There is little more frustrating than being asked the same question over and over and over and over. To this end, a new rule has been put into effect: “Ask one time; once is enough. Ask me twice and the answer is automatically no.”
Keep in mind, we are not referring to the forgotten questions where I was asked to get someone cocoa and forgot in all our business. No, these repeated questions have already been given an answer and addressed. My children are now asking because either I am not moving fast enough for them or they are trying to change my mind.
You know what I mean. “Mom, may I have —, please?” “Maybe.” Two minutes later…. “Mom, may I have —, please?” “I already gave you my answer.” “Oh, right!” Ten minutes later…. “Mom, did you have an answer yet? Can I have it?” “I’m still thinking about it.” The questioning goes on and on until I either give in (bad move on my part) or I get frustrated (also a bad move).
To skip both of these errors, a new rule seemed to be needed. Get my attention, ask your question, and wait for my answer. If my answer is “yes”; more power to you. If “no”; live with it. If “maybe”; wait patiently or the answer will become no.
I am not trying to avoid answering; I am not ignoring my kids. There are some decisions which require thoughtful inquiry and prayer before just popping out an answer.
On the off-chance I do fail to get back to them, I am completely open to them asking politely if I have come to a decision. My only stipulations are that they ask nicely and after I have had some little while to think the matter over or discuss it with my guy.
As a side note: I am also okay with them asking why a decision was “no”. There is nothing wrong with wanting a logical explanation. As long as they are being respectful and seeking the truth (not just being argumentative), I have no problem with this discussion.
What I am trying to avoid is the constant asking which, in my opinion, is the sister to nagging. Once your request is made known, let it be!
How many times can your kids ask for something before the asking needs to stop?