Yet, I live in a home free of rough words.
I do not curse because I married a Russian.
In Russia, women and children never use profanity. To do so would be as taboo as using ethnic slurs in our culture—offensive in the extreme. In seventeen years of marriage, my husband’s worst oath has been “The devil can have this as a gift!”
It took me a month to temper my language around my new husband. A year later, my brain re-wired itself so much that my own mother scandalized me. Seventeen years later, my Mom re-wired her brain for her blushing daughter!
Every household is a miniature culture, with its own customs and prohibitions. Our home honors Russian tradition and my injunction against personal insults. We do not say “stupid”, “idiot,” or demand someone to “shut up.”
So, this summer, my brows lifted when I overheard Tyoma’s cartoon du jour, Phineas and Ferb, feature a shut up-stupid shouting match.
I didn’t ban the cartoon outright. He will hear the same words at a playground or at school. At six, Tyoma seemed ready for a life lesson on bad language.
Actually, I was the one who learned a life lesson about bad language.
To be continued…