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Should I put a TV in my kid’s bedroom?   I won’t be doing this anytime soon, but probably not for the reason you think.

Please read this post, in its entirety,  before you comment, because you will see that this is simply what we have picked for OUR family, but certainly not to say that it is right for YOUR family. ♥   ‘Different strokes for different folks.’ 

Two children kneeling on a bed with their hands covering their eyes and their mouths open.

I allow TV time.  I allow electronic time.  I allow time for apps and games… but they all happen at times that we have given permission.   So… will I allow our kids to have a TV in their bedrooms?   To have their phones or electronics in their rooms?  No… but it is probably for a reason that is different from what you may think.

“Mom, can I PLEASE have a TV for my room?  All of my friends have one!”   Yes, our kids have asked me about it… often.   I always say “No.”  I just won’t cave on this one for many years.  I’m sure that by the time that they are getting ready to head off to college, our plans on this will have changed, but for now, I hold my ground. I never had a TV in my room growing up and I don’t want the kids to, either.  The reason, however, is probably not why you think.

Sure, I want to cut back on screen time when I can, but that isn’t why we won’t let them have a TV in their room.
Sure, I would worry that they would be up early watching it and go to bed with it on, but those things can be controlled and that isn’t why we won’t let them have a TV in my room.

The real reason is that we have four kids and if I put a TV in each of their rooms, I don’t think that I would ever see them… OK, I’m sure I would, but it would be much less than I see them and hang out with them now.

Have you ever heard the old song:

“But you know, love grows best in little houses
With fewer walls to separate
Where you eat and sleep so close together
You can’t help but communicate
Oh, and if we had more room between us, think of all we’d miss
Love grows best, in houses just like this”.”

That kind of sums it up, in a way… being with your family is the best way to bond with your family.

I want to be where my kids are and I want our kids to be where we are.  I want to enjoy our time together while they are young and living at home.  I want to be able to talk to them about what they see and laugh with them at all of the funny parts in the show.  I want to interact with them and I want them to interact with one another. 

A group of people sitting in the grass.

Each of our kids have their own bedroom and to think that they would be off watching a show, in their room, without us just makes me feel like I would be missing so much time with them.

Our children are growing up so quickly.  Their time with me is getting to be less and less, and soon college and other adventures will be calling their names.   This is the time for us to grow as a family and for our kids to learn to really become each other’s best friends.

For that reason, Mickey and I won’t be putting a TV in our children’s rooms just yet.   I know that one day they will grow up and want to do things without us (in fact, I’m sure of it), but for now, we are going to work really hard at building these bonds that will last a lifetime and this is just one way that we are doing that.

What do you think?  Would this work for your family?

Remember… we only have a few years to really be present in their lives.   Let’s spend these years wisely.
ps- I want to invite you to sign up for my FREE e-mail series called One on One time.   It is completely free & I will send you this calendar to get you started. 🙂 

A close up of a calendar on a white background.

Hi there!

I’m Becky, a former elementary school teacher turned certified child development therapist and blogger. I work at home with my husband and together we are raising (and partially homeschooling) our four children in the Carolinas. I love diet coke, ice cream, and spending time with my family.

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  1. That’s one of the reasons we don’t intend to as well. Plus I want to be able to monitor what my kiddos are watching. But, like you said, to each their own. I know not allowing TVs is probably “old fashioned” and my kids will fight me on it, but – as of now – I don’t foresee changing my mind. 🙂

  2. I’m with you! We only have one TV in the house (not on purpose) and it has worked out for us as a family. Now our daughter is only 21 months so she has no business with a TV in her room for years, but as a couple it makes us able to congregate and watch our favorite shows together.

      1. I’m right there with you! We have three kids (9, 3.5 and 3 months) and only one TV in the house. We MAY add one to the basement strictly for times when other families with kids are visiting, but 98% of the time, there is no reason they need to go watch something on their own. Because of the one TV, my 9yo son has developed a love for history (watched a 7 hr documentary he saw me watching 2 more times on his own). We talk about foods we eat, how people treat others, decisions that have to be made in life, etc all because we watch food shows, Survivor, home buying shows, and others. Plus, we all get up and dance to Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Imagination Movers, and we all sing to Phineas & Ferb and Paw Patrol. And the best part–because we’re all together, it’s very easy to determine when we’ve all had too much TV and need some time to read, play a game, etc. To more family bonding, ladies!

        1. That’s a great idea (basement). We have one in our bonus room.
          Ps- our kids love the Phineas & Ferb song, too!

