I hate the word ‘No.” I like to say “yes.” I am the Queen of Yes and Doug is the King of No. Jaden asks for tape for an art project he wants to work on … before he can finish his question, Doug is already saying no. I, on the hand, am excited that he is working on an art project rather than watching Sponge Bob and get him his very own roll of tape. Or, when Jaden has finished his dinner and asks for hash browns (the kid is addicted to hash browns! they can be a pain the butt to make. Not really, but these days anything that isn’t heated up in the microwave is a pain to cook haha) Doug says “no, you’ve had enough to eat.” I say “sure, give me a few minutes.”
But do I say yes too often? Is there such a thing? Do I say yes so much that I’m raising a spoiled brat because I don’t say “no” enough? To be a good parent do I need to say no so he learns not to be greedy? That he doesn’t need “things” to be happy? So he learns that people can tell you no and the world doesn’t end? He doesn’t need to get his way all of the time?
I know discipline is not my strength as a mom. I don’t like to “boss” others around … I know it sounds silly … they are children – they need to be taught what to do. But I like to let Jaden make his own choices. I like to see him work out his problems on his own – figure things out his own way. I learn from him by doing this too. There is a delicate balance of letting him make his own choices and just saying yes to everything.
I’m a big fan of Love and Logic. The key for me is that you set parameters that work for your family. Some of the examples I find to be extreme for the Bissing residence. For example, they suggest bedroom time rather than bed time. The rule is that they need to stay in their rooms – they can go to sleep when they want. Lights on, music playing, reading books. They will learn from their own choices the importance of going to bed at a reasonable hour. Doesn’t really work for us. So we toned this example down by saying he can look at a book with a flashlight and listen to the radio, but the lights are off and it’s quiet.
Just as much as I don’t like to say ‘no,’ I don’t like to hear someone else tell me “no” either. If I ask Doug to help me with something – I expect him to say yes. He is my husband and he is supposed to want to help me. It doesn’t always work like that though. He is his own individual and if he doesn’t agree with what I’m trying to accomplish. He has the freedom to say no. When I ask my sister if I can barrow something of hers, I expect that she’ll say yes. Most of the time she says yes…well I actually can’t remember the last time she told me no … ok that was a bad example 🙂
I take it personally when someone says no. I sometimes feel like that 13-year-old girl, with raging hormones when Doug tells me no. For example, I really want an iPhone. Doug says no. My reaction? I want to kick and scream and tell him he can’t control me. Gosh it sounds so immature, but it’s true. I hate to hear someone tell me no. Maturity, for me, comes from not changing the way I feel, but what I do with those feelings. Do I yell “I hate you! You are ruining my life!” as I storm down the hallway and slam the bedroom door shut? I can’t say that I’ve never done that in our marriage but for blogging purposes, no I don’t respond this way. Instead, I try to figure out why he is saying no. Is it financial, can we really not afford it? Is it a power play? Does he want something in return? Then I use it to my advantage. I start making deals. Sometimes it works, other times it doesn’t.
I guess what I am discovering about myself is that because I like to say yes, I expect others to say yes too. Kind of a selfish view-point on the world. I do it this way so others must do it the same way. Not the case. There must be a respect of other’s view points in order for peace to be reached. I need to learn how to not take the two letter word “no” not so personally. I need to do some praying and reading on what the correct balance is between Yes and No in parenting. I ultimately want to be a parent that God is proud of. I want to be the parent that He designed me to be. A parent like Him. A godly parent. Sounds like a huge responsiblity and I suppose being a parent is.