Are there things you regret ever enlightening your child to?
How to work the TV remote, perhaps?
That their face won’t actually stick if the wind changes, or that Santa Claus may* be a succession of obese freelance imposters.
The one thing I’m regretting of late relates to swearing, or actually, to the world of cursing substitutes and work-arounds.
I’ve long had a problem with expletives, in that I find it difficult to restrain from using them.
See, I’m a fan of the well placed, and well used, swear. But also share the feeling of horror when things so vile come out of a youngster’s mouth.
When Max was very little I tried to put a complete block on any swearing, deciding bad language and children should not be a conglomerate.
But as time went on, and my ability to substitute every swear word with a derivative of ‘monkey’ waned, cursing has become more common place in our home.
I’m of the belief that I do keep ‘bad’ words to a minimum, and that by using them there's a lesson there for my son not to.
I get told off for swearing, and many of my apologies are laced with mini-lectures on swearing in context, and of adults being much better judges of when and where they are appropriate.
So I don’t get mimicked much, well at least until I didn’t, until I actually started using words that sound like, or start sounding like, swear words as allowed replacements.
I’d slam my finger in a drawer and be: “Ohhh shiiiiiiiiiiiiii-takke mushrooms.”
In receipt of another unreasonable demand for something or other:
“These people really know how to take the pissssssssss-tachio ice-cream.”
And, now, now I’m being copied.
And not in the proper context.
“I’m just going for a pistachio ice-cream, Dad,” As he heads for a watering hole.
He thinks it’s hilarious, and while I like my boy having a sense of humour, I do regret introducing my boy to this playful and cheeky technique.
Likewise I wish I could zap this from his memory.
Instead I’ve saddled myself with the duty of correcting the use of such words and, ahem, hand gestures.
Still, could be worse.
Yeah, he could support Feyenoord.