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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Like for months?


I'm seriously considering pulling the plug on both the internet and the cable this summer. We moved to a farm 15 months ago and last summer my kids haven't been outside any more than they were when we lived in town! I want them to experience the life I had growing up...you know, that BORING life with no internet and 3 channels on the TV. I want them to play until they're sweated out and then eat popcycles under the shade tree. I want them to built a tree house and play in the pasture.

I certainly don't want them watching continual reruns of Zach and Cody.

The reason I want to yank the net is because for the past 14 years it has been a huge part of my day. I want to have more time to play with my kids. I want to sit on my patio and read a book. I want to have a huge garden this year. I'm missing all of that because of my stupid net addiction.

I just got this book called "The Winter of Our Disconnect: How Three Totally Wired Teenagers (and a Mother Who Slept with Her iPhone)Pulled the Plug on Their Technology and Lived to Tell the Tale" by Susan Maushart. I'm going to read it soon and see how they did it, but I'm pretty sure my kids won't put up the stink her kids did. We'll still have local channels, after all...and DVD's...and the Wii...and computer games...

Has anyone else unplugged for a season? How did that work for you?
 

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I wouldn't call it "unplugged" but when I was about 11 my Mom got some kind of crazy midlife crisis and uprooted us and moved us to the country. It was a nightmare. I wanted no part of country life. Flaky septic systems and water wells going out was torture. Spending springs and summers 'tilling, raking, planing, harvesting was her dream and not mine. I liked the chickens but that was about it.

I live in the city now. I don't HAVE to drive 10 miles to anything unless I want to. I can walk to the dr and store if I need to. If I stretch hard enough, I can see the church from our 2nd story window.

Before you make any drastic changes, sit down and talk to the other members of the family. Listen to their likes and dislikes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
DH is for it. He can still get the net through work and if I wanted to check my e-mail I can go to his office and check it. (He works at home).

The kids....well, they have so many other things to keep them busy we don't think they'll mind it.
 

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We basicly give ours up once the summer comes,we are always outside.I work seasonal,April- October,which takes up alot of my day,but when I get home I have no time to be on the computer or watching TV. We have no kids at home now,but when the GK"s come they are also outside,mostly in the pool.
 

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Disconnecting kids from the TV is a fabulous idea. I do it regularly when my kids start to spend too much time on it. It doesn't enrich them in any way, and no one is ever going to give them a scholarship for being great TV watchers or video game players.

I've also considered shutting off the internet because I've spent too much time on it as well, but homeschooling takes up so much our time now that I don't have to worry about it. I really don't have much time to get online. (We used to have a pretty lax homeschool routine, but I'm pushing them quite a bit harder now that they're older.)

Anyway, good luck with it. I think it will be great for you.
 

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I think it is a great plan and that you are very brave. I couldn't do it. I'm trying to cut back because I too think it is eating too much into family time- for ALL of us! But I know there is now way we could go to nothing. Good luck!
 

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The internet is a major part of how I connect with the world, being a thousand miles or more away from family and friends, having some oddball hobbies that make it impossible to find associates locally, and having an interest in international news that the local paper can't satisfy. So I don't think I could disconnect for 3-4 months without feeling pretty lost and isolated.

But I have found balance with my life. I enjoy gardening and being outdoors. I quilt and have started going to shows and other events and being around people more. Gave up tv years ago, just can't stand to spend the hours sitting in front of it. Like you said, nothing worthwhile or productive about it. But DH and I do rent movies to watch together in the evening. My philosophy is "make hay while the sun shines", literally, if the sun is up I have other things to do than sit on the computer. I save the bulk of that for the evenings. I can surf the web at night, when I can't garden or hang out in the fabric store. During the day I try to be out and about.

So that might be something to try as a lead-in, if the sun is up, the tv and computer are off.
 

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Like for months?


