I explained to her that the cleaning ladies had come during the day. They must have dumped the water out and put the cups in the dishwasher. This made her really sad! Between sobs, I thought I heard her say, "Stupid cleaning ladies!" I couldn't believe that's what my sweet daughter said, so I asked her to repeat it. She repeated, "Stupid cleaning ladies!" This time she said it nice and loud! Yikes!
I admonished her immediately, telling her that it's never okay to call somebody stupid. It's a very mean thing to say. I also added that the cleaning ladies were just doing their job. The water could get really gross in the cups, and they had no idea it was part of a science experiment.
She thought about this awhile, then asked, "Is it ever okay to call yourself stupid?" I wanted to cry after she asked that. The truth is, I call myself stupid all the time, even in front of her. I usually say it in a self-deprecating way, but my husband has chided me for doing this. I have never took his criticism seriously before. Hearing her ask this question made me realize what a bad example I've been setting.
"No, that's not okay either," I said. I then admitted that I do call myself stupid, and I was wrong to do so. I was not showing myself the respect I deserve. I promised her I'd stop calling myself stupid, and I hoped to never hear her use that work about anyone else or herself. She agreed.
After my daughter went to bed, I told my husband what had happened. He said, "I told you so!" After that, we both misbehaved. Anytime we noticed something amiss, like when we realized the cleaning ladies threw out our liquid soap dispenser, we said, "Stupid cleaning ladies!" This morning, when my alarm went off at full volume, I bet you can guess what I said under my breath.
I'm so bad! (but you won't catch me saying THAT in front of my daughter either!).