Baby Needs an IPod…Or Does She?

Baby Ipod

Earlier this week I visited the Apple Store to order the full version of Tozzle, one of the iPhone games I’ve found that is like baby crack to the toddler set. Zizi is enticed to sit on the potty with either a book, watching Dora, or one of the toddler iPhone games like Tozzle, Peekaboo Barn, First Words: AnimalsWheels on the Bus (more interactive book than game) or Adam’s Game. Hey, Dr. Karp recommends using whatever you can to bribe them encourage them to spend time on the potty. So there you have it.

So back to the Apple Store. In reading the reviews for Tozzle, one parent wrote, “I installed this on my 2-year-old’s iPod touch and…” I have no memory of the remainder of the review. My brain came to a full stop with the words: my 2-year-old’s iPod touch. I could not get past the idea of a 2-year-old having an iPod touch of his/her own. No issue with a kid playing with a parent’s iPhone or iPod, but since when does a toddler need an adult piece of electronics like that?

I ran it by my partner in doctor-mommy parenting, Michelle, who was equally aghast. “Two-year-olds don’t need iPods!” she wholeheartedly agreed. We clucked and patted ourselves on the backs for being parents who would never be that indulgent. Nice shoes here and a pretty dress there, but not an iPod, we concluded.

Fast forward to yesterday evening. Zara decided that her burrito was more fun to play with than to eat. After the umpteenth black bean was launched from the high chair, she was excused from the table with a consequence of no Dora and a task of picking up all the no-longer-airborne food strwen about. Midway through the clean-up, she informed us that she had to go potty.

“Barn, pleasey Mommy?” she wheedled.

Hell, I’d give her a gin-and-tonic if it would get her to the potty. (OK, no I wouldn’t, but you get my drift.) I pulled down pants, wrestled off the diaper and settled her on her potty. I then handed her my iPhone with Peekaboo Barn open on the screen.

“No, no, barn!” she cried with toddler fickleness.

“You just said you wanted Barn! Why did you change your mind?” I asked stupidly. (Somehow I insist on asking her this type of ridiculous question. Honestly I think it’s because her behavior is so similar to my dear AdoringHusband’s that I get them confused easily.)

“No barn!” was her only reply.

“How about Tozzle?” I ventured.

“Yes, Tozzle! Pleasey Mommy!”

I handed her the iPhone and let her Tozzle her little heart out. I returned to finish my burrito with AdoringHusband.

“So what do you think about getting her an iPod touch?” AdoringHusband said while I was in mid-chew.

I must have looked at him as if he had suddenly sprouted 10 heads, because he quickly followed up with, “Wow, I guess you think that’s a bad idea.”

“What’s she need an iPod for? She’s 2-years-old! I’m not raising some indulged, bratty kid who gets an iPod at 2 and a BMW at 16! Oh no! Think again,” I huffed.

“First of all, it’s not like she asked for it. She’s too young to ask for things and doesn’t even know enough to be entitled. Remember, she still gets upset because she can’t pull a real balloon out of the ballon pictures in her books. Second, she loves those games she plays on our phones, but what if she decides to spike our phones on the floor, or better yet, give them a float test in the toilet while we’re not looking? It might be safer for her to have her own.”

“But it’s ridiculous for a 2-year-old to have a piece of electronics like that. It’s expensive…”

“More expensive that some of her dresses and shoes?” he cut in.

“That’s different!” I shot back.


“Well everyone has clothes and shoes. That’s universal. Yet you as a parent can decide to tweak up or down your kid’s wardrobe as you see fit when they are that age. She doesn’t know what she’s wearing, but I like the quality of her clothes, and she looks so cute!”

“Calm down,” he soothed, “I love how she looks too. But I just don’t see this as being any different. Or at least any different from her other toys.”

“Hrumph,” I grumbled, at a loss for how to explain what seemed perfectly clear to me. “I still think spending over $200 for her to play her games is a little much.”

“Wait a minute. They cost over $200? I thought they were like $75. I mean, the iPhones are $199 so these should be cheaper. Oh hell no. Forget it,” he concluded the discussion.

Yet somehow I still feel that even at $75, a 2-year-old shouldn’t have an iPod touch. I’m just not able to explain it in a way that makes sense to my concrete rationalist husband.

What do you guys think? Take my poll and give me more feedback in the comments.

