Take the Thinga-Reader Survey

I’m dying to know more about you. What’s working on Thingamababy? What’s not? And near the end of the survey, some fun (maybe?) opinion questions.

Take the anonymous survey via Google.

Then come back and tell us via the comment form what other parenting perspectives we can pick our brains about, or if you must, how I’ve designed a horrible survey that didn’t have the option you were looking for.


24 Responses to “Take the Thinga-Reader Survey”

  1. June says:

    I lied about my daughter’s TV/video exposure. I forgot that my MIL regularly watched TV with my then-not-yet-one-year-old daughter (without my knowledge) when she was our regular sitter. :(

    I didn’t expect your survey to bring out so much angst.

    February 26th, 2009 at 5:32 am

  2. RobMonroe says:

    My daughter has been watching one show, seven episodes that we rotate, as part of her bed time routine since right around her first birthday. She seems to be the brightest child her age that we have met, especially for a first born, so I think that too much is made about the “danger” of tv too early. (AJ and I have disagreed about this in the past. :o)

    I’m curious where your religion question is going….

    February 26th, 2009 at 7:31 am

  3. Shannon says:

    I also lied about my daughter’s tv watching. We watch some tv with her in the room, but we don’t intend for her to watch child directed tv until she’s 3. She mostly ignores the shows we watch, but she does like watching car races.

    February 26th, 2009 at 9:15 am

  4. JMo says:

    Oh no … a 4th liar. I forgot that my son sometimes watches TV at daycare. Opps! But not at home yet. Although … just this week he asked if he could watch Elmo, but I told him that we don’t have Elmo on our TV at home – that it’s only for school.

    February 26th, 2009 at 9:20 am

  5. Jenni says:

    I said 4 in the tv questions, but really it would most likely be between 3 and 4. It will completely depend on what I belive my child’s development is at when the time comes.

    February 26th, 2009 at 9:49 am

  6. Pippin says:

    My nearly 2 year old watches *some* TV, things like sign language videos, and “educational” shows. It’s not very often, but this week she’s seen a little more than she usually does–

    This morning I turned it on for her and sat on the couch and cried. The TV thing is such a huge issue, and I hate to let her watch it. The whole “Don’t let your kid watch TV because it’s terribly terribly bad for them, they won’t talk, they’ll be stupid, their brains won’t develop right…” , well, the guilt I feel about letting her watch is just awful.

    I feed her organic food, I read to her several hours a day, we use BPA-free products, we are members of the Children’s Museum, etc., but the TV thing just makes MY self-esteem as a mother plummet.

    Like I said, I turned it on for her today, and cried. I still am. I’ve been thinking about the TV thing all week, and it has depressed me horribly. She’s not even paying attention to it, but it’s on, and doing her lasting damage. I’m a bad mother, and my kid is going to grow up stupid and it’s my fault.

    February 26th, 2009 at 9:53 am

  7. AJ says:

    Rob, nuts, I started replying to your question, but I think it will make a better future discussion topic. Suffice to say, I have a hypothesis about Thinga-readers. It won’t be proven or disproved by the religious survey question, but I asked because I’m curious.

    Everyone else, thanks for totally screwing the TV question. Did you all mark “I’m an atheist” and then forget about your weekly Bible group, too? Somehow I always knew you were all a bunch of thieving liars.

    Yes, I know “thieving” doesn’t fit here, but it’s a turn of phrase and I wanted to use it more than calling you narcoleptic liars (which sounds sort of legally naughty because of “narc” but really would just confuse you more than my original word choice). Oh well!

    Pippin, I can’t tell if you’re really crying.

    February 26th, 2009 at 10:01 am

  8. Angelique says:

    The TV question didn’t bother me (I admit, I am Ok with TV in moderation and guidelines and I no longer feel guilty about it), but the “Way, in moderation” option bothered me for the pink/sports questions. I like to think I fit in another category, the “I don’t buy it for my own kids, but I don’t freak out if they receive it as a gift” category. “Way” implies that I go out and actively buy it myself. There, have I picked the survey apart to your liking AJ?

    February 26th, 2009 at 10:18 am

  9. Pippin says:

    AJ, maybe a little sarcasm, maybe a little tears.

    I feel like crap when I let her watch it, because, golly gee, I’m *trying* to do the other things right. But then there are times when it’s totally necessary- like when I’m loading the dishwasher (she likes to grab the knives), or when I have bathroom “issues”, and need to know she’s occupied- totally occupied- for a few minutes.

    But then, the TV stays on when I’m done with my tasks. This morning, after I did the dishes and a few other things, I sat on the couch (and read Thinga!). I SHOULD have turned off the boob tube, but it felt so nice to just sit on my couch and not have a toddler crawling all over me…. then I felt guilty. So, tears and sarcasm…. the TV deal is such a difficult thing to balance.

