A problem every parent, actually every adult, has to face is that question from a child to which they do not have an answer. Not that there is no answer, just that we adults don’t know it. Momentarily the child’s curiosity has surpassed our own personal need for knowledge. It can be frustrating to feel like an idiot while a mere child, with their limited knowledge and experience, seeks out our wisdom. What adult wants to admit that they don’t know?
Generally I enjoy the out-of-nowhere questions and out-of-nowhere poignant exclamations. Society has not yet reached their tiny minds making them an honest observer. Their imagination hasn’t been crushed yet. I will admit that sometimes their timing could be better. As could mine.
I probably asked more questions than my parents wanted or answered. (I still do at age 51.) It was in my early teens when I noticed that a lot of answers were a one word insult. “Because…” Yes, the dreaded “because.” It got to the point where I had my eye roll synced to that word. And I still do, I’m just better at hiding it.
Priority to the adults is different than to children. A high priority question rarely gets a high priority answer. This is how the parent-child debate first started. It looks a little like this: Because! Why? Because! Why? Because! (Then the child took it up a notch.) Because why!?! (This is when the adult came up with the ultimate response) “Because I said so!”
Children all over the world were devastated by this one sentence. A sentence that could stop any further questions from being asked or any debate a child might desire to start. Yes, for a time parents had it easy, if they knew the sentence.
Life was easy peasy until a child with a tip top priority level question was determined to get a tip top priority level answer. Maybe not every child remembers the day they would no longer accept the adult’s ultimate answer but the adults do. I don’t, but I do remember my trepidation when with a firm stance, my own version of an adult’s voice and a glare of intimidation, I said “Because isn’t an answer.”
E.T. Aka Annie