"Anyone who thinks the art of conversation is dead
ought to tell a child to go to bed." - Robert Gallagher
Whenever it's bedtime, my kids turn into Tom Cruise in A Few Good Men. They prepare their arguments well, and get me to say ANYTHING. While I know the standard "because I said so" closes the case quickly, it leaves to many unanswered questions, and my kids want answers, nay, THEY WANT THE TRUTH.
But alas, they can't handle the truth. They're children! Communication is not programmed into them from birth. So without help, they can be cavemen running around in full diapers grunting for food (I've seen it, so don't roll your eyes). It is our responsibility as parents to help them learn to communicate. Remember the line from Shrek, "It talks!" Shrek replies, "Yeah, it's getting him to shut up that's the trick!" It seems like we spend SO much time teaching out little ones to talk, and then they never stop. It also seems like talking is not completely communicating.
Our 'Lil Miss is now 7 and needs an explanation for all things that do not go her way. We've been explaining how things work in social, medical and other type of situations. I thank my mother for taking the time to do the same for me, as it shapes your view of the world and how you engage it. Our
'Lil Man is now 3 and a much different case to review. He's still getting that rules actually exist, and is trying to figure out which ones are the serious ones (verses the ones that DON'T put him in time-out).
As we look to get the most out of our relationships I urge us all to take more time thinking about what and how we're teaching our children about communicating. It's been the backbone of my marriage and it's success to date. Take the time as a family to talk. Also take the time one on one with each of your children. I've seen middle children fall through the cracks in large families. I've seen the eldest weighed down with too much expectation, just for being the oldest. It's our job. We signed up for it. My father always taught me to leave things better than you found them, and our children are no different.