I Don't Love You

From grade three we now go to age three...

This week we visited some friends in Massachusetts who have a three year old boy, Declan. We were chatting with them in their living room when Declan was dropped off from his preschool summer camp. He sat down on the couch and set about taking off his shoes--the first step in getting down to some serious playing. I was pretty sure he didn't remember me since our last visit a whole year ago, so I introduced myself. Declan answered by clarifying what I would not be getting out of this afternoon's relationship. The actual conversation went as follows:

Sarah: "Hi Declan! Do you remember me? I'm Sarah."
Declan: "I don't love you."

I'm assuming the conversation from Declan's perspective was this:

Sarah: "Hi Declan! Do you remember me? I'm much taller than you and a stranger who doesn't look like anyone in your family. Should we love each other?"

Declan: "Easy, lady. You are definitely not my grandma and I'm 85% sure that you're not one of my aunts. Those are the people that I love, but you are none of them. So, if you're thinking that you're just going to walk into my life and I'm going to embrace you, you are mistaken. We could probably play my Dora the Explorer Memory game, but that's the level we're at."

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