Thursday, February 12, 2009

Don't be a hater

It all started a few months ago...


"I hate dat boy."

"I hate dat man"

"I hate nigh nigh." (nigh nigh = bedtime)

"I hate people."

"I hate you!"

Lovely. How exactly am I supposed to explain this to the grocery checker, the fellow mother, the nursery my truly sweet and adorable child smears both her mother's and her own reputation as she proclaims the H word with all her might over the slightest irritation?
My apologies. As you can see, somewhere between learning her colors and counting to ten I've taught my child the ever eternal human expression of misery and spite. She says hate! Isn't it cute?!!

But before I continue to berate the very imperfect mother that I am, let it be known I didn't think I was teaching her this at all. In fact, as her mother I am helping her to untangle that new lovely web of negative emotions pummeling her forming rationale. While doing this I have come to discover that Lily simply uses the forbidden "H" word to express any sort of negative feeling.

"I hate dat bike."

"No, Lily, don't hate the bike. You fell off the bike. You are hurt. The bike hurt you, and now you are mad. You are mad that you fell off of the bike."


Stopped at a red light in the car:

"Go Mom! Goooo! Keep moooving."

"Lu, I can't. We have to wait our turn. It's the other people's turn."

"I hate people."

"No, you don't hate people. You don't like waiting."


Perusing a blog with her on my lap, she sees a little boy eating a donut in a picture.

"I hate dat boy."

"No, don't hate that boy. You want a donut too."

I can see it in her eyes, too, as I try to explain what she really seems to be trying to say. She is starting to understand! Call me Mom/SuperNanny. We've even included a request to God during bedtime prayers. Lily frequently requests that "she won't say hate anymow (anymore)".
Oh yeah, I'm good. Uh huh. Uh huh.

Not so fast, Supernanny.

Just tonight, Lily was insistent that she didn't want the blue bowl full of soup she had been handed for dinner. She proceeded to howl and moan and demand a different bowl. Tyler and I, firm in our conviction to not be too trampled by three year-old absurd requests, explained that she would have no choice but to eat from the bowl she had been given. With a solid tone, Tyler said:

"Lily, you're getting the blue bowl. Not another word. Now go ahead and you can say the prayer."

Lily seemed to get the message, and politely folded her arms, bowed her head, and proceeded with the following grace:

"Heavenly Fadder, I hate my bowl. I hate my bowl. I hate my bowl."

Oh boy.


Anonymous said...

My sweet Lily, What can I say except that you have got character! I love that. I like that you have a mind of your own. I love that too. I think it is somewhat funny but I am the grandmother, not with you every moment. Someday all of these virtues will be appreciated by everyone but when your 3 it may be difficult for your Mom & Dad to live through these times. You will grow out of the "hate" period just as you will grow out of your binkie. Boo hoo, kinda sad. Snap my fingers and you are graduating from high school. It all happens too fast. xoxox, Nonna

Sarah Hansen said...

Lily... I LOVE you.

Dan & Ali said...

Why resist the 'hate'?! Here are some reasons to embrace it:

1) Jesus told us to be like children. Therefore, we can say 'I hate ________' and be proud we're being child-like. Jesus actually loves us when we say hate (I'll make sure to teach Lily this important concept).

2) Summing up all emotions with a single word actually makes life easier and less complicated which in turn actually reduces stress levels, confusion, and negative emotions... ironically.

3) Hating boys with dougnuts and bikes that buck you off is probably a legitimate response and the ultimate HONEST response.

4) Honesty is the best policy. Rather than teach our children insincere and phony, we can teach them honesty!

I could go on, but perhaps we should rethink the positives of hating.

So yes, Lily, I too love you... especially because you hate!

Rae's Corner said...


You're not allowed around my children anymore.

Daron and Jamee said...

I think you observations are lovely Rae.

I love that you try to explain to Lily the true feeling.

Super Mommy you are.