At what point is it…. as I can’t remember a defining moment, I think it has just slowly crept up on me that my once beautifully compliant little boy started to challenge everything I said…..with the word “but”.
I think if I had a pound for every time I heard that word I would be rich beyond my wildest dreams. Some days I think if I hear that word one more time come out of my nearly 5 year Old’s mouth I am going to scream and run down the street naked!
This is particularly true in the mornings when emotions are heightened due to time pressure to get out of the door, to school and work on time!
“Joshua please put your school clothes on now” to which I get “but I am playing” or “can you clean your teeth” he replies “but I am watching this”, “here is your breakfast” to ”but I didn’t want that cereal”, “can you hurry up” to “but you said we had ten minutes” aghhhhhhh!
Have you ever noticed that? That your toddler has a “but” for everything you do, say or suggest, why is it that they just can’t do what you have asked without some form of “but”, simple no?
Reasoning doesn’t work, shouting makes it worse, changing the subject and counting 1…..2…..3…..and then take a breath before you try and reason can work at times but my sure fire way to win has always been until now – bribery “if you hurry up and just do it I will take you to McDonalds for tea” which is naughty I know but for the sake of my sanity at times has been a necessity, but these days it is not a guaranteed winner anymore, I think he enjoys watching me squirm as I try and find a better counter argument, it is like being prosecuted in a court room!
The worst “but blow” as I like to call it as he throws it at me like a winning punch is when he recalls something I did or said days, sometimes weeks ago as part of his counter argument “but you said…..” aghhhhhhhh how did he remember I said that/did that, that was a big “but blow” how the hell do I worm my way out now, he has me cornered, he knows he has the killer “but” and there is no way out for me and I surrender to a 5 year old!
So I give every parent permission to never teach their child the word “but”, I think it should be replaced in the dictionary with “of course mummy”!
Inspired by Joshua, written by Karen.