To find it disgusting so many people still think it's acceptable to use the 'R' word to describe someone who's done something stupid?

(217 Posts)
TangoPurple Sun 03-Mar-13 18:46:47

Bit of a rant! I told my friend this afternoon that i think it's terrible so many people still use the word 'retard' in every day conversation, as well as other offensive, disabilist terms.

She shrugged it off saying that people don't mean it offensively, it's just a phrase our parents used and passed on to us. She admitted that she used to say it all the time, but decided to stop after realising dd has autism, as she didn't want to upset me.

So, after she left, i took to my Facebook for another rant. A lot of people (who i have now deleted) echoed what my friend had said. They said it's just 'banter' and they call their friends it all the time. It's just another way of saying idiot etc.

One came along and actually cut and pasted the definition of retarded. 'Something that is slow or stunted. e.g. the car was retarded, due to its faulty mechanics.'

He therefore felt he had justified his frequent usage of the term in everyday conversation.

I just find it terribly upsetting that this is still considered acceptable. Don't want to break any rules by mentioning this, but someone had said it earlier today on here. A parent. On a parenting forum. It's horrendous.

My gorgeous 5yo has been called retarded before. We were on a double decker bus once, up the top, and she was stimming (flapping her arms) and humming because she was excited. A bunch of teens up the back called down, "Missus - is your kid reatrded or what?' and then called 'bye, window licker' as we left.

So, for someone then to tell me this is NOT a derogatory term is astounding.

Not sure of the point of this thread tbh. Probably another rant. I'm certain i'm not being unreasonable.

Please, please, please - if you are guilty of using this word, stop it. Your children will hear it and then think it's okay to use. And they may end up like those horrible children on the back of that bus my daughter and i had to endure.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 18:50:41

I agree Tango, when it was in that thread title I just despaired. I was going to post 1 step forward, 3 steps back, but I just couldn't find the energy. You are absolutely not BU.

Crawling Sun 03-Mar-13 18:53:51

I agree horrid word I would have been devastated if those people had said that to my autistic dd.

Strangemagic Sun 03-Mar-13 18:54:08

A boy shouted this at my son (who has asd)I was so mad I knocked on the door and told his mother.Horrible word.

marjproops Sun 03-Mar-13 18:54:10

Op, how do we stop it though? mine gets called the same (autistic too), plus when people call each other pikeys, gay, etc etc.

when i was a wee nipper at school the floowing were spouted to all and sundry: 4 eyes, (glasses wearers), the N word, paki, etc etc.

it goes round every generation. and theres ignorance and just plain nastiness.

marjproops Sun 03-Mar-13 18:55:06

The following, not the floowing...and im not even on an ipad!

mummymccar Sun 03-Mar-13 18:55:42

YANBU - I really hate that word.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 18:59:40

My dd has AS and she sees and hears her peers using that word all the time. it's never directed at her but she feels very strongly that it could be sad

Oh, how horrible. angry

I would be especially angry with someone who said it's 'banter'. hmm No, it's not. I know 'banter' was coined to describe a particularly un-funny kind of twittism, but still.

I can understand people using the term out of ignorance and thinking it still has only the etymological meaning of 'slowed down', but once they've been told it has also got a strongly offensive meaning, they should stop using it! It's not difficult.

Sorry your DD has had to put up with this, and that you had to hear it.

mum382013 Sun 03-Mar-13 19:07:03

never acceptable, just like the n word or other such words. never

kissmyheathenass Sun 03-Mar-13 19:09:37

ds, 12, has picked this word up from school - I pick him up on it every time he uses it and tell him its as bad as racist language and unacceptable. Its an awful word.

WeAreSix Sun 03-Mar-13 19:12:12

YANBU. I've got some family in the USA & they use the word freely. My cousin has a brain injury and he is often described as retarded over there. It makes me sad.

FanjoForTheMammaries Sun 03-Mar-13 19:26:44

YANBU it makes me physically feel sick when people say it.

So sorry these teens did that. It says much more about them than your DD.

countrykitten Sun 03-Mar-13 19:34:24

The original definition does mean to hold back as in 'retard the development of the cell' for example but it is now become an offensive term. I wonder at how language changes over time and how this came to pass - similar to 'gay' I suppose.

I too have relatives in the States who use it as a jokey term with teach other and I have also occasionally heard it from the kids I teach.

I am appalled by what happened to you on the bus Tango, that is heartbreaking. sad

GrowSomeCress Sun 03-Mar-13 19:35:33

It's very common among young people unfortunately

I'm in 2 minds about this. It's like the word spastic' - originally it was the medical term for a condition. But then it became an insult when used towards 'normal' people and now it's an unacceptable word.

I think in the States it's still used a lot with the original meaning rather than as a derogatory term; I don't know whether that makes it more acceptable or not though.

(I hope it's clear what I mean btw, I think I'm coming across a bit muddled).

CMOTDibbler Sun 03-Mar-13 19:41:48

Its totally unacceptable, and something I would pull anyone on if I heard them.

And its not banter, its offensive.

ShellyBoobs Sun 03-Mar-13 19:42:57

YANBU at all.

It's utterly appalling.

I'm so sorry and angry to hear about your experience in the bus, Tango.

bookbird Sun 03-Mar-13 19:45:02

Sorry about your experience on the bus Tango, that is absolutely awful.

While it may have been a word used regularly, I thought it had been consigned to the dustbin along with many other offensive terms! I hope it's not creeping back into acceptable use.

Sunnywithshowers Sun 03-Mar-13 19:45:13

YANBU at all.

Tailtwister Sun 03-Mar-13 19:47:30

YANBU. It's offensive.

ovenchips Sun 03-Mar-13 19:48:04


I have also come across 'fucktard' which I find really, really appalling.

Both examples are indefensible.

OP I am sorry you had to put up with those shits on the bus.

poppypebble Sun 03-Mar-13 19:50:01

I have to pull colleagues up about using this term, and the term 'moron'. I'm a teacher. It is depressing.

Delayingtactic Sun 03-Mar-13 19:50:38

Everytime I hear this I remember the letter that that Olympian with Down's syndrome wrote to a broadcaster who called Obama it in a reference to the televised debate. It was incredibly powerful.

