And Then I Stepped in Gum . . .

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Must . . . Fight . . . Instincts . . .

(Yeah, yeah, I know I haven't posted in forever. More meta blog talk another time. The following was too good not to blog it.)

So. My family of origin has a little . . . quirk, if you will. We all like to be right. All the time. And if we think we're right, and someone else is not, we find correcting that someone completely irresistible. They don't even actually have to be in the room -- we have been known to correct people on TV, writers in the newspaper, etc. Of course, we mostly correct each other. And to a non-Dockstader, that can get a little, well, irritating when the nitpicking really gets going.

Ever since I married the unflappable, nonconfrontational Dave, I have been pulling away a little bit from the need to prove that I am 100% right all the time. (Dave would say, a very little bit.) I try to let things slide a little bit more. And with distance, I am able to see the irritating side of this trait. Really, I am. It doesn't always stop me from engaging, but I do try.

So I've been frustrated lately that Katie and Ian are beginning to correct each other (and us) to an extreme, about things that just. Don't. Matter. It flows mostly from Katie to Ian, or Katie to us, but they are both taking part, and it leads to pointless bickering that grates on me to no end. The other morning, I had a serious talk with them about the need to learn to let things go, to not correct every single, little, niggling thing that anyone else says or does. I suggested that we should make a chart and hang it on the refrigerator, and mark it down every time someone in the family corrects someone else needlessly -- the point being that I want them to recognize how often the behavior happens, so that they'll understand what I'm trying to say.

This afternoon, I found that Katie has already taken it upon herself to draw up the chart. Here is a picture of it:

10 points for anyone who can fully grasp the existential dilemma I am currently facing.