Y – is for Yes
In my world I have to say NO a lot (a lot a lot a lot a lot) of times. If I feel like I’m saying it so often it means the girls are living in it… I have been trying to say Yes to as many things as I can over the past two years. This is something I read about multiple places – along the same lines of giving kids a choice between two equal things – so they feel like they have some influence in their world. Is it working? I don’t know, don’t exactly have a control group going on here but I do notice days I say Yes more, I feel are more fun and interesting.
Today I said “yes” to myself and instead of my normal do-all-the-things day I volunteered at Niamh’s class, dropped in on Zoe’s class and then ate lunch with them both and then took Niamh out for a surprise afternoon. Just a Mom and Niamh day. She got to spend her birthday gift cards, we got pedicures together, and then we played a new game she got for her birthday. She brought up the game, I said ‘yes’, and I’m glad because it is a fun little game. I did have some must-do chores so I did dishes and she baked breakfast muffins ‘alone’. I let her double the recipe because she asked me, and, she even used logic because the recipe uses 2 eggs and 2 bananas and we did have 4 eggs and 5 bananas so she pointed out we had enough for double. Why not! I’m sure next week when I’m not baking muffins I’ll be glad about that yes 🙂
I wish I could always say yes, technically, I wish they always asked for reasonable things. In some of the same studies/articles they said you should never say ‘no’. They don’t actually mean to give your child everything, they mean just find another way to say ‘No’ like “You can have the cookie after dinner” or “The cat feels sad when you try to ride him”. I try to do that but all three of my kids at one point thought their name was Zoe-no-no (fillin the right name). It is better to redirect, to tell them when something will happen etc. All the things to keep track of, and, on top of it all, I also have to balance the scales so thing are fair (enough) between them all. Try explaining why one child gets candy for pooping in the potty and nobody else does. Luckily they all believe me that they got their fair share when they were learning, and, when we are totally done with diapers we are going to have a party and they are invited.
I think that if everyone said Yes more, things would be better. Need to keep the greedy/lazy/opportunistic people at bay though so I doubt it can be a world wide thing. In my house I do occasionally feel like the doormat and maid but I think that is a pretty common thing. I mostly feel lucky when I see them do to others as I have done for them.