Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Think Out Loud [32] Cussing Up A Storm

A couple weeks ago Will demonstrated he'd moved on to the next big stage of Middle School. My mom scolded him for something he was doing. Will's response? "Shiiiiiiit." He has a high signsong voice and loves to stretch his words out. I tried very hard not to be amused. Total failure. A week after that, his other grandma informed me she'd heard him say the f-word under his breath. Time for a talk, I thought, but then my mind went to all those moments where swearing played a key part of the experience. Weird, but I have a cussing soundtrack to my life.

Nine years old, rough time for me. My mom ordered patterns in the mail to make pillows out of cartoon characters. My sister's arrived with mismatched pieces. I didn't take it well. "If they messed up my Strawberry Shortcake pattern, I'm going to be really pissed off!" Got grounded on the spot.

Fourteen, summer before my freshman year of high school. After being grossly hit on, I boldly and stupidly told the awful (and gargantuan) guy I could not stand him. He grabbed my boob and in my struggle to get away from him, he ripped my shirt. The shirt I had just gleefully stolen from my sister. "You tore my sister's shirt! You (three fast punches to his face) asshole!" I learned by the immediate rage that took over his entire body to flee first, feel properly pissed later. Our mutual friend stepped between us before the jerk could pummel me into the ground.

Two years ago fresh off my divorce and about as fragile as anything, my dad called using his overly calm voice. My brain went into overtime to keep the emotions in check because I knew something bad was coming. "...and the doctor said I'd die of old age before the leukemia got me." I tried my best not to cry because I absolutely hate crying over the phone. In my effort, my brain grasped for anything to hold on to. Swearing. "Shit," was all I could say. Then he kept going, talking about white blood counts and diet. I nodded until, "Do you know the odds of Ella May and I both having leukemia?" "Wait. Grandma has leukemia too?" "Yes." "Shit." 

I don't know what landscape of life Will has in store, or what his cussing soundtrack will be. So last week after picking Will up from school, I turned off the car and had our talk. 
"Will, I don't want you saying shiiiiiit." He chirped the way he usually did. If I could draw musical notes you'd get a better idea of how he sounds.
"Anything else, Mom?"
"Uh...yeah, don't say damn."
"Or ass."
"You mean like Get your ass in here?"
"Wait, what? Where did you hear that?"
"Where did I hear Get your ass in here?" I nodded. "On my game at Dad's."
"Well, don't say that."
"You mean ass?"
"Grrh. Yes, ass."
"Anything else?"
"Don't say pissed off, God dammit, or Jesus Christ."
"How about bitch?"
"Oh my goodness, don't say bitch. Do not say bitch. Really. That's a terrible one."
"Bitch is terrible?"
"Yes, it's terrible!"
"I won't say bitch, but you can't say bitch either, as in son of a bitch!"
"Uh, my bad. Okay...And Will?" 
"Yes, Mom?"
"Don't say fuck."
chirp, chirp, chirp

Think Out Loud is one seriously awesome post whatever you want meme. I mean, I freaking love it! (I couldn't pull the trigger there on all-out cussing). 


  1. Wow. I never knew their were bad words like that till I was a freshman in high school!! And that wasn't so long ago sadly. But know it's like everywhere I go someone is swearing. I don't use it as much as my siblings but I do say it to myself. You got your hands full on those words with your sons. Hopefully they listen to you.

    And that punch to that guy..... I was found speechless. LOL

    Hope everything is going good for you.

    1. You weren't a foul-mouthed eleven year old? Oh goodness, I was. Eleven through thirteen I was awful and now that I'm around kids so much because I volunteer at both my sons' schools, it's the same with the current generation. I was extremely sheltered about sex and violence when I was a kid, but not swearing. Sheesh, we had one seventh grade teacher who swore regularly.

      Oh, and the punch guy. He went nuts, didn't he? Don't punch the huge bad guy with your wimpy fists, that's what I learned.

  2. Amazing TOL, Robyn. I guess it's kind of fun when kids start swearing. :)
    I rarely swear. As a kid I was too quiet and even as a teenager, I was pissed off, but swearing was never my thing.

    I smiled reading that you punched the guy because you were pissed off for the shirt and not for grabbing your boob.

    (I answered your question back on my blog. Take a look when you have time.)
    Have a great day.

    1. I was really surprised I hit him three times, bam, bam, bam. I wouldn't do that now because after he stormed off I heard a huge punching crashing sound two blocks down the street. He was so pissed he beat the crap out of the table at the ice cream place. That could have been me. Plus he had a hundred pounds on me.

      It's hard to imagine being pissed as a kid and not cussing at the world. I did that daily. My friends and I were such punks I tell you. Sometimes I wish I was the shy non-cussing kind of girl. There's this whole fantasy persona I'll never reach.

      Oh, oh, wonderful TOL post about what you believe in.

  3. Best. TOL. Ever. I agree with Athina - I laughed when you punched over the shirt and not your boob! And that you have a cussing soundtrack!

    If that guy had laid a FINGER on you, I'd go back in time and kick his ass!!!

    Probably easy for me to say, but all you can do is laugh. Janie never cussed - my sister always says Janie does not like shenanigans, lol. She's a strict by the book kind of girl. I'm bad - Brady and I cuss too much in front of the kids. :P Jack had a problem with cussing when he was two. He'd say bad words and laugh. After a few weeks, he stopped and if we cussed he'd tell us we shouldn't say those bad words, lol. We're terrible influences, hahaha.

