How did you become TV free? With a new baby?!!? (and 3 and 5 yr old boys??) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 02-23-2010, 09:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have become reliant on TV as a babysitter for my 3 and 5 year old boys, mostly due to using during pregnancy for a napping opportunity. Now I have a 5 week old baby and am using it in the morning, while I make breakfast, while I nurse the baby down to a nap, to keep them busy while I clean things, to make important phone calls...the list continues to grow.

I am wondering what the best method might be. Do I just get rid of the tv or put it away for special occassions? Or do I wean us off slowly? I am kind of a person of extremes, so I feel like cold turkey might the way to go. But at the same time, I wouldn't mind letting them watch 1 or 2 little shows.

Some questions I have, how do you keep older kids quiet (esp rowdy kids who fight over everything) while you put the baby to sleep?
What do your kids play with that isn't noisy/rowdy? Most of the time we use tv when I need them to be quiet. My five year old is not as much of a problem as the three year old.

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#2 of 5 Old 02-23-2010, 04:20 PM
 
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love your post--and can totally relate, both to being an extemist and to having loud, wild happy children. we are screen free and ver happy about it. will post later when both hands are operational. if i can do it, you can do it.

congrats on the babe

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#3 of 5 Old 02-23-2010, 04:24 PM
 
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I think with a new baby, your older kids' worlds have probably been rocked a bit -- I wouldn't choose this time to go cold-turkey! I would wean off gradually AND put some real thought into what new activity you can offer them instead, that would be fun and exciting. This is a hard time for them too.
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#4 of 5 Old 02-24-2010, 09:26 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, we did eliminate a chunk of tv time yesterday morning, I put the baby down for a nap and decided to be brave and take a shower too! When I came downstairs, my 3 year old was making cheese and cracker sandwiches for himself and the 5 yr was....playing on the computer. Hmmm, improvement, I guess! This morning I just didn't turn it on and they haven't asked for it (although I do miss Curious George, that's such a cute show, lol). So far, so good, I'm going to reduce slowly. For everyone's sake, lol.

homebirthing organic mama to three crazy boys very blessed!!
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#5 of 5 Old 02-25-2010, 01:02 AM
 
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That sounds really good, sweety mom.

I'm all for cold turkey. I have found that whenever I have needed to bring about a big change in my kids' lives--like no longer cooking nnodles because non one wanted to eat anything BUT noodles (we've since brough thtem back but they are now a side dish) or night weening or even implementing chores and the like--is easier than I think. The kids invariable adjust, and sometimes within only a few days or within two weeks at the most.

Your kids will find plenty to do really quickly. But be prepared for more messes and less quiet.

My newish-born is very good at sleeping through chaos.

I found that having kids help me with chores and tasks works well. They are actually willing much of the time, and this gives me oneon one time with each of the kids. It also keeps them busy so they can't make more messes--or fight, And I get to each them something that is good for them to know how to do.

My 9 year old makes amazing brownies and cleans the kitchen afterwards!

We do have movie sfor the kids from time to time, but we've gone months on end with no one even mentioning movie or asking or one. I have found that if we end up watching something more than every two weeks or so people get tuned into the idea of watching things and want more.

We have a computer that plays dvds but the volume is messed up, which means they have to be very quiet when they watch. It's also not that comfortable to watch things on a small screen, which is good in my opinion.

The idea of life with out (very much) tv seems daunting, but it really isn't that hard and the rewards soon add up. I think you are on to something and should go with your gut and go cold turkey. You might be pleasantly surprised

Good luck!

Happy mom to DS2000, DS2002, DD2004, DS2006 and DS 10/2009:
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