kariskhaos


“Why” is cute at two, at seventeen, not so much
November 8, 2011, 2:13 pm
Filed under: discipline, humor, Parenting, Teenagers | Tags: , , , ,

I am mopping the floor because it is disgusting. Lila, the two-year old I am a nanny to is in the why stage. It was “what doin?” for quite a while but she advanced to the why and does it really well. Her sister who is 5, and now in kindergarten likes to change her name to ‘WHYIT’ when she gets on a roll and will not stop. Today she is definitely “WHYIT”. Why mopping Kari? Why floor dirty Kari? Why you kids have dirty feet? Why Gus, Gus, make floor dirty? Why your kids spill Kari? Why? Why? Why? I then tell her that’s enough “WHYIT” and she grins, and says why you call me “WHYIT”? It is cute and obnoxious and funny. Lila will go home, I only have her for five hours a day during the week. I can escape her why’s and not get annoyed or frustrated, I can actually think its adorable and tell my friends about it. Anyone who has had kids remembers the ‘Why” stage.

Isaac is seventeen. The why stage is not cute. It is annoying and frustrating and inescapable. I think Isaac is going to be a lawyer. He does not know it yet, he thinks he might like engineering, but I am pretty sure he is going to be a lawyer. If what we say to him does not make perfect sense in his literal world we are questioned. If he has his mind-set on something in his rational, logical, concrete mind there should be no problem. He can not hear what we say. It becomes like that dog cartoon by Larson.

Isaac does this much more with his dad than with me but the result is the same. Anger, frustration and then silence. Not the good silence of I am so glad it is quiet and peaceful but the really loud silence of tension and angst. He is such a great kid, he is smart, funny and very loving. We have raised him to be an independent thinker and he uses his skills for the good 80% of the time. Why does that 20% seem to loom so much bigger?

I wonder sometimes if it is a game for him, he knows the right answer but just like a two-year old has to push the buttons with why? He is testing his boundaries again but with a mind much more developed, and a confidence that he knows everything, so the “why” is more rhetorical than actual curiosity. It is a verbal time bomb waiting to go off. I pray it is a stage. I pray it will pass like all things do and that all of our relationships will survive. But I really just want to ask him Why?

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2 Comments so far
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My three year old cousin Naomi went through the why stage while I was at college living close to her. Her parents would get frustrated and tell her that she could only ask why 2 more times and then she was done for the day. She would reach her limit and stop. Her uncle/my cousin, my siblings, and I had fun one day and taught her that when she was to her limit of whys for the day she should start asking how come? Her parents had the best look on their faces when she reached her limit of whys that day and switched to how comes.

Comment by Kate

HAHA just remember pay backs are hell

Comment by Kari




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