We all heard that once your kids learn the word “No”, that is all you’ll hear from them. And then the people who tell you this will normally roll their eyes and start complaining about their disobedient bad toddlers who are always punished for saying the word. These stories scared me when I didn’t know any better. I was worried that I wouldn’t know what to do if my kids started being all negative with me.
But then it never happens quite how people tell you. Yes, your kids learn this word and use it, and like using it, but it is all so understandable why they do it.
Honestly, I always feel bad for babies, even those who have the best, most attuned to their needs parents. Imagine yourself being immobile and mute, and depending on other people to take care of you. And sometimes, or most of the time in some cases, people have no idea that you don’t like something, that you wish you could tell them “No, please don’t do it like this to me, I hate it”. And once a child learns how to express this feeling, they kind of like having a say in what happens with them from this point. And believe me, you shouldn’t try to intimidate a child into dropping this budding independence when they are just learning it. Come on, give your kids a break, they can finally speak up for themselves.
Ok, sometimes they abuse it, but it is more like a game to them, really. Be understanding and try not to take it personally. Imagine being helpless all your life, and then learning how to have people pay attention to what you have to say. Would you like to be punished for that?
P.S. I love this quote from John Holt, so I had to use it to support my point.