My kid was rude, and I’m sorry.

My kid was rude and I’m sorry.

We have four kids who are as different from each other as pad thai and meatballs. Each one of them has strengths, and each one of them has characteristics that are harder to handle. For instance one of them has a cry that is louder than a Harley Davidson revving it’s engine in my ear canal. Another one’s feet smell like they’ve been decomposing at the bottom of the garbage can for six months.

We guess we still love them anyway.

The last one, she’s a passionate one, and often she is downright rude.

It is really important to us to teach our kids manners. We teach eye contact, hand shakes, sharing, and how to introduce themselves. For our first three children that (mostly) went smoothly. We got regular compliments on how well-behaved they all were, and a tiny bit of “nailing it” pride crept into our parental hearts. My advice at that time would have gone something insightful like: “What you do is, you just tell them: ‘kid, smile at your uncle and shake his hand…and then they do!’”


And then we had our last child, our firecracker, our passionate one…and all bets were off.

We are just hoping to make it home from the playground ALIVE. If I don’t have her in a bear hold while she flails on the way to the car…it is a goooooood day.

So, while manners are on my list of to-dos, we are not there yet, and I apologize. I apologize that she didn’t say thank you, or sorry, or I forgive you. I’m sorry that she didn’t give back the toy until I took it from her, and that she howled like feral wolverine while I bee-lined it home.

Chances are she will tell me a few hours later that she’s sorry about the way she acted, but you will never know that…

The thing is…she is wild and untamed, but she is also my heart walking around on the outside of my body.

She is my everything in a precious little package of passion.

Even though my face is hot and embarrassed when I make an ungraceful exit from the playground…I still wouldn’t trade any job in the entire world, for the job of being her mom.

I wouldn’t trade her in anymore than I’d trade in my son with the feet that smell like rotten cheese.

I see her when she’s rude, but I also see her in the moments when she hugs her sister and tells her she loves her. I see the way she grabs my face and gives me a kiss and says, “Mamma, you’re my favorite.”

It is so important to me that she learns kindness, but I hope she forever keeps her fire.

This teaching manners thing is going to take a while this time, and I’m okay with that.

In the meantime…thank you for understanding.


If you too have a wild child that is a little rude, I SEE YOU.

I’ve got your back, we are going to get through this together.



Picture by Marianne Wiest .

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11 responses to “My kid was rude, and I’m sorry.”

  1. I have one and I feel ya sista!!

  2. Di McCullough Avatar
    Di McCullough

    Thank you. Here, too, and thank you so much.

  3. Haha. I love the way you describe your daughter. I guess that’s how my parents would describe me too. Stop apologizing! I think being wild is an awesome thing. She knows what she wants and how to get it. I realize that for the others ( the tamed) it looks rude but that’s because our world it’s simple, we either like you or we don’t. We can’t pretend 🙂 And it gets even better as an adult. In my personal opinion, wild souls are the most creative, original, authentic and genuine people ever. Great post!

  4. I agree with you, I love wild souls. I wouldn’t apologize for who she is, just for screaming and taking other people’s toys 😉

  5. Love it, a very wild one here too. I recognise everything you say.
    And LOVE the part where you say she is your heart outside your body. So true!

  6. I’ve got one that sometimes refuses to say hello and hides behind me. She can definitely be perceived as being rude; I feel like it’s more shy. She does have her rude moments (she can say some mean things in a spat with a friend). But, she’s 5. So although we work on it daily, I do think it will come. I wrote a similar post about my kid being the mean one on a particular day…so I get it!

  7. Yep, my firstborn is JUST like that. Every transition is a trip to an outer circle of hell, and manners are often last on our list. BUT, I love his sweet little wild soul, and how he feels everything so much. Reminds me of … well… me. I feel you girl!

  8. I´ve got a wild one too. Used to fight three teachers on a daily basis and had to be dragged out of the classroom for the first few months at the new school (he was 6!! and very very strong). Now he is still his own boy (10 yr) and the whole town and school knows and loves him. We didn´t want to drug him just to make him easier to handle, but adjusted just one little thing as an experiment: no more red food coloring made of red bugs…it worked wonders! It´s in almost everything, so we started reading the food lables everywhere…and found some supergood foods…we´re much happier and healthier. Also we addopted the “shell” at home for anyone who wants to be left alone for a little while to find peace and quiet. For my little girl it´s a princess tent, for my boy it´s playing loud music and lego undisturbed for a while. We´re ok, although we have to keep adjusting to each other. We´re all in the same boat. I wouldn´t want to be in any other boat! ever! xx

  9. Love these suggestions!

  10. Your posts are so relatable, I just had to follow you. I’m also nominating you for a Versatile Blogger Award! You can see the post about it here for more info

  11. Awe thank you!

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