I have a confession: I suffer from a chronic case of potty mouth.
Now, I’m no Wanda Sykes. I don’t pepper most of my sentences with F-bombs and other assorted expletives. But I have been known to use them when I’m angry, or impassioned, or when something I’m saying needs a certain…emphasis.
Which was all well and good…until I became a mother. Now I have a very precocious 18-month-old daughter with an ever-growing vocabulary, and the unnerving habit of repeating words at random when I least expect it.
Any day now, I fully expect her to bust out a cheery “Asshole!” during one of our morning drives to day care. But I’ll blame that on the horrid drivers I must dodge to get her there in one piece…assholes…
In any case, this is a sticky issue for me. I once vowed not to morph into one of those uptight parents who tries to raise their kids in a bubble. And I never gave much thought to my language when there wasn’t a tiny human in the house.
Now, I get annoyed when my husband plays a semi-violent video game in her presence. The hip-hop music he likes is now verboten when she’s in the car with us; why didn’t all the violence and misogyny in the lyrics faze me pre-baby?
I don’t want to raise my daughter like a Pollyanna, but I don’t want her suffering the same fate as poor Little Mr. Apricot, either. (Click on the link…you won’t be disappointed!)
So, what’s a modern mom to do? Should I set up a “swear jar” and contribute a buck each time I catch me or my husband swearing? Are there self-hypnosis tapes that can cure me of this awful affliction? Or should I just keep talking as always, and teach my daughter that certain words are for grown-ups only? Will that increase her chances of becoming a national disgrace some day?
The possibilities seem endless and confusing.
Makes me want to say, “Ah, fuck it.”
What say you, MotherTalkers? Help a potty-mouthed parent out!