Some of you might have watched the coffee creamer advert on TV where a husband literally ransacks the kitchen looking for his favourite creamer. He goes through the cupboards and rummages through the fridge only to have the wife shout from the next room, “It’s not inside – it’s on top.” It is not IN the fridge but ON TOP of the fridge. How relieved when he grabs the creamer container.

Today that scene is oft repeated – not in the kitchen – but in the lounge. The man of the house is frantic. He crawls on all fours. He shifts the heavy sofa effortlessly, first to the right and then to the left. Picks up and inspects under every cushion.  He is now breathing heavily and comes just short of cussing while demanding, “Where’s the remote”, “Who took the remote”, “Who touched the remote”, “Who removed it from my arm rest?” You walk into the lounge and pick up the remote from the TOP of the TV and hand it to him with a meek, “Here it is – it’s on top!”. He takes it from you. He is angry. He does not even attempt to mutter a “Thank you.”


Son almost slays Mom over TV remote

(MEMPHIS (USA) 03/04/2010) — A fight between mom and son over a television remote ended with an urgent call to police. Anne Daniels says when she grabbed the remote control early Thursday morning, her son lost control, pulled out a knife and swung at her neck. 

“I’m here feeding you, clothing you, putting a roof over your head,” Daniels says, holding the remote that led to the argument with her son. “Then you’re going to stick me?” http://www.wreg.com/news/wreg-remote-fight,0,4689629.story


The truth is – you’ll not win this one. Learn to choose your battles. Let’s face it, it is not even worth the trouble. If you were to ask the kids in ANY household, the answer would still come back the same – the remote control belongs to DADDY!

What is it with men (and boys) and the remote control? In an evening a man will watch snippets from every available  channel. Is he making any sense out of all the jumbled programmes? If you happen to sit in with him then be prepared for a frustrating evening. Just when you are settling down and the special feature is beginning to make sense, his thumb moves almost imperceptibly and you find yourself watching cricket in Karachi, then Formula 1 in Monte Carlo, then wildlife in Kenya, floods in Australia, protests in Egypt, ‘SA has got talent’, T. B. Joshua preaching in Lagos, volcanic ash in Iceland, elections in Ivory Coast, crime scene in Miami, Primera Liga soccer, WWF no rules contest in Texas, foot and mouth disease outbreak in Botswana,  Zimbabwe Farmers in Nigeria, Two Oceans race in Cape Town, earthquake in China, collapsed coal mine rescue in Chile, etc., etc., all in the space of three minutes!! It leaves your head spinning!!

It has been said that frequent and irritating channel surfing is ‘natural’ for most men. What’s the explanation? Simply stated, curiosity and fear of missing out on whatever might be happening on the other channels. If it were at all possible, a man would really want to watch all the 105 channels simultaneously!!

But what’s the explanation? Men are attracted to speed and action. If there is nothing that closely resembles that on the current channel then off he goes – hunting. As a woman you do not understand that kind of thinking or behaviour. You’d often be quite content to sit hour after hour without even being tempted to switch to any channel other than what was when you switched on the TV.

Possession of the remote control is no laughing matter. He who holds the remote calls the shots. The possessor of the remote is the person in charge of the entertainment programme.


Woman hurt in fight for TV remote control
(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-10-23 09:03

A woman in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, was seriously injured when she fell off her bed trying to snatch the TV remote control from her husband on Sunday.
Lin’s husband rushed her to the hospital when she said she was unable to stand up.
Doctors said she suffered from a broken lumbar vertebra.
(Harbin Daily)


Just surrender the remote control. You have no idea how many homes have been shaken to their very foundations all because of that remote control gadget.

And you’d be depriving your husband of the only form of regular physical exercise that he enjoys – thumb flexing.

