Being a parent is not easy. It’s an age-old adage and its true. Sleepless nights, cleaning spilt milk and sitting through fits all take a lot of patience. Indeed, everyone understands that parents provide a lot of love and care to their children.

Yet, sometimes children have a lesson or two to teach their mom and dad. Twitter user MT(@Mocherin) is the father of two young children. One day, he tweeted this post on Twitter:

"My younger child always asks me questions such as 'Why do pinecones close when you put them in the water?' during bath time. On one occasion, I asked him ‘Why do you always ask me so many questions during bath time?' He answered 'Because you don’t have your smartphone with you to look up the answer. I can hear your opinion, and even if you don't know the answer, we can think about it together.' Naturally, I want to tell him the correct answer, so I research it online. However, I never realized that he also loves the process of figuring out the answer. I have to admit I regret relying so much on my phone. He's right that it's important to communicate together in this way."

It's true the internet and smartphones are pretty amazing. We now have access to all of human knowledge in the palm of our hands. Yet, there is still value in taking the time to think through problems with one another, especially when young children are involved. MT’s followers responded to his post:

  • "These days, when we’re asked something, we often respond ‘Why don’t you look it up online?’ or ‘Please use your smartphone to figure out the answer.’ I say ‘It’s not like that. I’m asking you.’ It doesn’t matter whether or not you know the answer or not.”
  • “Kids don’t really want to know the answer. They just want to have a discussion with their parents. Children grow up fast, so why don’t we enjoy this precious time while they are young!”
  • “I get it. Recently many people immediately turn to their smartphone for research when someone asks ‘What’s this?’ Why don’t we focus on communicating with one another rather than finding the correct answer!”
  • “Your kid put his feeling into words. That’s great!”
  • “It reminds me of a story. There was a kid who often hid his mother’s smartphone. When she asked him why he did that he answered ‘Because you never look at me.' I cried when I heard it. Kids love to talk with their parents.”

Many people thought deeply about MT's post. It's convenient to be able to research anything on a smartphone instantaneously. However, it's just as valuable to turn such questions into an opportunity to have a discussion.

Another father’s lesson

There is another parenting post trending on Twitter:

"When my daughter won’t even take a bite of her meal, we host our own quiz show."

Twitter user Kinoshita Yuki (@kinoshitas0309) posted this video which was viewed 1,030,000 times. As you can see, Yuki tries to feed his daughter, but she isn't having any of it. Rather than fight it out, he asks her a question about her favorite Japanese cartoon, Anpanman. Of course, she easily gets the correct answer and is rewarded with a bite of her delicious food. Yum yum.

Yuki’s followers reacted to his clever idea:

  • "I want to try this on the kids at my daycare.”
  • “How interesting. I watched it many times.”
  • “Your daughter, you, and your wife all enjoyed making this video… Everything is beautiful.”

Hopefully, this trick works for all the parents grinding their teeth through dinner time.

By - Luke Mahoney.