Sunday, March 9, 2008

Because I said so!

I see it every day. Parents trying to reason with their kids.
"I want some ice cream!"
"No."
"Why?????"
"If you have ice cream, you'll ruin your dinner."
"No I won't. I promise I'll eat dinner!"
"No you won't."
"Yes, I will!"
"No you won't!"
"Yes I will!!!!!" This escalation is sometimes (... often.... usually) accompanied by screaming, crying, pouting, etc.

It doesn't have to be ice cream. It can even be as mundane as, "I want to go to Amy's house to play."
"No."
"Why??????"
"Because we have to go to Grandma's house."
"I don't waaaaant to!"
"We have to."
"Noooooo!!!" with the aforementioned crying, kicking, etc.

Sigh.

We did our children a disservice when we took the phrase, "Because I said so!" out of our collective vocabulary. You should not be reasoning with your children, especially when they are below the teenage years. You should not be explaining, cajoling, bribing them to be respectful and listen to you. You are their Mommy- their MeanMommy. That should be enough.

Say there is a reason you don't want them going to Amy's house. You don't like the way Amy's father acts, or you don't agree with their parenting decisions, or they plop their kids in front of the tv and you don't like that. Whatever. It's not your child's business why you make your decisions. You should not be telling your child your reasoning-- there are some things a six year old doesn't need to know.

You are the MeanMommy, and what you say goes. Because you said so. Period.

6 comments:

Marta said...

Hi! And welcome to the Blogosphere! I clicked over from class-factotum.
Loved this post. It's so right on.
I always tell my kids proudly that I'm The Meanest Mom in the Whole Wide World - deal with it.
And I have always used the expression - "because I said so." Thanks for giving me permission to say it without guilt! =D

Robin said...

I also came over from Class Factotum. I agree with this and look forward to future posts.

Anonymous said...

Oh, this is going to be GOOD!!!! I already love it.
Class Factotum's lil sis

Richard in NY said...

I have a very strong willed six year old daughter and an eight year old son. I agree that you cannot be your child's best friend or engage in debate with them on matters of behavior, but at the same time don't think that "because I said so" is always the right response.

If one of my kids wants to do something that is dangerous or unhealthy, I think it's important for them to understand that that is why I'm prohibiting the behavior, and that it's not completely arbitrary.

Happy blogging.

regards,

MeanMommyDoc said...

Thank you marta-- I love reading your comments on CF's site. You are a fantastic example of a Mean Mommy, and I hope you can share your wisdom here.

Richard, I appreciate your wanting your children to understand why you are prohibiting their behavior. I think older children can appreciate that, but all too often (especially with strong-willed children) you just end up getting into an argument with them if they don't agree with your opinion that said behavior is dangerous. At that point, while "Because I said so" may not always be the best answer, it still should be respected. Thanks for your comments-- I anticipate you will be a good help to many parents as well.

MeanMommyDoc said...

Thank you marta-- I love reading your comments on CF's site. You are a fantastic example of a Mean Mommy, and I hope you can share your wisdom here.

Richard, I appreciate your wanting your children to understand why you are prohibiting their behavior. I think older children can understand that, but all too often (especially with strong-willed children) you just end up getting into an argument with them if they don't agree with your opinion that said behavior is dangerous. At that point, while "Because I said so" may not always be the best answer, it still should be respected.

Thanks for your comments-- I anticipate you will be a good help to many parents as well.