  3. That’s a good reason I hadn’t thought of! I don’t plan to have televisions in my kids’ room either. And your reason is the same why I don’t want to put a computer in their room. I’d never see them! I like them out in the open space 🙂

  4. I absolutely agree! My boys are 7 and I’ve had family offering to buy them TV’s for their bedrooms for Christmas. They were surprised when I said no. I limit TV time and when it’s on, it’s with my husband and I in our family room. They don’t even ask for it much. I like them to play and run around. 🙂

    1. I foresee that my family would offer the same in the future. Good for you for standing your ground. Recently a family member wanted to buy my preschool aged daughter a learning tablet and I said “no” they were a little offended but ah well, she is MY daughter. I asked for flash cards and books instead 🙂

  5. Im in 100% agreement with you, and I don’t think you could have said it better! I grew up the way that you did, and while my son who is almost one, will not be affected by this for a while, this is an important topic to have nailed down with your spouse/partner before the time comes when you hear “mommy , can I have a TV in my room, Jimmy has one in his room”.

  6. This is the same reason why I don’t want to do it either… My oldest (he is 10 now) has ask for one here and there in the last couple of years, but I’ve explained them my reasons… When I grew up I remember walking in my house and seen my dad in the family-room watching a show, my brother in his room watching his show and my mom in her bedroom watching another… and like so an afternoon on a weekend could pass by, I didn’t like it then, I don’t like it now, we have only one TV in the house and my kids (10, 8 and 7-year old), my husband and I all watch it together, once the kids go to sleep, then we watch adult tv… Eventually this will change, I know, but I will try to keep it like this as long as I can 🙂

    1. Yes! It is our 9 year old that asks us, too. 🙂
      (I know- I always say that “this will probably change – but let’s enjoy it now!)

  7. That’song is so true! It is a great idea to not have a TV in the kids”s rooms.
    We don’t have a TV in our home! We feel that the Tv will eat up the time we share with each other at home!

    1. 🙂 I agree- it really does. We try to make it count, like Cupcake Wars (that our kids love) that we can all watch together. 🙂

  8. I totally agree with you here. We spend so little time together as it is between work and other obligations, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to spend time at home and not all hiding in our respective rooms?

  9. I wouldn’t because I’m an insomniac and my son isn’t the greatest sleeper as it is. It’s proven to cause poor sleep. Bedrooms are for sleeping and if you’re an adult in a relationship *other things*. We have one TV and that is all we need.

  10. 100% agree and this is why our kids don’t and won’t have electronics such as iPads/tablets.

  11. I have a 16 year old and a 12 year old and they do have a tv in their room but like you, I LOVE spending time with them. So their tv’s are for xbox usage mainly and I am VERY BLESSED that they love to still watch tv at night with mom and dad. After school if there is no homework or its school holidays they will always watch a movie or tv with me sometime during the day and watch cartoons etc on the tv in the living room… I would hate to miss family tv time… so if this changed I would probably go and damage the sets in the middle of the night LOL

  12. We have 4 children and lots of tvs in the house…one in pretty much every room. My husband is the biggest culprit and turns on the one in the family room as soon as we walk in the house. I grew up with limited tv time with one tv and I hated it! What I have noticed from my kids (14,12,10,8) is they still hang with us and really only use the ones in their rooms when they need to escape. I will also say that although typically on, they watch much less than one would think. We have created kids who are insanely good at functioning with background noise and tuning sounds out to focus on what needs to get done. And if given the choice, my kids would choose to play a game over tv most days!

  13. I had a TV in my bedroom when I was in high school. My kids are in elementary and starting middle school, and they will not be getting a TV any time soon. Having a TV in their bedroom will only lead to problems.. The same can be said for electronic devices. Your article suggests that it is not for the reason we might think, but too much screen time also means less family time so same issue different way of looking at it. I only allow electronic devices in public areas of the home.

  14. I guess I am in the minority here. I agree (in theory) with most of the reasons presented here for not allowing a TV in a child’s bedroom. But I feel compelled to share my experience with allowing TVs and other devices. Both of my children (11 and 7) have TVs in their rooms. My 7year old has turned his on 2 times in 2 years. I know because he asks me to help him. My 11 year old rarely turns hers on either. They both have other devices that they only use when we travel. This wouldn’t work with all children, but mine seem to be less obsessed with technology than their peers who have little to no access to tv/technology.

  15. Television, computers, phones ALL take away from quality family time together. Hang in there moms, you won’t regret quality time with your children.