The Day I Swore at the Playground

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The crazy people who design playgrounds seem to think that it is a totally awesome idea to put all of the seats in a 2 x 2 space.  This means if you have ‘little dears’ the whole playground knows that they belong to you when they inevitably call you mum.  Pretending they aren’t yours is futile..believe me I have tried.

Occasionally however it gives you the opportunity to sympathise with fellow parents when your child bashes another child over the head with a shovel or completely ignores you when you tell them it is time to leave.  On Thursday last week, we thought we were in company of similar minded parents after a woman offered her been there done that smile when my brother huffed off from the playground on his scooter.

The woman piped up and said that she knew how frustrating children were (she had 3 of her own) and she was having issues with her eldest repeating things that she said.  She began to tell us a story of how she had completely lost it at her one day and was completely ashamed because she had sworn at her.  The daughter was now repeating this phrase to her sisters and she was horrified.

My mum and I listened and waited for her to reveal what this word was.  I was feeling a little guilty that I had made a quick judgement based on her appearance that she wasn’t the kind of person who would use swear words.  The woman continued to talk about her shame and said that she had told her daughter to…wait for it…shut up.

I waited for a few more seconds thinking that I had misheard..but not she repeated it and yes, the horrible, dreadful word she had used and her daughter was now using was ‘shut up’.  My mum thought she had had a power nap and missed what the swear word was.  We continued polite conversation with the woman until it was time for her to leave.

I looked at my mum and asked if she had heard the same thing I did..she had.  We had a bit of a laugh about being bad parents because we regularly said the word fuck.  I then said to her, I mistakenly thought I said it quietly, ‘Yeh I hate it when my kid calls me a cunt’.  The giggles from a bloke standing nearby begs to differ though.  It was a much better reaction than from the woman earlier in the week when I jokingly said I wanted to buy a massive wooden pole for a whacking stick.

Apparently swearing in the company of children is frowned upon.  I say fuck that.  How about we give kids a bit of credit, as well as our ability to parent them.  We cannot shield our children from absolutely everything and then expect them to never do it.

DP and I swear like troopers…but I can count on one hand (ok maybe 1.5) how many times I have had to speak to DS about using swear words.  Why? Because we have explained to him that they are mummy and daddy words and he accepts that.  We don’t make a big deal out of it when he does say them and simply say ‘Remember those are mummy and daddy words’.  Anything more and it turns into a game of how much of a reaction he can get out of us.

Do you swear around your children? How do you handle it when they let one slip?


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10 thoughts on “The Day I Swore at the Playground

  1. kirsty mackenzie

    Oh dear, we swear way too much around our kids, but with the older 2, they have NEVER sworn (have no idea why) and would often tell us off for it, as for our 2 year old, i am afraid that is a different story, she copies everything and has even said it off her own back and in the right context too…oops, but yes, diversion is what we are trying to do, the older kids make too much fuss over it, but in the end, they learn, they are just experimenting. As for ‘goody 2 shoes’, I am sure she isn’t THAT perfect, just a good chameleon .
    End of the day, what ever works for one, may not work for another, we are all just trying to raise good kids the best we know how.

    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      Oh I like the chameleon reference. It must be hard work though to appear so perfect all of the damn time.

  2. Oculus Mundi

    Ah, the beige brigade. How I do love them. People who pretend to be perfect parents always make me wonder what they are really like behind closed doors.

    Swear words are just words. And before anyone starts beating that tired and despeart “Lazy and poor vocabulary” drum I am going to copy and paste a comment I made on an article the other day on this very subject:

    “Absolutely, my paucity of vocabulary, dreadful dearth of creativity and inability to write fluently, coherently and articulately is most indubitably the reason why I swear. Or, maybe I just fucking like it. Like those ignorant and woefully inexpressive chaps Shakespeare and Chaucer.”

    Only the deeply stupid or terminally beige believe that using a swear word is of great “pith and moment.”

    Swear, or don’t swear around your kids, it’s how much love you give them that counts. Sometime I curse. Sometimes I don’t. Choose to be offended by that, or choose not to be. It matters not a fuck, either way.

    And if that’s all the Beige Brigade have to worry them, then aren’t they lucky, lucky bastards?

      1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

        Yes lucky bastards they are…although the term ‘doth protest too much’ comes to mind.. What are they trying to draw attention away from by jumping up and down about some words people choose to use. There is sure as hell worse things that a parent could be doing around their child than dropping the f-bomb

  3. Beck/craftypjmum

    Oh SHUT UP !!!!
    No way would anyone use this foul language within hearing range of children : ) lol
    Love this post……I to use “mummy & daddy” words on occasion, only trouble is that now my kids are teens they laugh and poke fun at me !!!!!

    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      Haha! Mr 3 chastised my 14yo brother when he swore and said ‘You are not a mummy or daddy you can’t say those words.’ There is no getting away with it, with a 3yo in the house lol

  4. Angela

    I don’t swear a lot, but I don’t make a habit of not swearing in front of my children. When M hears me drop the F-bomb, he tells me that I said a word that he doesn’t say anymore. LOL. Not even 4 and he has a ‘word’ he doesn’t say anymore. It makes me giggle every time. We explained to him that they are words that adults use sometimes and that children don’t use them. He is happy enough with that and other than informing me of the above, he doesn’t make a deal of it.

  5. Julie

    Ha ha Tegan that ‘s so funny. “Shut up”, in life you swear, I swear around my children but not at them. My kids don’t swear, we’ll one can’t talk. Great post. Loved it.

  6. Emily

    I don’t swear much and try not to in front of the kids. But I’m sure I’ve slipped. And I know they’ve heard those words elsewhere. It’s all about handling the situation, not covering their ears with ear muffs and hoping they never find out.
    (In that mum’s defense, I really don’t like to say ‘shut up’ to the kids. But I don’t beat myself up if it slips out. And I certainly wouldn’t go on about it to two strangers at the park, or call it swearing!)


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