August 22, 2011

Why Ask Me?

I get asked a lot of questions.  

"Can my parents (in-laws)* join us for dinner?"
"Can I eat this entire box of candy?"
"Can I jump off the roof of the house?"

Chances are I am going to answer all these questions with a "NO!"  Although I will seriously consider the last one, what harm could come about in jumping off the roof of the house.  Even though I say no, I don't think that my response EVER registers with my family. When was the last time that my wife's parents* weren't allowed to come to dinner because I said no? I would have to say never.  Does my son ever NOT eat the entire box of candy?  Uh uh.  If my other son wanted to jump off the house do you think that me saying no is really going to stop him?  HELL NO.

Why do I even get asked these questions?

It seems they are more of warning shots than questions.  It's as if my wife knows full well my in-laws* are coming to dinner but instead of just saying that they are coming, she throws it out there as a question.  My kids do the same thing all the time.

"Can we play the Wii?" NO.   Where do you think they end up?

It leaves me wondering if I ever mean what I say.  Am I such a pushover that nobody thinks I am serious when I say no?  Or do I just say no way too much?  If you have kids it's easily in the top five of words and phrases used:

  • No
  • Eat your food
  • No
  • Lift the toilet seat when you pee
  • No

Ok, so I do use it a lot.  But sometimes I mean it.  I only say it because I don't want anyone to get a belly ache, I don't want anyone to get hurt, and I don't want to eat with my in-laws* again.

I guess what it boils down to is this, I get asked a lot of different questions, I just don't have a lot of different answers.

*My in-laws are GREAT people.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?



  1. That's so funny. I ask my husband these kinds of questions all the time ... sometimes he does say no and sometimes it's a "no" that is up for discussion and sometimes it's a "no" that is definitely NOT up for discussion. I've found that asking at the right times is important -- like if it's something I think he'd say a real "no" to, and he's watching the Chargers' game and they are winning, I might ask my question then. More likely to be a yes. And then later a "why didn't you tell me that the Curry's are coming over for dinner tonight?"

    But you don't have to worry about having a lot of different answers, because most women hear what they want to hear anyway ;) No, seriously, as studies show that women (on average) speak 10K more words per day than men, maybe "No" is all you need :D

    Enjoyed the post.

    Jennifer P.


  2. 10k more words a day? I can see that. I say about 30 total.

  3. My soft version of NO is "we'll see." It is now known in the house that "we'll see" leads eventually leads to no, without the instant rejection.

  4. I have stopped using the word "no" because like yourself i know it will most likely be ignored, especially when it comes to people visiting etc so my new word is "whatever".

    Since i know im defeated i might aswell just say a word, so that everyone knows that im not fond of the idea, but i know that im getting outvoted.

  5. It always amazes me that I can get outvoted one to one. When did my one vote start counting as a zero vote?

  6. Well as the spouse to Ben (comment above here) I can say "whatever" works. Nothing pisses me off as much as "whatever". This is the answer to "Can such and such come here for coffee" to "What do you want for dinner today". Seriously, i never used to listen to NO, but i honestly miss that damn word today lol.

  7. Sounds like my home, where every day is Opposites Day...

    I learned a term in my psych class called "learned helplessness": shock a bunny enough times and he'll just lay down and take it(Seriously, that's the stuff they were teaching us). I don't know why they don't just use us dads and the case studies and save the poor bunnies...

    Great post!

  8. I know... Bunnies are cute. Us? Not so much.

  9. Like Chuck said above, I've seen that with the kids "we'll see" sort of keeps them from doing whatever it is they feel like doing for a little while. Eventually "No" has to come, alas, with mixed results. With the wife I always have the last word. "Yes, honey".

  10. Always important to get the last word in, no matter what you might be saying!