My kids think I know everything

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When my 5 year old son comes to me with a question, I usually give him one of three answers: “NO!”, “Go ask your father” or “I don’t know”.

He’ll usually accept either of the first two answers well enough, but the third is an answer he doesn’t like at all. It does not satisfy his plea. It says to him, you’ll have to wait a little longer to find out. And the boy does not do well with waiting, for anything. Especially when he knows I must already know what decisive answer I am going to give him. He thinks I’m just withholding it for my own tormentive pleasure.

These conversations usually end like so:

“I don’t know” I say for the fourth time, exasperated
“Yes you do,” Ethan insists, then pausing, "You know everything!” he finishes with a wink and a grin.

I can’t tell you how many times he’s used that last line and I’ve thought to myself, “If the kid really sees me as being so omniscient, why in the heck doesn’t he obey me more than 10% of the time? Or accept all of the decisive answers I give him?”

Like the time I didn’t know my own friends name.

Me: “Sweetheart, her name is just Melanie.”
Ethan: No mom, it’s Watermelanie

Seriously folks. He insisted her name was Watermelanie. He loved watermelon. A lot. Anything with the sound “melon” in it had to be prefaced by “water”, so great was his love for the fruit.

And then of course he won’t watch football with his daddy but he will watch flootball. And don’t try to tell him there is no L in there. You’re wrong. Dead wrong, okay?

Oh, and piggie back rides? There’s no such thing. They’re Monkey rides and they always have been. How that got started I really don’t know (though the term monkey ride is far more accurate), but we think it’s funny.

So, though I don’t know everything, I do know this. My little boy is one smart cookie.
If he realizes that maybe I really don’t know the answer to his question yet, a little flattery (you know everything) might be effective in helping me decide. Too bad for him it only works on his little brother.


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