You’d think after as many years as I have been a parent, I’d be used to it.
“Well you started it!”
“I did not!”
“Well, you were here first so you had to be the one to start it!”
“I may have been here, but I wasn’t doing anything!”
I used to think that my kids asking if we were there yet every 5 minutes on a car trip was the most annoying thing in the world. This beat it hands down.
“Everyone knows it’s your fault! You can’t get along with others! Why can’t you just play nice?”
“My fault? My fault? It’s not my fault, it’s your fault! You can ask anyone and they’ll back me up on this!”
It’s very difficult to keep one’s cool during such interactions, but the experts tell us it’s best to let them work out these issues on their own or they’ll never learn. I waited and suddenly realized that I was unconsciously holding my breath. I let my breath out and gave myself a minute to replace the carbon dioxide in my system with oxygen. The discussion, however, continued unabated while I waited. Finally I stepped in.
“Okay, everyone!” I interrupted. The argument continued. “Please!” I intoned. “Please?” “PLEASE!?” Finally everyone was silent. I took a deep breath.
“Thank you,” I offered. “Now onto the next question for our candidates participating in today’s pre-election debate…”