Thursday, July 31, 2008

What does C-L-U-E-L-E-S-S spell?

When I lived in Texas one of my friends had 2 little boys and lived nearby. Every now and then I'd see her pulling her older son away from older kids and would say she didn't want him hanging out with them. They weren't bad kids, and she knew they weren't---she just didn't want her 7 year old hanging out with 11 year old kids.

I didn't think much of it, and definitely didn't think I would have the same problem, almost 10x's worse.

Bo's favorite people are all older than him. Today he sighed dreamily over his pancakes and said, "I wish I was Joe." When I asked him why, his only real answer was---because he is 7.

I've tried different approaches to keep him away from older kids (I'm talking 9, 10, 11---even 12) but nothing has been effective. The Pokemon craze unites all kinds and I'm determined to ride this annoying and persistent Pokemon train until it's done. Last night J was daydreaming of a Pokemon-less existence and said, "Hey I know! Let's just ban Pokemon cards altogether!" For a moment I felt free again, but I had to remind J that we can't just go around making up rules because things are annoying to us. And since we don't have any moral opposition to the cards, we just have to let it go.

J objected. He says that he is morally opposed to being annoyed.

But this isn't another Pokemon post.

One of the issues my friend had with her son being around older kids, is the exposure to things over his head. I have that issue. Big time.

Yesterday Bo referred to his "nuts" and had NO idea what he was saying. Of course---when I told him what he was saying, that made it 10 times funnier for him.

Here's today's problem: (With a little background) Often when we are driving around Bo will spell out the names of various Pokemon cards for pronunciation. I have gotten very used to hearing, "What does T-a-n-g-e-l-a spell mom?" A lot.

Also, a few weeks ago Bo was waving his middle finger around and someone told him that meant something bad. One of those things that bugs me about him hanging out with older kids. So, later that night he asked me what it meant. I would not tell him the word, but I did tell him that it meant something very rude and it's probably best that he not do it. You know, flip people off and whatnot.

He didn't seem too concerned to not know the word. I was hesitant to have him hear it, even in a teaching setting, because my children have been on a year long kick of yelling out every "bad word" they can think of whenever they feel like being obnoxious. "Fohwt" is as bad as it's ever gotten around here.


Just now, I was sitting at the computer getting all my stuff together to pay bills. As I'm gearing up for the magic of paying bills, my brain registers Bo's voice. He's again spelling something. I absentmindedly say, "sound it out first, then I will help you" and as I say that, I realize it's not a Pokemon day, so I turn around to bust him and just in time, get to see my sweet little five year old with his tiny little middle finger struggling to stay up by itself amidst those other little fingers that want to stand up too and just in time to hear him say, "Fuhhhhh....."

Yes, he sounded it out just right.

And then noted, "Hmmm, the 'c' must be silent because I only made one 'kuh' sound and there's two 'kuh' letters in f____."

I told him that he'd sounded it out right and asked him where he'd learned how to spell it. It was an older boy. He told him this older (good kid) was allowed to say every bad word except that one. Uhhhhhhhhhh. Yeah.

I told him that it was a word he could never say, it's the worst word you can possibly say and that saying a word like that at school would get him kicked out of school. That's how he knows it's serious. I use the threat of expulsion on my 5 year old who hasn't even started kindergarten. I am that good at parenting.

I feel like the dropping of the f bomb is taken care of.

But I still have the dilemma of Bo always hanging out with older kids. One of the kids is 12 and when he knocks on my door and asks to play with a five year old, I just can't help but feel sorry for him. I don't want to be yet another person who rejects these kids, and clearly some of them are not well-accepted by their peers---or their parents for that matter.

I have tried just letting them in my home so I can supervise them---but that's not easy for me. I don't really have time to hang out with a bunch of kids in the basement while they obsess over critters with names most of them can't even pronounce. Not to mention the mental stamina for that kind of torture.

And now I'm going to publish and now the world will know what a vulgar people we are here in Iowa.


omar said...

Way to encourage your kid to sound out the F word, Nobo. :)

Just yesterday, my wife was telling me about how one of our friends' daughters came inside from playing in the yard and said, "I'm gonna take my f__ing shoes off." The kid just turned four. She had no idea what she was saying, and she wasn't trying to be bad. She just heard it, and repeated it.

That, and now your post here, remind me of how poorly prepared I am for what's coming my way when my kids get a little bit older.

Amy said...

That's funny!

Almost as good as when Bryan was teaching the 9 year olds in our ward and one child, who shall remain nameless since he's still in our ward, encouraged the other kids to guess the letters F, U, C....during hang man so that it was spelled out on the board DURING CHURCH!

