A Nice Shirt Never Hurts

At our family dinner table it’s not unusual to find us talking about words. The power words hold, their affect on the world, and, in our household, the bills they pay. After seeing the movie Lincoln, we talked about the power of the words “Yay” and “Nay”, and how “Yay” freed a group of people. Words have started wars, and made peace. Words can make you laugh, put a smile on a face, or make you think differently.

Having young kids, more often than not, my husband and I find ourselves talking about words that hurt. It’s heartbreaking to hear what kids think is okay to say to each other away from their parents and on their own turf. I hope we’ve taught our kids that ugly words are more a reflection of the person saying them than an accurate depiction of the one receiving them. Because that’s the truth.

I won’t be able to shield my kids from ugly words as they grow up. Sadly, like we all know, hurtful words have no age limit. I was reminded of this last week when I was on the receiving end of some adjectives that were neither constructive nor helpful, but just plain mean. I was also reminded a few days later that words inspire, as it did at my daughter’s gymnastics meet, where we all watched her 60+ year-old coach do a floor routine to a roomful of people chanting, “You can do it, you can do it, you can do it,” because she could and she did. Those are the words worth saying.

As my kids go through life, I hope they use words that make others feel good and valued. I hope their “thank you’s” and ” I love you’s” come as freely as their “please’s” and “you can do it’s.” I hope they surround themselves with friends and loved ones that say words that feed their soul, inspire their brain and nurture their heart.

Sticks and stones do break bones, and yes, words can hurt us.

Choose your words wisely, they reveal the content of your character. And have the power to transcend.

1. Sonia Rykiel “Oh La La” @ netaporter.com, 2. Marcus Lupfur “Have a Nice Day” @ jades24.com, 3. Wildfox “To Do List”  @ jades24.com, 4. e.vil “heaven” @ harrods.com, 5. Moschino Cheap and Chic “Time Is Precious” @ farfetch.com, 6. Cafe Press “Big Books” @ cafepress.com

8 Responses

  1. Jk_connell@yahoo.com'

    I love that post JSlow, I don’t think enough parents really take the time to teach and model great behavior. So appreciated by all who come in contact. I love a polite kid!

  2. normalouc@comcast.net'

    Touching, true, beautifully said. I’m forwarding this to Sammi and Jake. And I’ll take t-shirt number 3 – that pretty well covers it for me!

    Love you,


    1. Norma, I love #3. Though I’d have to trade cat for dog. I’m just too allergic. Glad you enjoyed the post enough to want to pass it on. Jake and Sammi are great kids. Tell them I said “hello!”

  3. kellypagnac@yahoo.com'
    Kelly P

    I got a bit behind in my BSB reading–but so glad I scrolled back. This post is lovely, and now I’m an even bigger BSB fan: you’re beautiful on the outside and the inside!

    Thanks, I’m going to share this with my kiddos tonight at our dinner table.

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