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Does Watching TV = Spending Time Together?

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I say yes, my man says no.

Man and woman watching TV at home

Momlogic's Julie: My hubby and I had a disagreement this week about the definition of quality time. He said all I want to do is watch TV once the kids have been put to bed. But I said that watching TV together is quality time in my book.

When we watch one of "our" shows on Tivo, we talk. We pause during OMG moments to discuss. We bond. Or at least that's what I think we're doing.

To him, watching TV together just means we're not talking, connecting, or doing anything valuable with our time. He'd rather chat, hang out together, play cards, do something around the house, or get physical instead of staring at a box for hours at a time.

Who's right in this fight?

next: What if I Just Ignored My Toddler?
13 comments so far | Post a comment now
Kate October 25, 2008, 11:01 AM

My husband and I have this fight all the time. All we do is watch TV together anymore, and I miss quality time doing other activities. Sometimes we’ll play Xbox or a board game, but mostly we’re couch potatoes. I think that the whole family could benefit from some together time outside of the house, exploring different areas in our community. I don’t think that there is anything wrong with watching TV together on occasion, but when one spouse expresses the desire to do other activities, the other spouse should make an effort to please by engaging in those other activities. It’s only fair!

Wendi October 25, 2008, 11:36 AM

My husband and watch T.V together to spend time together. He works and goes to school, so when he gets home he really just wants to relax. I am the type of person that loves to go out and do things, but we can’t lately because of him being so busy. We have 3 kids and they keep us busy as well. The 2 older ones are in sports, so we all do those together and practices together. We also make sure that we do take some walks and go on hikes when we can. I think that balance is very important in this situation and this is one that really needs to be talked out.

When we are watching our shows, this is time we also use to snuggle as much as possible.

DEBRA October 25, 2008, 12:05 PM

since my husband bought his laptop he stay in the room and watch movies and any thing else he can do til wee hours of the morning. i have to ask him to come and watch one of our favorite shows with me. we spend quality time together going out to dinner twice a month, and he dont have anything to talk about - just eat.

Brandi October 25, 2008, 12:33 PM

I think that both are okay. I think that you have to do more with each other than just watch tv though. My husband and I have a few favorite shows that we watch together, but we also do other things together as well.

Uly October 25, 2008, 2:59 PM

Your husband.

However, with regards to another commentor - if you want to get out and about more, just go do that. You don’t *need* your husband to do that.

Anonymous October 25, 2008, 5:08 PM

I’ll ask my husband his thoughts… as soon as we finish our shows on Tivo.

Wendy October 25, 2008, 10:07 PM

We have the opposite views. I would much rather be doing something meaningful or active or fun. However, there are times when it’s nice to turn something on, cuddle and just veg-out together. I think I had a problem with it the most when it seemed like that’s all we did.

Mandi October 25, 2008, 10:46 PM

I think the husbands response is correct. I dont think that watching tv is spending quality time together. You need to talk to each other to find out about each others day. I don’t think that kids enter into the equation. because you can talk to each other when the kids go to bed. So I would say find something more interesting to do such as playing a game or anything that you know that you both will be interested in. But i am sure this is an argument that all couples come across.

geen October 26, 2008, 10:43 AM

Me and my hubby play “hungry hungry hippos” together.

Anonymous October 26, 2008, 11:29 PM

It all depends how you feel afterward. Do you feel closer? Warmer? More connected? If you have a meaningful conversation about the show, then maybe you do.
I read in a magazine that gardening together makes you feel good. Usually I do garden things by myself but one day my husband came out and cut down some branches that were keeping sun out of the garden. It was very interesting. I did feel really good and close to him right after that. Maybe cause it’s like farming which helps the species survive and so evolution has made us feel good about doing it (like sex.)

Kathy October 26, 2008, 11:31 PM

whoops left my URL off the post -

Janettee November 5, 2008, 2:09 AM

My hubby and I fight a/b this a lot. Actually, when we were dating, it was the other way around… He was the couch potato and I was always wanting to get out, go do something like a movie, or something.
Now, two years later… He’s the one wanting to get out of the house, and I’m the one wanting to just stay home and watch TV. (Even though we lost cable in July when we bought our new house, due to the added finances)…
He’s flat-footed and has plantar fascitis so, considering that about 1/4 of the time he’s at work, about 1/4 of the time he’s asleep, and then about 1/8 of the time he’s completely unable to even stand up… I tend to try to find things we can do together that don’t involve him moving. Especially since his reason for not doing housework on his days off is frequently that he couldn’t move…

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