The Matron and her husband are a team.
They learned this early on, in Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE) parenting classes. Always agree. Be on the same page. Subject thee not, to Manipulation.
Now, they liked that. Unified front, clear rules for children and all.
But more than that, they liked the idea of being a Team. Supporting each other--sort of akin to the 'in sickness and health' sort of stuff. Sometimes (she admits) after a day of Snipe and Accusation, they clutched one another, bewildered, in the kitchen and reminded themselves: We Are The Team.
So Merrick is all about this.
"Mom!! Can I have candy right now?
Matron: "No, not until after dinner."
So young lad scuttles to another room and, he hopes, to a weaker heart.
"Daddy? Can I have a Tootsie roll?"
John: "What did Mama say?"
Merrick: "Not till the dinner."
John: "That's what I say. We're on the same team."
Merrick: "Mama, can I stay up aftew Swyker?"
Matron: "What did Daddy say?"
Matron: "That's what I say. We're on the same team."
Imagine the above, rewinding for poor Merrick's ENTIRE LIFE TIME.
Tonight, Merrick queried both parents about Chex Snack Mix before dinner, several times. The Team replied in unison: No.
Finally, after bumping his head against this roadblock for --oh, 5 years, --- Merick fell to his knees and screamed: " I HATE THE TEAM!!!!!"
And then stood up. "But can I be on it?"