Yesterday I had a video call with some of the widows that I’ve met at Camp over the last few years. We usually keep in touch via text, but it was great to look at their faces instead of the text bubbles. Recently, one of us had solicited advice on how to handle a situation. Besides the great advice that included expletives was this gem.
“No is a complete sentence.”
My mom imparted this one on me a few years ago. I’ve used it with my children when they beg for something relentlessly. I don’t use it all the time but it’s effective when I do to cut off the pleading.
However, I haven’t really put this one to good use in my widowhood. I find myself thinking of all the scenarios where we can use this by itself or even with a few more words if needed.
Can I have his (insert belonging here)?
I would like to see a copy of (insert personal document)?
How did your husband pass?
“No, I don’t want to discuss that.”
Are you dating?
‘No.” (Even if the answer is yes.)
Aren’t you over that yet?
We don’t owe anyone an explanation of why we won’t be answering their highly personal questions. The answer can just be ‘No’.
Of course, this doesn’t go for everyone in our lives. There may very well be people in our lives who we want to gift a treasured item to. Someone who will help us try and make sense of a medical report. A friend to share the ups and down of what it’s like to date again. However, we get to decide who those people are. Just because someone asks, doesn’t mean they get answers.
So, feel free to put that one in your pocket for when you need it later. No is a complete sentence. The End.