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TV in bedroom

(26 Posts)
bigbluebus Thu 08-Nov-12 12:45:01

DS has a birthday coming up in the next few weeks. He will be 16. His birthday 'wish list' consists of almost entirely 'shooting' games for PS3, which I am reluctant to buy him as he already has plenty and most of the arguments in this house are about the PS3.
We have agreed to decorate his bedroom and make it more adult, and I wondered if buying him a tv/dvd player for his bedroom might be a good idea. He already has virtually exclusive use of a room downstairs which is equipped with TV/DVD plus playstation and desktop computer.
I think it would be good for him to have something to 'chill out' in his room with - we have always shied away from gadgets in bedrooms, but he does 'play' on his phone when he's up there, and we have had cause to take it off him when he has been using it after lights out. DH, however, thinks that DS will just take his PS3 up there as well, and plug it in to the new tv, and we will never get him out of his room.
I agree with DHs fears, but DS will be 16 and needs to learn otherwise, if he goes to Uni in a few years time, he will not have learned to self police his gadget use and sleep time. Plus at 16, isn't it just what teenagers do? The computer will not be going up there, although might have to buy him a laptop when he goes into 6th form.
We can flick the wifi off at night if necessary, but that will only stop him playing online after hours, the phone, tv etc will still work. it a right of passage or am I about to make a mistake that I will very quickly regret?

winniemum Thu 08-Nov-12 13:17:18

I think every child is different. If I had let my DS1 have a TV in his bedroom, he would have been up there all day every day and night!
All my DC's spend most of their time downstairs as they don't have TV's etc in their bedrooms but that's the way I like it.
However my DC2 would probably have been more sensible about how much time he spends in front of the TV if he had had one in his room.
Everybody is different and this is just what we decided worked best for us.
You sound unsure if it's the right thing. However once he has a TV in his room it's hard to remove it if you decide you made the wrong choice.
Surely if you flick the wifi off at night you are policing his use at home so no lessons learnt there for Uni?

Sparklingbrook Thu 08-Nov-12 13:23:23

DS1 (13) has a TV/DVD in his room. he has films he likes to watch that we don't particuarly want to like Fred the Movie.
Also he likes to watch Russell Howard and Match of the Day which isn't my taste.
He isn't up in his room the whole time but he goes off up there for some down time away from DS2 (10).

dexter73 Thu 08-Nov-12 13:28:06

My dd(15) has a tv in her room. She likes to watch different things to us so she can go upstairs if she wants to watch something and we are watching a different programme. It is also good at the weekends if she has friends over as they can watch a dvd in her room instead of hogging the tv downstairs. She doesn't spend all her time in her room watching tv so I think it is ok.

Pourquoimoi Thu 08-Nov-12 13:28:35

You could be me apart from the fact my DS is going to be 12 in the next few weeks.
His list is all about 18 games for the Xbox and a tv for his room. Him and his brother have a room for their own use downstairs so I don't see the need for it in the bedroom and worry I will never see him if I provided that stuff upstairs (and he's not allowed the 18 shooter games either).

The big difference is that your DS is about to be 16 and I think needs his own space away from the family so maybe you ought to relent? I don't know, but our fears are the same but your DS is so much older.

Sorry to not have been of much help but I do recognise the feelings...

Pourquoimoi Thu 08-Nov-12 13:30:26

And of course I think it is a totally different scenario when kids don't have heir own space downstairs, but ours do so that makes it less necessary to pack them off upstairs.

bigbluebus Thu 08-Nov-12 13:46:34

winnie I take your point about the wifi - would hope not to have to use it, but it is there if we need to take action if DS abuses the rules!

DS already has use of a tv in a separate room downstairs, so there is no issue over him wanting to watch things that we don't want to see - however, it is in the same room as the PS3 and computer - which are his gadgets of choice.

We also have DD, who is supposed to be able to share the downstairs room, but DS constantly 'hogs' it. DD is disabled and has carers in sometimes - the difficulty is DS monopolising the downstairs room when they are here - but at the moment, he has nothing to want to go to his room for - except to sleep. It hasn't been such a problem before as he has either been going out with us when the carers are here, or it is evening and DD goes to bed earlier than DS, so she is not needing to be in that room with th carers. However, he doesn't want to come out with us much anymore unless there is a free meal out involved and we are just in the process of getting a new group of carers, so it might be a little more awkward as they will be strangers. (DS had known the other carers since he was 9)

So there are other reasons for thinking it might be a good idea, which I had not previously mentioned. However, the carer issue is not a very regular occurance, so I was more interested in the general consensus about TVs in bedrooms.

winniemum Thu 08-Nov-12 16:23:20

Hello bigbluebus. Everyone's DC's and situation are different as I said in my earlier post, so you must do what you think is right for your DS and family.
Ours are lucky to have use of a room with a TV downstairs and have never really asked for bedroom TVs.
Good luck. Hope he enjoys his birthday!

SecretSquirrels Thu 08-Nov-12 17:03:49

I think they do need some privacy and space at 16.
I stuck out the "no tvs in bedroom" policy until DS1 started year 10. He had use of two shared computers in the study and the family tv before that.
I did a makeover of his room and he got a tv and computer in there, along with a desk .
He is now 16 and at 6th form. He does all his homework up there and actually only uses the tv for You Tube and podcasts. He still watches tv downstairs and we all eat together so there is some family time left.

