Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Using Good Language FHE

We're having a pretty awesome day over here...It's 70 degrees, so my kids have had a great morning outside. Here is Val having the time of his life playing in the mud in the empty lot next to our house.  That lot won't be empty much longer as it recently sold.

I thought I'd give a quick update on some things I'm doing and thinking about.

Last night for Family Home Evening, we talked about language and reviewed what For the Strength of Youth says about it.  Believe it or not, I accidentally said a swear word in front of my children yesterday. It was totally unintentional.  I like to rhyme words together when I'm being silly with them, and I accidentally rhymed out a bad word.  Whoops!  My kids thought it was hilarious and thought it also gave them license to repeat what I said to others.  

I know they hear lots of bad words at school or in media despite our best efforts to avoid it, so FHE seemed like a good time to review where we stand on all of that.

We read through FTSOY and talked about its recommendations on bad language and gossip.  Then took questions from them.  Scarlett told me, "But, Mom, it's so HARD, because almost everyone around me swears or uses crude language."  I told Scarlett that NOT saying anything to her friends would make it harder for her in the long run, because she would always feel conflicted and might feel tempted to use the language that she hears, whereas if she gently lets her friends know how she feels about the language they're using and asks them to try and do better, they might just respect her for it, they might even change.  And the earlier she sets that standard for herself and those whose company she keeps, the easier it will be moving forward.

We role-played how she might go about doing that.  I pretended to be Scarlett talking to her friends, and tried to mimic her bubbly personality.  I said, "Friend, I love you so much and I love being around you.  You're so beautiful. I only ever want to hear beautiful things come out of your mouth!"  Now, complimenting others is something Scarlett does freely and often, so this would be a pretty natural and kind/encouraging way for Scarlett to get her point across.

Guy asked, "But how would I do it?  I can't say stuff like that to my friends."  We worked on a few ways, Guy might briefly get his point across to his buddies...something like, "Hey, it's me here, Guy!  You don't have to talk like that with me," etc.

It seemed like a helpful evening together talking about things that are probably real-life issues for them as they progress into tween-hood.  I'm looking forward to hearing what becomes of it and if they find the courage to mention their language standard to their friends.  I assured them that even if they just told one friend, usually that person will spread the word so that they usually don't have to.  Scarlett said, "I'll tell Cassidy!"  I love that she could think of someone right away who would be understanding of her desire to raise the standard of language she and others use.


  1. What a great family night lesson.

    I wish I could remember the details, but when one of our sons was a senior, some freshman on the same wrestling team used some bad language. Our son's reaction was to jokingly make a big deal about it and say something like, "Oh no! What did I hear? You're not old enough to use words like that!" Whatever he said fit his personality, came across as not being offensive, and made the point that they could work together and have fun while also using appropriate language. It worked.

  2. what a great idea, I did this with a grandson and he was quite receptive...