I'm seriously considering pulling the plug on both the internet and the cable this summer. We moved to a farm 15 months ago and last summer my kids haven't been outside any more than they were when we lived in town! I want them to experience the life I had growing up...you know, that BORING life with no internet and 3 channels on the TV. I want them to play until they're sweated out and then eat popcycles under the shade tree. I want them to built a tree house and play in the pasture.

I certainly don't want them watching continual reruns of Zach and Cody.

The reason I want to yank the net is because for the past 14 years it has been a huge part of my day. I want to have more time to play with my kids. I want to sit on my patio and read a book. I want to have a huge garden this year. I'm missing all of that because of my stupid net addiction.

I just got this book called "The Winter of Our Disconnect: How Three Totally Wired Teenagers (and a Mother Who Slept with Her iPhone)Pulled the Plug on Their Technology and Lived to Tell the Tale" by Susan Maushart. I'm going to read it soon and see how they did it, but I'm pretty sure my kids won't put up the stink her kids did. We'll still have local channels, after all...and DVD's...and the Wii...and computer games...

Has anyone else unplugged for a season? How did that work for you?
I just had rules about the times it was allowed. 1 hour a day. They could choose what hour. You don't need to do without to set boundaries.

Mine could also earn more time with chores outside of their regular chores.

In the winter I was less strict about it. I was still strict about the fact that grades had to be up to earn the priviledge and if they disrespected me (mouthing off, raising voice excessively in angry tone) that morning there was no computer/tv that night regardless of what they had earned.
 

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I could disconnect from the tv but can't the net. My kids are in college, live at home and have to have it.
 

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I caught a show on CNBC recently called "Crackberry'd"

It not only talked about the addiction to being connected 24/7 on the Blackberry but also the addiction of the internet and TV as well. It's amazing how technology has made the majority of people. The show was definitely eye opening.

The suggestions for screen time (TV, computer, video games) on the show were the following:

NONE for children 2 and under.

2.5 hours a day for everybody else.
 

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We have already disconnected from the tv. Now the net is another story. I wouldn't since my DS is away at school, my family and close friends in another country and I just love all the information that can be found surfing! :D
 

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yup and i have. there was no internet connection where i was living for over three months
 

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Disconnect? How could you?

Wouldn't you miss me? :D

I have gone for 3 weeeks w/o looking at forums/FB/email and I am online MUCH less during the gardening season. It was amazing how much I got done without surfing the internet.

.
 

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No, I could not.

As a matter of fact, my realtor is a good friend of mine and when I was looking at a house the first thing he would tell me was that high speed internet was available there. (he didn't bother showing me homes where it was not) I did not even have to ask him.
 

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I think it sounds like a great idea. I do use basic technology however am not hooked up to it 24/7. Personally I really do not want to be.

It sounds as if your children would gain so much by being unconnected even if it was for x amount of hours per day. Growing up we did have a tv and radios. But it wasn't uncommon for someone to come along and turn the tv off and tell you to go outside and play. Which we did.

Sure some people can't go out and play because of safety issues but when you are able to you really should.
 

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well i need it for work - i need to acess my work email and print out work referalls etc since i am only in office 1-2x a week

kids need it for school research ( most recently to help come up with a cool science fair idea for 10 yo )

theres a website that makes free charts we will surely be using for the science fair .

we can monitor grades online
speak to teachers, coaches about concerns online at both of our convienences .

Its the way the teachers - coaches- youth group leaders - room parents- schools communicate with us ( we get both phone calls and emails about days off from snow etc )

our school has a wednesday envelope that is usually filled with forms some one may need some one may not -now the school saves money by putting it up on website now so you can read without wasting paper and just print what you need.

you can request paper if you cant get online but 90% goes in the trash so i wouldnt.

we use the internet connection to stream netflix

i use my groups and FB and emails for keeping up with my friends and my sanity .

I dont go on instead of working or going outside or spending time with my kids- i go on the same time i might sit and read a book or magazine ( which i also still do alot LOL ) IE i worked on work stuff until 1o got on to print out work stuff and now taking a little me time before i hit the bed !

My kids would rather be outside playing riding bikes - working even ( older ones ) than on a computer or watching TV .

