When my girls were little, it seemed I was always getting sucked into watching shows with them. Whether it was Blues Clues when the oldest was little, or Dora when the middle was little, or Wonder Pets when the youngest was little, every day brought some new wonderful moment of sugary sweet saccharine viewing. I’d never admit it to them, but I secretly loved these shows (okay, Dora got a little annoying with her shouting questions at me but I digress) and every now and then, I’ll catch them watching reruns of Hannah Montana or Wizards of Waverly Place, and we’ll stop what we’re doing and watch it just like old times.

Fast forward to the teen years (and I mean FAST) and I have an easier time getting them to do their chores than I do to watch a show with me. Partly because we’re all so busy with our own schedules and partly because we all like different shows. But occasionally, there will be a show that either I know they’ll love or they know I’ll like and thus begins the convincing.

So, how do you convince the kids, friends, significant other to just stop everything and come together for just one hour of TV bonding time? Personally, I’ve never had an issue convincing an SO to watch a show with me but the kids? Different story. Here are a few tips that I have found to work – most of the time.

  1. You have to find something that you’re all going to like. This is an obvious one, I realize. If you’re like me with more than one kid (all of whom have very different viewing habits), consider making it a one-on-one thing. One of my favorite things is hanging out in my room watching a show with one of the girls. It’s like our own little GNO but at home!
  2. Put it on the calendar. Busy moms live by their calendars and we all know that if it’s going to get done, it better be on the calendar. Pick a night, pick a time, call it a date, and unless something major comes up – stick to it. You’ll all love the thought of having carved out time to spend together.
  3. Make it a party. Not like a full-blown, dress to the nines party, more like yoga pants and hoody kind of event. Make sundaes.. make popcorn.. drink soda.. whatever floats your boat, make it special.
  4. Bribe or threaten them. Seriously, we’re talking teenagers here. You do what you gotta do. Threaten them with losing their phones, cars, left arm – whatever it takes to get their attention. Will they complain? Sure but deep down inside, they’re savoring the moment and will remember those together times fondly when they’re parents. No. Really. They will.

With 25 million options on Netflix, there certainly has to be ONE show that all of you can watch together, right? In our house, we have binged a TON of shows over the summer but I’ll save that list for another article because I’ve got some great suggestions for you when you’re looking for your next escape.

Are you a fan of Chef’s Table but want a buddy to watch it with you? Check out this flowchart and you’ll have a sous chef to your head chef viewing partner in no time at all!

What are your tips for getting someone to watch a show with you?