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Proposing a new Sub-Forum: TV-Free Families

post #1 of 236
Thread Starter 
There is NO place on the internet where families who are TV-Free can talk about what it is like to raise a family without TV. While there are several non-profit organizations out there encouraging families to turn off the TV, the goal is usually to do it for a week -- not forever.

TV-Free families face all sorts of challenges and questions. How do you explain to your kids that your family does not watch TV, while others do? Will your kids fit in? What happens if you watch a few select videos - are you opening Pandora's box? What do TV-Free families do when some "down time" for mom and dad is needed, and there is no TV. How does one deal with criticism from family members and friends?

TV-Free families really need support! It is a very uphill battle we face, yet we feel we are doing something TREMENDOUS for our kids. The benefits seem SO apparent! I BEG MDC to consider adding a Sub-Forum under the Media Forum. I mean -- there is a sub-forum for Television! How can there NOT be one for TV-Free? It seems to me that reducing or eliminating commercial influence on our children is at the backbone of natural parenting, and deserves a place here at MDC.

I must add that a TV-free tribe is not particularly helpful. It is too hard to have a meaningful dialogue in that kind of thread, and many of the posts are just spent introducing oneself. I know from talking to other TV-Free families that everyone really wishes they had the benefit of asking questions of others -- especially those with older kids who have already faced many of our dilemmas.

I look forward to hearing what others have to say.
post #2 of 236
At this time, I don't see a need for an entire forum for TV free families. What I will suggest is that you start a thread in Finding Your Tribe for TV Free families. This is a good way to keep the conversation in one place and find some other likeminded TV free families
post #3 of 236
Quote:
I mean -- there is a sub-forum for Television! How can there NOT be one for TV-Free?
I wonder this, too.
post #4 of 236
Thread Starter 
Needless to say, I am disappointed by your answer to my request. Especially the part about starting a tribe:

Quote:
What I will suggest is that you start a thread in Finding Your Tribe for TV Free families.
I do not need to start a tribe. There is already an existing one with 1,419 posts on 71 pages! The posts are all over the board, from questions on how to convince one's husband to go TV-free to discussing how kids can fit in with "princess play" at school when they've never watched Disney. The discussions never make it that far, because it is a tribe, and not a sub-forum. People's individual and important questions get lost once someone changes the direction of the thread.

I hope you will reconsider. Thanks to the previous poster for highlighting my comment about there being a subforum for TV but NOT for TV-Free. If not here, then where? And why is there even a sub-forum for Television anyway? I just checked out the most recent post from that sub-forum. Here it is:

Quote:
[Thread Title: The Family Guy.] I am a complete addict. I started watching it back in... was it 2000? Before it was initially cancelled? I still love it. What is your favorite episode?
Am I missing something? What compelling aspect of natural family living is being addressed by the above thread? I don't get it.
post #5 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shell View Post

TV-Free families really need support! It is a very uphill battle we face, yet we feel we are doing something TREMENDOUS for our kids. The benefits seem SO apparent! I BEG MDC to consider adding a Sub-Forum under the Media Forum. I mean -- there is a sub-forum for Television! How can there NOT be one for TV-Free? It seems to me that reducing or eliminating commercial influence on our children is at the backbone of natural parenting, and deserves a place here at MDC.

I must add that a TV-free tribe is not particularly helpful. It is too hard to have a meaningful dialogue in that kind of thread, and many of the posts are just spent introducing oneself. I know from talking to other TV-Free families that everyone really wishes they had the benefit of asking questions of others -- especially those with older kids who have already faced many of our dilemmas.
Yes. All that!
post #6 of 236
Another mother of a TV-free child chiming in. I agree that the thread we have already is not very helpful. I would love to have a place to go to ask specific questions without it being eaten up by a huge thread. There are a lot of issues we contend with, as the OP illustrated. We need a place to post our questions and links to studies showing the effects of TV-watching on kids where others won't jump in saying, "Everything in moderation!" or "I grew up addicted to TV, and I turned out just fine!"

Please, please consider a TV-free forum.
post #7 of 236
Isn't it an oxymoron to have a tv free forum in Media?
post #8 of 236
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
Isn't it an oxymoron to have a tv free forum in Media?

Certainly open to suggestions for a better location!
post #9 of 236
Well if it was me I'd probably put it in parenting, * since you asked * because wouldn't it be about all the other things to do with kids besides tv?
post #10 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shell View Post
Needless to say, I am disappointed by your answer to my request. Especially the part about starting a tribe:



I do not need to start a tribe. There is already an existing one with 1,419 posts on 71 pages! The posts are all over the board, from questions on how to convince one's husband to go TV-free to discussing how kids can fit in with "princess play" at school when they've never watched Disney. The discussions never make it that far, because it is a tribe, and not a sub-forum. People's individual and important questions get lost once someone changes the direction of the thread.

I hope you will reconsider. Thanks to the previous poster for highlighting my comment about there being a subforum for TV but NOT for TV-Free. If not here, then where? And why is there even a sub-forum for Television anyway? I just checked out the most recent post from that sub-forum. Here it is:



Am I missing something? What compelling aspect of natural family living is being addressed by the above thread? I don't get it.

