Bad Words

Last weekend, like most weekends, Tony sat in my lap while playing Counter Strike on my PC. This is our bonding time. I use it to teach him new words and phrases in English, and when he play CS he seems to think in English more than usual.

I asked him, “Do you know any bad words in English?” He thought for a second and exclaimed, “Dingleberry!” He likes that word a lot, but I told him it’s not that bad. So I asked if he knew any words that would get him smacked if he said them in front of Baba (my mother.) The best he could muster was “Fat girl.”

It makes me proud of myself to realize that for the past 10 years I have been so patient and careful of a father that I’ve never cursed in front of or at my kids. I’ve never lost my temper when they leave on every goddamn light in the house, I’ve never threated to kick their asses for goofing off when they’re supposed to be getting ready for bed, and I watch my language when I’m playing video games with them. But once they hit their teens and start really screwing up, I wonder how long I’ll be able to keep their ears safe.

Rich Pav

Richard has been living in Japan since 1990 with his wife and two teenage sons, Tony and Andy.

8 thoughts to “Bad Words”

  1. I’m not sure how this sounds… but I appreciate that, and I’m positive Andy and Tony will someday too. I really hope that when I have kids I remember to be a patient parent. I used to work at a daycare, and it was easy to see which parents actually took the time to care for their kids. Keep it up! They only grow up once. 🙂

  2. It is a well-known fact that most children learn the worst of their curse words from friends at school. Bring them to the states for a week and let them play with kids their age and they’ll learn plenty to get them in trouble.

  3. I grew up with an Irish father, so despite my mothers constant attempts to stop him, every second word was a ‘bad word’. I can’t blame my father, he grew up where swearing is perfectly normal and they emphasize everything with an f-bomb.

    It was funny though, becuase my mother would always manage to convince us that swearing is bad, and on the rare ocasions that one of us (me or my sister) did swear, we knew never to do it again.

    I do swear a lot now, but the odd thing is that my ex-girlfriend hated swearing. I somehow managed to turn swearing off like a switch whenever we were together. It wasn’t even hard, I just didn’t swear, but as soon as I got together with my friends I swore so much it was like I had tourettes.

    Kieron’s last blog post..Html?

  4. Hi Rich, its good to see that you are caring for your family like you do, in England their are so many bad parents who dont care about their kids and let them roam the streets on a night, thats why we have a big problem with gangs of teenagers commiting murder etc.

    Im suprised to see you playing cs with your children present though!

  5. CS is fantasy, like cops & robbers. Tony won’t become a serial killer from playing it. I’ve already drilled him on the difference between video games and reality and he passed with flying colors. His sense of right and wrong is better than my own.

  6. I’ve always looked at swearing differently than others. Around friends, I curse like a sailor. Around family however, I turn into Mr. Rogers. I won’t swear around my 6 year old nephew. Unfortunately, his lunatic father swears constantly around him. But I still won’t swear around him. I try to be a good example to my nephew.

    If I had kids I’d probably be the same way Rich. But I think one of the commenters had a good point. Most kids learn the dirty words from their friends in school. There’s not much you can do about that. We learn to curse regardless of how much our parents try to prevent it.
    So if I had kids, and they were foul mouthed around eachother, I’d try to at least tell them, to only do it among themselves. Keep it clean around the adults, or else daddy’s gonna get into trouble 🙂

  7. There was one incident, when Tony was around two years old when I was having trouble backing out of a tight parking space in our boat of a minivan and I let an “Ah shit” slip out. I only said it once, but it left an impression. A few weeks later at ToysRus Tony was driving one of those little cars in the isle and did exactly the same thing. I was amazed he remembered it. My wife, on the other hand, was less impressed.

    Yep, you’re right about kids learning to swear at school. It’s inevitable. But the one thing I won’t tolerate is hearing Tony and Andy swear at each other. I don’t lose my shit when it happens, instead I make the offending party rephrase themselves in a more kind manner, the way I do with them.

  8. 昨今の日本においても、日本語の乱れは聞くに堪えない。
    Rich Pav さん、あなたは父親として、素晴らしい!

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