I dont think its an either or thing .

I think sometimes its a self control thimg for kids ( and adults) and that if that is the issue something else will just take its place .

and i think its a perfect way to teach skills they will need as an adult to limit things .

i have used timers in the past when i felt one of the younger ones was on the computer too much

my 14 yo studies with friends using OOVO ( like a skype program where they can video chat with up to 4 other girls at the same time ) her grades actually improved because they do it like a gameshow and the people answering get points .


sometimes the drama comes up but 99% of the time the drama isnt on FB or online at all but happening when they are with each other because they know we parents are watching them online.
 

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For myself, no, I've never considered it. I'm not someone who has to have my cell phone by my side at all times or has to check Facebook every few minutes. I live in the country and go days or weeks at a time without seeing anyone besides my DH, so the internet is important to me. We would consider getting rid of satellite television if we had an internet connection that was good enough to stream Netflix, etc.

For your situation, I think it sounds like a great idea. If I had children, I would limit their internet, cell phone and video usage. I think it's good for children to learn to create their own entertainment, so to speak.
 

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I'm reducing our tv package to only the local channels starting next week, mainly because of the cost. I cannot give up the internet at this point though, we use it during our homeschooling for finding information on report topics, to get worksheets to strengthen new skills, etc.

I mainly use the internet for finding information about homesteading, gardening, for cooking/baking recipes and to keep in contact with family in other states. I do have a few favorite boards that I like to visit daily. I think that I need to start putting a limit on myself as to the amount of time I spend on-line daily.

I think sometimes about how much more time I'd have to get things done if I wasn't connected to the web. But it also saves me money on gas by not having to run to the library, in town 3 miles away, to look up information I need. Once gardening season begins I'll be on here a lot less often.

But back to your original question....I think that no matter how hard you try to give your kids the same childhood you had, you'll never succeed. Things were just too different back then, we knew how to entertain ourselves without all the things kids need today. We were happy just to get outside and play, we were expected to be kids, without all the gadgets to keep us busy. If one kid on the block had a bat and another had a ball, we'd play baseball all day. We we lucky to have toys to play with, now everybody has to have bigger and better than everyone else in the neighborhood and no one shares anymore. Everyone needs to be the star, getting all of the attention.

Another thing is we aren't as connected to our neighborhoods like we were years ago. Back when I was growing up you knew everyone on your block and the block past it in every direction from your house. It was a community of sorts and if you did something wrong your parents knew it before you got home. Everybody watched out for everyone else's kids. Now you don't know much about most of your neighbors, muchless their names at this point, and can't let your kids go to thier friend's house on the next block without worrying if they'll get there ok. There are too many wackos out there. Today's kids are exposed to so many more things at an earlier age than we were, I don't think we have a chance. It's so sad that most kids in the USA have lost that innocent, childlike quality, (at a much younger age) that we had growing up so many years ago.

Maybe living on a farm in a rural area you'll have a better chance at giving your kids somewhat of a childhood like we had, but not in today's suburban or city neighborhoods. Most parents encourage their kids to grow up too quickly, buying them everything their little hearts desire, shuffling them from activity to activity, keeping up with the Jones and technology. I don't think it is possible to recapture that innocense in the kids of today.

Good luck with your endeaver! Pop back on here and let us know how things are going if/when you do decide to unplug. :)
 

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I could probably do without the TV , but not the net. We only have dd17 that is still in school. Dh uses it for work invoices and e-mail.

I don't think I am on it an obsessive amount of time, just spurts during the day.
 

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Well, if it was just me, I probably wouldn't even own a tv. Sure....there are a couple of shows I like, but I honestly wouldn't miss them if I never watched them again. The internet is a different story. I love visiting my frugal forums, I save money with the coupon sites, I bank online, listen to music online, read the news online, check my daughter's school information online, etc. I would definitely miss the computer, but I would give it up if I didn't have the money to pay for it. It would definitely be at the bottom of my priority list.
 
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