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Monday, April 16, 2012

Babysitter

I've never wanted to be the mom who relies on tv to keep my kid occupied and thus far, I'm proud to say that even with "virtual" twins, I limit total tv time to one hour/day. This normally takes place while Lucy naps so she actually doesn't see much programming at all. Kate, my dear non-napper, watches 2 episodes in the hour that Lucy is down so I can eat, check email, etc.

Despite its obvious uses (I can pee or eat without 4 hands and arms and legs climbing and grabbing), I've found one major adverse consequence to letting the tv babysit: my children tend to mimic what they have learned, the good, but also the bad. And by bad I mean very, very bad.

Is there any parent out there who does not think that whining is like nails on a chalkboard? Oh I can handle full-on crying and even tantrums, but my god, the incessant, grinding repetitiveness of a child whining will send me over the edge so fast I get whiplash. Both girls have always had a bit of whining (they're two after all) but ever since Kate has been watching a fairly popular and highly-recommended PBS show, Caillou, her whining has increased tenfold. She whines now pretty much ALL. THE. TIME. Asking for milk used to be, "Mama, can I have some milk please?" but has become, "MIIIIIIIILLLLLK! MIIIIIIIILLLLK! MIIIIIILLLLK!"

Seriously?

And although this show is pretty good with the pacing (not crazy-busy like Yo Gabba Gabba or Spongebob) and has good messages about sharing, etc. I have a huge, huge problem with Caillou's constant whiny voice. I have an even bigger problem with the fact that Caillou's long-suffering parents never say, "Shut the fuck up!", "I can't understand you when you whine like that. Please try again with your normal voice."

Funnily enough, when googling for some examples to show you, an entire thread on Caillou's whining popped right up.  Here are a few of the best:

After watching a LOT of the show "Peppa Pig," which features a kid Caillou's age without the neurosis, I now feel like telling Caillou to grow a pair.

Caillou spoof on youtube...love the father's voice-over towards the end!


Caillou's voice is like Chinese Water Torture


Hey Caillou, put a sock in it!


So the search began for a suitable replacement. I brought it up to my fellow mamas at playgroup and, at first, one mama recommended the new show, Doc McStuffins on Disney. By the next week, however, she had retracted it saying, "L is becoming a hypochondriac. Yesterday her tummy hurt. The day before she had a sore arm." 

I stumbled onto Bubble Guppies this week and so far, fingers crossed, it appears to be innocuous. So far I've been impressed. The two episodes I've watched featured colors in one and simple math at the supermarket in the other. Each show only tackles one theme but has common elements in each episode like "What's for lunch?" and "Let's go Outside". The bonus for Kate is that she's totally into mermaids (it started with her MerLion from Uncle RyRy and Uncle Paul) and dolphins (on her dolphin shirt from Nana) right now.


And the bonus: no whining.
_______________________
For those of you wondering, no word yet about when my biopsy will be. I called today and the radiologist was still analyzing my films to figure out the best approach for a core sample. I will call again tomorrow morning. And I will keep calling until I get an answer. I wasn't a Project Manager for nothing.

6 comments:

Jodie said...

Ahhhh.....the wonderful years of whining. Hmmm......I wish I could tell you that they'll grow out of that pretty quick but I would be misleading you, my friend. lol Then, all of the sudden when you least expect it...the whining will turn into teenage pouting! hahahahah!!!! *sigh* You sound like you have it under total control, though. So ...kudos!!! :) Thank you for keeping us updated on the biopsy stuff. I'm so glad you're not one to just sit by without staying on top of things. Keep up that calling....and we'll all continue to pray and send positive "vibes" your way. LOVE AND HUGS!!!! xoxoxox

Lynn K said...

We've been big fans of Dora here. I don't think she whines. But then, I didn't think Caillou did!

Just wait 'till they go to school. Then they come home with some great words and matching behavior!

ashley said...

My daughter does not watch much TV either.....She prefers the camera roll on my iPad. She loves to look at pictures of herself! Have you ever seen Kipper? It is a simple and quiet show about a dog named Kipper and his animal pals.
Maybe Kate and Lucy would like that. I'll say though, it is British the animals have a bit of a British accent. (but maybe Kate would mimic that? It might be kind of cute!)
Thinking good thoughts for you as you wait for news of your biopsy appointment.
:) Ashley

EC said...

A study was recently conducted that verified that whining was the worst sound in the world (at least, among all sounds tested). Researchers had participants listen to various noises (baby crying, machine noises, regular talking, etc) while working simple subtraction problems. Participants did the worst when listening to whining.

But all of us parents probably could have guessed that anyhow! Good luck!

http://bodyodd.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/06/17/6883577-whining-is-the-worst-sound-in-the-world-study-confirms

Lisa said...

Thanks Jodie!

Lynn K--I am totally dreading the influence of other kids on mine! How egocentric is that?!

Ashley--never heard of Kipper. I'll do a search to see if I can find it. Would love to hear Kate with a British accent!

EC--I totally believe that whining as a form of wartime torture would be totally effective.

LynnKZ said...

If you have Sprout and a dvr, look for Dirt Girl World. It's nature-oriented, no whining!, and freaky-lovely. Cool music too! It's not on often, so we put it on the dvr.

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