Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Why Ask Why?

So our little three-year-old, who will be four soon, has entered the world of why and has ushered his little brother into it sooner than expected too I might add. Everything is why. I knew it would come. I just hoped it wouldn't. I remember my little brother, who is six years my junior, going through this inquisitive phase and it drove me crazy. I'm sure my parents were even more annoyed by it. I mean, it's one thing to want to know how things work but sometimes the whys can be relentless ending in wanting to know why immutable things are immutable. Some things are the way they are just because and how do you explain that to a three-year-old?

There is good news though. I have to say that my husband has come up with a brilliant solution to the why question. It is simple, strategic and extremely effective. It may seem strange but it truly has worked. Here is the secret you're all dying to know--give a total and complete nonsense response.

Here's an example:

Steve: Isaac, your eyes are blue.

Isaac: Why Daddy?

Steve: Because that's how God made you.

Isaac: Why?

Steve: Because that's the eye color He wanted you to have.

Isaac: Why?

Steve: Trolls!

Trolls you may ask? Trolls! What is that? That is our random response to his relentless why questions. When the whys are being asked in succession we just immediately throw out the word "trolls" and it completely diverts him and he stops. It works every time. We only use this in extreme cases when Inspector Isaac goes into his extremely inquisitive role but I must say it really works. Now when we respond with "trolls" he just says, "No! Not trolls!" And that's it. He's onto something else.

I'm all for explaining things to my children. However, the long suffering whys can get tiring. Now I'm sure you're asking why trolls? I don't know. I think it was just a random word that came to Steve's mind the first time he employed this technique and it worked so well that we've used it since. But why, you're still wondering? Because it's funny, silly, weird. But why? Trolls!

Successfully diverted huh?

Try it people. Try it.


  1. That's brilliant Nikki!! Give me a few months and I will definitely put it to use! I can already see it coming!

  2. I think Isaac has his best "troll" face in the pic too! Ha ha! Love Steve's creativity and randomness - hey, it works!

  3. I LOVE that picture of Isaac!
    I like the "random answer" approach to the random question. I've recently tried giving the most obvious answer, and it can be amazingly successful. For example:
    Leif: Mama, what are air bubbles?
    Me: Bubbles made of air.
    Leif: OOoohhhhh....(said with amazing realization)