“I’m not going.” These are the most spoken words of my 8-year-old. No matter what the event, lesson, sports game, etc. it might possibly be that we have to go to, my child will tell me “No.” It might be Taekwondo, baseball, a birthday party, school, a boat ride or a vacation to Disney and he will still give me the hardest time. There are times I try not to tell him where we are going because I know what he will say. Sometimes I say, “Just get in the car and it will be a surprise.” He tortures me by yelling, “I won’t go, I’m not going and you can’t make me.”
I know perfectly well how he happy he is at Taekwondo or a birthday party, but it is so hard to get him out the door. Why can’t he just say, “Okay, I’ll get my shoes.” Part of me knows he wants to bargain with me. Maybe if he quickly gets in the car he can get a slushy or a new toy soon. I admit that it does make it easier if I just stop and buy the Mango Snapple that he loves so much in return for a child who quietly gets in the car without a major meltdown.
This behavior has been this way since he could talk so I don’t think it is pure manipulation to get something new. But several times a day, he does torture me when it is time to go somewhere. Sometimes it takes an extra 5 or 10 minutes to get him out the door and that is with plenty of warnings. The complaining doesn’t end in the car either.
The only good part of this might be that maybe he won’t date or be a crazy teenager because he will never want to go anywhere. That might be good!