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Weaning off tv....

(11 Posts)
scrappydappydoo Sun 05-Oct-08 21:40:09

I need some help and advice - I have 2 dds - one 2.7 the other just 7mths. I'm a sahm and really struggle with the 24hour-ness of it - e.g looking after and entertaining dd's, cleaning, cooking etc. Very often just out of sheer frustration and laziness blush i sit them in front of the telly. We're talking a couple of hours a day. I want/need to stop this - we're all addicted, dd1 has the attention span of a goldfish and shows little interest in her toys and I feel she is wasting her childhood staring at the screen. I don't want dd2 to end up the same. I've tried cutting back but I struggle to cope without my 'babysitter' - can anyone give me advice please?? I feel such a rubbish mum sad

SharkyandGeorge Sun 05-Oct-08 21:43:30

Does your eldest DD not play by herself, can you not set up some other things for her to entertain herself? Such as colouring books and crayons, stickers, bricks, a play kitchen, things she can mess about with without your constant input whilst you are doing other things.

I have a 2 year old a a 6 month old so know how full on it can be at times, I never ever have the tv on during the day (not meant to sound smug) but also I don't really constantly interact with my eldest either and she gets along amusing herself with odd bits of input from me from time to time.

LadyOfWaffle Sun 05-Oct-08 21:44:13

Some days I just don't turn it on. If the 2.7yr olds asks, say it's broken. Cold turkey is best option IMO. Then have 'TV' time at specific times , ie. 1-2pm or something. If you find yourself just not turning it off, get a timer to plug into your socket. I used to leave mine on alot just as background noise etc., but it's alot nicer when it is off.

scrappydappydoo Sun 05-Oct-08 21:55:48

Sharkey - she does play but in very short periods -
Friday was a prime example of a typical day - we got up - had tv on from 7.30 - 9 whilst we had brekkie and cleared up etc.. went swimming - came back at 10.30 - then we did painting, playdough, colouring, bead threading, puzzles, playing with dollies , messing about in garden- (all her ideas - i set her up leave her to it then 5mins later she wants to do something else). Had lunch at 12pm then up for a 1 hour nap. Woke up at 2pm repeat most of morning actvities and is whinging by 3.30 which is when I cave in.

mawbroon Sun 05-Oct-08 22:14:59

Scrappy, would a book on CD hold her attention for a while?

We don't do tv through the day at all (have almost 3yo ds and assorted mindees) and I can get a few minutes peace to do stuff if I put on a story.

stayinbed Sun 05-Oct-08 22:33:30

can you afford to bring someone to come and play with the girls for a couple of hours a few times a week? or for half a day twice a week?
the person can spend quality time playing with them while you rest/get things done, and this can make a huge difference on your energy levels for the rest of the week

lingle Mon 06-Oct-08 09:07:16

hello scrappy. our tv was out of control for about 12 months whilst DS2 was 2, and I sympathise. I also find the daily routine relentless so I know where you are coming from.

I like the book on CD idea. This worked for us as a "transition" from TV to blessed silence.

for what it's worth, what worked for us was going to my mum's for ten days. Habit is so powerful at this age. When we got back from holiday, DS2 found that the tv had been turned to the wall and that his life had changed. He didn't complain much, but he would have screamed the place down had it happened overnight.

My instinct would be to work on EITHER the breakfast time OR the 3.30 pm slot. Every family is different, but I think in the majority of families the breakfast time slot would be easier. If you have a tv in the room where you eat breakfast, you might need to remove it for a while, or at least cover it with a cloth (switch it off at the mains first).

3.30 is quite a natural time for the bodyclock to slow down and attention to fade a bit. Perhaps you could try to hold out until 3.30 each day?

Good luck!!

constancereader Mon 06-Oct-08 09:28:17

It sounds like your children do lots of things as well as watch tv. It doesn't seem that bad!

I have just had a baby and my 20 month old ds watched loads more tv than I ever envisaged he would. We are cutting back now but it honestly saved my sanity through the last stages of pg.

Try cutting out the morning one and leaving the other.

Mercy Mon 06-Oct-08 09:35:36

It sounds like you are doing/expecting almost too much with/from your dd tbh.

Children of that age do have short attention spans and don't play alone for any length of time.

As constance says, perhaps cut out the breakfast tv and get dd involved with what you are doing - let her help load the washing machine, making playdough together, give her a duster etc.

Can you afford a session or 2 at playgroup?

WheresTheAuPair Mon 06-Oct-08 09:38:14

DS is 23 months and we have tv on from 7.30-9 while I get things ready and the day started. I sympathise its so easy to leave it on especially as he can just turn it on if I switched it off!! The solution i've found is to put the radio on instead (then hide the remote!). Atm its 'Fun Radio' which does get tedious after a while but stops him from being glued to the box!) My mum (teacher) swears that the radio is good for developing their listening skills so we'll see in time i'm sure!

He gets half an hour or so (peppa pig) in the afternoon after his nap as well as he's normally a complete grump when he wakes up from his nap.

Saying all this, my 2nd LO is due to arrive in the next 2 weeks so tv consumption is bound to escalate as I adjust to life with 2!

scrappydappydoo Tue 07-Oct-08 22:20:15

Thanks for your replies - I went with a combination of your ideas so for the past few days we've had no telly in the morning and just the radio on. Then nothing til 3.30 when we had 1/2 hour of peppa then nothing til Charlie and Lola and then bed. Its been much better than I thought - not nearly so much resistance from dd1 than I I thought I would get. So fingers crossed we'll be able to stick to this...
Mercy - I really struggle with the whole competitive mummy thing blush - I see other children do stuff my dd isn't doing and panic that I'm doing something wrong! I honestly don't push dd to do things - she decides she wants to do something so we do it..

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