Britt and I actually made this resolution together. I have been a terrible example for him. Brady said he never cussed until he met me. Somehow I doubt this, but hey! It's his story, and he can tell it any way he wants, right? I do have some responsibility in his profanity, I will admit it. I'm an a bad influence.
If you are wondering what brought me to this point, it is simple. Britt, my precious, sweet Mama's Boy, started cussing. Kids in public schools start cussing at a very young age, and especially in this area. I don't know if it is like this in other communities, but I'm guessing cities are a bit worse than smaller, country schools. It would be interesting to study, wouldn't it? In any case, we were fairly protected from this kind of language at Buena Vista, which is a smaller school in Eugene. But once my kids hit sixth grade, they were exposed to cussing on a whole new level - middle school level. Wow. Brailey said it is worse in middle school than it is in high school. And it caught up with Britt. His cussing at school, which truly mortifies me, started happening at home, too. He fell prey to what all of us who curse fall prey to, at some point - it becomes the natural dialogue we use. Not good.
So you can imagine how this upset me. And yet, how could I, one of the biggest cussers of all, tell Britt not to do it? I am not proud of this character defect of mine - I am frankly, extremely embarrassed that I let myself succumb to a language so denigrating, disgraceful, tactless and classless. I am completely ashamed of myself in this regard. I haven't been a good example. Somehow, Brailey didn't follow my lead, thank goodness, and she doesn't condone cussing or think it is cool. But Britt, he actually likes cussing - what boy doesn't? And I can only point the finger back at myself, because I haven't modeled the behavior that I want him to follow, and we all know children do what they see.
Brailey's dance coach has a lot of wisdom she shares with the girls, and one piece of advice she gave during a parent/dancer meeting really stuck with me. It was right before Christmas, and it had such an impact, it led to this resolution not to cuss. She was talking about social media and behavior in general, and she said, "If a Disney princess would not say or do it? Then don't say or do it."
I see a lot of profanity on social media. And you know what? Even though I am a cusser in my personal life, I restrain myself when it comes to social media. I can at least be proud of this, right? I do have a shred of decorum and good taste. Not a lot, but a little! And guess what else? I have found myself offended by people posting things with profanity in them. And honestly? I don't like cussing. I hate myself every time I succumb to it. So no more.
Since making this proclamation to no longer swear, I have relapsed a few times. This is normal - relapse is part of recovery. And I don't know how Britt is doing at school, but he hasn't cussed at home at all, so I will take that as a positive. I have given him the authority to help me and to correct me. When I do have the occasional slip, which is always in a moment of frustration or anger, Britt lets me know, and he has decided I must say the "bad" word backwards two times in order to undo it I do this even if I am not with Britt and I relapse.
We actually made this resolution for our entire household, but Brady is struggling a bit with it. However, it has brought to light for him that he cusses more than he realizes. Hopefully he will become reformed before the year is over. I'm not going to lie - it is tough. Profanity is everywhere! And it lives in my head. That is the hardest part of the battle - changing the language in my head. I am working hard to be a better example for Britt, and I am trying to teach him that he should never, ever swear in front of a girl. Again, tough to do when Brady and I both cuss in front of each other. It's never too late to transform bad behavior into more acceptable behavior, though, and I am working through my relapses and hope to have myself fully reformed sooner than later.
Because the bottom line is this - WORDS MATTER. Wish me luck on this journey. I need it!