Parents, you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers.

Or just as likely, we’ve got questions and you’ve got answers.

Challenge: Parenting Resolutions

I Resolve to NOT Have All the Answers

Vote up!
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Email this article

I am not one for making—or keeping—New Year's resolutions, but this year I have finally come up with a very do-able resolution. This year I resolve to NOT be the smartest person in my house.

For years I have been the one with all of the answers:

Where’s the milk? In the fridge.

What time do I start school? Same time as yesterday or, 8:15 in case you don't remember.

Why do I have to know algebra? Because.

No matter what the topic or the situation I was, without question, the only one in my house who had the answer or, apparently, the capacity to figure out what to do.

It's time to pass the torch.

Someone else might want to tell someone where the ketchup is or how to figure out what the capital of Zimbabwe is by using nothing more than a computer or a phone or a tablet.

As much as I hate relying on someone else to look out the window to see if it's raining, I think it's time. Being the person with all of the answers is fun! Who am I to take that fun away from someone else in my family?

For example, just yesterday, one of my children was standing in front of our open refrigerator, totally befuddled."Where is the yogurt?" he asked.

Me (quickly figuring out the answer from the other room): "Move some stuff around in the fridge and you will find it."

My kid, smacking himself in the head with the realization that I just gave him the perfect answer: "Oh yeah! There it is! Thanks, mom!"

But, if I wasn't the smartest person in the house this is how it could have gone:

Me, whining: "I can't find the mustard!"

One of my kids: "Move some stuff around in the fridge, mom."

Me: "Of course! There it is! Wow, honey, what would I do without you??"

Think about how great he would feel if he was the one with all the answers! Think about how much it would build his self-esteem! He would be drunk with power! I know I am. I currently go to bed every night thinking:

I am so powerful! I am the only person who knows what time the kids get out of school, where the extra dog food is kept, and where to find a book on the bookshelf. I don't want anyone else to have that information because I want everyone to ask me questions all day! Bwahahaha!

See. Drunk with power.

But it's not fair. I shouldn't know everything anymore. I want my family to know that feeling as well. I want them to know what it's like to sit down, pick up a magazine and have someone yell to them that they can't find their homework/shoes/keys. I want them to feel the joy when they respond, "Well, did you look in your backpack/the mudroom/your jacket?" and have the item be exactly where they said it would be.

Why should I have all the fun?

So, yes, I resolve to pass the power of knowledge to one of my family members. And I will...just as soon as one of them can find it without my help.

This post comes from the TODAY Parenting Team community, where all members are welcome to post and discuss parenting solutions. Learn more and join us! Because we're all in this together.