"Fuck" is a great and versatile word. Seen here:
Fuck is not so great and versatile a word from a six year-old. So that being said, our house has been infused and inundated with the word "fuck". We're not sure where he picked it up, but he's got it. He's learned that it gets a great reaction... especially at school. It has become deeply troubling and embarrassing to us as parents. Now we are those parents. We've got that kid. This started about a week and a half ago, and is fading out (thankfully), because we simply ignore it now. No reaction at home drives the boy crazy. I wish we had tried that at first rather than drawing so much attention to it the first few days thinking punishment, guilt, or misunderstanding would help.
So here's the anecdote that will make you laugh, warm your heart, and appall you at the same time.
On Thursday morning, the day after Halloween, Jack decided it was a great idea to strike up a conversation with one of his classmates about the amount of candy he received. Back and forth conversations not guided by an adult are rare, but do happen once in a while. "Sally" is a sweet girl that has always taken a liking to Jack. She's one of those "what can I do to help?" six year-old girls that every class has. Thank Heaven for little girls indeed. As an added bonus, she's the only blonde in his class. Daddy approves. Sorry, Baby Love (There are no red-heads in his class like his mama).
I digress. During this wonderful interaction about the candy another little boy walked right into the conversation and hit Sally. Yep. Socked her right in the face (this is a Gen Ed class, full inclusion contains some awesome characters, doesn't it?). Sally started to cry and the aide instantly dealt with the little boy. So, as Sally is crying, Jack, my boy, asked her why she was crying.
"Johnny hit me"
"Are you sad?" he asked. Hooray! My son recognized an emotion in another!
"Yes" Jack placed a hand on her shoulder, sweetly. Yes! Joint attention and empathy!
"You want me to fuck him up?"
Yep. That's what he said. She tearfully shook her head "no".
I don't think Jack knows what "fuck him up" means. I think he's scripting, but not sure.
But I do know he recognized emotion in a classmate, I do know he felt empathetic, and I do know he problem-solved. Take the word "fuck" out of the equation and it was the greatest conversation he's ever had. Guess what? I was silently proud. Yep. I was.
We're working to get rid of the word. We're also working to get that level of connection to a friend.
I told my wife and she thought the story was appalling, yet funny. She said she was also proud of our chivalrous son in a strange way. I don't recall Malory or De Troyes writing about Lancelot offering to fuck up Modred for the love of Guinevere in their tales of courtly love, but I get the connection.
It is absolutely inappropriate for a six year-old to drop the f-bomb at school.
But this was his reward the next day:
The entire way home.
And nobody had to get "fucked" up on the way.