Wednesday, November 13, 2013

8 "Mom Dictionary" Terms You Should Start Using

In this world of political correctness (and especially in the world of mom blogging), apparently there are things it's okay to say, and things you should never say, as a mom.

Like calling your kids little assholes. Apparently, that's a huge no-no in society today.

Even if your kids are being little assholes, you can't call them like you see them. One wrong person hears, and you have child protective services knocking at your door, wondering why you called your kids little assholes (and the correct answer isn't, "Because they were being little assholes"- and for the record, no, this didn't happen to me, but I've seen it happen to quite a few other mom bloggers I read).

So, I received that memo. Don't call my kids assholes in public. Gotcha.

Instead, I'll call them gooberheads. It works for us, and I don't get strange stares when I'm out somewhere, my kid tries to trip me up on purpose, and I yell out, "Cut that out, you little gooberhead." Much better than the alternative, right?

That got me to thinking about other words moms use to describe their kids, or to call their kids, or for parenting situations, that are more politically correct than the words we want to use at that moment.

I'll give the word or phrase, how it's used in a sentence, and what we moms really mean when we use it.

Difficult- "The kids have been a bit difficult today." Bat-shit crazy. The kids have been bouncing off every single wall, trying to kill each other, and trying to kill me. At one point during a difficult day, duct tape is considered either as a means of restraint, or to try and permanently house yourself in the closet.

Doesn't Make the Best Decisions- "I've noticed that sometimes, my kid doesn't make the best decisions when it comes to things she does." Does stupid fucking shit. Why did my kid just decide to purposefully walk into a glass door? To get laughs from her brother. And because she does stupid fucking shit. Why does my son insist on willingly taking his Legos outside, knowing the rule we have against it, which
results in him getting grounded? Because he doesn't make the best decisions does stupid fucking shit sometimes.

High Maintenance- "Her little one seems to be a little high maintenance. She can't even leave the room to pee without her kid following at her heel, and they never tell the little girl 'no' because of the huge temper tantrum that follows." Spoiled. High maintenance = spoiled. Do kids go through clingy phases with their parents? Of course they do. But, if the clingy phase has been since your kid was born, and she's now approaching 4, and she dictates everything that goes on in your house, down to which restaurants you eat at, the child is spoiled.

Quirky- "The Ginger has quite the quirky personality." Weird. The Ginger is weird. It's as simple as that. And, as you can see, I used my own kid as an example, because, well, my kid is quirky. I've just found out first-hand that when you call your kid weird in public, you get stares. Weird is not derogatory in my house. It's actually a compliment, but whatever.

Intense- "My toddler's temper tantrums can be on the intense side." Out of fucking control. We don't want to go around advertising that sometimes our kid's head spins around and (s)he spits pea soup out of their mouth during a temper tantrum, so we use the word intense so maybe that friend will still watch our little demon for an hour or so. Everyone needs a Date Night at least once a year, right? Even if it means stretching the truth a little.

(Pause) Different (Pause)- "Wow. I've never seen a person carry a baby like that. That's definitely a ... different... way of doing it ." Wrong. We're trying to tell you, in the sweetest way we know how, without insulting your parenting technique, that carrying your two-month-old around upside down by its ankle is wrong. This different is very distinct from other uses of the word different (like, "My kid is a little different than other kids"- see 'Quirky' above). You'll be able to notice it because it is surrounded by breaks of silence, which is what happens when we are looking for an appropriate word to replace what we really want to say, which is that you are doing something wrong

In Your Best Interest- "Do you really think back-talking me is really in your best interest at this moment?" Cut out whatever you are doing that is pissing me off or I will go nuclear on you, NOW! or Don't do that shit. Should you wear shorts when it's 40 degrees outside? That's probably not in your best interest, no. Should you continue to ask me the same question over and over again, even though I've given you my answer? That's not in your best interest, either. I'm a huge advocate for letting my kids make their own decisions, so they understand consequences. When they make a decision that I know the outcome won't hurt them, but it's not the best decision (stupid fucking shit- see above), I always ask them if their behavior, or decision, is in their best interest at that moment. That means, cut the shit out.

And don't forget to start using Gooberhead in place of Asshole. It'll save you a lot of strife.

Do you have some Mom Dictionary terms that should be added to the list? Comment below!

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  1. Ha, you did make me chuckle with this post! :)
    I have definitely used [pause "different" pause] with that exact meaning and can see myself using "in your best interests" frequently from now on...

    Not yet used "Gooberhead", but my youngest thinks his name is "Monkey", as he's been called one so often... *sigh*

  2. Hi Morgan,

    I spent a year in the States as an exchange student when I was a teenager. We were always told to answer any question along the lines of 'So what do you think of the way we do such-and-such over here?' with the word 'Different'. (As in, 'It's not better or worse, it's just... different.') Probably saved me getting lynched.

    As you say, the technique also came in handy years later at parent and toddler!

    All the best,