Tuesday, December 28, 2010

respecting feelings

Andre is now 20 months old and he has been learning a new word every couple of days. The latest addition to his vocabulary appeared on Sunday when he was playing with a new toy and Luca tried to play with it also. He hovered over the toy and said the cutest "no" I have ever heard.

Since it is a new word, he is using it often. This morning when I asked for a kiss goodbye before I headed to the office he said "no" and walked away. I respected his wishes and just waved goodbye and smiled from a distance.

Interestingly, he's refused to kiss me many times before and I've usually just hugged him and kissed him anyway. After all, I'm about to leave him for at least 8 hours and I don't want to do so without kissing his chubby cheeks. But this time the word "no" added some meaning to it. Now that he has command of the word, he's using it to assert himself and it makes the statement more powerful, leading me to be more respectful of his wishes. I realized I should have been respecting them all along even if they were not expressed in words. I would have apologized for not doing so before but realized he probably would not understand. I'm wondering where else I've made that mistake with him and Luca.

Has this ever happenned to you? 


  1. My daughter is using "no" a whole lot these days. The cuteness of the word wore off within about 2 days of her learning it. LOL.
    But you are right. SOmetimes we don't acknowledge our children's feelings because they can't express them like we do, and we definitely need to make an effort to do so.

  2. Oh. Yes. And this makes me go crazy sometimes. The line between respecting feelings and discipline can be tough for me.

  3. Ahhh, the "no." My youngest still thinks this word is funny. I ignore him. Mostly b/c I don't think he means it. When it's one of my older kids, I respect that, but little ones- they are getting my kisses anyway!

  4. Shell, I like your rule about making an exception with kisses to little ones. They are just so irresistible!

  5. I've seen my friend's three year old saying "no" to other kids and it was the cutest thing! I really am so amazed when these kids actually mean it when they say it! That conviction in their eyes!

    But I hate the feeling when you want to kiss them and they don't want to be kissed. It feels funny to be rejected by babies that way... :)