“Just Because I Said So” Is a Valid Parenting Technique

cartoon of bossy mom pointing at you

Getting children to be obedient can be a tricky thing. I know this will ruffle some feathers, but there are times in life when I expect the boys to do something simply because I’ve asked. Period. Of course I try to share the logic behind my directions and requests as often as I can, but there are some times when it just comes down to “you need to do this because I asked.”

Someday each of my lovely boys is going to go out and get a job. In that job, they’re going to have to do what the boss asks just because the boss asked. How can they succeed in their work if they don’t know how to function in a structured world? Could they just finish school and strike out as entrepreneurs and always be self-employed? Yes….but how likely is that to happen without any work experiences in traditional jobs?

I know it drives them completely crazy when I tell them they have to do what I’ve asked “just because”, so I try not to do it too often. But I do say it.

What about you?

Do you say “because I said so!” to your kids? How do you structure that?

Do you put any effort into explaining the whys and wherefores of your instructions sometimes? All the time?

Would you please leave a comment and let me know? I’m curious!

Earnest Parenting: advice for parents who aren’t afraid to be bossy.

The editor-in-chief of Earnest Parenting, Amy is the mother of two sets of twin boys. Yes, they drive her crazy, but they also make her laugh occasionally. Amy enjoys writing, quilting, reading, and working on her burgeoning cyber empire.

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  • Sherry February 4, 2011, 8:32 pm

    We chatted about this at Blissdom! “Because I said so” is a huge thing with me, but I try to explain as much as I can and when I’m in the mood, if you know what I mean. I don’t think every request has to be explained, but it teaches them your thoughts behind the request if you do, and I think it’s respectful to them as well. I’ve learned they deserve just as much respect from me as I deserve from them. 😉
    Sherry´s last blog post ..A Different World

    • Amy LeForge February 7, 2011, 1:11 pm

      Sherry, I’m all for explaining the whys and wherefores of my directions/requests. I usually do. In fact, probably 80% of the time, I stop and explain exactly why I just asked for such and such, because I want the boys to understand the thought patterns of other people. I figure that explaining mine will at least give them something of a representation of how adults think. 😉

      But there are times when I cannot explain myself immediately. And. It’s true that there will be in life many times when they have to obey without understanding. I see people claim that you should never say “Because I said so” to children, and I just don’t agree with that. The never part I mean. 🙂