March 11, 2010

I Swear


I was raised in a home where swearing was not allowed. I remember my ears burning off one time when during a time of great stress, I overheard my father say the word "damn" (and I said it in quotes- as in quoting another person so it's okay) in anger over some silly situation. He was relocating his dental office and my mother innocently asked him if it wouldn't be better if he did something a certain way. His reply "YES it would be a damn site better, but I can't because... yada yada yada...." You could have heard a pin drop after that. I was shocked to the core!

Things changed when I entered middle school and made friends with a troubled girl named Melinda. Melinda's parents had divorced nastily and she was rebelling against the world and was going to take me along for the ride. It was a rocky time being friends with her. She introduced me to the coolness of swearing. No word was off limits. Then I began to slip up at home and boy did that bring down the house. I had the gumption to even cuss in anger at my parents using the F-word on rare occasion. I shudder to think of it now and I am so so sorry. I totally deserve angry teenagers in my life now because of that. After a year of abuse from her I moved on and made better friends. I also worked hard to stop the swearing habit I had acquired.

The funny thing is my teenager does not even go there. In fact if anyone is going to swear in one of our arguments- it's me. "For the 11th time today, but that damn violin away!" I heard myself saying the other day. I did quote there that time, but sadly- I was quoting myself. I know there's no salvation for me. I think I am going to blame it on my father for his example that day in the dental office. If I am ever in the heat of the moment, say I stub my toe badly, or scrape the car backing out of the garage my word of choice is sh_t. It just pops out. I am working on it. I blame Melinda. I also see a pattern, as I write this, of not owning up to my problem. I am blaming others instead. I will have to add that to the list of things I am working on.

I find a certain kinship to people with my same problem. Someone who isn't all stuffy and judgmental. I'll tell you when I do slip up in front of Big Boy he really lets me have it. Hair raised up, angry as a cat, telling me that I am the worst example of a mother he has ever known. I think he is just trying to shift blame and make me out to be the bad guy. He knows how to push my guilt buttons alright. Maybe I am the bad guy. Maybe I just need to expose him to more skits of the church lady and he'll see the error of his judging.

Middle Boy doesn't have the same sensitivity. Today I read this blog entry to him and we laughed out loud at the cussing from Pioneer Lady's disabled brother Mike. I think that Middle Boy is going to turn out just fine. I do tend to swear at him a lot less...

8 comments:

Tracy P. said...

Oh, P-Dub's brother Mike does have a way with words, doesn't he? I love how he throws "Butt" into every insult. If only "butt" were the worst thing I ever said...

c a n d a c e said...

Loved this post, although I have to admit that swearing is low on the "List" for me. I mean, if swearing is the worst thing I'm doing - I am smooth-sailin. Just sayin...

You are a great example Aunt Kelly! :) And I also hate stuffy, judgemental people...even though I'm related to some.

CSIowa said...

Good for you for working on the swearing! I vote yes on Big Boy trying to shift blame--that he IS doing it, not that he should. I guess if you don't swear it's harder for him to shift blame, so you win! Although, I have to say that my experience is that teenagers will always find some straw to grasp at in order to divert attention from the topic at hand--even when their mother doesn't swear. But maybe it would confuse yours if you stopped.

Kelly said...

I wouldn't want to add confusion to our problems :)

Carrie Stuart said...

Darling post...and LOVE your honesty! I went through a swearing phase when I joined the Navy. Whenever I hear someone use that phrase "mouth like a Sailor" I protest with, "Hey! I resemble that statement!"

My husband had to jinx me a few months ago (after 18+ years of marriage...thanks Hun) by announcing to the family at dinner, "Guys, I just had a realization today while I was (I don't remember...maybe he was counseling someone...or just having a conversation with someone) that your mom is not a swearer. I've never heard her swear." and went on to tell them how much he appreciated that. (I guess I'm good at keeping it under my breath...or saving it for when I'm alone.) WELL...I don't know WHY, but for some reason, now I've cursed in front of my kids 3 or 4 times since then. Not terrible swears...but enough to totally shock them. Maybe I just couldn't handle the pressure? I don't know...but glad I got that out of the way!

Carrie Stuart said...

OH...and here's another one to make you feel better. I think swearing at home is good to let your kids know what words they shouldn't use in public. Because of our lack of parental swearing (and the fact that I home-schooled my kids for 5 1/2 years) my son, thinking he was being very suave and clever, used the phrase "pretentious pr--ks" sarcastically referring to himself and his AP Lit. classmates while talking to our piano teacher the other day. He's a Sr. He should know better. But he had NO IDEA that it was a bad word. Then he blamed me for lack of exposure. He does have a point...I only unleashed him into public school the middle of last year. Oh well...at least he's learning before his mission. That could be embarrassing!

noyb said...

i dropped the f-bomb yesterday. i hate that i did it-i never, ever swore and then 11 years of marriage to a big cusser rubbed off on me and a lot of tacky words became part of my every day vocabulary. i have all but eliminated all cursing from my life and its definitely for the best, but yesterday when my fork slipped onto the rug after hitting my pants on the way down...i let it slip. yikes.

Chaka said...

I don't think my family has ever heard me swear, but I have a habit of saying bad words to myself when I get frustrated. I sometimes make up stupid replacement swear words which are even more embarrassing to say than actual swear words.