Rude: A Four Letter Word

I have three children and I’m painfully aware of their behavior at all times: the good, the bad, and the ugly.  I have a face for every moment: a look, a sigh, an exasperation and a few exclamations.  Lately I feel like a soldier alone on the battlefield.  While I’m running for cover, intercepting my children’s barrage of ills, I see other moms and dads detached and disinterested; no beads of sweat, just a cool look of apathy.

What are these parents thinking?  Are they too tired to care, or are they just as rude as their children?  After careful observation, I think the latter.  Most parents these days feel entitled, and then pass that on to their children.  Why should little Janie conform to the rules, if mom and dad don’t?  Little Janie can run around the bookstore like an animal, because her mom lets her, showing total disregard for the people around them.

Mr. Rude by Adam Hargreaves

Mr. Rude by Adam Hargreaves

As if the public display of naughtiness is not enough, have you noticed the way these children are speaking to adults? Call me old fashioned but fresh talk, and back talk, irk the crap out of me.

When an eight year old feels free to question my authority with the tone of a ruler swinging nun, I’m speechless.  I once said to a guest, “Susie, please don’t run on the stairs”, her reply, with attitude, “Why? My mom let’s me run on the stairs at my house!”  There’s something to be said for not talking back to your elders.  It’s at that moment I’d like to respond, “I don’t give a F- what your mom lets you do, this is my house, my rules (you little shit)“, but that’s a bit harsh, so I smile, and in my best ‘Leave It To Beaver’ tone of voice, say “Well Susie, in this house we don’t run on the stairs.”  Five minutes later Susie’s running on my stairs, and I’m ready to stick my foot out, trip her and end the play date early.

Instead I take a deep breath, pray for an early parent pickup and continue to wonder:  Is it me, or are children getting ruder?

Reposted by Jean James courtesy of:

10 thoughts on “Rude: A Four Letter Word

  1. Yes, exactly! I am on – I posted about my loving mother being carted off to jail today for being uninvolved in every teeny aspect of my life compared to 2013’s helicoptering parents but nobody got away with bad manners! She knew what was important.

    • That’s right our parents may have ignored us, but by God we better mind our manners or else…I don’t think kids these days know what’s on the other side of an or else.

  2. I have said the same thing like a broken record. I cannot believe the disrespect and general lack of manners so many kids display today. I by no means claim to have perfect children, ( who does) but the absolute must in our home and anywhere my kids go for that matter is to be respectful and show proper manners. I too have many a time, been shocked at kids behavior knowing if that had happened when I was growing up, there would have been some ass-smacking courtesy of the “elders” lol. I agree, a lot of parents today show total disconnect from most of the situations we are describing. I have even heard them say, ” oh let them be kids” ! Really! Why, so those same kids can grow up and become adults with no learned boundaries, respect for others, and in general become the people I want my kids to steer clear of? I choose to address the bad behavior as it ocurs and do what I’m supposed to which is PARENT my kids!!!

    • I know a kid who misbehaves and her parents find it amusing. I’m speachless. This will definitly be a case of like mother like daughter. Sad really.

  3. You’re not alone on the battlefield, Jean. It just feels that way. I’ve often told my son, following one of his frequent outbursts, “If I ever said that to my father, you wouldn’t be here.”

    I know people have been complaining about these things for centuries, but it does seem as though many of the values we grew up with have disappeared in one generation. I often wonder where we’re headed.

    • I’m guilty of saying the exact same thing to my kids. Thing is, my husband isn’t nearly as scary as my father, and I gather you aren’t either. Nice to know I have a buddy in the trenches.

  4. Hear hear. Thank you. That sense of entitlement we seem to be breeding in our society is turning us into a nation of MEs. It doesn’t help that this rude behavior is encouraged and laughed at in sitcoms and reality TV shows. The mouthy kid or the sassy adult always gets the laughs. I remind my kids that what’s on television is not what people want to see in real life. Every time I encounter a polite child, I thank the parent, because I know it didn’t happen by accident. It’s a lot of hard work on the parents’ parts.

    • Yes it is a nation of MEs, obnoxious MEs. I hate most TV shows geared towards kids today. I miss the Noggin chanel with shows like Little Bear and Yo Gabba Gabba that offered nothing but kindness and music. I like that you compliment parents of a polite child, because it does take a tremendous amount of work to raise a kind, polite child.

  5. As someone who just retired from 30 years in the education field, I can tell you with certainty that, yes, rude children most often learned their behavior from rude, apathetic parents. So many times when I had difficulties with a particular student, I met the parents and realized the student was an unfortunate victim of his/her own environment. Fortunately for all of us, those children are still capable of learning appropriate behavior–and even though some of them will still choose not to, they and their parents will always be out-numbered.

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