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Dump your cable and internet today!

20 Oct

This article:http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/20/health/parents-kids-risk-empowered-patient/index.html#
Reminded me of why I turned off my cable and my internet at my house. It’s true, not only have I saved roughly $150/month on my bills but I also turned my house into an interaction zone!
Creative turn-a-phrase, but that’s what it is. I made it a priority to not allow my young son (15 months) to watch TV, even for brief periods of time. He has watched probably 30 mins total TV time in his entire life, mostly by accident.
I find that by not having the option to watch TV or go on the internet, I am much more free to do actual productive things. Did I mention that I’m writing a second book? Probably wouldn’t happen if I had a million channels of sports to watch (love sports, mostly SPEED Channel).
(I read in “Parenting” Magazine that the average dad spends 6.5 hours a week with their kids. What the hell??!!!!)
I have more time to spend with my son, I read more, I exercise a lot more, I can get out and do yard work, I can work on my car to get it ready for the road next year, I can clean the house, I can do my writing and photoshop, I can get out and photograph to make a little extra cash… It really does feel good to not feel as if I have a zillion hours of crap stuffed on my DVR.
I advocate dumping all these plans frankly. You won’t have the temptation to be a Facebook widow or a WarCraft widow. You don’t have to watch TV all the time to fill your evenings.
Not to mention the effects it has on young children to not be able to watch TV. The risk of ADHD goes down, creativity goes WAY up, they will want to interact with you more (which is a good thing), you can teach them more and overall have a more cohesive and connected family.
Isn’t that what you always envisioned when you had kids?
I’m rooting for you,
~Eric


				
 

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  1. Avatar of opinionated

    opinionated

    October 21, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    I applaud your conviction and perseverance, but the facts are that even though I admire this aspiration there are many people like myself who work and live in an international based economy and could never survive without internet access for more than hours, let alone ever at home. Remember time zone differences as well. I deal with 7 to 13 hr differences on a regular basis, sometimes 16 and 17 hrs as well, so at home is a required time to be present and on-line. Finding a new profession sounds good but until then….someday I hope to take an early retirement and have a teaching job for oh say my last decade of work. Then maybe I’ll look at your approach again. For now I carry 24/7 internet access devices everywhere (sigh).

     
    • Avatar of Eric McClellan, MA, LMFT

      Eric McClellan, MA, LMFT

      October 21, 2011 at 1:55 pm

      To Opinionated:

      You have a valid point that many folks have to have some form of internet. I carry around a cell phone that has internet and a wifi hot spot when I have to turn in stories or look up a phone number or something.

      I guess the larger point I was going after was that if you aren’t able to make the choice to ‘veg out’ or surf the web, it makes it a lot easier to forget about it.

      I still don’t think that you couldn’t figure some way that would limit the time you spend not working on the internet. Work is one thing, play time away from the family for “farmville” is entirely another.

      ~Eric