Delayingtactic Sun 03-Mar-13 19:52:04
Empress77 Sun 03-Mar-13 19:53:05

I agree its completely unacceptable, I cant bear it when people do that, or when they use 'gay' in the same way, its awful how people do it and seem to think its ok, its incredibly offensive.

HollyBerryBush Sun 03-Mar-13 20:03:08

'R' is a widely accepted word still in the USA. With the level of programming and media we get from the USA words like this will creep in.

hazeyjane Sun 03-Mar-13 20:17:30

There is a movement based in the USA speaking out against the use of the R word, it is seen as unacceptable by many there as well as here.

Is it a regional thing? Because I don't think I have EVER heard anyone use the word in real life, and I am 50 now and certainly do not lead a sheltered life. When I was young you would hear the word 'retarded' used, but not as an insult; it was the accepted term back then for 'learning difficulties'.

Similarly with 'fucktard', never heard it in real life. Plus, when I first saw it here, I totally assumed it was a contraction of 'fucking bastard' (which I have said heard frequently in real life. A sort of txtspk version, if you will.

tazzle22 Sun 03-Mar-13 21:33:25

There are times when the context of when and how a word is being used that determines whether it is intended as an insult or not........ bit like "gay" being able to be used in more than one context.

If its being shouted by a group of kids sneering or being otherwise disrespectful to someone then its quite clear its use is not that of being kind or even just a statement. sad

There always has been, and always will be, words that will be used to tease / hurt / disreprect and hurt others with. Sometimes these include words that have had proper medical ( or other) status to start with. Its sad, its disgusting and even evil.

However I do feel rather sad when perhaps some people do try to use the word in the context they understand without realising that its use has been hijacked and that they are potentially insulting other members of the community they have no intention of hurting / insulting. It also means that people on the receiving end also are hurt and think poorly of someone that perhaps does not deserve that.


ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 21:39:11

I don't really know what you're getting your knickers in such a twist for to be honest, it's a descriptive "word" that's all. This bloody political correctness going on makes my blood boil and has gone too for for too long.

When i was a kid we used to call others mong or some such word, no big deal really.

Things are only a big deal when people make them so and it all needs to stop.

ChristmasJubilee Sun 03-Mar-13 21:40:02

What WhereYouLeftIt said. I have never heard it used in real life. I have two teenagers and it's not something I have ever heard them or their friends use.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 21:53:10

Things have gone too far, everyone is scared to open their mouths these days in case someone becomes offended.

"acceptable" terms change at a ridiculous pace and who knows what you're supposed to say next month let alone next year!

For example there was a thread on here a while ago where the OP wrote something about a dog shitting on the pavement and used the term "blind dog" well, all manner of things were said to be point of ridiculousness to her.

Yes, when I was younger a guide dog was called a blind dog, simple as that! Get over it. The world would be a better place.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 21:54:45

A "movement" about a word, really?

Blimey, I've heard it all now.

How ridiculous.

EuroShaggleton Sun 03-Mar-13 22:04:27

I don't quite understand why this has become offensive. It literally means slow (from the French verb "retarder"). If someone is being a bit slow catching on to something it seems appropriate to refer to them by a word meaning "slow". But I get that some people find it offensive, so I don't use it. But I do think it is a bit silly.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 22:04:28

Clipped - I was going to reply to you but I haven't got the energy. You are way off the mark, that's all I can say.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 22:07:07

Oh dear god here's another one. "a bit bit silly" for OP's dd with autism to be referred to as retarded, really? You don't see that as wrong?

vjg13 Sun 03-Mar-13 22:07:19

Tango YANBU, Some of the recent postings on here make me despair. sad

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:08:39

Oh pack it up thornrose. I'm honest and giving my opinion. I don't really care whether you have energy or not, i didn't ask you to reply to me.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:10:13

It's a word, that's all it is.

vjg13 Sun 03-Mar-13 22:10:42

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:12:27

take "despair" for instance. The use of that makes one conjure up a person sitting there very lonely and unbelievably upset. Which is not the case is it?

stargirl1701 Sun 03-Mar-13 22:13:13

It doesn't help that it is widely used in the US and a great deal of our entertainment comes from there.

I hate it with a passion and always come down like a ton of bricks on any pupil using it.

squeakytoy Sun 03-Mar-13 22:13:43

"when I was younger a guide dog was called a blind dog"

unless the dog was blind itself, how on earth would that even make sense?

I am 42 and have only ever known guide dogs be called guide dogs, because they "guide the blind".. quite self explanatory really.. if the dog was blind, it wouldnt be much use to a blind person

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:14:01

Now the very people who proclaim to be oh so offended are actually making rather nasty comments about me. How very hypocritical.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:15:41

I know lots of people who called it a blind dog, so what? I'ts not such a big deal is it. I'ts quite funny actually when you think about it. Nothing to try to make someone feel small about though is it?

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 22:16:02

Clipped I will not "pack it up" I am telling you, as the parent of a child with Sen, who you may feel appropriate to call retarded, that it is wrong and offensive and inappropriate. You didn't ask me to reply but you expressed an offensive and ignorant opinion which I feel obliged to reply to on behalf of those who aren't able to.

OhBananas Sun 03-Mar-13 22:16:37

Is idiot ok or offensive?

clipped it is not up to you to decide what is offensive and to whom

OhBananas Sun 03-Mar-13 22:19:31

That was probably a bit of a daft question, obviously calling someone an idiot is offensive. Is it disablist in the same way as retard and words like m***?

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 22:21:47

I've heard one or two people use the phrase 'blind dog' but tbh they weren't particularly intelligent. Other than that it's always been guide dog to my knowledge.

OP YANBU, there are still people (mainly kids/teens) who use phrases like 'retard' or something has 'spazzed out'.

It makes me cringe really.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:22:35

Telling me? I'm not telling you am I. I'm stating "my" opinion which is just as valid as yours by the way. Yet you see it fit to personally attack me?

Things are only offensive if you choose to see them as that.

It's not up to you either Norsk.

FlouncingMintyy Sun 03-Mar-13 22:23:03

Well, people either know it is an offensive word or they don't. If they don't then its great that there are a lot of people around to educate them.

I can't see what you are disgusted about tbh.

Most people know it is offensive, some don't. That's just the way things are atm and hopefully it will become used less and less as people become aware.

MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 22:23:32

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:24:47

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I quite like being 'Norsk' smile
But I don't think I like Clipped very much sad

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:27:06

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:27:58

I wasn't put on this planet to be liked by strangers norks so I'm fine with that.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 22:28:16

This thread is making me sick, Flouncing, you can't see what op is disgusted about, really?

mrsDV is wise and eloquent. I agree with her.

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 22:28:54

Because the family weren't particularly intelligent people as I remember.

MechanicalTheatre Sun 03-Mar-13 22:30:17

It's a horrible word. A woman at my work uses it all the time. She is a teacher, who did SEN as her specialism.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 22:31:38

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:32:10

Thats your opinion LRD which is fine. I'm also entitled to mine.

Words really don't bother me very much, nor do veiled insults, I can however tell the difference between veiled passive ones and off the cuff ones, plus ones that are a figure of speech and not really meant as bad.

The people I like the least are the ones who dish out the veiled ones.

googlyeyes Sun 03-Mar-13 22:32:17

Throwing the word 'retarded' at a child with special needs is not offensive?

On which fucking planet??

MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 22:32:33

I am never passive aggressive Clipped. You are obviously confused <concerned>

I am sorry you think my response aggressive. It wasn't meant to offend. Just my way of saying I don't agree with you. Only words. Up to you how you interpret them smile

Oh wait, now yes....that was passive aggressive.

oopps blush

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:33:45

A few fuck off's now and again are ok too.

Mmm. Not sure you are entitled to be disablist, no.

Do you think it's ok to call someone a 'retard'? If you do, then no, you're not 'entitled' to that, IMO. A person who used such language, knowing they were being offensive and disablist, would be a total wanker and a bigot. It's obvious, really.

All this rubbish about veiled and unveiled insults seems irrelevant to me.

MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 22:38:22

Attention seeking.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:41:15

Very strong words there though huh LRD.

Retard is an old word that has now become very offensive but wasn't so in my day therefore it doesn't bother me, it's just a word.

I'm also not offended by the use of many other derrogatory words used here either aimed at me.

Always remember, two wrongs don't make a right and hypocracy is very evident on this thread.

MyDarlingClementine Sun 03-Mar-13 22:41:33

Its vile, I have complained many a time about various people using the word.

I can't help it but as soon as someone uses that word - or spastic - or even sticks their tongue in front of their lower teeth, something in me just turns me completly off that person.

They just sink in my esteem and its hard to get above it again.

Tigerbomb Sun 03-Mar-13 22:42:39

The word is offensive . It doesn't matter if it wasn't offensive 10 years ago - it is now.

If you know some people find the word offensive, what kid of person would continue using it, knowing that by using it they will upset someone...especially a child

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:43:10

No, not at all DeVere. I have an opion which is my right and i will defend it. I haven't once asked anyone to comment on what I've said. You have chosen to.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:43:55

What offends one doesn't offend another. It's a personal issue.

googlyeyes Sun 03-Mar-13 22:44:55

It's no-one's right to be disablist. In the same way no one has the 'right' to be racist

forgetmenots Sun 03-Mar-13 22:45:26

YANBU OP, I hate it too. Your poor dd being spoken to like that sad

poppypebble Sun 03-Mar-13 22:48:05

People with any sort of disability or special needs have enough to put up with everyday without being abused by this kind of offensive language. It is offensive to call someone a retard, or a mong, or a cripple. It just is. Would you bandy about offensive racist terms and expect people to accept that it is just a 'personal issue'?

clipped - See my first post. If someone thinks retard is not offensive, despite being educated out of their ignorance, they are being disablist and should fuck right off.

PeneloPeePitstop Sun 03-Mar-13 22:49:36

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MyDarlingClementine Sun 03-Mar-13 22:50:56

There is always one isn't there.

The Irony and the sheer Ignorance is astounding.

You just have to rise above it and not pander to it.

I wonder if our charties for the disabled are campaigning for stopping the use of these words too.

Maybe Mnnetters should email them.

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 22:52:41

I think the danger with campaigns like that Clementine, is that they often make the word even 'naughtier' to use for some people IYSWIM?

MyDarlingClementine Sun 03-Mar-13 22:53:30

Yes true Worral but think how far we have come with rasicm no?

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 22:58:24

There's always one? I'ts a word as explained, words only have such power if you take such offence to them. Next week there will be another, then another etc.

I believe in freedom of speach, not repression. Banning words give them far more strengh.

Nagoo Sun 03-Mar-13 22:59:05

I tell my friends 'you aren't allowed to say that anymore' and I explain what is wrong with it.

Eventually it will stop.

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 23:00:54

Fair point Clementine but then the 'yoof' reclaimed the N word because for some reason they thought it made them sound all 'bad arse'?!

Tough one really.

Words/phrases come and go but sadly ignorance seems like it's here to stay....

MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 23:01:54

of course it was offensive in 'your day' whenever that was.
It has never been a positive term.
It was invented to describe a medical model of learning disability.
Therefore it has always been offensive. Over the years it has become colloquially offensive rather than 'just' an oppressive medical term.

you twat.

akaemmafrost Sun 03-Mar-13 23:03:39

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Nagoo Sun 03-Mar-13 23:03:53

I don't agree about words have power clipped. It's fine to say that if someone calls you cunt, shrug it off, just a word. But to use the word retarded is to drag a vulnerable person into it as a reference point. They are not the subject of the insult, but demeaned and disregarded as the object that an insult is about.

if i am too tired drunk to explain that properly. I will come back in the morning.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:06:03

Did you know that "twat" is one of the most offensive words you could use in certain places? Most of the words you have used in your responses on this thread are offensive.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:08:01

Had a few have we ladies?

akaemmafrost Sun 03-Mar-13 23:08:10

You deserve everything that's been said to you.

MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 23:08:32

Its just a word.
Political correctness gone mad!
Makes me fume
Its like living in Russia.

PeneloPeePitstop Sun 03-Mar-13 23:09:12

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PeneloPeePitstop Sun 03-Mar-13 23:11:27

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:11:48

I don't really care what you say (its always the same bunch by the way) who really have some sort of perverse thing about the offended. On here night and day whipping yourselves and your pals into offended frenzies.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:12:49

I'm glad you have all been able to have a frienzied offended swear.

coralanne Sun 03-Mar-13 23:12:56

So sad to hear that this word is still in common use.

When I saw the title of the thread, I ws wondering "What on earth is the R word".

