The level of wickedness that resides within the soft glow of our flat screen television is something that I've struggled with ever since Abbey came home from the hospital and I started devouring information on baby/childhood brain development.
Everything I have read suggests it is bad, bad, bad to let your infant watch television. Most experts agree that the TV should be OFF - no exposure - for infants, and most seem to agree that TV adds no value for children under the age of 2.
Intellectually, I totally agree with them.
Here's the thing.
I grew up in a household where the television was on pretty much ALL THE TIME. Thus, in our house, the television is on almost ALL THE TIME. No, we aren't always watching it. Often - like now - it's on in the background turned to a news channel with the volume set lower. On the weekend, it's usually set to the Food Network, or a DIY channel. So, it's not like it's continuous gratuitous sex/violence being exhibited on the flashy screen. It's Eggs Benedict. And gardening. And the Today Show. And we NEVER plop Abbey in front of the television thinking that we WANT her to watch it. Heavens no! But she is, from time to time, drawn to the magical screen. Especially when there's something musical happening - a jingle, or a video, or Dancing With the Stars. But it's usually just for a second or two and she returns to playing with her toys, cooing happily.
So, how badly are we damaging our child here?
The television is by no means a "babysitter" in our house. Rather, a companion for the adults who are news junkies and like to check in with the adult world. So, I'm curious if any of you out there have read anything on passive TV viewing in children? Because I think I can attest that I definitely have some ADD and OCD tendencies, and maybe that's a product of growing up in a digital age. And if that's the case for me - in my Atari loving, MTV just came out, I loved Fraggle Rock childhood - what does the impact of so much technology mean for our daughter?