I determined a long while back that I was going to learn to speak differently. I wanted language for a vehicle for expressing meaning, humour, outrage, gentleness, anger, gratefulness ... everything, without using words tinged with disrespect. The 'r word' went long ago. Then, after a gentle challenge here on this blog, I committed myself to eliminating words like 'crazy' or 'nuts' or 'insane' along with 'deaf' and 'blind' and 'lame' when those words referred to anything other than disability. I thought it would be hard to do, it isn't, unless you think pausing for a second to think up another word is hard. But hell, I pause to decide between chocolate and vanilla, and then I pause again to consider the possibility of strawberry ... so pausing isn't the big deal some make of it.
Then, most recently, I've decided that I really don't like the way 'b*tch' flies out of my mouth in reference to complaining or when someone, male or female, does something I don't like. After those other words had pretty much been retired, the stark ugliness, of the 'b-word' hit me. I hear it everywhere and I used it more than I, now, like to admit. So, I've been on trying, really trying, to take it from my speech, and from my writing, and hope that eventually it will leave my consciousness as a word choice all together.
I have many women in my life, I have little girls that I love living in my heart - I don't want, in any way, to contribute to them ever being called such a degrading word. So ... it now part of my journey.
Here's something I wrote on Facebook yesterday:
couple times ago, the first time we stayed at this hotel, they had NO
disabled parking. It was difficult for us to negotiate the wheelchair
and luggage in a cramped space. I complained, I was reassured it was 'on
the agenda'. I came back two months later and there was still no
disabled parking. I raised bloody hell. When I was reassured it was
coming I called 'lie' to that - they said it before,
didn't do it. I wrote letters, I contacted the parent company. I got
reassurance after reassurance that it would be done. So, a year has
passed, Joe and I were betting on whether or not the spaces would be
there. We both thought 'probably not' ... they were there!! Four lovely
spaces!! It really did help. We've dubbed them the 'moan and whine'
spaces ... there should be a plaque."
You see where I've written 'moan and whine'? I want you to know that just before I pushed the button to put this on my page, I'd written, out of habit, "b*tch and moan," I saw it, stopped, and you know what? It took me only as long as it takes to erase and to retype, to change the words. That's all.
Less time than it takes me to decide 'Oreos' or 'Chocolate Chip' which admittedly is a big decision.
But ... time well spent.