Because I Said So, The Famous Phrase Used By Parents

I use to hate this answer when I was a kid. As I got older, I thought to myself, “when I’m a parent, I will never say that to my children”. I will give them a thoughtful, and well thought out response, and they will accept that…
After reasoning has failed, and all logical explanations have been given, sometimes there just isn’t any other good answer. Sometimes the only answer left to give is, “because I said so”. Of course we want to teach our children, and we want them to understand why they cannot have or do everything they want, but there are times when our children do not want to hear explanations that do not involve them getting what they want. Sometimes they do not want to listen to logic or reason, and there is only one phrase left to give them that will silence there pleading requests.
I am a single father to a beautiful little girl, and yes, there are times when she truly does need a well thought out response to her requests. “Dad, can I go swimming in that river?”. No you cannot go swimming in that river that’s moving at 15 mph, you will get swept away and possibly drown. Granted, that’s not really a well thought out response. That’s more along the lines of common sense, but you get the point. To my daughter it may look fun, but she will not be swimming in that river, and if she were to ask me again, my response might be, “because I said so”.
Early on in my parenting journey I did not give much thought to this subject specifically. As my daughter got older and life started to get more complicated for her, I started to wonder if it was the answer, “because I said so” that stopped the confrontation, or if it was just the tone those words were spoke in that concluded the argument. I thought, maybe I could just grunt loudly in the same tone, or yell out some non sense words with no meaning to throw her off the subject. I started to think, this could be a fun way of getting her to accept the inevitable. Maybe this will end up with a laugh rather than a lower lip protruding from her mouth to show me that she is unhappy. Have I stumbled onto a great parenting technique that my parent’s missed?
No, probably not, but I am always looking for ways to be a better parent to my daughter, and teach her valuable life lessons. After all, that is my job as her father. So, I started using this technique. After giving her explanations, and reasons why she cannot do something, my final answer would be something along the lines of, “elephant ears at midnight”. I would say this in the same tone, and mind state as if I were saying, “because I said so”. It works! This proved to me that it’s not those famous words of “because I said so”. It’s reaching the end point when a child knows their parent has had enough, and they are not going to get their way.
This little technique has also been a fun way for my daughter and I to connect in that tense moment. She knows that I’m serious and that the issue is over, but it ends with a little smirk on both our faces.

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