How I Learned to Fall Asleep Without the Help of the TV

by Erin Jahns

Growing up, I was never the kid sitting glued to a Nintendo DS, compulsively playing Oregon Trail on the computer, or watching more than an episode or two of TV daily. Though my parents had a strict no-TV-in-the-bedroom policy, they were otherwise pretty lenient as far as how I spent my free time. Never a troublemaker, I suppose they just trusted me, having faith in the fact that I would much rather scooter around the block about 15 times or choreograph interpretive dances to Vanessa Carlton with my girlfriends (I have yet to find those camcorder tapes and burn them) than watch TV.

As I got older, attending dance practice, chasing boys, and engaging in all other pretentiously teenage activities kept me busy, so I just didn’t have much time or interest for TV (except for the occasional episode of MTV’s Life of Ryan—circa 2008, Ryan Sheckler was a nonnegotiable). This is why my college dependence on it only a few years later was all the more startling. Now, let me point out (hi, Mom and Dad) that my dependence didn’t consist of skipping classes in order to binge-watch America’s Next Top Model or Say Yes to the Dress. Sure, my roommates and I might have mindlessly watched while getting ready or studying, but my problem came around bedtime. 

Keep reading to find out how falling asleep to the TV started for me and how I finally ended the habit!

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