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Monday, 10 March 2014
One sure thing in parenting is that your children will surprise you.
And they enjoy experimenting with language!

I suppose I should be somewhat thankful for a short memory, because I had forgotten my daughter's adventures with swearing until it happened again this week.  And, until whatever internal machinations of irony my blog has going on decided to spit up a couple of posts on this very topic to remind me.
Potty mouth at age 2.5.
Get the Swear Jar at age 6

We aren't a foul mouthed family.
We aren't perfect, but we don't swear regularly.
We also don't make a big deal about swearing -- words are words, and if they bother others it is respectful not to use them.

Rowan is 8.
Like many 8 year olds she likes to make an impression.
And her behaviour one day last week was most impressive.

I'll admit it started with the 'anti-joke chicken' meme, which Rowan stumbled across while researching chickens. This joke:

She read it aloud, blushed and immediately told me she knew there was a 'bad word'.
The one she learned about last summer.

We were camping and Ro and a friend were pretending to be warriors of some sort, hoisting stick swords and running through the woods. When I heard her yelling "Ship! SHIP!" I looked to the other mom and we both shrugged, assuming that she was saying "ship" --'they must be pirates'.  The woods were ringing with the word.  She yelled it again, running close by me.  I stopped her and asked what she was yelling.

She looked me in the eye, and honestly said, "Shit.".
"That is not a word we use when playing -- it is a swearing word."
"OK" and off she went.
End of story.

So when she read the meme, she knew it was not a word we use.
Except that she went to her sitter's for the afternoon, she lost no time in regaling the sitter and her boys (age 6 and 8) with the horse joke.

And when she retold it, that horse made a very big mess. Over and over again.
When she was chastised for her language, she replied with two baffling statements.
1) "Right, I shouldn't use that word in front of children".
2) "I am working on not using it as much as I used to".

What? I can't even.
Thank goodness I learned all of this while alone and by text.
Because I couldn't stop laughing at the brazenness of my child.

{for one awful moment I worried that it had become a tic! Although only 10% of people with Tourette's experience foul language tics 'coprolalia'... What if?! Thankfully it subsided and a good discussion about appropriate language use was sufficient.} --PSA, please do not ever share or use Tourette's jokes that suggest people who swear have the neurological disorder. It is an incredibly difficult condition to live with, found most often in children and teens, and spreading false info hurts them all. Thanks xo

And that folks, is, I hope, my last post about my foul mouthed little girl.
But somehow I suspect there may be more to come.


June said...

Awww- sweet Rowan! LOL.

My twins were *ahem* QUITE a bit younger when they used that word. See, we had a TV that was temperamental. It would shut off suddenly for no reason. Now when the kids were little, we had the same sort of outlook on swearing and swear words as you do. We didn't swear like sailors, but we were not above letting a curse fly on occasion.

One of those occasions was when the TV would shut off. Hubby would mutter "shit!" and get up and bang the side of the TV to get it to switch on. Soooo, my little angels, who were maybe 18 months(? it's been awhile), learned that the box that made sounds and had pictures of people and things moving around- the box that was SO entertaining- was called a "Shit" and you banged on the side to get to watch it. They did that for a week or so until they learned a new word for the magic box. :)

Unknown said...

Oh I love it, June! Kids don't miss a thing!!

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