Rockstar could take or leave TV until someone presented him with an extremely addictive cartoon series on DVD. It was like he bit of the Apple – suddenly he didn’t want to read. He didn’t want to paint. He didn’t even particularly care for the playground. He only wanted to sit, slack-jawed, and watch TV.
People take raising their kids very seriously here. At least several families we know quite well – a very nice Korean family who came in out of Canada, another Singaporean family who has been in London for some time – allow their babies and toddlers zero tv. Zilch. (Another Malaysian family living here, to our relief, does however allow their boys limited tv like we do.)
Our pediatricians Dr Leo Chan / Theresa Wong, very respected among the Hong Kong Mummy circles, always give us grief that we allow Rockstar a teeny, tiny bit of tv. Dr Chan breaks out the folder of newspaper clippings (many in Chinese) and journal articles about the Evils of TV with regards to a child’s development every single time.
So Rockstar's parents staged an intervention. After we hid the boxed set, we told him the DVDs were spoilt.
GlaMum felt terrible lying to her rockstar. He asked for the DVDs from the moment he woke up, several times a day when the “craving” hit. He would pull her aside and look her in the eye. “DVD nooot spoilt” he would say suspiciously, even accusatorily.
“Yes they are, darling.” (All the while feeling terrible.)
I couldn’t take the dishonesty in the relationship. I vowed next time, I wouldn’t lie.
“DVD not spoiiiilttt…”
“No, darling. They’re not spoilt. You were watching them too much. You stopped reading and working on your jigsaws. Watching tv without doing anything else – reading, playing games – could make you stupid.”
He listened so seriously.
Then the rockstar got up from Mummy’s bed where he was sitting, and walked back outside to look thru his bookshelf.
He never asked for the DVDs again.
GlaMum cannot believe her luck.