Single Moms Should Use TV & iPads as Babysitters Even If It's Bad for the Kids

Sometimes I have no idea how I’d manage without the proverbial “electronic babysitters” known as the TV, the iPhone, the computer, and the tablet. Actually I don’t have a tablet, but I do have a 4-year-old iTouch and that’s basically the same, right?

Anyway, there are times when I just need to keep the kids out of my hair. As a single mom, I don’t have anyone to hand them off to for a few minutes of “sanity time” at the end of the day. When they’re with me, it’s just them and me, and if I need to get something done, it’s so easy to sit them down and tell them they can watch a show if they agree on it.


They like it, because this usually translates to one show each, as they’re five years apart and are generally into different genres. That’s 44 minutes in which I can get dinner together, finish up some work, make phone calls, or even just catch my breath.

But here’s the downside I seem to always forget about when I have the brilliant idea to break out the electronic entertainment -- they turn into screen zombies.

Remember that part about not having a partner at the end of the day to pitch in with the parenting? Yeah, that means I get the TV tantrums all to myself too.

Every single time, I promise myself that I won’t ever do that again, or at least I’ll hold out longer next time before caving. But then I’m back at square one eventually. Because that beautiful glow is such a treat for them, they sit mesmerized -- and quietly.

Sometimes a single mom just needs a moment of peace, even if Strawberry Shortcake is on in the background.

And let’s face it -- it’s easier to deal with the post-screen time meltdowns than to stay trapped in a destructive marriage.

Do you use screen time to get a little peace sometimes?


Image via Michael Cramer/Flickr

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