Ladies and Gentlemen…I have unfortunate news! My son used his first “curse” word at school. He didn’t mess around with the insignificant ones, but instead went with the big daddy of them all. Let me share some background information before I continue…
Up until now, my TBP’s sophisticated vocabulary had fallen short when it came to emotional outbursts. When he was really angry, he would say “stupid head” or “dummy” and then stomp off for a while before returning with a heartfelt apology. We thought that we were clever by not giving any word a tremendous amount of power. We would watch movies and wouldn’t flinch when a swear word was used. If we didn’t react, he wouldn’t notice the word and it would continue to be left out of his repertoire.
It worked for awhile…but our luck ran out.
As I shared in a previous post, we started out the year on a high note. We had a great first day and a wonderful email from the new 2nd grade teacher. We were cautiously optimistic. However, as each day passed…the anxiety with the morning drop off grew. It reached a new level after returning from the long Labor Day weekend. At this point, my son began to complain about school drop off even before he left home. Last year, he was allowed to enter his classroom earlier than the other students and wanted to continue this plan. Understandably, the school felt that the office should be the drop off location instead of the classroom. Each day, was increasingly stressful and emotional.
On Thursday afternoon, I was met by the principal when I came to take my son home. This is never a good sign. The principal shared that my TBP had to be held while his mother left. They blocked the door so that he could not run out into the parking lot. While this was taking place, my son’s emotions hit an all time high and he shouted “the word” at the principal and another staff member. As the principal is recounting the events for me, I am horrified. I say what every parent says at this point, “He said what?!? I am SO sorry!!!” I continue by saying that we don’t talk that way at home and that we haven’t ever heard him use that word. This is true, but I know that people always have doubts when other people say that.
The principal continues by saying that my son wrote a letter of apology and that everyone was shocked when he said it. He chuckled a bit when he said that my son even looked surprised when he blurted IT out. He assured me that he felt it was an isolated situation and that he wasn’t expecting to hear it again. I listened and hoped that the principal was correct, but I had my doubts. My son now knows THAT word. He knows the reaction THAT word gets and that very few words have the same impact. When my son arrived at the office, the principal reminded him about tomorrow’s drop off plan. My son agreed and happily waved goodbye to the secretaries and gave the principal a smile and a fist bump.
The school staff thought that everyone was on the same page. I suspected otherwise.
As we walked home, I spoke with my son about the situation. I told him that word was not to be used and that there would be serious consequences if there was a repeat performance. He was apologetic…that is until I mentioned tomorrow’s drop off. At that point, my TBP said, “I know they like the plan and they think that I am going to follow the plan, but I’m not.” While I listen to these words, I’m feeling a mixture of anger, panic and fear. He had left the office with smiles and what looked like a clear agreement. And The Oscar goes to…
As you can imagine, we were worried when Friday morning came. He was reminded about the consequences of another outburst and he assured us that he would not use that word. He knew that he would lose Mine Craft and internet privileges and that his Saturday play date with a fellow Mine Craft addict would be cancelled. I was hoping that these threats were powerful enough to dissuade him, but a little voice inside of me was telling me otherwise.
Friday morning and another “f bomb” was dropped. I am told by the secretaries that it didn’t compare to Thursday’s outburst and “that it was 80% better”. I know they shared this to make me feel better, but it didn’t. As promised, he lost his Mine Craft and playdate. I expected him to throw a fit when he knew that we were sticking to our word. He took the punishment better than expected and said that he had learned his lesson. We talked about the importance of standing by our word. He told me that he understands and that “Monday will be a new day.”
We are experiencing mixed feelings about this situation. Obviously, such language should not be tolerated; however, we have to wonder why there is so much separation anxiety in the morning. The good news is that the classroom environment has been maintained and that none of these tantrums have effected the rest of his day or his new best friend relationship. For this, we are very grateful. This would NOT have been the case last year.
With Monday right around the corner, we are concerned. If this continues much longer, we will need to have the school provide a different plan (one that he doesn’t see as a victory because of his determination) or some incentive that can be put in place to immediately reward his courage. Keep your fingers crossed!
No Minecraft will surely get boring, I’m sure he will stop. It’s just a word!! All the other kids know it and have heard it, probably many times Everyone will just have to ignore it. Good Luck!!
Yes…I hope that the boredom gets to him and causes him to make a different choice! I tried to explain that using the f bomb is not impressive! It doesn’t make you look grown up or intelligent. I tried to also explain that he must keep his word! He didn’t like the idea that I might promise something and then not deliver.
I am dreading the day that something like this will happen with my son. I have a feeling it is only a matter of time.
I am guessing that the school understands that kids usually learn of these words from other kids, not from their parents. But I know how mortifying it must feel.
Best to you on this. I’ll keep reading in hopes of learning successful ways to deal with this.
Yes, this was a tough one. Despite close monitoring, his access to the Internet (you tube) provided him with more of an education than I wanted. Now that it’s done and can’t be taken back, my hope is that he understands that words like this will not open doors for him but instead shut them!
How are things going now? Did everything work out on Monday?
We are happy to report that yesterday and today were good drop off days!! No more f bombs and crying. Hopefully that was the end of it…for awhile 😉
Thanks for your continued support!
I am so glad to hear it. 🙂
I’m glad to hear that he’s doing better now. Sounds like he was stressing pretty hard. I’m sure this was a hard situation for you.
On a different note, when I was little, I got my mouth washed out with soap for saying bad words or back-talking my parents. Have you ever experienced that? It’s AWFUL! Haha!
Things are much better now…thank you! I never experienced soap in my mouth, but it sounds horrible!
Oh no! Hope he has a better week ahead!*
*(as it is already the 12th, I should ask how he’s doing so far since that day. 🙂 )
This week has been great! Thanks so much for asking! We are keeping our fingers crossed! 🙂
We haven’t had “the big ones” used yet by my boys, but I’m dreading when we do. We did have a streak with my oldest when he was only about three where we wanted to use the word “frickin” all the time. The worst part was it was really hard not to laugh when he first said it. We walked out side and he looked at me and said, “It’s frickin cold outside today!” I tried ignoring it but that very afternoon when we got home he looked at me and said, “I am frickin tired.” We had to talk about that being an adult word, which is hard to explain to a three year old. But it was a wake up call to my husband and I that we needed to not just avoid the “real” swear words, but all those milder variations that don’t sound at all good coming out of a tiny mouth!
It looks like things have been better – glad to hear!!
Frickin’ is a hard one because it does sound hilarious coming out but is just around the corner from the f bomb.
We had a great streak this week that ended today, but hoping for a fresh start on Monday!
Thanks for stopping by and commenting!
Yeah – I thought I was going to implode from holding in the laughter when he said it was frickin’ cold out – because, well, it was! 🙂 Almost a week long good streak – celebrate four good days, give yourselves grace, and start new on Monday! Have a great weekend!
I should look at it that way…you’re right! It is so disappointing when you think you have a situation handled and then it bites you!
Fresh start I hope!