Candid Chatter

Just Say It

I’m Rubber You’re Glue July 30, 2009

Filed under: Life... The Way I See It — candidchatter @ 8:53 pm

What bounces off of me sticks to you!

I remember my Mom teaching me that chant. She was trying to help me through a rough patch of being called names at school. I’ve always been hurt by name calling. I happen to believe most people aren’t very good at letting it roll off their backs. For me, it’s a real struggle.

I’m not sure if it’s because of that sensitivity or what. But, I strive very hard to not call my kids names out of frustration or anger. I think the worst I have said is, “she’s being a brat”, in regards to Brianna’s behavior, which is not nice at all. I mean to stop that.

I’ve written about my deep-seated stance on never telling my kids they are bad. I’ve heard people call their kids bad this or bad that and it makes me cringe every single time. I reserve the word for training animals. My kids are not animals. And, I have no animals, so that word is not frequently used in my house; especially not to describe a child. But, that’s me.

Saying “bad girl” or “bad boy” is nothing compared to verbally abusing your child.

Do you tell your child he’s stupid, ugly, worthless, a mistake, or that he will amount to nothing?
Verbal abuse!

Do you say things like “you are just like your Father” with venom in your voice because you hate that child’s father?
Verbal abuse!

Do you use curse words when disciplining (and I use that word loosely) your child?
“You’re an a-hole!”
“What a b*tch!”
“You f****ng loser!”
VERBAL ABUSE!

How about these words?
“Why can’t you be just like your sister?”
“Your brother is so much better than you!”
“You were a mistake!”
“I hate you!”
“Nobody loves you, not even me!”
“I wish you were dead!”

Wanna know something? Every single word that comes out of your mouth towards your children is meant to do one of two things; build them up or tear them down. Think before you speak.

Words_can_Hurt_or_Heal_small

What are your words doing to your child?

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5 Responses to “I’m Rubber You’re Glue”

  1. Lorna Says:

    I try not to use negative words with my kids either. I will admit I have said things in anger that I needed to apologize for and I just asked my daughter what the meanest thing was I ever said to her and she answered with “clean you room”.

    But seriously this reminds me of an email that I received today that pretty much trashed President Obama. And although the writer did make some valid points that I might agree with, I was horrified by abusive language in the letter. Worse yet, it was apparently written by a school teacher. At the bottom of the email in big bold letters was printed MAKE SURE YOU FORWARD THIS LETTER TO EVERYONE ON YOUR EMAIL. I hit delete instead. It makes me very sad that we can’t have differences in opinions without slinging harmful words at the party who does not agree.

  2. Ivan Says:

    Two excellent posts. I am not as careful as I should be with our son. Your last point on this post is exactly the point, …, although worrying too much over it can’t be the answer either.

    Verbal abuse comes very easily to my lips. Not so much the “you are an xyz”, more the ‘smart remark’ that leaves the target to work out what kind of an xyz they are for themselves. I was more or less trained into this from an early age (not very nice). I’m having it trained out of me now (much nicer).

    Possibly what is happening with a lot of the times you’ve mentioned in these last two posts is that the child has just unwittingly flipped the valve holding in whatever excess bad vibes are sloshing around inside the parent. For some reason it’s harder to hold it in with family and lovers.

  3. Great post Heidi! I am dead set against using any type of verbal abuse at all. I know how words can hurt and we were very careful to not use those words against our girls. We never swore at them and called them vile words. You have done an excellent post my lady. I wish the world of parents (and siblings) could read this.

  4. Holly Says:

    Oh my. I feel horrible. I had no idea!

    Every time mom and dad said to you all:
    “Why can’t you be more like your sister, Holly” … you all were experiencing abuse.
    I’ll say it for them, and for myself.

    So sorry!

    In all seriousness. I agree with this post.

  5. Tabetha Says:

    It’s possibly the worst form of abuse, imo. Those words stick with you for years. How can we teach them respect by saying such disrespectful things?


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