Monday, June 22, 2009

Pillow Talk

When the fabulous dude and I were planning for our marriage, we were blessed to receive pre-marital counseling from two couples who were both very influential in our teenage years and who had been strong models of Christian marriage to us as we had grown up. During one of our sessions with one of the couples it was suggested that we withhold on having a television in our bedroom for at least the first year of our marriage.

The couple explained to us that they felt it was important to reserve the bedroom as a place of intimacy, especially in the early years of marriage. Without having a TV in the bedroom, a couple is able to spend time in conversation before going to sleep at night. This way, the bedroom is a place of refuge, a place that belongs only to you and your spouse and is free from distractions.

Growing up, my parents had a TV in their room and FD's parents did not. Neither of us felt like it was a big deal either way but we thought the advice made sense. Plus, we only had one TV (and actually, for the first 2-3 months not even that) so it made sense to put it in the living room and not the bedroom.

Now, after 2.835 years of marriage, we still have just one TV and is is located in the living room. We don't watch much TV anyway. We don't have cable and so we get about five stations on a good day. We have grown accustomed to not having a TV in our room, so it doesn't usually feel like anything is missing.

However, there have been many times when one of us has said, "I wish so badly that we had a TV in our bedroom right now". On nights when one of us is tired and ready for bed and the other is not we sometimes think it would be nice to still be close to each other but one person could go to sleep and the other could watch TV or a movie. Or sometimes, it would just be nice to snuggle up and be comfy in our bed while watching a movie. Occasionally, we have done this by setting up the laptop on my dresser so we can watch a movie in bed (usually this happens when I'm ready to fall asleep and he's not tired yet). However, recently the laptop has been acting up and we can't move it around a lot or else the power cord doesn't reconnect when I plug it in. So, we haven't had the chance to watch movies in our room in quite a while.

Despite the times that we have said it would be so nice and convenient to have a TV in our room, I think, overall, I am glad that we don't. It is nice to have the bedroom as a quiet place that is not full of distractions. Also, I don't think I would like it if we ended up falling asleep while watching TV every night.

So, I am wondering if anyone else has an opinion about this? For those of you who are married, do you have a TV in your room? Why or why not? Is this something you made an active decision about? Did your parents have a TV in their room when you were growing up? Did this impact your choice? I'm curious to see if this is something that is a debate for others or just us.

21 comments:

N. said...

Hmmm ... thought provoking. We do have a t.v. in our room, but we typically don't watch it in there. It's used more for midday t.v./napping. We do end our day together watching t.v. in the living room. Then we go to the bedroom for discussion and/or "other".

I will say that we used to go to bed to watch t.v., in the early years of our marriage, but what I found was that after I had laid in bed for over an hour watching t.v. that I wasn't comfortable enough in bed to be able to go to sleep after that. So, that's why we quit doing it.

But, I can say that I do think it's wise to reserve your bedroom for intimacy, or intimacy gets lost like it tends to everywhere else. Great advice you received!!

Nicole

Jessica said...

Growing up we only had 1 TV and 2 stations so it wasn't an issue for me when I moved out. My hubby and I do have a TV in our bedroom but don't watch it together. We usually watch TV together in our living room. The bedroom one is really only used by me in the morning when I'm getting ready so that I can listen to the news.

When we go to bed we always talk about things we haven't had the time to talk about during the evenings. It's really our favorite part of the day and I'm glad we've kept doing that even though we've been together a long time. (We've been married 3 yrs but living together for about 7 total).

I think it something that makes a marriage stronger. Especially after kids (which we don't have yet) but I know that once we do that time we spend together will be even more precious.

Snow White said...

No TV for us in the bedroom -- we only had one, and honestly, the thought never crossed each of our minds.

We don't watch that much TV, and usually camp out on the futons in the living room when we do... sometimes it turns out to be a camp out when one of us falls asleep.

So, I agree with you -- it's nice to have the bedroom be TV-free.

Evan Kirkland said...

TV in room all the way. We don't right now, but we will...once dad buys a new one for the boat and I can snag the old one...

Holly said...

We do have one in the bedroom now, but didn't for at least the first 10 years of our marriage.
I think it's nice not to. I will admit that sometimes it's on too much. On the other hand, it works for us now because I like to have it for when I'm doing laundry (which is upstairs w/ the bedrooms), and also, when a child is sick, it's nice to tuck them into mom and dad's bed and still be able keep them entertained.

C said...

We feel the same way. We were counseled to not have a tv in our room, and I'm so glad we don't. Our bedroom is for "us time" only. The only place we watch TV together is on the living room couch.. and that's pretty rare too.

Taryn said...

I am with you- no T.V. in the bedroom. I believe that both of our parents had T.V.'s in their rooms, but we also had pre-marital advice to keep it out of the bedroom for a bit. We only have one T.V. too- and no cable- so it wouldn't really be worth it.

