I try to take the questionable language my kids sometimes use in stride. So while a fresh, sassy mouth will get you a quick send-off to the corner, a random “sucks” or “what the hell” doesn’t really bother me.
Oh I still pop right up on my soapbox with a “those are adult words” and a “we don’t say these to the neighbor kids PLEASE” talk, but then get sent on their merry way. I figure that so long as they can keep it in our house, or if they’re a bit more unsavory in their rooms, we’re all good.
But this brilliant let’s-get-upset-about-stuff-that’s-actually-really-bad parenting doesn’t take into account the tiny one in the house, which I discovered when she started calling me a Dumb-ask, which she heard from her brother which he heard from, well, we won’t discuss that, but let’s just say now my BFF’s kid is saying it.
I think the hardest part of the whole thing is not to laugh when she uses it in completely appropriate situations, like when her brother takes her piece of banana bread. Or when her sister elbows her.
I mean, they kind of are being dumbasses. Or Dumb-asks.
A few days ago, we were at my in-laws (hey-yo, 10 minutes away, guys!) and my little 18-month old niece was there, who Bridget has deemed her archenemy because, well, she’s always been the baby.
“She’s mean!” Bridget said to me, pointing at an adorable, smiley whispy-blonde haired toddler who is a dead ringer for a baby doll.
“Blabbieprrrrrffffftmoooooo” replied her little cousin, scampering off in all her INCREDIBLE MEANNESS.
Whoa, watch out. That kid is a TIGER!
They played a bit more and then ended up near me in the kitchen, where for seemingly no reason, the little cousin reached out and pinched Bridget’s arm in one of those slow motion you can see it coming but can’t stop it in time situations, at which point Bridget gave me an I-told-you-so look before SCREECHING at the top of her lungs.
It was more like a I WANT TO BE THE ONLY BABY kind of screech because lord knows Bridget can dish it out and can certainly take it, so one little toddler pinch would not cause her this much strife.
But then, while my mother-in-law was trying to explain to the baby that pinching wasn’t nice, Bridget turned around, walked right up to her, and said:
YOU’RE A DUMB-ASK.
As she walked back to the playroom, I got up to grab her, but then, sat right back down because you know, I can’t say I really blame her.
And hey, it was better than pinching her back or calling her a SHITHEAD.