Suppose you were given a word, or better still, a phrase, that when you uttered it, would cause your will to be done. How often do you think you would use it? Once a month? Once a week? Once a day? Twice? Every five minutes?
Think about your answer for a moment and then let me tell you. You would use it every day. All day. Oh, yes you would. And I know this because I am an expert in the human sciences. Or rather, I am, at least, at the moment, an expert in The Origins of Will. Oh yes I am. I am! I am too! Fight you!!
I know I am right because the spud has recently learned a couple of magic phrases of his own and here he is, displaying his basic human need for control and desire fulfilment by using them at all possible turns: 'Don't Want It' and 'Do It'. So we have 'Don't Want It', 'Want It', 'Me Do It' and 'Mummy Do It', although most frequently we just have 'Don't Want It! Don't Want It!' Yes, our little man is making his needs very clear these days. It's better, I have to say, than the tantrums but he is using these magic words fairly repetitively.
I on the other hand feel a driving need to respond intelligently to each blurt of the magic words, to aid his communication and to treat him like a person however all that ends up happening is that I go through a variation of the following conversation; 'If you don't have it you'll be cold/hungry/tired/dirty'; 'I know you don't want it sweetheart but we all have to have things we don't want sometimes'; 'But you like it!'; 'It'll be nice, I promise'; 'Come on sweetie. Have it for Mummy?'; 'You'll want it as soon as we go outside/you go to bed/we get out of the car'; 'Well you have to have it'; 'Just take it'; 'I don't care that you don't want it, you are having it. NOW!'; 'I KNOW you don't want it.'; 'JUST TAKE THE DAMN THING'; 'OK OK OK, you can go outside without your shoes/stay up until dawn/starve yourself/poo in your socks'.
I'm losing this one, aren't I.