Let’s Make a Deal

Kaleb: “Can I watch The Dancing Hamster video on YouTube on the iPad?”
Me: “No, Kaleb, YouTube has too many bad videos.”
Kaleb: “But I will only watch The Dancing Hamster video. I won’t watch any bad ones.”
Me: “I said No, Kaleb. You can’t watch YouTube on the iPad!”
Kaleb: “How about when I’m 10, then I can watch it?”
Me: “No, Kaleb, no YouTube!”
Kaleb: “Forever?”
Me: “Yes, forever!”

Kaleb is going through a phase where he wants to argue about everything and he won’t accept “No” as an answer to his many requests. He thinks the rules can change depending on what he wants at any particular moment.

It seems like every conversation with him is “Let’s make a deal!”

I suppose it’s because I’ve let both of them talk me into things in the past. I guess I have a track record of letting them have their way.

Tami says I don’t know how to say “No.” She says that I’m a pushover, a soft touch. She thinks I let them talk me into doing whatever they want.

She reminds me that my “No” should mean “No!” She says they’re going to be spoiled and grow up undisciplined and unruly if I don’t learn to follow through.

Is it possible that I have already formed the kids into truculent and obstreperous little scamps because I have no parental backbone? Am I a gutless parent that allows himself to be manipulated by a six-year-old and an eight-year-old?

Certainly not! But, even if I occasionally give into the kids, it’s because the grandparent side of me makes me do it! It’s the grandparent side of me that makes me always want to tell them “Yes.”

Besides, they’re just so cute!

Anyway, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Kaleb: “Can we go to Walmart?”
Me: “Why?”
Kaleb: “I need to get a Power Rangers Dino Charger”
Me: “Maybe you should ask for it for your birthday or for Christmas.”
Kaleb: “I can’t wait that long. How about let’s get one today?”
Me: “No, not today, Son.”
Kaleb: “But I need one really bad! Please. I love you, Dad.”
Me: “Well, I guess so, but we’re going to count it as one of your presents when it’s your birthday nine months from now…”

I know what you’re thinking…

But, as I said, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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