PeneloPeePitstop Sun 03-Mar-13 23:13:43

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WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 23:14:48

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MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 23:16:39

attention seeking

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 23:16:53

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akaemmafrost Sun 03-Mar-13 23:17:33

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:19:33

I come on here now and again for multiple reasons and yes a few drinks is one of them, I could be PMT, I could just be bored, I could be looking for a solution to something. That's the beauty of the internet and these sites.

However, I'm very rarely judgemental nor do I get my knickers in a twist.

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 23:22:11

However, I'm very rarely judgemental nor do I get my knickers in a twist.

What the actual fuck?? grin grin

Rarely judgemental?

Do you want to remind us again about your views on WOHMs 'farming their kids out'?

I think I hit the nail on the head with the drink...though MrsDeVere doesn't sound far off too with attention seeking.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:24:01

No, I don't look for anything really, I give an opinion, that maybe not to peoples liking but there again I have a right to have one. I don't put myself in a "group" and I don't need to be liked. I don't need to be agreed with either. The amount of vitriol that comes out of peoples fingers on here is another thing.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:26:11

I also don't see a need to "look people up" on here either worra.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:27:27

As for that thread I personally think the best person to look after your child is YOU.

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 23:28:58

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ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:29:30

I also don't do personal insults. I do general opinions unless someone is actually aiming something directly at me on a thread, then I feel it's my right to fire something back.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:30:47

It's your choice to have any opinion you like about me worra really it is.

MrsDeVere Sun 03-Mar-13 23:31:09

I think 'fire' is overstating things a bit.

Just my opinion smile

WorraLiberty Sun 03-Mar-13 23:31:33

Well yes, talk about state the obvious?

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 23:36:12

And my question " do you genuinely not care when a parent of an autistic child expresses despair"? Does that really not affect you? At all? Doesn't that worry you?

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:39:06

You don't bother me in the slightest. I know what's coming being on here for quite a while now. However, i have seen a fair few become really upset by you and it's really not on.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:43:44

I was talking about a "word" and people getting so frenzied about them.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:45:01

"fire something back" is again a phrase DeVere.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 23:47:12

Forget that, hasn't there ever been anything in your life you feel passionately opposed to? Racism, sexism, anything, that can be represented by a word?

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:53:22

Not really to be honest thornrose. An act of unkindness etc. would but an old word or phrase doesn't. I usually think that they probably don't quite know what they're saying. I also don't think it's ignorance or a lack of intellegence either. As I said, everyone is just so "polically" correct and offended these days it's quite sad in itself.

ClippedPhoenix Sun 03-Mar-13 23:55:12

Politically, by the way.

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 23:57:44

Agh, your not getting it. It's not political correctness. Example, I have a mixed race dd, her dad was Jamaican. She is also autistic. There are so many derogatory words that can be thrown at us, and they have. Words DO hurt, why don't you get that? I wonder what age you are?

thornrose Sun 03-Mar-13 23:58:20

You're obv!

LadyBeagleEyes Mon 04-Mar-13 00:04:47

I hate it, it makes me cringe, but as long as it's used as a common insult as it is in the US, then our kids are going to be influenced by it, there is so much US telly around.
I'm not sure how we get round that really.

ClippedPhoenix Mon 04-Mar-13 00:05:26

Let's just say I'm old enough to have heard them all and not let them affect me to point they affect people now a days. I do get why the OP was upset but what I don't like is this making a word so inflamatory that it becomes ridiculous. There will be another one along soon so getting it out of proportion is a bit mad really.

thornrose Mon 04-Mar-13 00:10:00

So they could've affected you? Which ones, out of interest.

ClippedPhoenix Mon 04-Mar-13 00:11:25

To be honest I'm far more concerned about the amount of belittling that goes on here by a handful of rather awful people who band together. I personally am not bothered in the slightest but I have seen others crumble in the name of intellegence and whit.

ClippedPhoenix Mon 04-Mar-13 00:13:55

If I told you I'd have to kill you...

Only joking thorn.

I can't remember, that's how unaffected I've been.

thornrose Mon 04-Mar-13 00:14:59

Ok, I give up. As you where..

thornrose Mon 04-Mar-13 00:16:25

As you were, bloody bossy IPad.

TheCatInTheHairnet Mon 04-Mar-13 00:31:39

I live in the US. I don't particularly like the word, but I don't object to my kids saying someTHING is retarded. It does not mean the same in American English as it does in English. If any of my children called someone a Retard, they would be regretting it for a very, very long time. And they know that.

The fact is, American English and English English are very different languages, even if they sound mostly the same.

Turnipsoup Mon 04-Mar-13 01:07:19

I'm so sorry OP that your DD had such a horrible experience.

I think a lot of people use terms like retard (it makes me ashamed just to type it) without thinking of the impact it has. Just like some people swear all the time. It is not ok, it is offensive, and everyone should challenge its usage.
Words that were once considered part of everyday vocabularly do change meaning over time, and society as a whole hopefully becomes more educated ... hence racist words are now universally unacceptable and the R word should be too.

I am horrified to think that I grew up using the word 'moron' in the States without knowing it's background. I have just had to google it to find out why it is offensive. (really ashamed as I work with children with SEN and genuinely had no idea)
I haven't used the m word in years (more like decades) but I wish someone had challenged me on it.

To the lovely posters over at Special Needs:Children - you have a huge positive impact - you are educating and enlightening MN - I have lurked for years and learned a tremendous amount from you wonderful, amazing people. (It made me choose to do what I do now) And for every MNer you enlighten, they will hopefully enlighten their children etc. So although it must feel like wading through treacle, you are changing it, and for every battle you fight there are thousands of MNers behind you.

(hope that doesn't come accross as too pompous/patronising/easy to say if you're note facing the challenges every day - it really isn't meant that way)

SpecialAgentKat Mon 04-Mar-13 01:10:21

Whether you agree with the word or not this thread reads like ragey teenage girls in a texting war.

SpecialAgentKat Mon 04-Mar-13 01:11:31

By the way OP I'm so sorry that those teenagers were so nasty. May I ask (as I fear to Google) what does 'window licker' mean? I assume it's an insult but I don't get it.

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 01:23:15

Are you for real, clipped? Maybe you would like me to explain to you, once again, that YOU don't get to decide what offends someone else.

YOU don't see it as offensive. YOU obviously haven't got a disability that this word is used to mock. When you do, THEN you can come back and tell us that 'it is just a word'.

