Sunday, June 10, 2012

Church Picnic

Today was a church picnic. That means GL spent most of the day every day for the past week repeatedly asking if we were going to the church picnic. The answer was yes. Every. Single. Time. But he can't take yes for an answer. All through the service this morning, he kept asking if we were staying for the picnic. As soon as the service was over, he began asking if he could call Grandma about a visit as soon as we got home from the picnic. He never cares what's happening right now, he only cares about what's happening after that. Sometimes, when he's asking a repetitive question, I ask him what I said last time. He can repeat it back to me, but that doesn't keep him from asking again. And again. And again. And Again. And AGAIN. AND AGAIN!

Although we provide both verbal and nonverbal cues (which he usually misses) and explain to him repeatedly and in great detail (which he repeats back and claims to understand) how irritating his repetitive questions are, any time we show the slightest exasperation, it takes him entirely by surprise. Even though he can answer these questions himself every time when asked, to him, it's as if each time he asks is the first time, and our exasperation is coming out of nowhere. To him, we are the ones being unreasonable.

We enjoyed chatting with friends (between repetitive questions), the food was wonderful, I ate too much, and then the boys and I joined a game of Ultimate Frisbee. That is, BB and I played. GL followed people around the field for a bit, and then wandered off. Mama Bear brought a craft project to work on, and she sat and chatted and crafted with other crafty ladies.

BB would have stayed all day (and probably all night, too) if he could have. I'd had enough food and games, and we'd all had more than enough of GL's asking if he could call Grandma when we got home, so after three hours, we loaded up the car and left. GL and BB immediately started fighting. I stopped the car, and MB switched seats with BB. GL started hitting MB, so I stopped again, and we gave him his medicine. He continued nagging and whining all the way home. And that's what a successful outing looks like with the Bear family.

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Blogger Jim said...

Lily does this too. The one she's worst with is her big sister.

"Emma, are you happy or sad?"
"Emma, are you happy or sad?"
"Emma, are you happy or sad?"

And so on. I was reading a friend's blog, and the subject came up.

One of the commenters related it to a quote from Temple Grandin, who in response to the curiosity about why she asked her mother the same questions over and over and over apparently said, "I asked my mother the same questions over and over so I could hear the pleasure of the same reply."

We talked about it being about control to some extent. The kiddos have so little that's under their direct control, and asking the same question and getting a consistent response as a result seems to be one thing they can get a little comfort from.

The blog was Karen V's. . . not sure if you have her on your list or not. If you're interested the post is here:

June 11, 2012 at 9:46 AM  
Blogger DeeAnn said...

I can relate. Cody also worries about what is next rather than the now. It's good to know there are other families dealing with similar...shall we say...frustrations. ;)

June 15, 2012 at 1:56 PM  

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