I let my son watch TV. There, I’ve said it. I also let him play games on my mobile. He isn’t, by any means, attached to a screen all day but he definitely watches TV way more often than is recommended. I’ve agonised over this quite often during the last three years but I’ve decided it’s time to let that guilt go and here are eight reasons why:
He mainly watches CBeebies and the majority of their shows have an educational element – whether that be numbers & shapes or foreign countries and animal care. I swear there are some skills he’s learnt entirely from the telly.
It’s teaching him about technology
We live in a technology-driven world and there is, sadly, no getting away from that, so knowing how to operate an iPhone at aged three isn’t exactly a disadvantage.
It’s age appropriate
Obviously I don’t sit there binge-watching old episodes of True Blood in front of him. He only watches shows and plays games appropriete for toddlers and preschoolers.
He is meeting all his targets
Most importantly, he is meeting every single one of his development targets and excelling in most. He isn’t overweight. So, in all honestly, I can’t see what damage the evil forces of excess screen time has so far done.
We have balance
Caterpillar is out of the house most days – whether that be attending nursery or out with me going to classes and groups or meeting friends and their children. When we are at home we draw, craft, talk, read & play so if after all that he watches several hours of TV I’m not going to beat myself up.
It’s impossible to keep them occupied entirely alone; we all need a break
I refuse to be a slave to my child. I will do my very best for him and I love him very much but I’m not physically or emotionally able to dedicate endless hours each day to play and activities. I need time for housework, my day job, blogging tasks etc. and if screens help occupy Caterpillar for a while then so be it.
Kids need downtime too
Modern parenting gurus would have us believe we should be engaging in actitivites, play and learning opportunities with our children every waking moment but firstly, this is impossible to maintain (if you’re a mum like me, at least, I guess some mums manage), secondly, our own parents certainly didn’t do this (and we’re just fine) and lastly, children need to relax too. Watching a movie or a TV show allows your child to rest and refresh their minds a little, especially useful before bed or nap time.
I’ve given up on guilt and parenting advice
I made a pact with myself a while back that I would endeavour to give up on Mum Guilt and ignore parenting advice (which is usually conflicted and from a questionable source anyway). We’re doing our own thing and so far that’s working out just fine.
So…what are your thoughts on the screen time debate?