Also- I can't fall asleep if the T.V. is on. Chris can (and did in college) but for me- it just sucks me in and I just veg and can't fall asleep even if I am not actually watching it. so I don't know if we will ever have a T.V. in our room. Plus, I kinda like having the bedroom be just for "us." If you know what I mean . . . = )

Lindsey said...

Great question! I never wanted a TV in the bedroom, but it's the only way Garth can fall asleep so we have one. We don't have cable though so we don't really watch much TV.

Meg said...

We don't have a tv in our bedroom. We decided if we wanted to watch movies in there (we don't have cable) we would just take our laptop in there. We do that on occasion but usually end up just sitting in the living room. We talked about getting a TV in our room but we decided against it for the reasons you've posted about. We enjoy talking for awhile at the end of the day before we go to sleep. It's time to just relax and enjoy each other. =)

Cristina said...

We don't have a tv in our bedroom, I think my husband and I have the best conversations before we fall asleep at night...we only have 1 tv in the house and it's in the living room.

Jenny.Lee said...

We do not have a tv in our room however we do use a laptop to occasionally watch movies. This really isn't something we've talked about simply because we don't have the extra tv. I think we may eventually get one but as of right now it's not a necessity or even a want.

...Mrs. Southern Bride... said...

As of right now, we don't have one in our room...

You have a bloggy award on my recent post!

Summer Wind said...

Hi! I found your blog through Love& Marriage. I noticed you like worship/inspirational songs, you should check out Hillsong, it's a great inspirational group. My favorite is called From The Inside Out!

TRICIA @boutellefamilyzoo said...

Hi Lucy. Sorry I haven't been around in a while. Crazy weeks!
Anyway, regarding the tv in the bedroom I say no. We don't have one. Sometimes as you, we wish we did, but it does help reserve the bedroom as the bedroom. Plus, one added advantage is that the kids don't take over the room as their own to watch tv. ;)
BTW: all ofyour photos have just made a sick girl very hungry! That grilled veggie salsa looks AMAZING!

Yummy!
Have a great week!
*Tricia

Miss(es) Canadian Pie said...

We don't have a tv in our room either. For the same reasons as you. For intimacy reasons...and then bc we only have one tv. We both like watching movies and I love tv (though we only have three channels on a good day). We used to use his portable dvd player to watch movies in bed but then the dog ate the cord for it. I think tv's should stay outa the bedroom. Just my preferance.

Kayla said...

We do not have a tv in our bedroom. When we moved in together, we made the decision to keep tv out of the bedroom. We figured it was better for a healthy "intimate" relationship. My parents actually have a tv in their bedroom, but they do not watch tv very often. It's usually if my mom heads to bed early and uses it to fall asleep to (in less than 2 minutes) when my dad isn't ready to go to bed yet.

My husband and I do try to go to bed together every night though at the same time. I think it's important to have that time to talk about things as you mentioned.

It's worked well for us. We've been married a little under a year so far! :-)

Brittany Ann said...

My parents did; the hubs did not. We didn't care either way. But we each brought a small TV to our marriage. We put the nicer one in the living room and hooked it up to our channels and cable. We put the tiny one in the living room and hooked it up to ur DVD player. We only use it to watch the occasional movie before bed. And we do it together (or if my husband is working out of town, I do it alone...helps me sleep since I don't sleep well without him there.) We like to cuddle in bed and watch movies. We don't want to flip channels and watch TV in bed. So it's a movie-only zone. And we probably only watch a movie once a week or every other week.

Emily MacKenzie said...

We had a TV in our bedroom for the first few years we were married, but haven't for the passed 3 years. We liked having one. When Lill was an baby I would throw in a Friends episode while feeding her at night.
I don't think it really interfered with our communication (or anything else for that matter...). If it's a priority to stay in tune with each other, you will. TV or no.
Both our folks have one currently, though I don't know if that was the case growing up.

Rona's Home Page said...

Charles and I didn't purchase a TV till our 2 year together. We put it in our bedroom. We both had a TV in our bedrooms before we got together.
I enjoy watching TV especially during my severe pain episodes. When I was recouping from my work accident it helped keep my mind distracted.

Lucky in Love said...

We do have a TV in our room. My parents did and his parents didn't. But...I've had a TV in my room since I was little and I fall asleep it to. Matt does not too. It's also nice because sometimes he wakes up a little earlier than me on the weekend so he watches TV until I wake up. We always go to bed and wake up together.

I have thought about that it sometimes would be nice to not have one...but the nights where we decide not to turn it on...it feels SO quiet! I guess I'm just used to it now.

Carrie said...

For the first 15 or so years of marriage we only had one TV so we didn't have one in the bedroom. When we got a new TV we put the old one in our room, but only for a short period of time because I found that we were staying up too late watching TV. I also didn't like the way it looked. It was an ugly, big, black box right on my dresser. I made a decision to take it out and haven't really missed it. Now we talk or read before bedtime. It's actually very relaxing having some quiet time before bed and helps me drop off to sleep easier.