All this to say what? I’m not really sure. Maybe that parenting is exhausting? Just when you think you’ve got one thing figured out, something changes and makes you question everything? All the time? Or maybe it’s that there is tremendous pressure to raise and release into society some normal, loving and self-adjusted people?
Again, I know nothing.