It is Upon Us: My Daughter Is Using Bad Language

My wife and I were sitting at our dinner table last night with our 4 year old daughter and our two month old baby girl. Our older daughter was jabbering away like she always does. She is a precocious little thing and charming in her unique way. She told me about her day at school and I asked her what she liked best.

She replied: “My teacher pushed me wicked high on the swing”.

I practically dropped my fork and a sudden intense silence filled the room. I locked eyes with my wife and she had both horror and shame on her face. We asked our daughter what she just said and she repeated it.

I knew this day would come even though I worked towards and hoped for the best. When my wife and I married, she promised me that we would leave the Boston area when we wanted a house and family. Her job eventaully prohibited that. As a work around, I picked the suburban that we live in. It is a quaint and beautiful town that is shielded from the harsher aspects of the city. We carefully selected our daughter’s day care and that is all she has known since she was 8 weeks old. Everyone there seemed to be of like minds when it comes to this stuff.

We explained to my daughter that the word “wicked” should never be used in that way. We went over the Wizard of Oz (which she loves) and used the Wicked Witch of the West as a proper example. She seemed to understand what we were saying and I acknowledged that it wasn’t her fault. I don’t know where the breach happened but I can’t protect her from it forever.

However, the first time I hear her answer something with “So don’t I?”, U-Haul will be getting a call within the hour.

I’m not sure I’m following you here… Are you saying that “wicked” is considered some kind of curse or swear word where you are (which I’ve never heard of), or objecting to its use as an intensifier (which is increasingly common)?

Personally I like “wicked” as an intensifier. It’s not like she’s saying “axe” for “ask” or “seen” for “saw”, which is actually ungrammatical – it’s just slang. “Horror and shame”? I’m blinking in astonishment here. Good luck if you plan on keeping her language pure of slang you never use yourself :slight_smile:


Yeah, I’m not getting why you’re up in a tizzy over “wicked”. Fuck that shit, dawg.


Word to your mother.

As long as she said “teacher” and not “teachah”, let her have her wickeds!

Ya, I’m a little lost. You’re bumming dude 'cause the bambina is using slang?

I’ve got a bit of a sewer mouth but to this day my 6 year old hasn’t picked up any bad words from me. She did learn “damn” from a cousin this summer but that never took hold, and she’s got some nasty Chinese and Shanghaiese swears down pat, but not in English.

That little bitch!

I’ve completely missed something. What’s wrong with “wicked”? Or is Rhiannon right?

Haha, I think I’m with Rhiannon here.

I’m really hoping it’s a whoosh. Otherwise, parenting is not going to be a joy for you or your daughter!

It’s already too late. Once the wickeds take hold they don’t let go.

Soon she’ll be asking to go to Dunkies in the morning before school, asking for your cah and getting friends to buy from the packies.

Too late.

If I must explain, “wicked” is a Massachusetts-ism, perhaps one of the most unattractive variants of God’s language. I am born and bred Southerner and although my wife is from Massachusetts, she certainly doesn’t have a Boston accent either. I detest all of the different versions of the Boston accents and believe that it is rarely , if ever, an asset to anyone. If we lived in the South, I would discourage the “aint’s” and other ugly language usages common there as well as the Bronx etc.

As usual with regards to my writing style, all the facts (except MAYBE the U-Haul) are true but the story is conveyed in a way to emphasize certain points and emotions. If I just wrote that my daughter was being exposed to things that I wouldn’t prefer, that would seem nonspecific and pedestrian. I truly wish that she wouldn’t speak that way but I am a loving parent and know that I can’t control everything. If the story makes me sound like a pretentious prick, you can use Occam’s Razor to sort that one out but I am a good Daddy despite it all.

You described my fears precisely. I don’t even think summers in Texas with the grandparents can undo that sort of thing but I am new to all of this.

Boston to Texas?
That’s some wicked sheeyat, man.

“Wicked” is annoying. But I don’t think I’d equate it with “y’all” or “ain’t” or “axe” for terms of evil AND annoyance…

There are worse things to say and better places to put your parenting energies I mean, she’s growing up there. It’s going to happen. It may even be a phase. You should have just ignored it.

I would have to agree with the OP. I do not like talking to people who use an abundance of slang words and/or phrases. For example, until recently I have never heard the word “sick” used in any other way than to describe someone as not feeling well. When someone says something like “Oh man, you should have seen the skateboarder yesterday, he was SICK!” I am left with the impression there is a skateboarder riding around somewhere throwing up all over everything.
I would put “wicked” in a category worse than “ya’ll” only because with ya’ll the words are there, they are just slurred together, but its still understandable.



Shagnasty, I really, really hope you’re kidding about this. Trying to raise your kid in a bubble, preventing her from assimiliating, would be a lot worse for her than letting her talk Bahstan would be for you. Just out of curiosity, how far do you intend to go in your “carefully selecting” and “sheltering”?

I was kinda kidding about that, but if “wicked” is a problem, then “y’all” certainly would be.

Are you sure she didn’t say “wicket high?” :slight_smile:

I wasn’t aware that “wicked” was ever considered “bad language.” Hell, in the 80s you couldn’t throw a stone without hitting someone who was in the process of saying it. It was interchangeable with such 80s-isms as “radical” and “gnarly” (the latter mostly stemming from California’s infamous San Fernando Valley, whence came the stereotypical Valley Girl). Was this sort of thing verboten in MA back then or is the prohibition of “wicked” a more recent thing?