No More T.V. – For a While

Today I did something my kids still can’t believe – I took away their daily t.v. time for an undetermined amount of time. Let me explain why.


Logan and Lila have been getting more and more familiar with me. Anytime I ask either of them to do anything, they have a reason why they can’t obey, or an excuse, or an outright “no”. I find I’m repeating myself too many times a day, trying to get them to obey.

What’s worse, they will obey daddy wonderfully, will clean up their toys when he asks, come when he calls, etc., well, most of the time. They even told me that they would only obey daddy. That got me mad and on more than one occasion, I had to get Glad to talk to them about needing to obey me too.

We’ve tried many different discipline methods, but the only thing they seem to respond to is loss of privileges, mainly t.v. and movies. We’ve used this many times in the past, mostly to get a lesson to sink in, and it seems to work, at least for a while. During the time when they know they are missing their favorite shows, Logan will ask me why he’s missing it and we talk about what he needs to change to get to see them again.

But after today, I think it will be awhile before they get their shows back.

See, I asked them to do something they have to do every day: tidy up their bedroom. I got the dinner done early, since it is better to go out a little later when it is cooler, and they spent that time playing.  Once I was done, I asked them to pick up the mess so we could go out. No response. I asked again. Told them we needed to go outside. Nothing.

Then it started raining. Not too much, we still could have gone with raincoats, but by now they were both saying they didn’t want to clean up. No, they wouldn’t do it. Logan went as far as to tell me to never ask him to clean up again!! This stinker is not even 6 yet. That is something I expect from a teen, not him.

I’d had it at that point. Not just because they wouldn’t clean up this time, but because of all the times lately that they have not listened to me at all. I just said there would be no more daily t.v. time until they learn to obey me. That did it! The tears! No, we want to obey. Oh, really? I’ve heard that one before.

I held my ground and left the room to wash dishes so as to not yell at them any more. We didn’t go out, they played around a bit, and cried more when they realized I was serious. Then daddy came home. Of course he had to hear the tale and of course he agreed with my decision. I actually heard them talking before he came, hoping he would say something different and change the punishment or drop it. Such stinkers!

In the end, Scarlett cleaned most of the mess, while Logan and Lila did a little. Then they sat for dinner with daddy and he talked to them about obeying me. Before bed, I again had to make it clear that it was up to them how long this t.v. ban would last. I know I’ll have to discuss it again tomorrow. And probably all of next week.

I’m actually curious to see how long it will take for them to get that I mean business. I know there won’t be an overnight change, since they are in the habit of not obeying the first time, ignoring me, arguing about having to obey, etc. It’s going to take me reminding them every time I ask them to do something and they don’t do it right away. I know this is going to be rough for me as well as them, but the hope is that in the end, they will be more obedient.

How do you handle disobedience with your children? Any tips or suggestions are welcome.


Update: November 2, 2013 – after one week I tried letting them have t.v. time back. Logan lost it again on the first day when he freaked out over Lila doing some small thing he didn’t like and biting her so hard he almost cut her skin. The girls aren’t into the t.v. as much as he is, so on those days when Logan wasn’t allowed it, I only put it on if they asked. Mostly they would just play and be happy on their own.

After 2 weeks, Logan is doing much better. He is listening to me more, obeying more, and he has yet to bite again. I consider this a success. So yes, they are again allowed to watch their shows. Hopefully they will remember this one for a while.

Leave a comment


  1. Dear Mommy!
    This is but the beginning. I hate to tell you. Rooms a mess is a tug-a-war until they leave home. My daughter’s rooms always looked like a pig sty and yes, they had to clean their rooms when they were young. However, I’ve want to share with you something. There is hope. My daughters and my messy son’s homes are clean and tidy. Although, their bedrooms might be a little messy, the rest of their homes shine. So be of good courage, it will get better. Love them through the messes. You seem like the kind of mommy who would, though.

    Take care.

    • Thank you. Mess is a daily thing and I know it will always be there. What really got to me was how they didn’t want to obey me, only daddy (who is gone most of the time, therefore they are less familiar with him). It’s so frustrating to do everything for them and then have them not want to obey. But I guess every child and parent goes through this.

      • Hi Mercy!
        Daddy’s and their low voices are special. Even my dog listens to my husband more than he does to me.
        You are their pillar-their foundation since I believe you said their daddy is gone a lot. Remember, the things you do for them is out of love and love only. Not because you must, but because you want too. Someday, they are going to appreciated you. Remember when people are on TV, and they are approached, one of the things they say is ‘Hi Mom” not “Hi Dad.” I know when my daughter was having her baby, she said, “I need someone” as she experienced her labor pains. Her husband said, “Here I am honey.” She gave him a hateful look. “I don’t want you. I want my mommy!” Love them but discipline with love because it is necessary for a parent to command respect. Too many times these days, teenagers do not respect their parents or others or even themselves.

        Take care. God bless you mommy. I do in some ways miss those days of being a mommy and not Mom.
        Take care..

  2. This would never work in my house. The kids watching TV is more for MY benefit than for their own desires. If they watch 20 minutes straight, once a day I’m LUCKY to get a few minutes without a barrage of questions. I know, someday I’ll be happy that they are not couch potatoes, but right now, I just WISH they would zone out for 30 minutes in a row so I can get a little peace!


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