T3 was not invited to this particular session of family night (we put him to bed and then had this discussion.)
So we came up with a compromise.
Mostly No Media Summer
During the day we are trying to stay media free.
But it is up to moms discretion – ask first. So for example T2 wanted to play Wii with a friend this week. I said, yes you can play an hour once T3 leaves to go to another house. This will help keep T3 media free. I think the younger they are the less media they should get.
On Monday and Wednesday night the big boys can watch a show with Dad. (I teach Hypnobabies Monday night and Wednesday is usually my other night out.) So this is part of our rhythm, but I knew if I left it random, each night T2 would be begging and it would become a problem. So I set the expectation and they know no TV Tues and Thurs.
I like this plan, it is balanced. The big boys get some media and it keeps T3 mostly media free. I think the younger they are the less media they should have. T3′s behavior deteriorates with the more media he has. I think his little brain gets overwhelmed.
I will say it was an adjustment. He keeps wanting to play with me. I was thinking back to last summer and not remembering the never ending requests to play games. Then I remembered, last summer he was watching shows instead of playing with me. So there has been an adjustment on both of our parts. I am embracing these moments, I know that so soon he will be 13 and not want to play games with me anymore.
I am finding so far the computer is the problem. Though in a good way. The big boys need to research stuff. For instance they bought themselves a sewing machine and have to look things up on the internet to learn how to make things. The first project was a pillowcase. Totally a good reason to go on the computer.
However T3 is being the media police and yelling “media!” He just finds it hard to accept that they can go on for some reasons and he can’t. I try to explain that what they are doing is like homework, but he isn’t buying that. We have only had a few days of summer, so hopefully it will balance out soon.
Reducing Media Usage for Kids Series
This series was inspired by my 13 year old. He said I need to tell people about this, after seeing the benefits in his quality of life over the last few months as we reduced our media usage.
More Boys = More TV or How we got to become media addicts.