I couldn’t help but share this blog post from the Motherlode, a parenting blog in the NY Times. I try not to include too much on parenting on this blog, but sometimes it’s too relevant not to. Last night, my husband and I got into a parenting discussion about this idea of saying “yes” to your kids as much as possible (in order to say “no” as little as possible). He always refers to a slogan from a store he frequents for work, that says “the answer to any reasonable request, is yes”.
While I generally agree with him, I am often quicker to say “no” than he is. When I tried to figure out why that is, I think it’s just about our personalities. He’s the eternal optimist, the calm, even-tempered, relaxed parent. I feel the stress of being rushed, being on a schedule, getting too stuck in our routines, and as a result, I guess I don’t always take that moment to ask “is this a reasonable request?” and can I just say yes? For example, last night after one too many bedtime requests (one more book, one more sip of water, rub my back for one more minute, etc., all after our usual bedtime routine), I just said “no”. My husband probably would have just indulged them in whatever they needed to complete their bedtime rituals, and left the room with all parties happy. Instead, my saying “no” led to tears and a very unhappy bedtime.
I thought it was so funny that right as we talked about this, there was a blog post on the same subject on the Motherlode. Do you try to reserve “no” for extreme or unreasonable requests, and unsafe situations? Or do you find yourself struggling (as I do) to “say yes to any reasonable request”?