Saturday, June 25, 2011

Just Say Yes, Of Course

The Pumpkin has been in a phase where instead of saying "yes" she answers "of course." Like most phases, it started out cute, but has become a problem.

At first, she just said it ocassionally. "Pumpkin, can I have a kiss?" "Of course!" It was adorable, and we would laugh. The girl loves to make people laugh. She said it in response to sweet questions, and we found it adorable.

But then she started saying it more, and it was a little frustrated. "Pumpkin, do you want milk?" "Of course!" She didn't say it all the time, but just enough to cause Londo and I to sigh. How would we know if she wanted milk? There was no "of course" about it.

I'm sure you can guess what happened next. She started saying it all the time. So much, that it has started driving us crazy. "Pumpin, are you going to do what I've been telling you to do?" "Of course!" Now, she was using it in ways that were in way "of courses." Things she was ignoring until we practically had to force her to do or answer, and we'd get "Of course!"

Finally, one day I'd had it. I responded back that it was not "of course." That "of course" was for when the answer was pretty much known, and that I had no idea that she had heard me and was going to do what I told her or that I didn't know for sure that she wanted milk. I old her that instead of answering "of course" that she should just say "yes."

She seemed to get it. And the next few times she said of course, I said, "Not of course. Just yes." And she'd say, "Oh, right. Yes." And after a few times of that, she stopped herself from saying of course and said yes instead. I noted it and praised her for remembering.

There has been a noticable difference in the last couple weeks. She really has cut way back on "of course" and mostly just answers "yes." This is how I know we are in one of those equilabrium stages, because she is making the adjust quickly, easily and without big arguments or meltdowns.

So let's hear it for the ability to modify behavoir at age 4! She listened to what I wanted, paid attention to why I wanted it, and has worked very hard to stop doing it. Do you think I can translate this ability to other areas of behavoir? Of course I'm gonna try!

3 comments:

Cloud said...

Maybe this means that my 4 yo will start listening to me in a few months??? Because that would be really nice.

(I'm glad your Pumpkin is listening right now!)

hush said...

Amen to what @Cloud said!

mom2boy said...

I don't know that Tate listens to me more but the tantrums are few and far between these days, thankfully! He just tries to talk his way out of or into things now. "Okay mom, but..."

It is funny how they pick up a phrase and use it in context at first so you think they have the gist of it but then they just start using it all the time and it becomes apparent that the subtleties aren't quite there yet. Tate does it a lot with "That's not fair.", to him it means that's not how x is supposed to be done procedurally.