Television Isn't All Bad

We love our screen time at this house. A little too much. We have tried to put restrictions on it, but the fact is, Hubby and I like our screen time, too.

Yesterday morning, the boys would not stop picking on each other. So in the spur of a weak mom moment, I declared, "No screen time today!"

Now, mom code dictates that you never dole out a punishment that you cannot live with yourself. So, after the older boys were dropped off at school, Lil' C was watching Playhouse Disney by 8:30 so Mommy could check her e-mail, Facebook, Twitter and blogs. What can I say, a gal's gotta keep up with social media, right?

In all seriousness, on normal days, the boys get only one hour of screen time with a chance to earn more on the weekends. It works for us.

We were sitting in the kitchen after school eating snack, when Slim asks me, "Mommy, do you text and drive?"

This is a peeve of mine - people in their cars on their phones. I can't say I've never placed a call or texted while I have been driving, but it is extremely rare if I do. Checking my e-mail, however, is another issue entirely (I just can't resist that little "whoo-hoo" that lets me know I have mail).

"Where did you hear that?" I ask.

"On a t.v. commercial," the boys answer in unison.

So, of course I say, "No, a person should never use their phone while driving," all while making a mental note to myself to stop looking at my phone while I drive because the boys are getting old enough to notice.

And then, all three boys look at each other like a round table of scientific experts and start spewing out statistics on how many accidents are caused by texting and driving.

Then Lil' C says, "And you should never drink and drive either," as if he's just told me it is Mickey Mouse's birthday.

I raise one eyebrow and ask, "Drink what and drive?"

Knox leans over and whispers loudly, "Pop. You shouldn't drink pop and drive." And Lil' C announces proudly, "Pop!" And more statistics come after that.

I laugh and launch into a speech I know I will repeat to this group of boys so many times in the future about what alcohol is and how it impairs your judgement. It's never too early to start that talk.

And that is what's okay about television. It started a conversation with my sons that I would eventually need to have anyway. It started a conversation about something important while they are young, impressionable, and receptive to hearing it.

That's why television, in certain amounts, isn't all that bad.

What's your policy on screen time for your kids?
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