Ask Dad: My Kid Swears. It's My Husband's Fault. What Should I Do?

Cary McNeal

yelling boyWelcome back to Ask Dad, your one-stop-shop for a dude's point of view here on The Stir. Today I'm hanging in the Big Kid section so I can answer this question about a boy with a salty tongue -- just like his old man.

My husband swears all the time. I'm concerned because our 6-year-old yelled out our window last night, "That f**king guy is making too much f**king noise!" He said it was my fault for reacting. What should I do?

I hate to say it, but the kid was right: that f**king guy was making too much f**king noise. I could hear that motherf**ker all the way from here!

Okay, I'm probably the wrong guy to ask about this, as I have a pretty foul mouth at times. I tried to tone it down once my child was born, but it's easy to forget they're around.

When my kid was 3 or 4, her mom asked her not to do something, and my sweet little daughter replied, "Kiss my ass." Naturally, I was blamed as the source of this phrase, and rightfully so, except I wasn't sure where she heard it. I certainly don't go around the house telling my wife to kiss my ass; if I did, I wouldn't be here today to write this answer.

Not long after this I was in the car with my kid when another driver did something to piss me off -- not hard to do -- and I said, without thinking, "Kiss my ass!" Mystery solved. Oops.

Maybe your husband forgets, or maybe he isn't trying at all. I'll assume you've asked him to tone it down. That's step one. If he can't, or won't, remind him that while he might find it amusing to hear a toddler utter the F bomb, your child won't be laughing when he ends up in time-out at school or day care for simply repeating words he heard his father say. The kid's the one who will suffer, not you, and that's not fair, because most of the time, he has no idea what the word even means.

You can also tell hubby that having a 3-year-old with a salty tongue will make grown-ups think he comes from a white-trash hillbilly trailer where chickens roam the yard and Ma and Pa take turns cussin' each other up and down in between chugs from a Schlitz Malt Liquor 40 and spits of tobacky. Do you really want to be that family? I didn't, so I cleaned up my act, at least around my child. He can, too.

If not, let him be the one to take the kid to and from school and attend parent-teacher conferences and PTA meetings so that he, not you, can feel the judging adult eyes burn a hole in his back.

Oh, and it's your fault for reacting? Horse sh*t.

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Photo via *clairity*/Flickr

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