Monday, January 28, 2008

Draw the Line

My discipline methods have often been a source of amusement. Among friends we laugh about how conservatively we raised our children but we continue to defend our means with a laugh.

One of the particular issues was my concern about keeping our language pure.
In our home we did not use the "b" word..........
instead we said "rear", "hiney", "caboose" or any of those benign terms for the part of our body for which we rest ourselves. Over the years since my children are all grown now we have begun to slip and use the "b" word ourselves a little. Knowing friends suck in their breath loudly and proclaim, "oh, no" and we laugh over it.

But truthfully....

Our society has become so loose with their language that by today's standards adhering to such a policy may seem ridiculous. My reasoning was always that the line needed to be drawn for children what is acceptable and what is not. We drew the line very conservatively. If my children knew that I would frown over their use of b--- then they would not be using a-- in front of me anyway.

I cringe at sports events when coaches get up and announce to our children "GET OUT THERE AND KICK SOME A--!" But I was around when they used to say "GET OUT THERE AND KICK SOME B---!" Give them an inch and they'll take a mile.

Over the weekend my old rule came back in the form of my youngest child disciplining his oldest child. Carl admitted he told Reese teasingly that he was going to "kick her b---" and for days she went around saying it. She has such a sweet little voice. Words drip from her lips in a rhythmic sound like angel's singing. Here was this sweet sounding child singing "kick your b---, kick your b---, kick your b---"
Carl said it took days of undoing what he had done.

It may seem ridiculous to many that we draw the line with rude sounding words but if we do not keep high standards we have placed ourselves ON the line, or even over the line and there is not leeway left.

So draw the line and stick to it. At least you will take a stand. Your children will not forget it. They may stray from it, they may trot around it, they may twist it and even break it but they will remember you told them what was appropriate and what was not.

1 comment:

  1. AMEN!

    And as a mom with my babies now being two adult men, I have to asmit that when they or someone around me say an off color word, they apolizie and (yes Rob) even blush. Makes me feel honored and respected.