[poll id=”2″]

Published by: teendoc on April 30th, 2009 | Filed under parenting, shopping, toys

11 Responses to “Baby Needs an IPod…Or Does She?”

  1. Adrienne Says:

    I voted No and not to mention the risk of hearing loss from the ear buds used for iPods. Ear phones that go over the ears have less of a risk than the ear buds.

    All DS needs on the potty is one of his books and thats if hes pooping. He pees so quickly he doesn’t want to read, just wants to go, get it done with, wash his hands and be gone. LOL

  2. teendoc Says:

    I should have been clearer that we would not let her use ear buds at all. She has tiger over the ear toddler headphones that we use with the DVD player. When she plays the games, they are with the music/sounds coming out of the phone itself.

    At this point Zizi needs encouragement to sit and “make.” Initially she did well but then we had some regression where she didn’t even want to sit on the potty and went OOC when we tried to put her on it. So now, as long as we get the “potty is your friend” vibe, we are good, no matter how we get there.

    Thanks for the feedback!

  3. Becky Says:

    I’d think of it like this: I think $75 is a small price to pay for a kid to get potty trained. But that’s just me. I’m with your husband, I easily spend that on clothes for my kid in a couple of months. I’m sure that I’m in the minority.

    Beckys last blog post..Whatever Is Spanish For Denial

  4. Sarah Vogel Says:

    Personally, I thought early potty-training was way over-rated. For us (we’re not that organized) it was a lot easier to carry diapers and make quick changes as needed than to remember to ask the girls to go before we left a place with a bathroom – and even when we did, they would need to go desperately when we were no longer in easy range of a bathroom. And like Zizi, they both got resistant when about 2.5. Doctor said not to worry – try again at 3. And at 3, it was much easier for both parents and kids and training was done (with occasional mistakes) in a week or so.

    Despite being an info junkie, I’m kind of a Luddite when it comes to electronics for the kids and mine don’t get to do much with computers, phones, game boys etc. I’d rather they got out and ran around and explored the real world (tho’ hard to do when you’re sitting on a toilet!). We listen to music on the stereo and dance together and play a few computer games but the kids use our stuff and don’t have their own.

    Does it make a difference? Who knows? I grew up in a household with the TV on constantly (and I mean constantly) and I’m a big reader and rarely watch TV. My husband grew up without a TV and is much more of a TV & computer game junkie. All we can do is make the best choices we can for our situations, I guess.

  5. Neville Says:

    …u still can write well 😉

  6. Michele Says:

    Crap. I guess I’ll return her birthday gift. Until you posted this, I was totally giving her the iPod touch for her birthday. I suppose it will have to be the pony after all. Is your neighborhood zoned for a pony?

  7. Deathstar Says:

    Back in my day, if you crapped in your diapers, then too bad for you. All we had was a stick and an empty refrigerator box……

  8. Adrienne Says:

    Do you stay with her in the bathroom when she is on the potty? See, I potty trained my son by teaching him that he was responsible for sitting on it when he had to pee. But he didn’t have to sit on it if he didnt have to go. I think that is what helped him to go, other than following me to the bathroom when I had to go LOL

    Potty training is up to the kid after the parents explain the basics and the kid gets it. LOL

  9. emily Says:

    Seeing how hard my daughter ‘knocks’ on my iPhone when playing Peekaboo Barn has made me consider getting an iPod touch. It would not be property of my daughter, but she could use it for all her games and movies. It worries me that she will break my phone and replacing it (mid contract) will me more expensive than buying a refurbished iPod touch.

  10. Kelly Fleming Says:

    I voted perfectly fine. If I had a child who enjoyed it and I could afford it and I was ok with the use of technology then I would do it. If any of those three things were different no.

    With that said my 8 year old wants an ipod touch and we have said no because he has an ipod already.

  11. Vernell Says:

    Hi there,

    My son i(4 years old) s also a fan of my iTouch. I, on the other hand, had never heard of the thing prior to receiving it as a gift for Christmas (from my hip 14-year old niece who also talked her parents into buying me Uggs). I can’t lie, he uses it much more than me and has disovered the piano, Tic Tac Toe and various other features. It amazes me what he can do at his age.

    Nonetheless, I voted “on the fence”.

    Happy belated b-day Zara!

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