…or stages in the plottings of a dangerously pro-defenestration TV saboteur…
Stage 1 – Angst leads to resentment
I’ve been having real problems with the TV in our house. Whenever it’s on I resent it. I resent the noise, the attention it gets, and the mindless staring of DS and DH to the exclusion of any communication or constructive activity. At least I crochet/DIY/work/talk/sort laundry/whatever while it’s on! When DH and I watch, I try to make it a more social activity by discussing whatever’s on, but he’s not really into that and gets frustrated that I’m interrupting.
Every year we go on holiday and have no TV for 2 weeks. Usually I get used to it again after a few weeks back, but last summer we came back and I just never got over it. I don’t mean to be on a crusade, but it is just SOOOO annoying .
Stage 2 – The light at the end of the tunnel is very far away
Last year DH suddenly suggested that we try a ‘TV free week’. It was shockingly completely his idea to try to go without it (he’s more perceptive than he looks!) as I never thought he’d consider it.
Unfortunately it only lasted 4 days. Better than nothing, I know, and one reason the ‘week’ ended was because I couldn’t stand him just looking at me expectantly and mournfully telling me he was bored. Though I possibly didn’t help by thinking of useful things he could do around the house…like help me sort nappies…he just doesn’t understand the quality time he’s missing out on
Even more unfortunately, the TV free days made me realise how much it stresses me out and that I really really do resent it. Typically his experience of the same days made DH realise how much he ‘needs’ it to relax.
DH thoughtfully searched on forums for ‘my wife wants to get rid of the tv’ and apparently found lots of posts saying ‘get rid of your wife’, so that really ‘helped’ the situation .
We’ve now agreed to have at least 1 TV free day a week, but I feel that as a compromise it’s not really fair. Surely it should be TV free 1/2 the time to be fair? Or at least a 1/3 of the time if you include DS in the equation?
Stage 3 – ‘Harmless’ dreams of better things
So I want to ‘accidentally’ break it in an ‘I was carefully carrying the TV to a safer place in the attic when suddenly the wind blew the window open and the cat tripped me up and to avoid DD on the floor I was forced to hurl it out of the 2nd floor window with all my might so that it smashed into a million pieces – oh what a shame – but I’ll clean it up and lets all enjoy our evening now ‘ kind of way. Oh yeah, and we don’t have an attic, but there’s a very high roof up there….
Stage 4 – The plot thickens
Sabotage! So maybe violence is not a reasonable way to go with this. I need to be measured and subtle in my approach. After consultation with people sympathetic to my cause I have a couple of other ideas…
1. I could sell the TV and buy something exciting to replace it… Though I fear that whatever I found I don’t think DH would agree it was a good swap…
2. I could repeatedly detune the TV. This would stop DS watching it at least, but would probably just cause arguments with DH. Though I do have a fairly strong track record with winning arguments……
3. I could think of a mind boggling array of interesting, engaging and relaxing things for DH to do instead of watching TV. But, quite apart from the fact that it makes it all my responsibility (and I’m almost certainly not going to be able to keep up that much enthusiasm in the evenings for very long), I genuinely think that on many evenings he’d rather zombie out on the sofa than engage with me…
Hmmmm….. ideas with potential, though it’s all mildly less satisfying to imagine than a big explosion! And I guess DH might be able to stop me selling the TV, or ignore my attempts to amuse him, but he can’t stop me having a TV-related defenestration incident
Stage 5 – Self control and the attempt to be reasonable
So I realise that I’m not actually going to break the TV. And shamefully the main reason is that I feel it would be a waste of family resources, especially when DH buys a bigger, more expensive one to replace it. So I need an approach that might work in the real world and not just in my gleeful imaginings.
I think I might jump up and down a bit and demand more TV-free days and hope that everyones enjoys themselves so much more that they start to see my side of it. I’m hoping it’d also give me a chance to think of things for DH and DS to do instead so they don’t sit there looking at me as if their brains are linked up to the TV and have been turned off too! We already limit TV for DS, and so I can just reduce that further until it no longer bothers me while he’s up, but the main problem is still after the kids are in bed.
Stage 6 – The final solution
For DH it’s just a habit really; it’s like he doesn’t know what else people do at home when they’re not at work or out. When the TV’s off he just sits there with an aura of ‘well, what are you going to do to entertain me now?’. And, though I think that my efforts would be as least recognised (if not entirely appreciated), I’ve already ruled out the state of the art, multiroom, Em-powered home entertainment system as a workable long term solution.
The only reasonable, workable way to help DH to break his habit, cleanse his soul and to release him from the addiction that is clearly stunting his psychological horizons and is detrimental to his abilily to engage fully in a constructive family life is…
…to make him throw the TV out of the window!
Off to look up local hypnotists……..
Very self indulgent, but ranting is good for the soul! Thanks for letting me vent my angst! xxx
This was based on my original rantings, and the replies I received on the naturalmamas forum here: I want the TV to have an ‘accident’… Many thanks to all who replied! xxx