    February 26th, 2009 at 10:22 am

  10. AJ says:

    Angelique, don’t read too much into “way.” It was a vague cultural reference to Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

    Bill: Who are you guys?
    Future Ted: We’re you, dude.
    Ted: No way. No… way.
    Future Ted: Yes way Ted!


    So, if you let your daughter have some pink princess stuff, no matter the method of acquisition, I count that as Way — in moderation.

    Pippin, everyone will tell you to not sweat a little TV. I am sweating through my second toddler, and I’ll just say it can be done.

    Have you tried a play yard? It helps to have a safe place to stick a toddler, whether she plays in it or just screams until you return. Even a crib will do in a pinch. Also, Mr. Pippin should help out more with housework if needed (day jobs are tiring, but not nearly as stressful and exhausting as parenting a young child).

    February 26th, 2009 at 11:06 am

  11. KGS says:

    I assume the circumcision question was about baby boys; as a girl’s parent I haven’t thought about it much, so I just guessed. I’d have liked a “not applicable.” Whine, whine, whine.

    February 26th, 2009 at 12:31 pm

  12. Patti says:

    I’m the token anti-demographic thingareader. My kids have watched tv since they were little, though I differentiate in my own head between “The tv is on because some adult wants it so” and “Here, child, sit in front of this entertainment-designed-for-you so I can do something with my hands free”. Both have happened, but the latter starts later on in life in our house.

    I submit to the scorn / pity of the “no tv for us” set. I’m not acrimonious about my perceived self-perception as a less-than-enlightened parent… as I obviously have a very artfully developed self-hating part of my psyche.

    I guess I justify myself TO myself in that my kid has got smarts and social skills and seems to be able to learn through the haze of the airwaves. So, um, go him? If I really, seriously, saw that I was doing harm with the TVness of our life then I’d stop cold. But, I don’t. And I don’t buy into the “no tv is better” logic ENOUGH to more than feel bad that I don’t ban TV from our lives and remember to consciously turn the thing off and keep it off from time to time.

    February 26th, 2009 at 1:06 pm

  13. Kimberly says:

    TV question didn’t bug me either. West watches Baby Signing Time and Ebee Baby, both I feel totally appropriate for his age and developmental level (age 1).

    I am interested in seeing the circumcision results as it is a topic I feel passionate about (I am all for keeping our sons uncut!!).

    February 26th, 2009 at 1:10 pm

  14. Dani says:

    I guess my only comment was whether my child has disabilities.
    I wrote yes because I wasn’t really comfortable saying no.
    He has some physical issues that have required physical and occupational therapy in the past (and is currently being evaluated for the future). He is not severely handicapped in any way but I guess I would have liked to explain it further instead of just saying yes or no.

    February 26th, 2009 at 2:25 pm

  15. LeAnn says:

    In my own personal experience, TV isn’t all bad, even at a young age. While traveling to work one day, my daughter, at about 2, saw steam coming from some kind of factory. She very emphatically told me she saw a volcano. I thought her teacher had been talking about them for some reason, and asked her what else the teacher had told her. I was quickly informed that Dora says when the steam comes from the mountain, the volcano is going to “rupt”. At least the 30 minutes of Dora she watched while I showered and dressed every morning didn’t rot her brain too much!

    February 26th, 2009 at 5:29 pm

  16. Christy says:

    I did NOT lie about my daughter’s TV consumption. We watch adult programming (not to be confused with ‘Adult Programming’) while she is in the room, as we have done since she was born. We let her watch it as a wee little one, probably about a year old…and she still watches it. Call me crazy, but I like to cook dinner in peace.

    That being said, I totally thought of Bill and Ted when I read “way”.

    I too am quite curious about the religion question. I have found that it plays heavily into the circumcision issue in our community….

    February 26th, 2009 at 8:14 pm

  17. MoJo says:

    From my experience, TV watching at a younger age is more common with subsequent siblings. I marked the selection for age 2, but really that was with my first. My next two were exposed at an earlier age, but didn’t show an interest till closer to 1.5. I am a believer is making life less stressful. And if that means a 1/2 hour of TV so that I can do a quick pickup of the house or do the dishes, then I am all for it. I am a happier mom who then enjoys my time playing on the floor with my kids instead of worrying how i can’t find the kitchen sink through the dirty dishes. And I can say that my kids have benefited from some of the shows they like. Sesame Street, Sid the Science Kid, etc have talked about things that have really stuck with them.

    February 26th, 2009 at 9:38 pm

  18. My Boaz's Ruth says:

    For TV I wrote two because that is when we would be okay with it. However, since we don’t have a TV now, and don’t know when we will purchase one, it may end up being older.

