Disclaimer: I have been hesitant to publish this post. So much so, that this has been sitting here as a draft for a couple of weeks now.
Television is such a touchy and controversial subject for many so I am trying to step lightly here, but at the same time should I be forced to contain my excitement for something my family and I did that we are proud of? Would that be fair to us?
I personally don't understand why the topic of tv is so taboo. As with any other parenting topic, everyone does what works best for their own family. For us, a tv-free childhood is what works. Does that mean that I think everyone should do what we do or that I would ever judge those who choose differently? Heck no! I have known people in the past to get defensive due to our tv-free choice, and it pained me that they felt that way. I am not trying to offend at all nor make anyone feel they need to defend themselves or their choices - NOT AT ALL, again, it's just our choice! You guys wouldn't attack me for our choice, would you?
Ok well...Here goes nothing!
After years of toying with the idea we finally did it - we got rid of our tv!
As you probably figured out, our children do not watch tv. This was a choice we made when I was pregnant with K - before even discovering Waldorf education. To be fair I have to admit that K was briefly exposed to it for a couple of months when I pregnant with C. I stayed in bed with morning sickness watching marathons of 'Gilmore Girls', and she didn't want to leave my side. She has no memory of it, though, which is quite funny to me. Our girls don't even really know what tv is, and while that makes for awkward social situations, it's fine by me.
We still had a tv in our home, though. Actually, pre-kids Kevin and I had three tvs in our home - one in the living room, one in our bedroom and one in Kevin's office. Quite the change we have undergone,huh?!
Anyways,we kept it hidden in a cabinet downstairs in our office area. Kevin and I would still watch it at night when our little ones were in bed. It was like some kind of big secret we kept from our children. That weirded me out a bit.
Then our financial struggles hit us and we also thought perhaps we were a bit too addicted so we got rid of all tv programs and only used the tv for DVDs. Even then, we still felt like we spent too much time watching that box - time we could spend with each other or getting things done. I am one of those people that really zones out watching tv, once my eyes are on it, it's hard to look away from it.
Kevin and I would have discussions quite often about just getting rid of the tv all together. We figured if we really wanted to watch a DVD we could just do it on our computer, yet something was still preventing us from removing it from our home. I am still unsure of what that something was. Attachment and fear of being 'different', maybe?
Then the other week when Kevin was loading up our van with donations for the K-9 Search and Rescue garage sale, we said let's just do it! So we unhooked the tv, the dvd player and the vhs player and threw them in the van - never looking back.
Can I just say how great this feels?! I am getting even more done now at night with out it there to distract me - and I feel a lot better about not having this secret between our children and us. Yes, this is just what our family needed. Now why didn't we do it sooner?!
The option is still there to watch movies if Kevin and I really desire to do so (with the computer) - it's just not so blatant. In fact, Kevin and I borrowed Misty of Chincoteague (one of my favorite books from childhood) on DVD from the library last week. For some reason watching it on the computer seems to control my addiction and the need to watch more. I have a feeling movies for Kevin and I will now be a rare occasion around here, and that's just what we were hoping for.
We are not sure of what we are going to use that cabinet for just yet but we opened it up for the girls to see. They currently think it works great as a doll changing table, so that is it's current incarnation. Any thoughts on what we could use it for? I put my photo albums up high in it for now and was maybe thinking of using it for storing more crafting goodness...
Anyways - Thank you for letting me share this freeing experience with all of you, without judgement. I am so blessed to have this online community.