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My 2 ½ year-old daughter should be one of those CIA operatives who can coerce information out of prisoners through verbal torture. She is slowly, steadfastly driving me insane. Her technique is so simple. She does it with one word: why?

All day long, for 12 straight hours, and nothing I say can make it stop. It’s the repetition that makes me want to throw myself into the Hudson River just so I can get a few moments of serenity. One of her favorites is, “why does daddy go to work?” So I try to explain, “Daddy goes to work so he can make money. With money, we buy things like cheddar bunnies, yogurt and ice cream.”

But apparently that answer is insufficient. Within a few minutes, Dylan wants to know, “why does daddy go to work?” In an effort to keep my mind energized and to not suffer agonizing boredom, I offer up these reasons throughout the day.

“Daddy goes to work to bring home the bacon.”

“Daddy goes to work to pay the mortgage so we can live in the manner we have become accustomed to.”

“Daddy goes to work to make money, so we can buy things, which helps keep the American economy strong, which means the United States continues to be an economic powerhouse on the world stage.”

Dylan stumbles through the words “economic powerhouse” to inquire why that is the case.

“Dylan, no more questions today. I love your curiosity but mommy is tired. We’ll ask more questions tomorrow,” I tell her sighing deeply.

“Why?” she asks. Oh my god. She is killing me.

4 Responses to dylan the torturer

  • Robin Singer says:

    I remember this. Actually the memory of my niece doing this is more clear to me at the moment. "Why are we in the car?" "We have to go get the tire fixed." "Why." "Because we got a flat tire." "Why you get a flat tire?" "We went over something in the road." "Why you go over sompin in de road?" "It was sticking up." "Why it was sticking up?" "Enough questions." I also remember asking Zoe once why she had to talk so much, and her response was "I have a lot to say." 🙂 God bless you and the patience you will gain as a result of this.

  • Daphne says:

    I don't remember who saved us from this torture, but here it is, the one answer that has a shot at working…"Because it is the way of our people." At the very least, it buys you a precious fraction of a second during which she ponders this deep thought. Also worth trying, "well, why do you think so?" Good luck, we are living it now with Acadia (aka Anabelle) and are driven halfway to crazy town every day!

  • Karen Veronica says:

    Did you happen to hear on NPR last week the originon brining home the bacon? I always wondered how that phrase came into use. Evidently long ago (in England maybe) if a couple stayed happily married and together for a year thge reward was a good size portion of bacon — Now WHY did that get started??

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kelcey kintner