13 Things You Never Thought You’d Have to Say to Your Children

Children are people too. Stubborn, bizarre and obtuse little people, whose actions and activities make the strangest things come out of your mouth. Here are just a few of the extraordinary things my boys have caused me to say throughout their hyperactive little lives:

  1. Please don’t step on the baby.
  2. Please stop smelling my pants.
  3. No, you may not touch the dog poo, not even with a stick.
  4. How many times to I have to explain to you why I don’t have a peanut?
  5. No, you may not make the baby into a sandwich using couch cushions.
  6. Yes, you may stand on my back and pretend I’m a surfboard, as long as you let me lie down.
  7. Those are mommy’s private parts. No one in Chuck E. Cheese wants to see them, so please put my dress back down.
  8. No, if you gag on the broccoli and spit it back onto your plate, that bite does not count toward dessert.
  9. Yes, replacing each word in “You are my sunshine” with “poop” is hilarious, but I’m not going to sing it that way.
  10. Please don’t pee on your brother.
  11. Please don’t pee on your feet.
  12. Please don’t pee on my feet.
  13. Stop licking the produce.

What strange utterances come out of your mouth around your (or other people’s) children?

Photo Credit: Mathieu Gasnier

About Peryl Manning

Peryl Manning is somewhat (and pleasantly) surprised to find herself the mother of two almost freakishly dimpled little boys. She isn’t sure she should be the one in charge though; at thirty-something she still manages to somehow end up sitting in her own gum, and last week she found her credit card in the fridge with the leftover pizza. She loves mellow moms and Ayelet Waldman; she hates judgy moms and truffle oil. She juggles kids, contributing to the Seattle Post Intelligencer, Momtastic and Mamazina Magazines, and other parenting publications, with whatever grace she can summon.


  1. Samantha says:

    I’ve used “Don’t pee on your brother” more times than I care to count. What is it with boys and their obsession with territory marking?

  2. Tara says:

    “Please don’t eat dead bugs off the windowsill.”

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  3. Can you please stop talking to me and just finish watching television?

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  4. Heather says:

    My favorite so far: “If I find boogers on the DVD player I am going to be so mad!”

  5. Karen says:

    Please don’t lick the top of my head,
    Please don’t drag your brother round the room by his feet, his screeching is not because he likes it.
    Please don’t poke the cat with the turkey baster
    Please don’t flush my glasses down the toilet, it’s kind of you to try and clean them, but not that way.
    No, you can’t take my bra to “show and tell” at school (don’t ask, I’ve not worked out that one either)
    Oh dear, I think my family needs therapy?!

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    • Peryl says:

      “his screeching is not because he likes it…” I often have to tell my older son that when his brother is crying, that means stop! Oh, and I often say “remember, your brother is not a toy.”

  6. These are cracking me up! I have had to ask for a kid to stop licking, too, only it was my face. And my version of #4 is, “How many times do I have to tell you? You don’t have a penis. You have a vagina.”

  7. Jennifer says:

    Please stop punching me in the butt.

  8. TechyDad says:

    I have a four year old (JSL) and an eight year old (NHL). Both boys. They like to fight. Specifically, JSL enjoys beating up his older brother. NHL usually responds by trying to send his brother to his room for timeout (No, NHL, you don’t have the authority to do that), crying to us, or (as a last resort) hitting back (Yes, NHL, what he did was bad… No, NHL, that doesn’t mean you should hit him also). JSL went through a phase where he liked hitting things with his head. So I had to say “Don’t headbutt your brother in the crotch” too many times.

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  9. Kelly says:

    “No Christmas Carols sung outside the month of December, EVER.”

    (In July, in a hot car with no AC, and three kids singing Jingle Bells for the umteenth time in the backseat. Thought I would lose my mind.)

    They’re all grown up now and they still remember that one.

  10. MamaKaren says:

    “The dog does NOT want to wear a hat!”
    “The living room is not a naked room” (I designated a rule during toddlerhood/preschool that allowed as much nakedness as they wanted in the bathroom and in each one’s own room, but nowhere else)
    “Do not climb the refrigerator”
    “You may not set an alarm clock to wake up the computer”

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  11. Sue Jackson says:

    Ah, Peryl, you know this is one of my favorite topics!! My husband thought we should write one of those little gift books they sell at the register at Borders (so sad) called “Things You Never Thought You’d Have to Say.” Our all-time favorite was “Do not put your feet in the mashed potatoes”, though I can’t even recall the circumstances now. If we didn’t have short memories, we might just go crazy!

    I like #13 – my son once picked up an eggplant at the store and licked it for no apparent reason (I guess it was that shiny purple sheen).


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  12. the Domestic Goddess says:

    Yep. Said all of them. And don’t sit on your brother. And don’t drink your brother’s pee.

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  13. Marisa says:


  14. Ms. A says:

    I recall telling my boys how much better they were getting at writing their names on the fence. But, hey, it was better than them peeing in the pool!

  15. Jessi says:

    “Babies are not weapons” is a fan favorite in my house. Also, “Get your shoe out of your mouth.” To my seven year old. Not even kidding.

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  16. Karyn says:

    Please stop putting your butt in my face after you fart; I don’t like that.

  17. HeatherS says:

    “Please stop petting my boobs.” They are 6 & 9 and when they snuggle up with me to watch a movie, both of them have a habit of petting my boobs…the girl and the boy! I have no idea where that comes from! And only one was breastfed!
    “Please act like a human,” that about covers most behaviors when we are out in public.

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