My three year old is starting preschool today. Yeah, we’re late to the game. Most kids start in the Fall. Some start when they’re two. We really never thought we’d put her in preschool. Let her be a kid as long as she can, we thought.
But, we started to realize that she is beyond ready. She’s smart as a whip and has a beautifully outgoing personality. She gets giddy to meet new people, and is crazy eager to learn new things. I think in some ways being stuck at home most days with Mommy and Baby Sister has been torture.
Her smile was so big this morning:)
So, onto my thought. Why I watch my fucking mouth around my kids.
I have a potty mouth. I admit it. I love curse words. Don’t get me wrong, I love myself a Shakespearean insult, or high language conversation. But, I also love the expressiveness of letting out a low and slow “shit!”. But there’s some other things I choose to balance that with.
I think that, in our culture, we have lost a beautiful thing with the ediquitte of times past. Now, I’m not talking about a woman being considered a whore for putting on lipstick in public, or being gawked at for showing her ankles. I’m talking about how ediquitte reinforced and afforded everyone you encountered (including yourself) with a level of respect. Respect for simply being a human being. I think we’ve lost a lot of that.
I speak frankly here because I assume anyone reading this is an adult, and can easily choose whether or not to dedicate a few moments of their life to reading this. If a word here is offensive, I would encourage said person to move along, and find something they find more pleasant to look at.
When I am meeting someone for the first time, or am around a crowd of people with sensitive ears, I cater my language to them. Sure, I don’t have to. Some people may call bullshit on it. But just like I think that looking someone in the eye and saying “good morning” is simply a respectful thing to do, so is occasionally curbing your tongue.
It makes me sad to see little nuggets wearing shirts like “I’m not shy, I just don’t like you.” Or, “you’re ugly”, or some bullshit like that. It’s not funny. It’s teaching children to be cruel and hateful. It’s teaching them that they don’t need to be kind, or have a basic respect for their fellow humans.
The concept of being respectful is something that we have to teach our children. Making way for someone. Saying thank you. Holding a door for them. Wishing them a good day. Saying excuse me and not interrupting. Giving someone personal space. Using nice words. Giving someone the time of day. Those are all things our kiddos learn. Hey learn it first from us, their parents.
How can we expect our children to be respectful to us if we don’t treat them with respect, and without seeing us treat others with respect, as well;)
Also, my kids are just starting out in the world. The last thing I want to do as a mother is hinder their experience in the world. How will their teachers teach them differently if they don’t know how to speak nicely? How will it hinder them from making friends? These are some of the things I think about.
On the flip side, I am not naive. Doodlebug hasn’t busted out an “F” bomb yet. But I know the day will come. And, it won’t be the end of the world. We’ll have the talk about the need to use nice words. We’ll talk about appropriate language. I’ll wait till she goes to bed, and then laugh about it. I’ll dread having her teacher tell me that she’s taught “the word” to the other kids. I’ll delay that all from happening as long as I can.
And, until her vocabulary inevitably expands into the world of curse words, I will continue to do my best to watch my mouth, and use nice words around her. Just like I expect her to do:) Because, I want her to rock this world, and not be held back by anything!