Floralnomad Thu 08-Nov-12 17:10:09

My DCs have pretty much always had TVs in their rooms and TBH barely use them . My DS uses his for the Xbox but not excessively . Having said that they ( both teens ) also both have laptops in their rooms and I have never felt the need to switch off the Internet . I'm a bit odd and have never really done bed times , just times I want them out of my lounge ! Also have never done lights out and mine are both quite sensible about getting enough sleep .

Bromptonaut Fri 09-Nov-12 22:11:30

Pretty much same set up as floralnomad. DD & DS had Tv in their rooms (courtesy of grandma money) from early teens. Initially just four analogue channels but the full monty since switch-over last year.

They also have PC's with full internet access.

No doubt DS has viewed porn and unsuitable TV but such things are better dealt with by dialogue rather than prohibition/sanctions.

BraaaaaainsButterfield Fri 09-Nov-12 22:14:29

I think at 16 it's for the best for him to have one. That goes beyond the "kids having TVs" argument IMO as he could be moved out on his own at that age, technically speaking! He will want to watch his own, no doubt wildly unsuitable things, but I don't think it's such a worry at 16 that it is for younger children.

streakybacon Sun 11-Nov-12 09:21:59

I could have written the OP, apart from ds being 14 this week rather than 16.

Up to now we've only had one tv, in the living room, which I have always felt was important for sharing, turn-taking and family time. Not a problem. Ds also has his gaming here and if he has friends over dh and I slope off into another room and leave them to it.

But yes, teenagers need their own space so we've relented for Christmas and got a tv for his room, but it's not without conditions. It will be for dvd only to start with and he'll have to demonstrate that he won't sit up there square-eyed at all hours if he's to get it rigged up to channels. He has AS and ADHD and will take advantage if we don't get him to acquire it in reasonable stages.

At 16 though I think it's far more appropriate to have tv in their rooms - as has been said, he could be leaving home and doing his own thing by then, if he chose, and then you'd have no control over his screen time at all.

Sparklingbrook Sun 11-Nov-12 09:25:29

I think there is a misconception that as soon as a TV appears in a teenager's bedroom they will be glued to it 24/7 but that really hasn't been the case with DS1 (13). It just gives us and him options.

But yes, it's easy enough to unplug and remove the TV if necessary. Just hiding the remote isn't enough. wink

streakybacon Sun 11-Nov-12 09:41:25

I suppose it depends on the child Sparklingbrook. I know for sure mine would be plugged in around the clock if he had the chance grin.

Sparklingbrook Sun 11-Nov-12 09:44:19

[grion] streaky. What does he watch?

Sparklingbrook Sun 11-Nov-12 09:44:48

grin obviously. I nearly typed 'groin'. hmm grin

shrimponastick Sun 11-Nov-12 09:50:14

DS (14)has had his own tv/s since the age of 6.

He has never spent excessive amounts of time watching tv. In fact I am thinking of nicking his for myself.

I reckon at 16 , he can watch what he likes.

streakybacon Sun 11-Nov-12 09:59:44

Comedy mostly, if we're talking dvd. If he's connected to the internet, it's Youtube clips and pages about Skyrim and Halo <sigh>. But if we're together we'll watch science and history programmes a lot, and I don't want to lose that.

I think overall it's about knowing your kid and what they like/want/need, and how manipulative they can be as well. For us, it's not so much about appropriateness than the ridiculous amount of time he spends on screens, to the detriment of other aspects of life. Balance is good grin.

notusualsuspect Sun 11-Nov-12 10:01:58

He's 16, they need their own space at 16.

So I think you should buy him a TV.

bigbluebus Sun 11-Nov-12 10:38:05

Still undecided, but did go with DH to look at TVs yesterday. I'm not sure he will watch too much TV if he has it in his room, I think I'm just more concerned about what happens when he moves his PS3 up there (which at the moment is in a downstairs room as he has nothing to play it on upstairs). It is more the gadgets off at a reasonable time of night bit that concerns me - we have already had issues over the mobile phone in bed at night - which has resulted in it being 'confiscated' at bedtime and left downstairs over night for 2 weeks. The PS3 causes more arguments in this house than anything else!!!!
I think my problem is with letting go of the 'control' and letting him make his own choices, as he will be 16 - whilst also not wanting him to jeopardise his schoolwork because he is tired, in what is a very important school year for him (GCSE Yr 11).

Floralnomad Sun 11-Nov-12 12:27:53

Yes but eventually they have to start making their own decisions and along with that their own mistakes, that's how you learn

SecretSquirrels Sun 11-Nov-12 13:42:39

My 16 year old Ds has had his tv 2 years and pretty much never uses it as a tv, just as a computer monitor. Even on the rare occasion that he watches tv in his room he uses iPlayer.
He has asked for an HD monitor for Christmas so the TV will be spare.

PropositionJoe Sun 11-Nov-12 13:53:50

I think if you take the router up to bed with you (!) then you keep enough control. And keep on insisting that the phone gies in the schoolbag when he gies to bed.

bigbluebus Sun 11-Nov-12 14:27:14

propositionjoe. Problem with the phone is he uses it for You Tube and Facebook in the evenings and runs the battery down, so it needs to be on charge overnight ready to go in his school bag in the morning. We all have the same phones though sad family so we have 3 chargers the same - one in his bedroom and 2 in the kitchen.

The router is in the 'play room' and could easily switched off at bedtime. He wouldn't go downstairs without me hearing him, so I would know if he tried to switch it back on again. But as winnie pointed out earlier, switching the wifi off doesn't teach him to be responsible - its still me controlling him - although that option is always there if needed.

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