No. Non. Nein. Nyet. Iie. Yelem. Ne. Nej. And, even, Hapana.

We’ve started that part of the show where we are trying — TRYING — to teach our daughter the concept “No.” And mostly failing.

“No” is an important word in the parental lexicon. It’s how we teach our child what is good and bad in the world, what is safe and unsafe, and what is acceptable and unacceptable. It’s an important word for kids too, setting boundaries and limits and keeping them safe and on the right track. Developmentally, it’s the right time to start teaching her “No”, although she won’t get it, really. But it’s the right time to begin.

Problem is… nobody gave That Baby the memo.

If I had a nickel for every time I said “No” in the course of a day, I would already have enough to pay one of our monthly bills. I would guess we are even approaching mortgage payment volumes, here.

We’re working on “No” in conjuction with a delightful new habit Stinkerbelle has come up with: Spitting. Not spitting food… just accumulating a bunch of spit and spouting it out of her mouth. In charming places like the grocery store and the like. So, we thought it was time for the hard lesson of No.

Except, the only ones learning a hard lesson is her mom and dad.

She spits. We say “No” in a stern voice. She spits again. We say “No” again. Ad infinitum.

One day, it seemed like we were making some headway. We thought that she was grasping it a little bit, because she seemed to stop when we said it.

That was a nice day.

However, nowadays, when she is not completely disregarding our “No”, she smiles when we say it. Just before she spits, mind you.

So, we continue the Battle of No. It’s a tough fight. She thinks we’re quite silly, really, with all this “No” business. But I long for the day when she tires of us saying “No” all the time, and just humours us to shut us up.

That will be a good day. A spit-free day. A magical, quiet, dry day.

Until that day, I am going to see if there’s some sort of plan, or maybe a government grant, whereby we can make some money off this repeated “No” thing. Because, honestly, if we’re going to keep going, we might as well be making a little coin off it.

Even if it is just a nickel for every time I say “No”.

***bumped up since the threat of Teh Internets has been fixed.

6 thoughts on “No

  1. I am trying not to laugh as I envision stinkerbelle letting a big slobby gob rip but I can’t help myself – and I shouldn’t laugh because one day it may be us and then I will ask for your help and you will laugh at me…

  2. My son used to always bang his head on stuff….the floor, the table. It used to scare me so much and I would think “What the heck is wrong with this kid!” Luckily he outgrew it. I hope the spitting thing is a phase that passes quickly.
    Goodluck with getting NO to sink in.

    I loved your list of things someone should invent…I like the chocolate idea the best.

  3. Wait a minute. You can’t just roar at them and throw a can of pennies like we do with our cats? Have you even tried that, yet?

  4. Janice —

    My daughter smacks herself in the head with toys and stuff all the time. A wise grandfather, when asked why kids do that, said “Because it feels so good when it stops.” So, maybe that’s what was behind the whole head-banging thing.

    Nothing some awesome and totally good for you chocolate wouldn’t fix, mind you. 😀

    Alana —

    1. The social workers tend to frown on that kind of stuff. We lock our cats in the basement when they are bugging, and you’d be surprised how the powers that be say that’s NOT cool with kids. (I know! Quelle surprise! I was shocked.)
    2. The kids? They roar back. AND they get to an age where they can heave stuff back at you. And dude, their throwing accuracy is for crap, so stuff gets broken. And that? Is a drag.

  5. Ok, serious pearl of wisdom learned during a particularly difficult time during our BIG family vacation in Cuba… yes we are the idiots who took their 18 month old to Cuba…. go ahead hate us… we know you want to!

    Anyway one of our wonderful parental cohorts whose child was slightly older and MUCH better behaved than ours told us to try time outs. I thought…oh no he is too young, he will never stay…

    No only did he stay in time outs… it worked!!!!!!!!!!!!! He started understanding that no was not just a word… it bore consequences!

    Now it is no miracle cure, but darn, I never would have thunk it at that age. Might be time to give it a try.

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