Everett has become aware of germs. He doesn’t want to get them, and he doesn’t want to give them to other people by sharing cups or food. This has created some conflicts for him. For example, we have mentioned before how much he loves Dada water (from Chris’ nightstand), but now he has realized that this requires sharing a cup with Dad, so he has started asking what part of the cup Chris drank from in order to put his mouth somewhere else. He has also started using germs as a convenient excuse why he can’t share with his parents. When asked to share something delicious (basically any kind of dessert) he will say “I have the croup!”, referring to the couple of times he has had it in the past, followed by a couple of forced coughs. We have asked him where the concern for germs is coming from and he told us that they are learning about it in school, which is good for us as parents because it reinforces habits like covering his mouth during a cough or sneeze. We remain appropriately skeptical when germs are an excuse why he can’t share chocolate but don’t seem relevant for foods like squash that he has less affinity for.

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