Why Not?

A few days ago, Fingerprints On The Fridge posted her new parenting style.

And it convicted me right to the heart.

She had decided to start asking herself, "Why not?" when her girls asked her to do something instead of just saying "No."

She wrote about how children have so many boundaries and hear "no" so many times each day. How they have little control over what they do and do not get to do.

And I am the worst.

I don't always say no right out, but I'm sure if Josie had a penny for every time I told her, "after I'm done with this maybe," she would be off to Yale.

And to make it worse, I finish that task and add on 5 more things that I need to finish before we can do what she asked.

And by the time I'm done and ready to do what she asked, she is usually over it and not interested anymore.

She has been awesome with the baby these past couple weeks. But over the past few days, she has started to get rough. She is disobeying right in front of us.

And I know she is doing it for attention.

So to nip this before it becomes a habit, Andrew and I are going to try out the "Why Not" attitude.

Instead of saying no or maybe later, I will ask myself, "Why not?"

"What would it hurt?" "What can wait until later?"
Like yesterday, she wanted to wear her Easter Dress over to her Aunt Amber's for a playdate.
At first I said, "Absolutely not."
And then I thought, well, why not? What would it hurt if she wore the Easter Dress that she has only gotten to wear once and probably won't fit her the next time a holiday comes around? Who cares if she is over dressed for playing?

If it makes her feel like a princess and it won't hurt anything, why not?
So she wore it. And you would have thought I gave her the moon.

I'm learning that while all our outings are fun and fill up my day, they result in lots of time strapped in a carseat with the day already planned out for her.

And sometimes the girl just wants to ride her bike and get pushed on the swing.

Of course there are some things that have to get done and some things that are dangerous that will still result in a no.

I'm not interested in running a child led house.

But honestly, most of Josie's requests are just to play or have my full attention.

So this week starts my new plan and we will see how it goes. We are flying to my Dad's house on Thursday so I'm sure this week won't be too difficult!


Amber said...

I like that "why not?" attitude. By the way, she looked beautiful in her Easter Dress!!!

bri said...

way to go Nicole! You are a great mom :). I have been taking that approach with the boys lately and just having a lax attitude about it all. Like you, I will not have a child-run house, but I will have a house that our children can grow in and learn and experiment with mommy right beside them instead of "mommy doesn't know that we are hiding in our closet making s'mores because she'd just say no"... :)

Love following... even though i have not been commenting I am still here catching up every now and again.

Mrs. M said...

I think as moms we are all guilty of this. There are so many times in a day that I am always telling my sons...in a minute...later...after I clean this (although the house never looks tidy so I should just scrap this one!). It's hard. We have so many things on priority all at once and it can feel like the house is falling down around us so it comes first.
I love the Why Not? school of thought. My sister is awesome at this! Not me...
I love that you let Josie wear her Easter dress. Something so simple and provided her so much pleasure.
Thanks for inspiring me to play at little more....and postpone a little less.

kimmer said...

Awesome idea!!!I just know it will be a good thing and let her express herself even more! I think sometimes she just wants you to listen to her and with how busy its gotten that is hard sometimes! "Why not?" sounds like a fabulous idea to me!!! Keep us posted on the ideas she comes up with...I love it!