thread: Could you live without TV?

  1. #1
    Registered User

    Jul 2006

    Could you live without TV?

    Hello Ladies,

    I had an interesting conversation with a mum at playgroup this week regarding TV.

    This mum has banned TV completely!! They have actually given it away.

    Apparently her 2 children 4yo and 2yo cope just fine and they seem to be able to entertain themselves very easily and they don't rely on mum too much either to keep them occupied.

    This got me thinking..How would I cope without the good old electronic nanny??? Do my kids watch too much TV?

    I do use the TV as a tool to entertain my kids whilst I get things done, and some days I think that they both get a little too much of it. My 3yo has always been a the type to need entertainment and if the TV is not doing it then I must!! My 1yo won't leave my side and loves to hang off me especially when I am cooking dinner. If the TV is not on the morning then I am bugged if I get a shower, let alone out the the door. My girls would be in the bathroom with me or taking off their clothes to hop in the shower too.

    So I find myself turning to the TV for help. I use it in the morning so that I can get dressed in peace, I use it a lunch time for DD1 so that I can have a rest whilst DD2 is asleep and I use it in the arvos so that I can get dinner on the table...In between times my girls are playing outside and I am doing some sort of activity with them and the TV is turned off. Oh my just typing the usage makes me feel guilty. Although with number 3 due in 3 months I can't see the usage getting much less.

    I am intersted in what others do and your prespective.

  2. #2
    Registered User

    Nov 2005
    Ontario, Canada

    Well, I have three little ones and am expecting our fourth, and we do not have a TV. We do alright. But, I do allow my kids some time on educational websites, which might count as "TV time" in a way.
    We are actually really glad we gave up on the old tube. I can't say I miss it. It's an adjustment at first, of course. It takes a little while for the kids to learn to entertain themselves. But they do. Actually, I find it's easier to keep three busy than it was with one. Now, they play together. Then, I was the only playmate. So while they paint, or do play dough, or colour, or dress up, or whatever, I can fold laundry, clean house, check BellyBelly....

  3. #3
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Feb 2006
    South Eastern Suburbs, Vic

    Yeah we could. I couldn't find the remote this morning, so I just chucked the radio on (I think I'd struggle with a silent house), and we're doing fine! The kids aren't into the telly that much anyway, it's more for me to help me feel like I have company.

    To be honest, I think the telly and especially the internet get overused in many houses, and that relationships would definitely benefit from learning to switch off - says she who was going to bathe her kids an hour ago... Okay, I'm going now.

  4. #4
    Registered User

    Jan 2008
    Euroa, Victoria

    All of my married life (nearly 5 years!) we have not had a telly. We have a cheapo projector which we watch DVD's on occasionally.

    Flynn is used to it, if we go somewhere that there is a telly he will watch it for about 1 minute (if that) and then be off doing something else. He is getting the hang of entertaining himself. He loves playing outside but I can't really leave him out there by himself yet. Sometimes I wish he would be entertained by a DVD but he is just not used to it! Don't feel bad that the telly helps you get stuff done!

    I personally don't miss the telly. It is rare that I have the time when i could be watching telly and if I have that time I often spend it on BB or other places online. It takes up an awful lot of time and IMO a lot of the stuff on tv is rubbish anyway.

    When we were kids mum banished the tv to her wardrobe for a whole term! We played way more games together and talked to each other a whole lot more.It has it's pros and cons, but it is not that hard to live with out it!
    Last edited by catherinemoses; April 24th, 2009 at 01:51 PM. : spelling

  5. #5
    Registered User

    Jun 2007
    Melbourne, ready to meet peeps IRL

    NO WAY

    not me couldnt live without my TV not just for the kids to watch while I am on BB but for meeeeeeee I would be sooooo soooooo board... with BHL away with work all the time its my only adult company some days... well most days, without it I would be more nuts than I am now....

  6. #6

    Mar 2004

    I grew up without TV so I know we could live without it just fine (especially since I can just download my favourite shows lol) but I prefer to have it.

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Add Rach75 on Facebook

    Oct 2005
    Moura, QLD, Australia

    I love my TV but then I do get a break as at our holiday place we have no tv we have spent up to 3 weeks at a time there and we haven't missed though we do listen to the radio but I find down there we spend more time together all 3 of us and just jase and me when we come home I sometimes begrudge the tv internet comp...as we lose our time together

  8. #8
    Registered User

    Jan 2006

    I prefer to have it DS does watch TV but also happily ignores it to play on his own or with DH / me. The neighbours daughter had absolutely no TV until recently (she is 3) and every time she is at a house with TV she is completely absorbed in that and not interested in playing.

    I guess it is the same (IMO) as junk food. Too much is bad for you but having none at all can make you prone to binging when you do get the chance to have it / watch it. If it is included in a normal existence then it isn't that exciting when you see it somewhere else and you are more likely to ignore it.

  9. #9
    Registered User

    Apr 2009

    I couldnt live without because it keeps DH occupied. I can entertain kids without a problem (thank you childcare training) but my husband is another story. Before we got the net he'd watch tv alot, now he's on ebay as much as possible.

  10. #10
    Registered User

    Aug 2008
    Melbourne City


    I know what you are saying WAITING.