My DD can tell you that she FELT upset at being called this word LONG before she could read this word, and LONG before she knew that it used to be an acceptable term but was now used to insult people with.

My DD could tell you that at times, she wanted to DIE because she was called this word every day by the ignorant bullies.

When YOU have had to sit there and try to comfort your child (that is unable to be cuddled because of their sensory issues) when they want to die because people are calling them derogatory names every day, THEN you get to say what is offensive or not.

My guess is that you haven't been in either of those situations, so IMO you can't tell people that HAVE been in those situations that they aren't allowed to be offended by this word.

The person at the receiving end of the word who has a disability that this word mocks, or a person caring for someone in that situation, are the ones who gets to decide whether they feel it is offensive.

We are NOT the 'professionally offended'. We are just OFFENDED because that word is aimed at either us or our child or a loved one and is being used in a derogatory way.

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 01:23:46

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 01:36:21

And I have also been at the receiving end of something you say is 'just a word' whilst being post-ictal. And I can tell you, despite being unable to tell you where I lived at that precise moment - I STILL felt offended by it.

So try to understand that while YOU aren't offended by this word, probably because it isn't aimed at you in the same way as it is aimed at people with disabilities, PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES WILL BE OFFENDED BY IT.

And that isn't a 'right', or being 'professionally offended'.

It's because it IS offensive to those with disabilities and their Carers!

dottyspotty2 Mon 04-Mar-13 01:39:35

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 01:41:38

And it's NOT that we 'all gang up together'.

Surely it is telling that you are the by far in the minority here in saying that this word is not offensive, and EVERYBODY who is disabled themselves, or is caring for their child with disabilities, or has a family member with disabilities IS offended by this word?

Surely that alone should tell you that it is YOU who is in the wrong with your persistence in your conviction that you should be allowed to spout disablist words?

Are you as convinced that you should still be able to say the N word without causing offence?

If not, then what the fuck is the difference?!

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 01:56:21

What couthy said.

Also..Kat..people being offended is not being lie a "ragey teenage girl". And go and Google the phrase, don't be so insensitive as to ask OP about it.

SpecialAgentKat Mon 04-Mar-13 02:49:03

Oh, so being offended justifies saying: You're a cunt/twat/disgusting/fuck off/you're an alcoholic and even jump off a cliff? All while in the same breath saying another term is offensive. Those are all the things I see my stupid younger sister and her friends say to each other and it's hypocritical.

I happen to find the word cunt very offensive to women. But if someone called me one I wouldn't tell them to die.

Oh and with all that? I'm insensitive to ask what a derogative term means?

This thread is irrational. Of course the OP was not being unreasonable to be disgusted at her daughter being bullied and degraded.

I just don't think it makes a lot of sense that then a lot of filth that is also offensive somehow justifies your (plural) position?

MechanicalTheatre Mon 04-Mar-13 02:59:34

I don't see cunt as offensive to women any more than cock is offensive to men.

I hate the way that when people get their arses handed to them on here they always say "you're ganging up." No, just a lot of people have the same opinion. That's not ganging up.

SpecialAgentKat Mon 04-Mar-13 03:06:49

That's your opinion. I think cunt is an extremely degrading and humiliating word to women. But that's not the point of this thread.

I guess I just don't understand how in one breath you can say someone has said something terribly offensive, but then accuse them of being on the bottle or wishing death on them. It sort of negates the point IMO.

But yeah of course the OP isn't being unreasonable. What happened on the bus was just cruel.

I'll take my leave now as I suspect this thread will either go poof or there will be so many deletions only about twenty posts will stand.

OP: I'm so sorry your little girl was treated so appallingly. I really hope she has lots of fun on the bus as she's clearly more mature than them!

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 03:36:53

I think it IS twatty to speak to someone using disablist terms. I would be FAR less offended at being called a twat than I would about being called the R word. FAR less. In fact, I've probably called myself a twat at least twice today.

The worst I did was sat that I think the OP is a disablist twat.

Which I do.

Anyone behaving in a disablist way is a twat IMO. As is anyone acting in a racist way, an ageist way, a mysoginistic way, or a homophobic way. All twats.

If you can't accept that times have changed, and it is no longer acceptable to behave in such a way as to deliberately offend people (and if you KNOW that people are likely to be offended by it and STILL behave that way, then it IS deliberate), then you are a twat.


FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 03:37:06

I didn't call anyone anything, so presumably i can still think you are insensitive?

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 03:38:44

Plural position my arse. It's called being angry and agreeing with each other.

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 03:39:07

Aaarrgghh! NOT THE OP!! CLIPPED.

Brain fail from changing tack halfway through a sentence and not checking.

Sorry OP!!!

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 03:46:38

How typical that someone would not even read my posts but lump me in as having sworn and adopted some mythical 'plural' position.

Couthy, your posts were very eloquent, you can be forgiven for dropping the odd twat in IMO

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 04-Mar-13 06:16:06

I think it's horrible to say unkind things about or to people who have a disability. That horrifies me.

I am not horrified when someone calls someone "retarded" as a general put down for doing something stupid. But, I don't do it because it upsets people. I don't think they should be upset, but they are, so why say things that will offend them?

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 06:22:05

But that is equating doing stupid things to having a disability so IS being unkind about disability and should be equally horrifying.

JakeBullet Mon 04-Mar-13 06:25:30

To the OP, is unacceptable in this day and age...totally and utterly.

How anyone can defend it is beyond me.

TheNebulousBoojum Mon 04-Mar-13 07:12:31

In my day, lots of things were different, ClippedPhoenix.
Words like retarded, Educationally Sub-Normal, and racist language were part of people's daily vocabulary, along with corporal punishment and very tightly-defined gender roles..
Things change, it's called education.
You need to move on from the attitudes you developed in the 60s and 70s.

MrsDeVere Mon 04-Mar-13 07:37:41

why should we all be niace little girls and engage in intelligent debate with someone who is dismissive and then counters most replies with passive aggressive hints and conspiracy theories?

Again and again the position of most parents of children who are affected by words like this has been explained.

We are NOT here to educate the masses. If you use a word or condone its use we get to tell you to fuck off just like 'normal' parents.

Most of us are fed up of trying to engage with posters like Clipped who probably just picked a thread at random anyway.

