Violet’s been saying it a fair amount recently. Such as, this morning! I was exhorting her to do her homework. “One page and two handwriting words,” I told her, already letting her off the hook somewhat because she was up late last night. I’d usually tell her to do two pages and two words.
“One word!” She hates practicing handwriting. Hates it with burning passion.
“I will not bargain with you.” This is what Sally Draper’s grandmother told her a few weeks ago on Mad Men when Sally didn’t feel like taking out the garbage. I liked the way it sounded. Don’t bargain with terrorists.
She immediately starts to whine. “And I won’t argue, either. I can’t make you do it but I won’t be very happy with you if you don’t and you know life isn’t much fun when Mom is mad.”
She sighs, huffs, slams her palms down on the table so sharply that I consider summarily sending her to her room but pick your battles, pick your battles. She does slide the yellow homework folder in front of her and picks up the pen. So great. Until she slides it back in front of me to show me what she’s written: “I hate you, Mom.”
Weirdly, it doesn’t even bother me. Whatever, silly little girl, you’re just trying to get a rise out of me. You totally love me. I see the look on your face every day when you come out of school, walking in a line with your class. You’re just super pissed at me right now, which I get, but it doesn’t mean you don’t have to do your homework.
“Fine, I still love you,” I sigh back at her. The moment passes. The homework gets done, after much dramatic whining and sighing, and it’s bathtime and schooltime. Now I’m sitting alone and wondering, did I say the right thing? Should I have said “How dare you” or “Don’t say that” or “You don’t really mean that” or something like that? Was it okay that I just blew it off? I didn’t see the point in making a thing about it. But I also don’t want to give her the idea she can just say anything to me, like my feelings don’t matter.
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how do you respond to i hate you mom
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