9/04/2007

Inappropriate

Not too long ago I asked you dear readers a very important question which you graciously answered, thus giving me a bit of ammunition the next time that issue arises. I have another question for you - is it wrong for anyone, let alone a mother, refer to another baby as ugly, or otherwise odd?

P started nursery full-time yesterday. There is another baby there only a week older than P who I kindly refer to as Gargantuan Man-Child, Gargantuan Freak Baby, or just simply Freak Baby. Take your pick. There are a multitude of reasons this 13 month old has inspired me to come up with a series of nicknames - she is older than P by a week, yet more than a head taller. GMC/GFB/FB is almost as tall as some of the 2 year olds in the nursery. She has hands finger segments longer than P's, and she crawls up the steps to the slide like she has been scaling them for years.

It's not just that she's bigger than P, but she just appears very unbaby-like. When I first saw GMC/GFB/FB, she was eating toast alone in a corner a few months ago. I'm not talking about jamming the toast in her mouth, or squishing it between her fingers like my (then) 10 month old would do. She ate a full piece of toast, unsliced, like I would. Bite by bite, with no need to grind it on the floor or wipe it over her hair. Her entire demeanor is so...adult and so very alien. She freaks me out.

In conversation I refer to her as one of the names above and The Dude lectures me, saying, "Mums don't talk like that!" The man has been with me for 11 years, surely he knows by now that I am not your average person, so I was never going to be that mother. Some babies are ugly, sorry. "Unfortunate looking" doesn't always suffice. Some babies are just not cute, and others are Gargantuan Man-Babies. The decent person may even use "breathtaking", which as we all well know is just code for "hideously ugly child". I'm not that gracious.

I'm sure some people, including the rather eccentric commenter from my last post (now deleted, but it was an absolute gem) would ask what I would say if P was referred to in the same way I talk about GMC/GFB/FB. My answer is, go right ahead. Do I want to hear it? No. I'm not about to go up to GMC/GFB/FB's mum and say, "I'm sorry madam, I think your kid is the freakiest small human I've seen in my life." I keep that shit to myself. Oh, and my husband. Oh, and all of you. But otherwise, it's a completely private thought.

Say what you want about my kid. Refer to her as Stupid Mullet Head, Freakish Tiny Walking Baby, Pock-faced Ginge, Lemur-eyed Grotbag, whatever. Just don't tell me you're slagging her off or else I'll send GMC/GFB/FB over to climb up a slide in a park near you in that creepy, adult-like lurch that she does. Be very afraid.

15 comments:

j said...

I think that if you can refer to your own kid as "stupid mullet head" (and, btw, at least here, the mullet is making a comeback. Or, it's finally arriving. You pick) then you can perhaps call the other baby names. Just not to her face. Or the face of her parents. I don't think terming the kid "FB" is going to raise any alarms. You know, just make sure that "Stupid mullet head" doesn't catch wind of it (you know, eventually) and repeat it.

Anonymous said...

I think as long as it's a private comment to yourself or someone you are SURE won't share it, you can say whatever you want. I know I mentally sort the kids at preschool by their distinguishing characteristics, not all of which are attractive.

But you want to be sure who you're talking to before you open your mouth-- a friend just might have another friend who knows the kid's parent. It's happened to me twice; once I said it ("you know, that little pale kid with the bald spots and continually runny nose?") and once my husband quoted me to someone when trying to explain which kid he was referring to. Ouch. I have learned my lesson.

By the way, my kids are huge for their ages and remind me of GFB in your description (but we live half a planet away). I may sometimes be guilty of thinking the inverse of you-- thinking of some kid as "that tiny little one who just sort of sits there," or "the one who's still eating baby food," or whatever.

Lori said...

Let's just say I'm happy that my kiddos are still young enough that I don't have to watch what I say around them. It's going to be tough when they get older.
I do the same thing with the understanding that some may be looking at C's giant amazingly round noggin and muttering something similar to themselves. Even though we're mothers we are still human.

DD said...

What's "slagging"?

I can say whatever I want about my big-headed, sasquatch-footed child, but YOU (as in anyone but his Mom) cannot. I feel that if I bring it up and you agree, that's OK. But to say, "Good morn, DD! How are you and the Brat doing?" will piss me straight off.

I have standards. So what if they're Double?

Thalia said...

a pair of h's friends have a baby who was really extraordinarily unattractive. We have both commented on it to each other, but of course never to them. 'ugly' has certainly not been a word we avoided.

rockmama said...

Early on, when I was still breastfeeding, there was a woman in my "Breastfeeding Cafe" who was really kind of weirdly intense and kind of rubbed me the wrong way. She had a baby who, bless him, was just funky looking. VERY large ears and extremely turned up nose, poor little bugger. Of course, I never pointed out this obvious fact to her, even when she made snide comments about the fact that I was expressing rather than actually feeding from the breast. I think I was quite restrained.

electriclady said...

Dude, some babies are ugly. Just don't let the freak baby's mama hear you.

Jenn said...

My own kids freak me out sometime so I don't think it's wrong for other kids to freak you out. I've definitely seen some ugly babies. Not every one can be as attractive as mine :)

PiquantMolly said...

I'm with electriclady. I'll discuss it, but not with anyone who would find it offensive.

Because I'm a bitch that way.

(At least Statia will join me. Right?)

Jen said...

I think this babe must have an American counterpart, who I saw recently--4-5 mos. younger than A, but much larger, with mannish hands. Very disconcerting, though we tried not to stare.

I'm pretty sure that part of the marriage vows includes being able to share this kind of thing with your husband, without it going any further.

Nico said...

I am very guilty of using the U word. I'm afraid that there definitely are some babies who are less attractive out there.

tonya said...

Hey, we are all entitled to our opinions, and yes, there are fugly children out there. And I second j... the gig will most certainly be up when starts P. repeating what she's heard. Amazing how they pick up on the most embarrassing stuff to parrot!

gold star said...

adultish children scare the shit out of me.

does she speak in tongues?

Rachel said...

OH yeah, there are ugly babies! Ugly adults have to come from somewhere, you know? But I would never SAY that, I don't think. If I did, I would fully expect a punch in the face, which is what *I* would do if someone dared tell me Jillian was ugly. Good thing she isn't!! :-)

Twisted Ovaries said...

I think it's ok to slag off an ugly kid if you're doing it to someone you trust. You know, someone who won't sell you down the river for making fun of an ugly baby while being ok with the fact that you're both going to hell for doing so.

That's the bestest kind of friend.

Now friends who will let you make fun of other bloggers and join in on it, well, lemme' just say that those friends are KEEPERS.