As a parent you need to pick your battles. This was one I missed. Didn’t nip it in the bud quick enough. I lost control. I made a mistake. A couple of rude words here and there. I told them to stop. It’s rude. I don’t want to hear that kind of language in my house. I didn’t persist…..insist.
And now? Now our house is like a gangster movie.
“Yo muthafucka pass me the tomato sauce”
“You’re a bitch when I catch you I’m gonna kill you”
“Fuck off that hurts”
This swearing is a regular thing between our 2 boys. 9 and 7.5 years old, it’s f-this and f-that. Bitch-this and bitch-that. Bloody-this and bloody-that. What should I do? Send them to their room? Ground them? Put them outside? Smack then? Remove the Ipod, Ipad, Xbox etc. Wash their mouth out with soap?
Well we’ve tried most of them. Except the soap. It was my last resort.
I have asked others about their kids swearing. Most say they hear the occasional word. Some say they don’t care it’s only words. Others are taken aback when I tell them I’ve got a white Samuel L Jackson in my house.
I ask how they stop it. Some say they just never tolerated it. Stamped it out from day one. Others say they never had the problem. Some put up with it.
Playing with matches. Forks in the power socket. Brother’s head being held under water in the bath. Jumping off the car roof. Stealing. Bullying. General thuggery and random acts of violence. That I stamped out immediately.
Swearing. Well it just didn’t seem that bad compared to the rest. The problem is that fuck, shit and bloody are part of the everyday vernacular.
Australian drink drive ads finish with “Drink. Drive. You’re a bloody idiot.”
Triple M footy broadcasts have the slogan “Shut up, footy’s on the radio”
“Where the bloody hell are you” was Lara Bingle’s message in the Visit Australia international TV adverts.
Bill Maher recently dropped it on his show in America. Ex-Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett let it slip on 3AW a few weeks ago. Ed Sheeran didn’t realise he was saying it on the Jonathan Ross show a few days ago. Sports players say it all the time. It is one of the few words you can see them mouthing on the pitch. You can’t hear but you know exactly what they said.