TheNebulousBoojum Mon 04-Mar-13 08:06:57

We are part of a conspiracy theory?
How did I miss that?

MangoLangoTango Mon 04-Mar-13 08:20:36

I'm late to the thread but I was just wondering if people mean to remove the R word from the English language or to discourage it's use as a justifiable horrible insult?

It is a fairly common (and useful) word in biology (e.g. growth retardation, channel retardation) but this is of with it being used in it's true sense to mean stunted. Similarly the word spastic is often used as an insult but it actually has a very specific meaning medically (e.g. spasticity to mean an abnormally increased muscle tone).

Any word can evolve into an offensive insult, it is the intention of the user and the situation it is delivered that then gives a word it's context.

blueballoon79 Mon 04-Mar-13 08:45:29

Op, what happened to your child is horrific and disgusting.

Using words such as spastic, retard etc in the wrong context (as an insult) in my opinion shows great ignorance and backward thinking.

Just because these words were ok many years ago, doesn't mean they're ok now.

Disablist attitudes and offensive disablist insults irritate me no end.

For those people saying it's just a word and words have no effect- how ridiculous!

I was extremely badly bullied throughout primary school and had a very old fashioned teacher who always used to say to me "sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me".

So why is it that now after twenty years I have forgotten the numerous physical assaults but can still remember every hateful name they called me?

Words have power.

WorraLiberty Mon 04-Mar-13 08:57:15

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

LithaR Mon 04-Mar-13 09:36:10

Oh wow, as an observer some of the vitriol being aimed at ClippedPheonix is actually pretty offensive to me.

I don't think her statement that words are words was that bad that they need to be attacked in this way. I'm disabled and honestly don't find being called retarded upsetting, mainly because I know that its not meant to demean my disabilities but rather because I've missed the point or just not clued on fast enough.

The people that have called me this before have been friends and I know they didn't mean it in any malicious way. I think everyone needs to take a breather and remember that most justification for bullies is that they were bullied. By becoming bullies yourself you are not doing your children justice. You are just becoming part of the problem.

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 09:41:52

You dont have a learning disability affecting your iQ though. So why would you feel it referenced your disabilities.

Noone is bullying here

LithaR Mon 04-Mar-13 09:51:48

Actually I do. But I shouldn't have to justify my disabilities to you or anyone.

hazeyjane Mon 04-Mar-13 09:54:01

Just out of interest, wrt the use of the word retard(ed) in America.

"Rosa’s Law and Legislature Challenges
On October 5, 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama officially signed bill S. 2781 into federal law. Rosa’s Law, which takes its name and inspiration for 9-year-old Rosa Marcellino, removes the terms “mental retardation” and "mentally retarded" from federal health, education and labor policy and replaces them with people first language “individual with an intellectual disability” and “intellectual disability.” The signing of Rosa’s Law is a significant milestone in establishing dignity, inclusion and respect for all people with intellectual disabilities."

I do not understand the eyerolling, and cries of political correctness gorn mad, etc etc. The word "retard(ed)" as an insult, is about a lot more than hurt feelings; it's about having so little regard for an entire segment of the population that you will openly use a word that exists in this context, only to mock and injure them.

PeneloPeePitstop Mon 04-Mar-13 09:56:11

Well good for you, Litha.
You really do not speak for everyone.

I have also had my kids called retards and window lickers and I am very much offended by that.

akaemmafrost Mon 04-Mar-13 10:00:21

Litha you have the right to deal with being called offensive names regarding your disabilities however you see fit. I reserve the right to deal with that abuse being directed towards my children however I see fit.

I can begin to understand why you would allow your "friends" to treat you in that way though tbh.

akaemmafrost Mon 04-Mar-13 10:00:36

Litha you have the right to deal with being called offensive names regarding your disabilities however you see fit. I reserve the right to deal with that abuse being directed towards my children however I see fit.

I can begin to understand why you would allow your "friends" to treat you in that way though tbh.

akaemmafrost Mon 04-Mar-13 10:01:45

CAN'T not can blush

HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 04-Mar-13 10:05:51


Thought now might be the moment to state that we at MNHQ would regard the use of such words as 'retard' and 'mong' as disablist - and, if posts containing those words were reported to use, we would delete them. We have made it pretty clear rule in our Talk Guidelines that disablist language breaks our site rules.

We do also have to point out the personal attacks break our site rules, too. We do understand this is a pretty emotive discussion but please don't let personal attacks undermine any points you wish you make - they'll only get your (probably otherwise very strong and effective) post deleted.

Kikithecat Mon 04-Mar-13 10:09:53

I don't know any adults who use it but my DS also picked it up at school, but I put him straight immediately.


gimmeanaxe Mon 04-Mar-13 10:19:24

why anyone would want to use words that hurt people is beyond me. Especially after being told they hurt. Maybe they are cruel?

CoreOfLore Mon 04-Mar-13 10:26:55

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Peachy Mon 04-Mar-13 10:29:17

DS1 (AS, attends a BAse within a MS school where he is beating most of the MS kids academically) was called a retard a few weeks back: really upset him.

I mean, it's not even accurate is it?

I hear it used apologetically by professionals at university who are using it correctly, and nastily by horrible people in the streets.

It's NOT about being slow. Not when used as an insult or'banter'- 'retarded development of the cerebellum' = appropriate use; anything that equates retarded development with bad or stupd = needs a serious word with.

I won't let my boys use that term, mong, or any of the other hate words- disability, racist or any other type. I'd be ashamed if I did allow it, or if they sued it (after being told once that it is unaaceptable).

As for people saying oh it's all gone too far / PC / etc. phooey. I am PC and I am happy with that. The opposite of that is politically incorrect, and I don't want to be incorrect, I want to be kind, nice, correct.

'Words are words'- yep tell that to any journalist, PR rep or defence lawyer. Bet tehy will agree hmm

If it hurts people, don't use it, think of another term that does the job. it's not ahrd. OTOH if anyone thinks they ahve a right to hurt people as long as they get to retain use of a word- nah not my sort of person.

StuntGirl Mon 04-Mar-13 10:39:37

core I can imagine some with special needs have felt pushed to that very edge by the use of disablist terms meant to harass, bully and hurt them.

PeneloPeePitstop Mon 04-Mar-13 10:40:32

Core you know what? I haven't told anyone to die, I think the worst was when I used the c word - a word I hate - because a particular poster was pooh poohing reasoned argument and actually being a goady fucker. And being quite smug about it.

