“No mommy! You’re wrong! The sky is blue! It’s sunny today mommy!” My four year old yelled in the car after I casually pointed out that it looks like a cloudy day (despite some sunshine). “Oh?” I said as I stifled a laugh “It looks like a clear day to you? Usually it IS sunny on a clear day”. My kid was ready for an argument. When my child disagrees, I needed to remind myself to take it easy.
“You were wrong. I was right” she said emphatically, but no yelling this time.
“Mm hmm” I murmured, biting back the temptation to correct her.
Guys. I HATE being wrong. I hate letting it go when I know I’m right. But that’s exactly what I have to do as a her parent. Some days are easier to see the humour in this. Other days – especially when I’m sleep deprived – I get more easily exasperated with the needless questioning. We are right in the thick of the disagreeing stage and often it can feel like a never ending argument. It can be exhausting. A quick google search tells me this is completely age appropriate.
I take a deep breath (or a few) and remind myself that our kids are supposed to disagree with us. It’s their JOB. At four years old this tiny little human is already trying to assert herself as an individual with her own thoughts and opinions and even knowledge. Often times this means disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing.
Do I wish that my kid trusted that I know best and deferred to my knowledge and logic? Do I wish she just listened without questioning Every. Single. Thing. I. Say? OF COURSE. Do I get frustrated that I have to explain myself to a 4 year old all day long? I sure do. Do I silently roll my eyes when my child disagrees? Oh yes. No matter how much I know this is normal. Some days I struggle to remember.
But then I hear her telling a friend something I explained to her and it warms my heart. I see her treating her sister with kindness using the words I taught her and I feel proud. I catch her saying “MY mommy says…” and it makes me smile. No matter how much she disagrees and argues with me, I know she listens. When she thinks that I am not watching, she still hears my voice. Most days that’s enough.
I’d love to hear from you. Is your 4 or 5 year old in the thick of the disagreeing stage? How do you cope?
Like this post? Check out this post about my internal struggle with becoming a mom cliche