Sarah Tilley said...

and here i am banning the simpsons because henry repeats everything he hears... dang, the f-bomb. i'm looking forward to that one. you handled it well, though. a couple months ago, one of the cub scouts called another one the n-word (even though both of them are white) which goes to show that even the older kids have no idea what they're talking about.

amy, that's so funny about the kid sabotaging the hang man game, though i'd hate to be the teacher in that situation.

Barnecked Lady said...

yep, that's about how it goes!

Tori :) said...

Oh, it makes me think of the Spongebob episode where he and Patrick hear (insert dolphin squeaking sound here) and they don't know it's bad. So thru the whole show they are using it until Mr. Krabs tells them it's a really bad word- #11 out of 13 to be exact. Mr. Krabs mom learned that he was saying bad words and made them all paint her house.
Anyway... that doesn't really help your situation unless you have Bo and his friends paint the house.

Rebecca said...

I am with tori.. them are sentence inhancers.. love the f bomb at any age.. got a call from my boys 3rd grade teacher because he was told the word (yes I have sheltered him) and walked right up to the teacher and asked what does F*&% mean? NICE!!! So we use it regularly around here so the baby will get use to it and not be suprised later on in life.. :)

Mad Libs Millie said...

My illusions of Iowa are shattered. Thanks, Bo.

I hate the "f" word.

Code Yellow Mom said...

It's the oldest child curse. Younger children have older sibs to follow or copy, but the oldests only have their parents or older friends, and they usually relate better with older people just by nature. They end up acting like miniatures of their parents (not entirely bad but sometimes socially suicidal) and / or following older kids around (which is sometimes heartbreaking because most of the time, the older kids don't think the tagalong is as cool as he thinks they are...sad, sad, sad.)

Anyway...Example: I got in trouble in fourth grade for bringing a full-on romance novel for my reading book. I thought my teacher would be so proud because I was reading grown-up stuff. I totally did not "get" any of the stuff that was in it, didn't even know it was an "adult" book (it wasn't rated X or anything, just NOT fourth grade appropriate), but a couple years ago I looked at a random page of it and it made me blush. My poor fourth grade teacher. I remember him just telling me I might want to pick something else out to read and not to bring that one to school again.

It is a little sad and creepy that 12yos are knocking on the door to play with a 5yo. You might need to brush up on your critter interest.

The good news is that Avee and Danyo probably won't have the same interest or issue.

P.S. "Nuts," not so bad. Except at primary. "f---"? If threatening expulsion works for that, do it. :) D's mom read him the definition of the word from the dictionary and gave a short history of the word's use and it ruined it for him forever. But that was in 7th or 8th grade. Not a bad idea, either, I guess.

Annie said...

My 16 year old nephew still loves Pokemon. You are in it for the long haul, Baby. Pokemon is harmless. I would embrace it. Keep buying the cards and such, it's better than the other stuff out there.

Physcokity said...

That'll teach him to sound it out...maybe. Hopefully your talk stuck.

Sorry to hear about the older kids dilemma.

If it comes up again you could always just tell him that that word (f___) is a sin and he'll go to hell for saying it...but then again that would be a little extreme, wouldn't it?

I totally remember watching that Spongebob episode and laughing my head off when he said, "My lips are tingling with the juiciness of this conversation."

Anyway frequent use of said words demonstrates a rather small vocabulary. Get the kid a dictionary! ;)

Physcokity said...

I love how code yellow still had the book bwahaha!

Beckie said...

I think I peed myself. I'll give you hte F word, but Zach learned the N word, from a friend, who was Black, and I had to explain why he was NEVER to say that EVER!!
I too totally thought of the Spongebob episode with the dolphin sounds as I was reading your post, how funny! I guess he's gonna learn it someday, and it's better noe than when he's an unruly teenager with dumb old parents.

MommyJ said...

Oh wow. I don't know what to say. The only curse words my kids have ever repeated are the ones' they've heard me say.

Sketchy said...

Oh man...suddenly I'm really glad there are no children on this block remotely close to my kids in age...

I got nothing for you my friend. Trying to "be in the world and not of the world" is a hard lesson for 5.

No Cool Story said...

"we can't just go around making up rules because things are annoying to us..."
And why not? It work perfectly for me, just ask my kids...
Oh wait.

No Cool Story said...

CYM: It is a little sad and creepy that 12yos are knocking on the door to play with a 5yo. You might need to brush up on your critter interest.

ITA 100%

Clint & Becca said...

I laughed when I read this because I remember saying that to my sister when I was about his age and getting slapped across the face! Maybe you could put a positive spin on the whole thing, by using other similar saying like "Hey Bo -you put the F-U in Fun!!!

My sister was teaching a lesson in primary about the Family. She spelled out the word family vertically on the chalk board. She then told the children that they had to come up with a word for each can guess what an 8 year old boy came up with for the letter F!!! To which, my sister replied, well I guess you could be right in a round about way, but I was hoping for the word Friendship or Fun!