All those suicidal methods and fantasies - yep, had them all. Even tried a few. Because of the kind of language used on this thread about my children. About people calling me a worthless piece of shit because I am on Carer benefits through no fault of my own, I'm scum, apparently. Even my brother says so and my mother is ashamed of me.

So, disablist goaders do not have the monopoly on misery.

People out to think what 'just words' do to other people's lives.

I don't think there's a group more attacked on here than parents of SN kids, or disabled adults. Constantly we are dealing with disablist language constantly tossed into threads, sniping, benefit envy (!), called Scroungers, worthless yada yada.

Yet when we lose our temper at the latest in a long line of abuse we are patted on the head and told to play nice yet the people being utterly foul at what they perceive to be a 'lifestyle choice' are allowed to continue their attacks with impunity because by attacking an entire group of us it's not a personal attack.

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 10:41:22

Coreoflore you are being rather abusive there yourself tbh.

And don't start on me..I haven't attacked anyone personally on this thread but will be lumped in with homogenous mass of posters as per usual.

You dont know how people on this thread are feeling either. Your post is shocking

CoreOfLore Mon 04-Mar-13 10:41:59

Of course, as an older sister of a boy with autism I know that just as well as anyone, but what is wrong with the world when someone feels they have the right to actually tell somebody to go kill themselves? What kind of human being says that to another human being?

StuntGirl Mon 04-Mar-13 10:42:46

Oh yes, how could I forget the carers of those with disabilities, like pam. As she has so eloquently proven they too are pushed to that very edge because of the heartless actions of others.

PeneloPeePitstop Mon 04-Mar-13 10:43:11

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

StuntGirl Mon 04-Mar-13 10:44:33

Not pam, penelope, sorry!

PeneloPeePitstop Mon 04-Mar-13 10:50:09

On mumsnet a personal attack becomes an opinion once you address it to more than one person. So, "you are a scrounging arsehole" is not ok as a personal attack but "Carers of disabled people are scrounging arseholes" is an opinion and entirely ok.

Yet if it was "all Muslims are x" or "all gays are y" or z"all n words are z" then that wouldn't be on at all.

And HQ wonder why we're aggrieved...

MyDarlingClementine Mon 04-Mar-13 10:51:12

*Yet if it was "all Muslims are x" or "all gays are y" or z"all n words are z" then that wouldn't be on at all.

And HQ wonder why we're aggrieved...*

this ^

Its not actually open for debate!

Peachy Mon 04-Mar-13 10:55:57

Please stop teh talk of suicide. If you feel bad today, please call samaritans or your GP. They can help- been there myself, GP did help.

Nobody should be fighting over who has it worst with that though: anyone suicidal needs and deserves sympathy and help. it's an illness not a battle tool.

I was lucky enough to get help but my husband called me one day to say he was going to end it and saying bye, I ahd to sit at home terrified as the police tried to track him down. His car stalled and he couldn't 'sort it', thank God. I'd never wish that fear on anybody.

MrsDeVere Mon 04-Mar-13 10:57:49


CoreOfLore Mon 04-Mar-13 11:00:18

You're right, what I said was horrible, but maybe you will remember my words next time you go tell another person to kill themselves. And yes I'm sure the word retard makes plenty of people feel horrible about themselves but is that as bad as actively and knowingly wishing death upon another person? Not to me...

giraffesCantDateDucks Mon 04-Mar-13 11:00:29

The s words seem to be seen as unacceptable now Hope the r word goes the same way soon!!

WorraLiberty Mon 04-Mar-13 11:01:49

This thread makes no sense any more.

And a few of the deleted posts didn't even contain personal attacks, or copies of personal attacks.

The place has gorn quite mad...

PeneloPeePitstop Mon 04-Mar-13 11:02:01

Spectacularly missing the point there, core...

MyDarlingClementine Mon 04-Mar-13 11:03:44

I thought MN was supposed to be " supportive" and a mum has come on here and told a horrid story about her DC being subjected to foul language,

Most posters have come to offer her support and sympathy. In line with MN ideals.

So how does someone coming on saying " actually there is nothing wrong with that language" fall into the supportive catagory?

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 11:05:49

I haven't told anyone to kill themselves.

Please stop lumping all posters together.

Your post was massively out of order.

LadyBeagleEyes Mon 04-Mar-13 11:07:43

This whole thread needs to go.sad
I've reported, I hope others do the same.

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 11:10:46

Am thinking I may as well do loads of personal attacks since people accuse me of them anyway

giraffesCantDateDucks Mon 04-Mar-13 11:11:41

Oh I was replying to the op I see a lot more has been said since!

ArmchairDetective Mon 04-Mar-13 11:12:57

I know this thread seems to have gone off track and I'm afraid I haven't read all of it but just wanted to post my experience of hearing this word.

I was standing outside my DD's nursery one day waiting to be buzzed in. Another Parent/GP/Carer walked up to the door. She had already told her "son" to effffing hurry up (he was 4). She then said "Come on open the door you efffing r.....ds"

I just thought if that's what you think of the nursery workers caring for your son, why would you trust him in their care?

The way she said all this in front of her son was horrible. How long till he starts throwing these words around too.

MrsDeVere Mon 04-Mar-13 11:14:49

who told someone to kill themselves confused
why has the thread been hijacked confused

Peachy Mon 04-Mar-13 11:16:53

Fanjo most of us know you're not like that love, don't worry X

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TangoPurple Mon 04-Mar-13 11:22:49

Hello, i've been working and not had chance to come back and reply.

Sorry to see this has caused a bit of a row. I was just upset yesterday when i posted, and naively (is that a word?) assumed i could somehow influence people to realise this is not an acceptable word to use in modern society.

Very interesting to read the comment about Obama banning it in medical terms.

It's clear to see that some people just don't get it, and probably won't ever get it.

And this makes me feel really sad. Children learn from adults. If adults continue using this word - and other equally offensive words - so freely, their children will follow.

I'm lucky that this word had only been directed at my dd a few times, the worst instance being the example i gave on the bus.

But she's only 5. As she gets older - especially in high school - i fear this word may become part of her daily life.

I really hope that by the time she reaches her teens, it won't be used in such a casual way as it is now.

