Saturday, 27 August 2011
A blue streak
When I grew up my mum wasn't really a swearer, but my dad never censored himself, always enjoying a good expletive to express himself. I have a memory of my younger brother counting the swear words that came from my dad during a car trip, just for a bit of hilarity.
I don't think this ever effected me negatively. It was just something my dad was allowed to do, but I wasn't – like drive the car or drink beer.
Now with my own kids, it's a kind of similar situation. Skip doesn't censor himself, I let fly occasionally and the kids understand it's something that grown ups say and they can't. Swearing is definitely more common place now than it was when I was a kid. TV shows and music have far more swearing than they once did. It's hard to protect kids against it.
We also let our kids get away with 'toilet' humour at home as well. Mainly because I'm a complete juvenile and find it funny, but the kids are aware it's something they can do at home and not at preschool or other people's houses. Also, it's not allowed to be used in an agressive way toward anyone else.
Each family is different, I know. The family who was shocked by the use of 'damn it' that I mentioned, there was another playdate we went on recently and Goosey got upset at toy she was playing with I think she then said it was 'stupid'. The other mother gasped and said: "Did she say the s-word?" I assured her no, she didn't she just said stupid. The reply came: "That's the s-word in our house". I was a little surprised. I wouldn't like the girls to call each other or anyone else stupid, but I probably wouldn't (didn't) notice if they said it to an inanimate object.
It's kind of interesting the limits and the values that different people put on language. There's never a right or wrong, it's just interesting.
I have had an issue with the girls using the word 'hate'. They've started saying they hate me or they hate each other and they've been quickly told: "You can be angry, upset or frustrated with me. That's fine. I just don't want to hear you say that you hate anyone. How would you feel if I said told you I hated you?"
How do you feel about swearing? Are there taboo words in your house?