Ask First ~

Teaching Children and Teens How to Make Requests

I mentioned on Monday needing to remember that sometimes Michael (my husband) asks me if I want to do something when what he really means to ask is would you do this with me. Well, since that reminder, I’ve realized that sometimes my grown children will do the same thing.

Recently Tiffany asked me if I wanted to go to the lake that today. I asked her, are you asking if it is something I want to do or if I would go with you because it is something you want to do. Thankfully, she was really wanting to know if I wanted to do it that day and I could truthfully answer, no. :D

This is something that I hadn’t thought about teaching before. So I thought I’d break down how requests should be made.

  • May I ________ (play video games)?
  • May we _______ (go to the park)?
  • Would you please_______________ (scratch my back)?
  • I’d like to _____ (go shopping) , would you please go with/take me? OR
  • I’d like to _____ (go for a walk), would you like to _____ (go) with me?


It is very mature to ask if someone would like to do something, but that doesn’t always make for clear communication. It also leaves the requestor open to hurt, if the person asked doesn’t desire to do what was requested.

It’s important to instruct teens especially, to ask for what they desire, rather than hint at what they want and expect the person to figure it out and offer. Especially if the teen will have hurt feelings if the outcome is not as they desired.

I hope I’m clear with this. If not, please ask in the comments and I’ll try to clear it up. ;)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

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