    February 27th, 2009 at 6:27 am

  19. Carrie C says:

    I almost lied about the tv stuff. She didn’t take an interest in it until she was about 2. But, we have watched the PBS morning run of shows (Sesame Street, Curious George, Sid the Science Kid) since she was about 10 months old. So I checked age 1. The Sesame Street was initially for me…I admit it, I love my Muppets. She loves it too, and now enjoys watching the occasional DVD of Sesame Street Old School with me. I learned my alphabet and numbers with the help of Cookie Monster and Oscar, she can too. She doesn’t watch tv after the morning shows. If we have the set on after dinner, she plays while we watch. Like everything, it’s in moderation.

    February 27th, 2009 at 8:32 pm

  20. Mary says:

    AJ, I thought that your survey was a good one, but it could have included a little bit extra. Honestly, I didn’t know how to answer the religious question because only I go to church and I bring my son with me (my daughter is still a bit young to just lay in the church nursery). My husband isn’t the religious type. So, my household is a mix.

    As for your other questions, I don’t know why the TV issue hit so many people so hard. I know that you are an advocate for no television and I respect you for that and being able to avoid almost all television in your household. However, my son has watched television and I believe he has learned quite a bit from the shows we allow him to watch. We are very particular about what he watches and we involve ourselves as much as we can. I do not consider myself a bad parent because my son enjoys television and neither should other parents (as long as their children aren’t exposed to inappropriate programming and subject to prolonged exposure).
    Boys and trucks, girls and pink: I don’t go out of my way to ensure that is all they are expose to, but yes, I like to see my little girl in dresses and bows (not all the time). If my son wants a doll or a pretend kitchen, I’ll gladly get one for him. So far, he has not asked for one, though. I let his interests guide him and when my daughter gets older (she’s only five months), I’ll let her interests guide her.

    We all have our own ideas of what makes good parenting choices and what is the “right” way to raise our children. There really is no right or wrong, as long as your children are happy, healthy, loved, and continually learning. We live in a world that continues to become more and more digitized. Exposing my children to that doesn’t force them to grow up too fast. It encourages to grow in ways different from our own upbringing. As long as there is interaction, exposure to a variety of media (from nature to technology), and a loving environment our children will grow up just fine.

    February 28th, 2009 at 7:36 am

  21. Kirra says:

    I felt the same as KGS that there could have been another option for the circumcision question. I also have a girl and hadn’t even thought about it. I originally didn’t put a response but found I had to put one in to submit since it was a mandatory question.

    I haven’t watched Bill and Ted’s adventure so missed the link there.

    February 28th, 2009 at 11:26 pm

  22. theblondeghost says:

    Wow. Reading the comments, the TV question seems to be the big focus.

    I had really conflicted feelings about TV/movie veiwing. I would have prefered to have almost none, but my husband is very into watching movies and tv. I’ve tried to show him some of the research about them, but he just doesn’t “get” my concern. It also didn’t help that since we’ve been married he’s left the TV on to “keep his dog company” while we’re away at work. So the TV was almost always on, since he wouldn’t turn it off when he got home. For a while after our son was born, the TV was off because I was home. As he got older, my husband wanted to “share” certain shows and movies with him. Letting go of the TV concern has been one of the prices I’ve paid for my husband taking an equal role and time commitment to parenting. Our boy is almost three now, and I’m seeing one positive effect of the TV veiwing — he’s able to tune out the TV and play with other stuff. He’ll ask me to start a show for him (currently ScoobyDoo) but 5 minutes later we’ll be racing trucks around the kitchen island and he’s totally oblivious to it.

    I’m concerned about many things impacting the health, safety, and well being of my child, but I’m no longer sweating the TV viewing as long as he’s still more interested in physical activities and social interaction.

    March 1st, 2009 at 9:14 am

  23. Paul says:

    TV … you asked when we introduced it? So I said basically from birth. It doesn’t mean we watch a lot but it was an experience we started early and every so often allow a little bit of.

    Toys … Honest we didn’t mean to lock them into role models. But I have a boy who is just obsessively crazy about cars, rockets and planes. I don’t know if it’s proving gender but I wasn’t going to fight his preferences. He also likes cooking and drawing, and wearing his sister’s hairbands, so I guess there is some balance there. He hasn’t asked to wear her dresses yet. ;-)

    March 1st, 2009 at 9:42 am

  24. Summer says:

    The TV question didn’t phase me at all, but the pink/sports question did. I guess I don’t like pre-prescribed gender biases. Our little one can do whatever he wants, including play with Barbies OR trucks. I myself hated pink princess stuff when I was small, and my husband and I both are not sports buffs (musicians instead).

    March 1st, 2009 at 6:54 pm

Post a comment

(will not be published)