I agree 100%
post #11 of 236
I'd love it for support!
post #12 of 236
Thread Starter 
I'd like to add one thing. I am the first to admit that the TV-Free Forum may not be the forum on MDC with the most traffic. That's because there just aren't that many of us, especially when compared to the number of families that do watch TV. But MDC Forums should not be a popularity contest. They should be here to fill a need for those of us that have no where else to go to get support for our non-mainstream sustainable loving choices we make for our families.

Furthermore, by having a Forum dedicated to this topic, it will expose many, many parents to the concept of being TV-Free, a concept that they may never have considered as even being an option.

Imagine if there were just a Cloth Diapering Tribe? How many momma's would have found that tribe and considered going to cloth? I bet just a fraction of cloth diapering mommas that there are today, thanks to a special forum on the topic.

To continue that line of thinking... part of the reason why the cloth diapering movement is so successful is because it is so easy to support the growth of the industry. There are lots of WAHM's that have created businesses selling cloth diapers and accessories. But wait! There is NO money to be made by going TV-Free! No spin-off industry. No way to capitalize on encouraging more families to be TV-Free! Which is precisely why we need our own Forum!!! The reason why there are no organizations already catering to the needs and interests of TV-Free families is because there is no way to earn money off of it. And we are constantly being pressured to assimilate to the world of TV... we are fighting a losing battle against commercialism, couch-potato'ism, and a loss of independent creative thinking by our children. Throwing out the TV is hard to do. We need to help support those people who have made such a bold step, and to show others that there are alternatives to plugging in.
post #13 of 236
I think that not having a TV is one of the most alternative, subversive and counter-culture moves our family has made. It is also one of the least noticed.
post #14 of 236
I agree 100% with Shell here. I can't understand how MDC's user base *wouldn't* benefit from a no-tv forum. The no-tv thread is okay but like someone else mentioned, the topics within it are so all over the place that it's really hard to get a lot out of it at this point, or to easily find certain issues addressed within it. I'd be much more participatory in a forum vs. trying to keep up with one gigantic-monster-of-a-thread. Please reconsider.
post #15 of 236
I also completely agree with Shell, and would ask you to please consider this. We are actually not a TV free family, but I WANT to be, and have lately been thinking about all the things/concerns Shell mentions in the original post. I actually just happened to see this, and clicked on it because going TV-free has been on my mind. I read The Plug-In Drug when I was pregnant with my first child, and never wanted to have TV, but over time, gave in to the "everything in moderation" argument. Now, my kids are watching WAY too much TV, and many of our struggles during the day are because of me being the mean mom and saying please turn it off now. I think it would be great to have a forum for this, not just to support those who are TV free, but also to help those who want to be TV free, or to maybe help others see/think of things they might not have thought about.
Yes, it's a good idea!
post #16 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by tifpaul View Post
I think that not having a TV is one of the most alternative, subversive and counter-culture moves our family has made. It is also one of the least noticed.
ITA. And when it is noticed it's a complete bombshell to most people.

Quote:
Originally Posted by momofmine View Post
I also completely agree with Shell, and would ask you to please consider this. We are actually not a TV free family, but I WANT to be, and have lately been thinking about all the things/concerns Shell mentions in the original post. I actually just happened to see this, and clicked on it because going TV-free has been on my mind. I read The Plug-In Drug when I was pregnant with my first child, and never wanted to have TV, but over time, gave in to the "everything in moderation" argument. Now, my kids are watching WAY too much TV, and many of our struggles during the day are because of me being the mean mom and saying please turn it off now. I think it would be great to have a forum for this, not just to support those who are TV free, but also to help those who want to be TV free, or to maybe help others see/think of things they might not have thought about.
Yes, it's a good idea!
Yes I would hope that it would support those in making the transition because it is a very difficult one. I think more difficult than most people realize. It isn't just simply pulling the plug.
post #17 of 236
I think this is a good suggestion. I had to stop participating in the TV-free tribe thread because at a certain point the conversation got ridiculous. It turned into this "you're not really TV-free if you don't cover your child's eyes when passing a television screen in a store" kind of thing. If the topic had its own sub-forum, one could ignore ridiculous or baiting threads and still discuss the other issues. Some of the legitimate topics people want and need to discuss include:
  • convincing a spouse to get rid of the TV
  • finding new ways for kids to occupy themselves so mama can do housework/have some personal time
  • discussing the research on effects of TV exposure
  • how to explain reasons for no-TV to family/friends
  • concerns about DCs being "out of the loop" with their friends on pop culture

All of these are interesting and compelling topics to parents who have decided against TV, but it is difficult to discuss them in any depth on the long tribe thread. The conversation regularly gets de-railed by introductions and debates. And it's so long at this point that a newcomer looking for information would hardly want to jump in.
post #18 of 236
I thought I'd add my support here. I don't post on FYT threads, because they get too long and hard to navigate, but we'd be completely into a TV-free forum!
post #19 of 236
I would also be very interested in a TV Free subforum. Please reconsider.
post #20 of 236
Really I think this is a great idea. We are a TV family (unfortunately I haven't broke the chains) and I would love it so much if we could become less dependent on the "one eyed monster".
Really I think many could benefit from this, even families that look at tv. Really when my kids look at tv, I know that they could be doing something better, but I lack insight about what that "something better" could be. I support the sub-forum idea.
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