I just don't know.
What would you like to do?I am beginning to hate these responses. There has to be a more intelligent answer to questions such as these...please?
"I don't know."
Where would you like to eat?
"I don't care."
What's going on?
"I have no idea."
Having three kids now past the age of 10, you can imagine that I hear these words quite frequently. Sometimes, it is warranted, yes. They really don't know where my keys got to, or who had my cell phone last. OK, I'll give that to them. But, wouldn't a better answer be, "Gosh Mom, I haven't seen your keys, but I'd be happy to help you look for them." *sigh*
There is more to it, though. I think when people say "I don't know" or more especially "I don't care", they are really ducking out of the decision-making process. They are making the other person make the decision for both of them. Unfortunately, this leaves the decision maker holding the bag, or more rightly the responsibility, of making everyone happy. And if the decision is not appreciated, or successful, then criticism follows.
Can I just say that I don't like this? I admit that I may be a little slow on the uptake, and that this has been happening to me for a long time, but now I get it. Can everyone just actively participate in everyday decision making, please? Why does it always have to fall to one person?
I have started calling people on this behavior. Being a rather take-charge type of person, it is easy for those around me to just assume that I will make the choices. I understand that they may truly 'not care' about small details like where to buy gas or where to grab lunch, but just leaving all decisions up to the other is inconsiderate. Especially if it happens all the time. It wears a person out, I tell you.
So, this is what I tell my kids; I don't know means I don't care (about you), and I can't means I won't. No, it doesn't apply in all situations, but it applies to most.
What time do you want to eat?
"I don't care."
What would you like to have for dinner?
Where would you like to go on vacation?
"Whatever is fine."