The Art of Saying No

Apr 02, 2006

When do we lose the ability to say No? Why is it that my 17 month old already mastered the skill and ability to make her priorities and I, the “grown-up” can’t? It’s a doosy here at the Flinger’s house. “Want to take a nap?” “NO” “Want to eat?” “NO!” “Want to watch Elmo?” “NO NO NO!”

‘Cept she means yes. Ah, well, she’s working on it.

Still, I wish I had her ability to make decisions. I often find myself in positions to say no. If I knew what was good for my family and my own mental health, I’d say no. If I’d remember that I actually DON’T like skinny bitch, if I’d remember I have a billion commitments already, if I’d just say NO to that last task they asked of me.. I just might not be the frazzled over-stretched professional mommy that I am.

Also, if i could say “NO” to that nightly chocolate, I might fit into my jeans.

What they say is true: Children really do teach you everything you need to know.


  1. I like when kids say no and then do something.  My 5 y/o nephew..no’s everything…going to the bathroom, taking a nap, eating whatever, then goes to the bathroom, falls asleep and eats.  I find it entertaining.  But that’s because I can send him home when he’s tired, cranky, hungry or needs to poop.

    I love being an aunt

    By Libragirl on 2006 04 02

  2. We sure do learn a lot from kids.  They are so honest about everything I love it.

    By Mama C-ta on 2006 04 03

  3. She is just learning about the power that NO has over us, whether or not she understands its absolute meaning is still up in the air. Emma doesn’t say no yet but she does shake her head negatively all the frigging time whether it has to do with getting a new diaper on or having another cookie. Let’s be honest, it’s jut plain fun. zzZZZzz

    By texasbelle on 2006 04 03

  4. It would be nice to have the discretion of a kid and say no so freely. I find myself trying to not ask Caitlin what she wants to do constantly (like, Do you want to take a nap?...of course she’s going to respond “no”) yet give her choices. I hear ya on the nightly chocolate. I just bought chocolate graham crackers in hopes that will scratch my itch without adding to my weight.

    By Jamie on 2006 04 03

  5. Also, if i could say ?NO? to that nightly “chocolate, I might fit into my jeans….....”  um yes yes yes. My jeans and I hear you!

    By Marie on 2006 04 03

  6. I am two weeks away from having a full-fledged TWO YEAR OLD.  We are frantically trying to retrain ourselves from asking questions to giving choices like Jamie mentioned.

    Maybe you and LB could work on a ventriloquist routine where she says no for you! smile

    By Amy on 2006 04 03

  7. My boy just recently learned how to nod ‘yes’. He just knew ‘no’ for months and months so he would nod ‘no’ to EVERTYHING and we never knew what he wanted!

    By Renee on 2006 04 03

  8. I have the same problem with the chocolate.  Damn the Dove Chocolate Truffle Eggs!!

    By Whitneyf1980 on 2006 04 03

  9. I’m pretty good at saying no. But then again, people call me a bitch, so I may not be your best example. Pick your poison, I guess.

    By erika on 2006 04 03

  10. Yeah, when do we lose that?!  Even when I DO end up saying NO to whatever, I feel super guilty for however long, so it would have been easier to say Yes and get it over with.  Or not, but it feels that way.

    By Holly on 2006 04 04

  11. You mean you don’t like it? smile

    By candice on 2006 04 04