Thursday, September 11, 2008

shut up Shut Up SHUT UP!!!!

I swear to God, if my kids don't stop trying to one-up each other, I'm going to scream. Ever since school started, this problem has actually been worse than it was during the summer! For instance:

Girl: I have twenty pages of reading to do tonight!
Boy: Well, I have twenty BILLION things to read tonight!!!! I have to read a whole book!
Girl(disgusted): You don't even know what twenty billion is.
Boy: Yes I DO! AND I have more scratches.
Girl: No, look at mine!

and so on. All afternoon. Frequently, they have this conversation on top of one another, in increasing volume, all at the same time, while I first try to stem the tide, and then turn up the radio, and finally demand silence. Sheesh.

Actually, I have noticed that almost all of a child's life is a competition. Even with their friends, much of the conversation seems to center on who did what better, faster, or higher than the other person. It's like the ultimate in Being A Know-it-all.

Come to think of it, I believe that a lot of adults to it, too. I have several friends who are constantly either Poorer Than Thou, More Eco-concerned Than Thou, or, generally, Holier Than Thou. I love these people, and I'm not dogging them at all, because I'm probably Wordier-Than-Thou, or Smellier-Than-Thou, or something. It's just that I always know, if certain topics come up around certain people, that they will be whatever-it-is more than me. I think I do it about dogs, actually, probably, come to think of it.

So, what does this mean? When does it stop? I'm in my mid-thirties, and apparently the need to be seen and heard as an expert on something is still very much alive and kicking. Maybe this will be the beauty of getting older; not caring what other people think, or what they think of me. Maybe when you get old, it comes down to everyone putting on their Depends one leg at a time, and once you're there, everything else kind of comes out in the wash, so to speak.

In the meantime, I want my kids to stop doing it NOW!


Kelsey said...

This reminds me of a story I once hear on NPR. They reported about some study, in Europe somewhere, I believe, that concluded that even monkeys will perceive certain objects/food that another monkey has as being newer/better and fight over it. So it stands to reason that there is some sort of drive to compete deep in our genes!

But really, my kids are so much more competitive with each other than yours, let me tell you. . .

Kidding of course!

I'm, um, hoping to avoid that particular (dis)pleasure for at least as long as it takes Michael to learn to speak and form sentences.

Kelsey said...

I meant a story I heard on NPR. Ugh. Must learn to proof my comments!

LoriD said...

LOL! The very same thing is happening at my house... even with the 2-year-old (who picks up on everything the big guys do).

My husband is big on the one-upping. If I say I'm tired, he'll give me 10 reasons why he is more tired. My standard response is, "So, now I should feel less tired?"

clueless but hopeful mama said...

I'm totally going to put on my Depends better than anyone else.

Special Needs Mama said...

I think when they start to do this you should leave the room. That way you can see if it's for your benefit, or theirs. If it's for theirs, they don't need you around to listen. And I agree, it's so very annoying and boring.

Kristin.... said...

Isn't it SO MUCH FUN? No no no. My two older ones are always arguing over who is right about EVERYTHING. I mean, a 3 year old is rarely right about anything....why should a 7 year old pick a fight about it? gah