    1. I love your protective gene I tell you. I didn't tell anyone about the grab because I was too busy trying to figure out what to do about my sister's shirt. The boob grab went right over my head. To me it was the closest thing for him to grab. I was very innocent at 14.

      And cussing too much, I try to minimize it. Once I went cold turkey (for like 2 days) and a car almost hit me backing up. It was so close. Really. Along with the sound of my horn honking all these words flew right out of my mouth. I decided quitting cold turkey wasn't good for anyone. Back when Will was still non-verbal (he didn't say mom until about 4 and a half), I used to say I don't care if his first word is a swear word, I just want to hear him talk. We all say that. I got my wish in the early days of him first talking because he's mimicker and we were stuck in traffic in the same place we got stuck every day and from the backseat I heard, "Jesus Christ. Come on already! Let's go." My bad.

  4. LOL Oh my goodness, Robyn. I needed this giggle today! LOL I LOVE that you have a cussing soundtrack for you life.

    Great talk with Will, dear. I love his questions - clarifying what he can and can't way. I haven't had to have this discussion with my kids...but maybe I our house when one person is in the shower and the other shower gets turned on, the water tends to run cold for a few seconds. (mountain water is frigid, btw) This happened a few weeks ago, and Sky yelled GD!! I was shocked! *giggling* I'm still laughing over it. OH, and I got grounded in 6th grade for saying 'horny' and I had absolutely no idea what it meant. :) And I can remember the first time I heard my mom say fuck...she whispered it. *giggles*

    Thanks for making my day! *hugs*

    1. I laughed through your entire comment. That is so funny that Sky yelled GD! And your mom and her secret cussing life. Ha! I made my grandma cuss one time. I was going through a terrible brat phase and she said shit. This woman scared kids without yelling or having a potty mouth, imagine how I trembled! That is hilarious about getting grounded for saying horny. I didn't know what that meant in 6th grade either. Thanks for making my day right back!

  5. oh Will sounds so awesome! And it's amazing what kind of words they can pick up from where!
    We don't swear very much, so the kids can't say that they pick up cussing from us. Which makes it easy for us to tell them that we don't use foul words in our house... Although I have to admit shit is not on our shit-list :p

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

    1. Shit is my go-to word. It's short and fits many situations. My ex doesn't swear at all, so all eyes went to me the first time Will swore. I did my best impersonation of a smiling innocent person. Did ya see Brandee's confession TOL post this week?

  6. I remember when my daughter was growing up and we all tried very hard to watch our language around her lest she learn to swear. That was terribly difficult and she picked up bad words anyway. She heard them in school, when she went to play at a friends house, almost everywhere she went. She now has three small children herself and we all try to watch our language around the little ones now. You can see my TOL here:

    1. Your effort to curb your language around the little ones is inspiring. I volunteer at my younger son's preschool and I certainly have no problem not swearing. I've tried substitutes, but the kids read through them and make such a big deal over it, swearing instead would have gone unnoticed in comparison. Thanks for stopping by, Carol!

  7. LMAO! This was hilarious. I remember when I started wanting to cuss. It didn't go over to well with my folks. LoL. I still didn't learn my lesson though because I cuss like a sailor nowadays!

    1. It's fighting the tide I tell you. It's hard to imagine myself as a non-swearing girl. I have the fantasy image where I'd say cutesy substitutes, but I just don't see that ever happening.

  8. LMAO! Great post. I curse, a lot. I mean, come on! You read my reviews! With that being said, somehow, NO IDEA HOW, I don't curse in front of my two girls. The dog, cats, mail box, gym bag on the other hand...

    1. That is so funny. I don't think I've ever cussed in front of the mail box. There was this time a huge pitbull got loose and ended up right at my feet at the mail box. In my head I said the f-word repeatedly, out loud I very calmly said, help. About ten minutes later and the dog sitting on my feet the owners came rushing over. "Is your dog friendly?" I asked. They laughed.

  9. This is a super funny post to me. The first time I cursed in front of an adult, I was 11 (Zane just turned 11) and I broke my ankle. Apparently it was broken in 2 places and I went to go have the x-ray done. They broke it in a third place in the hospital. That's when the D word came out. Drawn out and singsongy like Will's. Thankfully it was my Aunt Joy there who is a lot more lenient about things like that since my mom got upset at the word pissed that I enjoyed using a lot. Zane is completely different. I don't curse in front of him at all. He doesn't enjoy hearing it on T.V. (he waggs his finger at Blake Shelton for his dirty mouth) and tells me about how awful the language is in the bathroom at school. I don't know if I'll have to have this talk with him anytime soon, but I'm really glad I haven't had to have it yet. Jaclyn @ JC's Book Haven.

    1. I can just imagine you all tiny and swearing in a singsongy voice like Will. So cute! But how terrible to have two breaks and then another one! Before Will reached this stage he used to scold me for swearing and anyone else on TV. I had to stop watching Judge Judy because she said shut up and stupid all the time and those are big no no's, more than actual cuss words.

      If you have to have the swearing talk, be prepared for wanting to just spell the words out instead of saying them. It was almost as bad as the puberty talk. Zane is such a cool kid, Jaclyn. I've heard the kids talk in the bathrooms. I had to cover my mouth not to crack up.