For most of Bentley’s life his access to technology has been a computer laptop or an iPad. Both of these items are easy to put on a shelf or put a lock code on to prohibit his free range use. When we moved to this house we were given a television and would sometimes find Bentley up in the night watching his favorite show on Netflix while eating some variation of food he had made in the kitchen. We quickly realized adjustments had to be made in our home to prevent this from happening in the future.
So I start by asking, “What would you do?” What strategy would you put in place to help prevent the midnight or early morning tv watcher?
First we took the remote and hid it, but unbeknownst to us there is a button on the back of the tv that can allow one to navigate the whole tv- it’s quite amazing- I actually still can’t get it to do what I want, but Bentley works it with at least 90% accuracy. After this realization we decided we’d just take the cord and the remote to our room and tuck it in a random drawer so that he would come out to a black television with no hope. This strategy works wonders! It’s great! However sometimes we forget to unplug the cord and take the remote to be hidden so I’ll come out of the bedroom, pre-caffeine, while David is running- to find him watching. I’ll generally roll my eyes and say, “Bentley!” and then proceed to grab the cord and the remote and put them in a place. This same event can happen throughout the day if
A. he finds the cord and remote and gets the tv on
B. we forget to unplug after a family show
C. some variation that I am forgetting…
Here’s the problem with the spontaneous unplugging- I can NEVER remember where I have hidden the remote and the cord. So in our home- on almost any given day of the week- when the kids have earned their screen time, it will take us upwards of 20 minutes to locate the things we need to watch tv or play the old school Nintendo. I started laughing so hard yesterday because Clayton was getting so mad (understandably so) and I said, “Buddy, your college friends are never gonna believe the obstacles you had to climb to get to watch a simple show!” This moment allowed us to laugh together and think about the strange things families do to survive. It’s 2:00 PM today and the kids are finishing up their chores and schoolwork and I know that well earned screen time is just off in the distance- and I could be one of those organized people that goes and hunts down the remote and the cord now- or I could even be one of those people who sees the disaster approaching and learns to hide the items in the same place…. but I won’t… and today will be just like every other day.