Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Big Bad Word

I'm not one of those people that gets offended by foul language.  Words are words and we are the ones that give them power.  However, my stance change when it comes to children.  It's not that kids shouldn't be aware of those words but I believe they need to be taught when using them is completely inappropriate.  While I've been known to use bad words when I'm talking to other adults who I am very comfortable with, when it comes to my house, Jason and I do not use them in front of the kids.  Role modeling is one of the most important parts of parenting and we feel that by not using them in front of the kids we have it that much easier when these issues of bad words come up.

Quite honestly, to this point we haven't had any issues.  I know the kids know some of these words because Caroline and Bryce have asked what certain words mean.  Again, no problem there and I don't overreact.  I have no problem telling them what  "shit" or "ass" means.  I think it's good for them to know.  And up until this point, those words haven't come out in any kind of inappropriate way.  I know that they hear them at school from other kids but so long as they know they are words not to be said at school and at home, we're okay.

Several weeks ago another word came up at home that I wasn't please about but it came up as somewhat as a descriptive word and not in the name calling format.  The lovely word "asshole" was uttered.  Oh good lord.  I'm not sure which one of the older kids said it but it was one of those situations where they heard it, wanted to know what it was and when I told them it was another name for the part of their body that they are already familiar with, they understood.  However, upon hearing that Piper latched onto it and one evening as they were getting ready for bed we heard Piper say to Bryce that she could see his, well, you know what.

We told her that even using it "correctly" it's not an appropriate word to say and she seemed to get it although it was very hard for Jason and I not to smile because a 4 year old saying that is enough to make you giggle even if it's not something you want to hear.

Well, last night things changed a bit.  Piper and Bryce had been at each other's throats all evening and I was upstairs cleaning when I heard the back and forth name/insults.  Jason was right down there with them and trying to get them to knock it off when Piper threw "asshole" at Bryce.  BAM!  I couldn't believe my ears - where had she heard it used like that????

Jason immediately sent Piper up to her room and I stood at the top of the steps and made sure she got up to me.  She was crying the whole way and I sent her into her room and she closed the door and then SCREAMED at the top of her lungs.  We ignored it but clearly the name calling came from a very angry place inside her.  I let her cry for a while and when she called to go to the bathroom, I told her to go and then to get ready for bed.  It was only 7:15.  At that point, she was much calmer and we had a talk about it. I asked her where she heard that word used like that and she told me that Kodi told her.  (Kodi is my IL's dog.)  I told her that I don't think Kodi can talk but that the word should not be used to call someone a name.  She seemed to have the appropriate level of remorse and was upset that she was going to bed so much earlier than her siblings so she knew that this was a big deal and not to do it again.  I read her a book and she passed out within a few minutes of turning out the light.  I had a feeling that her being tired contributed to everything but it's still not okay.

Here's hoping we've nipped this one in the bud but I also know those kinds of words usually come out when a kid is losing control of their emotions.  If we didn't teach her this time, she'll learn the next time when the punishment will be greater - which I explained to Piper.

Sigh.  I absolutely refuse to have a foul-mouthed kid.  I know things will change as the kids get older and more mature, but for now bad language is off limits.

1 comment:

Heather said...

Did you let Kenny babysit???