To preserve your marriage and to keep the peace in the home, here are the SIX REMOTE CONTROL and TV COMMANDMENTS:

  1. THOU SHALT NOT remove the batteries.
  2. THOU SHALT NOT conceal the remote control under the sofa.
  3. THOU SHALT NOT carry the remote in your bag when you go shopping.
  4. THOU SHALT NOT pull the TV plug.
  5. THOU SHALT NOT stand between your husband and the TV with arms akimbo to get his attention.
  6. THOU SHALT NOT grab the remote and run!

What then can you do? Is it completely hopeless?

Below is a bunch of keys you might want to try to unlock this area of his life.

First key: Talk to your husband about his TV-watching habits and the possessive clutching of the remote control off line, that is, do not start the subject when he is in his favourite chair with the little gadget in his hand. All you will get is resentment and a dirty look!! Open the subject when out shopping. Or on your way back from church. Or while watching the kids doing sport at school. Or when you are out for a walk. Express your concern tactfully. Show how little time this leaves for the two of you to relate in the evenings. Show how much the TV is acting as a wedge driving you apart. Show how you are slowly becoming strangers under the same roof. Avoid ultimatums like  either the TV goes or I go!

Another key: Consider weaning him from his TV addiction as a long term project. You will not extricate him from that sofa overnight. Here’s why. For the last few years before he married you he was most probably living on his own and all he had for entertainment in the evening was TV to kill both time and the loneliness. Work on winning a square inch of ground at a time. You will get there eventually. The battle can be won and it will be won!! Be warned though – as with any addiction – being away from the TV will result in withdrawal symptoms like sulking and irritability. He might even resort to going to bed very early like 2000 hours!!

Another key: Ask yourself these questions: Is the TV a form of escape from you? Are you pleasant to relate to? Are you enjoyable company? Are you a nagger? Is your behaviour or attitude in some other area driving him to the box? Are you aware of his favourite discussion topics? What does he like to talk about most? Are you available when he wants to talk? Are you a good listener? What is it that you need to change in this area? How good are you as a counter-attraction? It is easier to work on things that you have control over. Do something.

Another key: Suggest one or two days of the week where you will have 100% control. You determine what to watch. Of course, you still have the right to surrender the device to him on your evening!

Another key: Identify a replacement behaviour. What is it that you can do together? What hobby can he pursue? What games or activities can you play or do  together with the children? Scrabble? Sodoku? Card games? Reading? Story telling? Bible study? Scrap-booking?

Another key: Negotiate and agree for some ‘dead TV’ nights. You agree that the TV does NOT exist for certain nights/evenings. The TV lounge is out of bounds. The remote is really remote and inaccessible.

FINAL KEY: Pray for him. This is a universal or master key which is bound to open any closet or compartment. The reason is you are inviting the Master Key-maker and chief locksmith into the picture. He made the locks and can easily match the key to each one. Talk to God about the problem before talking the problem to the man.



About the Author

I am a banker by profession. I am married with three adult children - all girls! The two older ones are now married. I became a Christian in my first year of University in the late seventies and have never looked back since. It has been a great adventure, I'd say. I am a senior elder in my local church responsible for the Bible teaching programs. I enjoy that. My wife and I are involved in a Marriage Ministry called HAPPY HOME PROMOTIONS which started way back in 1987. Through this, we have addressed scores of Marriage Seminars and counselled many, many couples - married and premarriage. The ministry seeks to fight divorce in all its forms. I still enjoy the ocassional game of soccer, albeit at a S-L-O-W pace now. I am a keen photographer, a fisherman, a carpenter as well as a beekeeper.

2 Responses to WHERE’S THE REMOTE?!

  1. Simbarashe Tavengerwei says:

    Thank you for the Weeping Wall ElderGee.It definitely is destined to make a vast impact on couples’ lives. god bless you. Mandla

  2. ElderGee says:

    Thank you too. Often we suffer in silence because we have none to talk to. This is just one of many channels for getting assistance. What counsel does is to switch on the light so that you can find your way and walk out of the quandary.

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