This Is What They Really Want

We’ve talked about why we say yes when our kids ask us to do things for and with them. We say yes to jumping in the pool. We say yes to watching that awful show. We say yes to being the chauffeur. 


Of course, because time is fleeting and no one knows for certain how many opportunities we get in this life to spend time with the people we love. But here’s the real reason: Your kid isn’t asking for you to jump in the cold water, or to tell them that story again—they are asking for you. Period. 

They are reaching out. And as we’ve said, when your child extends their hand, you have to take it. 

That doesn’t mean we always have to acquiesce obviously. When they ask for stuff—a new bike, a piece of cake, to not have to do their homework—you can say no. But when they ask for us? When what they want requires spending time with them, together as a family? We better jump on that loose ball and run it back for all its worth. Take yes for an answer—give them yes as an answer. 

They want you. At least right now. Will that always be true? Maybe not. But rejecting them, squandering a perfectly good opportunity because you’re tired, because you’re in a bad mood, because you’re not interested in the thing they ask for? Well, that’s one way to make sure it happens.

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