It is no secret for parents that there is a period when children, like a sponge, begin to absorb the speech of others: from relatives, classmates in the kindergarten and just from strangers in the store. And sometimes these are not scientific terms at all, but obscene expressions.
Moms and dads clutch at their hearts in horror, sowing panic and creating a taboo on the use of obscenities, and someone goes over to physical prohibitions: “I’ll hit the lips of the ladies! Wash your mouth with soap! Now I’ll take the belt! But what is the right way to react when a child swears?
Where did the Russian mat come from
Before being horrified by the knowledge of their child in obscene words, parents, first of all, need to reflect on the situation and conduct an educational program with themselves.
What is a mat? In fact, these are simple words that once turned into taboo. Previously, they were associated with the beliefs of the ancient Slavs (therefore, the roots of all obscene words known to us can be found in Ukrainian, Polish, Serbian and other languages) and with the sacred component: inducing and removing damage, calling rain, etc.
The word “mat” means to swear “for the mother”, which means to use words related to intimate details in speech. Since from ancient times any mention of sexual relations was considered something shameful, and sometimes dirty, these words acquired a negative connotation.
It turns out that from a scientific point of view, mat is the most common words in a new status. But from a moral and pedagogical point of view, this is «sheer horror.» And all because a lot of myths are connected with the mat, which has passed a long history. For example, that only outcasts and people who are not gifted with intelligence swear. Wait a minute, then who are the professors of famous universities who have created a lot of scientific papers on obscene vocabulary?
Why is the child swearing
If a child swears, this does not mean at all that he is poorly brought up or that his parents do not pay attention to him at all. There can be many reasons:
- At a younger age, kids imitate the environment in everything (not only moms and dads, but also grandmothers, uncles, children on the playground or people in a cafe). So they get to know the world and taste new words, including obscene ones;
- The child can thus attract attention. If he sees that a mate evokes a response (laughter, negativity, surprise), he will use it again and again;
- So the child expresses what he cannot express in other words (most often he has examples before his eyes: dad swore when he hit his finger with a hammer, or grandmother “spoke out” when she burned herself on a baking sheet with pies);
- The child believes that the mat makes him cool, influential, adult. That’s what teenagers sometimes think.
Recommendations for parents
So, what to do if the child swears? Moms and dads should follow a few rules that will ensure that they do not lose the trust of their son or daughter and do not cultivate fear or shame in them.
one. Scolding and forbidding a child to swear is completely useless. Yes, he will not do this with you, but with friends on the street or at school — completely. For the same reason, there is no need to shame him for a checkmate, punish him or make an elephant out of a fly.
2. Heard swearing from the mouth of a child? Talk to him about it. Ask why he used this word, what feelings he wanted to convey to them. Perhaps he only said it out of curiosity or to test the parent’s reaction.
3. Forewarned is forearmed. Therefore, be sure to tell your child that even if mating is not perceived as an out of the ordinary event in your family, other people may not understand it, be offended, angry, or even apply some kind of sanctions. Explain in what situations and with whom it is absolutely not worth using a swear word (for example, with a school principal or with a grandmother), and where it is acceptable (when communicating on social networks with friends).
four. Tell your child that swearing is not just “littering with words”, and if you really use a mat, you need to do it wisely. Mat cannot be banned, but it is possible to teach it appropriateness and correctness.
5. Explain to the child that you understand: sometimes a swear word can break out by itself (due to anxiety, shock, overwhelming emotions). If this happened suddenly or was inevitable, teach your son or daughter to apologize for words that may cause discomfort to others.
Mat cannot be eradicated. Even if moms and dads want to protect their child from him, they will not succeed, because the child will be socialized anyway. And if you don’t know how to defeat chaos, lead it! To do this, you need to talk with the child more often, teach him to express his emotions in an accessible and correct way, and be sure to talk about the appropriateness and inappropriateness of obscene vocabulary.