    TV is always off unless DH is watching something. When DD and I wake up, we play, have breakfast and I read (because I am studying). While I am reading, she plays with her toys or comes to sit on my lap as I read. So I guess she thinks I am reading to her or talking to her. Of course, I use the TV to watch News, Private Practice and The Desperate Housewives of OC . For DD, its a no from me. No TV for her. Unless DH turns it for her. I can live without TV, I think.

  11. #11
    Registered User

    Dec 2008

    I don't watch tv at all with the exception of the biggest loser. When the kids get home from school they put it on then when they go to bed DH watches anything on the screen. We can't get radio here but if we could I'd have that on constantly.

  12. #12
    BellyBelly Member

    Jun 2005

    I think i could live without TV....but i dont think my DH or my children could.

    Bekz your childrens usage of tv sounds bout the same as mine. I used to feel guiltly, but now i dont. My DD#3 (19months) will watch a whole episode of Diego without moving !!! My girls LOVE Tv and movies, and believe me, i use it to my advantage. Take now for instance, we've had friends over with their children all morning, theyve jumped on the trampoline, theyve played dress ups, theyve coloured in, and played with the dolls house. Guests have left, girls are tired. So now 2 outta 3 are watching Ariel DVD. Do i feel guiltly ? No way, im exhausted too. And after this post i will prob join them on the lounge LOL.
    My DD#1 has started school this year. And i have found her usage of TV is much, much less. She simply would prefer to sit in her room and look at her things, or even come and talk to me than watch tv.
    For me, in our home, TV is a part of our lifestyle. It works for us, i know my children learn from it, they dont have it on all day, just certain parts of the day. They get they're 30 mins or whatever it is of running around throughout the day. So dont feel too guilty hon.....sometimes i think we are our own worst enemies.

    If it is included in a normal existence then it isn't that exciting when you see it somewhere else and you are more likely to ignore it.
    .....i think thats what im trying to say. We went to Sydney aquariam during the week. We had the best day. If one of my children said 'mum...i really wanna go home and watch tv' whilst we were out, i think then i would have known we have a prob, but nope, they embraced what we were there for, and the TV stayed at home......LOL.

  13. #13
    Registered User

    Mar 2008
    Nth West Melbourne

    I think I could, but I'm not sure I want to. We've really cut back on our TV watching in the past few months and its great to have it at a point where it feels like watching TV is a choice rather than the default.

    I too try to use telly to occupy DS sometimes. He is very demanding of attention and sometimes at about 5pm I am just a bit over it and its nice to pop the telly on. Although he gets bored in about 5 minutes and is soon crawling all over the room and up my legs again!

  14. #14
    Registered User

    Mar 2009

    I grew up without TV but I don't think I could live without it now. DS wouldn't be worried, his pretty easy to entertain but I need it for ME, I use it for company.

  15. #15
    Registered User
    Add Starfish on Facebook

    Apr 2007

    I only ever have it on as background, so could easily live without it, but DH couldn't, which is why I leave it on. DD sometimes likes to watch Night Garden and loves some ads, but doesn't mind if we go out or swith it off. I honestly don't understand why TV is so demonised. If you want to watch, watch, if you don't, don't. I don't understand what the problem is.

  16. #16
    Registered User

    Aug 2006
    Our house, in the middle of our street

    I guess I could live without it if I absolutely had to. I love watching it though - and the crappier the show the better for me

    eta - Bek - maybe we should set ourselves a 'no tv for a week' challenge!! I'm up for it if you are!
    Last edited by Patooties; April 24th, 2009 at 04:34 PM.

  17. #17
    Registered User

    Jul 2005
    Rural NSW

    I'd actually like the challenge of living without TV. I think it ultimately would be for the better. I have a theory that what I gain by having the TV "look after" my kids while I cook/dress etc is eventually negated by it making their moods more volatile after watching it for more than half an hour or so. It's like Newton's 3rd Law: Every reaction has an equal and opposite reaction.... meaning sure my kids might be quiet for an hour.... but the next hour is pure hell with them fighting and letting off all that pent up energy that was contained while glued to the box. It's like eating sugar: nice at the time but afterward your mood crashes. Just my observation.

    So yes, I think we could do without it and cope just fine. My 14 yo would read more books and learn to use her imagination in finding ways to entertain herself too... sad to say that all her screen usage has just taught her to be a "consumer" of entertainment rather than a "maker" of entertainment

    ETA: When we have a blackout i think to myself "yay! now we'll have some peace and quiet!"

  18. #18
    Registered User

    Jul 2006

    I guess I could live without it if I absolutely had to. I love watching it though - and the crappier the show the better for me
    LOL - At least your mind gets a rest

    Michelle - Every thing is moderation is a good rule!!!

    MBear - My girls have days like your girls with outings, playgroup, friends over etc. After a huge day of activity DD1 often tells me she needs a rest and wants to watch a movie. DD2 won't move for a whole espidose of Wiggles so I know I can get tea on the table or at least have shower.

    Starfish - I think most of us mums and dads monitor closely what our kids watch and personally my DD1 has learnt alot from certain shows. I often listen to what they are watching then repeat songs etc in our playtime.

    Personally I don't watch TV much..BB/FB takes up all my free time. So I could do without it but don't take away my lappy!!!
    Last edited by BekZ; April 24th, 2009 at 04:39 PM. : Adding text