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Say No to Nagging and Yes to Fun

Updated on October 5, 2012

The day I stopped nagging my kids

As a parent, like many of my friends, I fell into the routine of constantly nagging my children about the silliest things ever in order to get them to do what needed to get done. I saw it as my way of teaching them right from wrong, but really, I was just nagging.

I was constantly talking, yapping and nagging them about clothes needing to be put away, picking up their shoes, lowering the loud music, and hanging up the phone after talking for an hour. Honestly, it was becoming annoying to them and frustrating for me.

I was nagging and I'm not talking about the lessons we try to teach our children while they are toddlers and young children to keep them safe nagging or don't talk to strangers or looking both ways when crossing the street nagging, I am talking about nit picking about silly things that I should be finding amusing and funny.

On many occasions I caught myself saying, "Don't bounce the ball in the house, stop making a mess, stop jumping on the bed, get off the phone, and go pick up your room" and my children would reply in a mumble I could never understand.

Well my turning point came one day when we were at a restaurant and I happened to utter the words (several times I may add); "Be careful you don't spill your water". Well as you can guess, I ended up spilling my water. Both my children and my husband looked at me and uttered, "Be careful you don't spill your water". Although a bit embarrassed, we laughed but it made me think, I'm more concerned about the water spilling than the opportunity we have now to spend time together. I know we all make mistakes and it was time I started making a point about the important things my children should be careful about and not the silly things that can be cleaned up or mended.

Since that day, I have a better relationship with my kids. I have more fun. I don't worry about things spilling or breaking since usually I am the one who is more uncoordinated than them. They've always been careful and have always taken care of the things they have. I still laugh at that day because it taught me a lesson to take it easy and enjoy all the wonderful days my children give me.

I am happy when I hear them talk endlessly on the phone since it lets me know they have many friends, I'm glad when they jump on the bed because it makes them giggle and I know they are happy, and as for picking up their rooms, I like a little mess here and there, it reminds me of all the things we have and how grateful I am for everyday that my children are with me. I still spill water, it's an attraction with me, but I just smile and clean it up. It's a reminder to live more and nag less.


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    • BSloan profile image

      Barbara Sloan 5 years ago from Miami, Florida

      Thank you for your comments Patty and Kathryn.

    • kathryn1000 profile image

      kathryn1000 5 years ago from London

      Very good to think of this and avoid irritating people!

    • Patty Kenyon profile image

      Patty Kenyon 5 years ago from Ledyard, Connecticut

      Interesting and Very True!!!

    • BSloan profile image

      Barbara Sloan 5 years ago from Miami, Florida

      What a great story. Yes we do remember those events and now they are part of our wonderful memories. Thanks for sharing!;)

    • Beth100 profile image

      Beth100 5 years ago from Canada

      Live in the moment and enjoy your time with your children, your husband and friends. We hear this often but it is another thing to practice.

      My children's father use to yell at us at the table for spilling a drop of water. I finally got fed up of it one day, and the took the pitcher of water (and it was brimming full) and dumped it on him. He was soaking wet and not amused. I then took my cup, and dumped it on my daughter. She took hers and dumped on her brother. Her brothers threw their water at each other. It was a mess -- but everyone was laughing and I made my point: the mess can be cleaned and never thought of again. But the laughter and the memory of how that mess came to be lasts a lifetime. :)

      Almost 15 years later, my kids still talk about it.... and the time I took the veggie sprayer and sprayed them when they wouldn't rinse their dishes. :)