Carter is better this evening. He woke angry and irritable this morning, but with a little extra medicine and a quiet day at home, he’s calm now. We have an appointment with his psychiatrist tomorrow afternoon, and I have a phone meeting with his therapist after that. Hopefully those appointments will be productive! On all other service fronts, we’re in a holding pattern. Both occupational therapy agencies that our insurance covers have months-long waiting lists, and we’re waiting on an appointment for a new neuro exam. Carter hasn’t had one since he was a toddler and both the psychiatrist and therapist think that, since we know so much more now about the nature of Carter’s difficulties, we have a chance of getting some answers.
Now that Carter is finally calm, we thought that we’d snuggle up together on the couch to watch some TV and Brian and I got to talking about how much television has changed since we were children in the 70s. What happened to the family hour? Used to be, from 7-8 (here in NM) or 8-9 (where Brian was, in PA), the programs were OK for kids. Look at this primetime TV lineup from 1979; every night of the week there was something the whole family could watch together. We watched Eight Is Enough, Little House on the Prairie, and Mork and Mindy in that first primetime hour. What little sexual innuendo there was in those shows was subtle enough that most kids probably learned more about sex from watching Mom and Dad greet each other at the end of the work day. Dallas and Hart to Hart (tame by today’s standards) came on long after us kids had gone to bed.
I’m not a prude by any stretch. I watch House, Grey’s Anatomy and even (ssh…don’t tell!) Nip/Tuck; I just don’t want my 7 year old to watch them. And I don’t want treacly, hyper-religious programing for any of us, kids or adults. A show doesn’t have to be a remade Waltons or Touched by an Angel to be family friendly. But there’s got to be something in between that and The New Adventures of Old Christine, Gossip Girl, or (God help us) Two and a Half Men.
Brian and I call this the iCarly Effect. The major networks don’t make much by way of family programming anymore because kids have their own programming, and tons of it. My kids don’t have TVs in their bedrooms, but if they did, I’m sure they’d want to go in there and gorge on tween/teen-TV: Hannah Montana, iCarly, Degrassi, and (again, God help us) 90210. Whether those shows are even appropriate aside (and two of them are not), they’re geared towards kids, not families. I want things we can watch together.
Too damn bad I don’t have any influence, anywhere, with anyone, because really? It’s dark out by 6 pm and there are only so many board games we can play.