Swearing…$%^&$%^ before 8am?
Did I envision that my 7 year old would swear like a fisherman before 8am in the morning? Not a chance. The F word to me is like a slap in the face. I literally feel it physically when someone says it. I grew up in a house that was swearless (is that a word?) I honestly can remember my dad swearing once my entire upbringing. Now, I swear occasionally but it is usually not in front of children.
What had I done wrong? My dear hand-holding, funny, baker determined sensitive child – I knew he had a temper that went from 0 to 100. The discipline and consequence version (which is another post) of my parenting style worked well with my other two children. However, when I tried to discipline my youngest son it escalated the situation and made it worse.
He is not a mean person. He is an angry person which I later learned was tremendous sadness but also he seemed to be a young soul if that makes sense. His “flip the lid” resulted in epic tantrums and extremely physical outbursts. There was no reason or control when he got this way. He hurt my other children physically and was terribly regretful after the outburst.
We needed help. We got him assessed. He got a few letters behind his name. I started researching and looking more into ADHD and ODD. We went to a wonderful adlerian therapist whose specialty is angry boys. He truly is a boy whisperer and has an uncanny ability to be able to think and talk at any boy’s age. The therapy helped both my son and I. The swearing was a real trigger for me – meaning bad parent. The other 2 children also thought their was a double standard so was able to figure out how to manage consistency and fairness in the home. My son was able to have practical ways to cope and manage through daily situations and to look back on situations with additional clarity and insight beyond his years.
I no longer react when there is an f bomb or jc in the house. Please do not judge. It washes over me; no longer physically or emotionally hurting me. I also during this time read Jennifer Kolari’s Connected Parenting. By understanding and connecting empathetically with my son better, our family has far less escalations.
There are studies out there looking into the science of swearing…it can actually be quite healthy to express yourself outwardly rather than keeping it in. I always remember when my son was better able to describe his feelings he said “mom darn just does not cover how strong my feelings are.” This opened my eyes to the intensity of his emotions. Our therapist said the if you just add the words “and then some” to everything my son does positive and negative that would describe him perfectly. It was great way to look at it.
There are still a few fbombs and yelling in my house…less directed to a person more at the situation. We have seen a big difference in control and leaving the situation which makes me worry less when he is a teenager.
My advice is if you can get help, share, reach out to parents and professionals who are experiencing the same challenges you are with your family.
I would love to hear how you are doing and what has worked for you.
Working to break down the silos of isolation…thanks for reading.
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