I also hope this thread doesn't get deleted. A lot of people have said they find the word offensive, and explained why they find it offensive. So hopefully it might educate/influence other readers to start thinking more and stop using it.

PrincessFiorimonde Mon 04-Mar-13 11:22:50

I can never understand people who carry on using words once they've been told they are offensive. Using them in all innocence is one thing - but when someone's said 'Please don't say r*****; it's offensive'; well, that's when you stop saying it, surely.

Words do change in meaning and intent. In the 60s, there was a charity called the Spastic Society - long since changed its name to Scope. In the 50s (I think) there was an embroidery thread called n*** brown. Obviously not called that now!

HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 04-Mar-13 11:25:11


Am thinking I may as well do loads of personal attacks since people accuse me of them anyway

Please don't <stern> <weary>

PrincessFiorimonde Mon 04-Mar-13 11:26:07

Xpost with OP. Tango, you were entitled to be upset! I really hope you're right about use of the word dying out.

StuntGirl Mon 04-Mar-13 11:26:14

Dotty said something to the effect of "just throw yourself off a cliff" in response to someone else's comment that disablist words aren't offensive and don't hurt anybody. Core got very offended because depressed and suicidal people might then take it upon themselves to actually kill themselves, and we should all think before we speak because you don't know by looking at someone whether they're depressed and simple words can hurt y'know.

I suspect she missed the point spectacularly.

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 11:26:55

I was kidding Helen wink sorryblush

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 11:27:45

core then told ME to think before next time I tell someone to go and kill themselves.

Which I haven't ever done so it would be the first time in fact.

FanjoForTheMammaries Mon 04-Mar-13 11:28:45

and clearly Dotty hasn't either , so i was annoyed at the massive guilt trip she was subjected to by core.

HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 04-Mar-13 11:28:50


On mumsnet a personal attack becomes an opinion once you address it to more than one person. So, "you are a scrounging arsehole" is not ok as a personal attack but "Carers of disabled people are scrounging arseholes" is an opinion and entirely ok.

Yet if it was "all Muslims are x" or "all gays are y" or z"all n words are z" then that wouldn't be on at all.

And HQ wonder why we're aggrieved...

Nope. It anyone posted "all Muslims are x" or "all gays are y", they would be deleted.

And if someone reported, "Carers of disabled people are scrounging arseholes", it would most certainly not be OK and it would be deleted.

None of them are personal attacks, that's true. But we do have other rules in our Talk Guidelines - and we do routinely delete posts that generalise in an discriminatory way against defined groups.

MrsDeVere Mon 04-Mar-13 11:30:07

Thank you Stuntgirl

In that case I feel my earlier post still stands


And oh the irony that many of the parents on this page are caring for children with the highest rates of self harm of any group.
And that parents of children with SN have sky high rates of depression.

But thanks for the lecture anyway core.

StuntGirl Mon 04-Mar-13 11:36:55

Yy to everything Mrs DeVere just said!

dottyspotty2 Mon 04-Mar-13 13:19:09

Well if I get annoyed over something that effects my family I will spout off FWIW I have major depressive illness and I class what I say as a turn of phrase like telling someone to go play on the motorway in other words get to fuck. Is that better.

hazeyjane Mon 04-Mar-13 13:20:24

Really, I should play on the motorway? Hokey dokey then.

<seeing as we are taking all of this at face value>

blacklightning Mon 04-Mar-13 13:50:44

Hi dottyspotty. I usually avoid these sort of threads as the comments can be upsetting. I remember in your deleted post that you said a sibling was being bullied. I am going through this too. I cmpletely sympathise with your felings at the lack of empathy.

The irony of lecturing parents with sen children about depression wasn't lost on me either Mrs Devere.

BabyMakesTheBellyGoRound Mon 04-Mar-13 15:05:55

I thought we had long moved past these offensive terms.
It saddens me to see this discussion. We wouldn't see anyone defending the use of the N word.

blacklightning Mon 04-Mar-13 15:52:35

Of 207 messages so far, the overwhelming majority agree with OP that the use of this word is disgusting, so at least that is encouraging. It is sad though that this discussion is even taking place, but agree with OP, I wouldn't want the thread to be deleted.

Words do have power. I remember a man speaking once about the use of the N word in the 70's on TV (I think it was a programme called love thy neighbour?). People said then that it was just a word, but he had to endure that word being used in an abusive way against him the next day at school. It is one thing to tell an adult not to be offended,its just a word, but how can a child make such a choice. (BTW I think as an adult you can't necessarily make that choice but that seems to be what some are saying)

Sorry for typos in first post, was trying to hold wriggly baby at the time!

MerryCouthyMows Mon 04-Mar-13 16:13:26

I expected that to get deleted. It still is true though!

And I will say it again, in a way that cannot be construed as a personal attack.

I feel that anybody who continues to use an offensive, disablist word AFTER being told it is offensive and disablist is a twat.

Is that any less of a personal insult, HQ?

hazeyjane Mon 04-Mar-13 16:17:18

On a thread the other day about Ricky Gervaise, someone linked to this poem by Dean Atta, about the use of the N word. He wrote it after he had tweeted this

"Rappers, when you use the word 'nigger' remember that's one of the last words Stephen Lawrence heard, so don't tell me it's a reclaimed word."

Words do indeed have power.

TheNebulousBoojum Mon 04-Mar-13 16:19:11

'I feel that anybody who continues to use an offensive, disablist word AFTER being told it is offensive and disablist is a twat.'

Because I can't put it any better that Couthy.

MrsDeVere Mon 04-Mar-13 16:27:20

hazey that is very, very powerful.
There is no 'reclaiming' of that word in my house. Not ever. My boys will never be allowed to use it in my hearing and they will be firmly discouraged from using it ever.

TheNebulousBoojum Mon 04-Mar-13 16:32:29

Usually I give people the benefit of the doubt, once. Partly perhaps because I'm a teacher and I've heard a lot of ignorance and stupidity from children and their parents over the years.
But only once. because then, as Couthy said, they are making an active, informed choice about the words they use.

Crawling Mon 04-Mar-13 16:48:32

I have to say as the mother of a severly autistic dd and a ds with possible as the terms mentioned on this thread upset me alot.
However I hear loony pyscho crazy alot more and as someone who suffers pychosis I find these terms equally offensive.

dottyspotty2 Mon 04-Mar-13 17:37:38

BLacklightning neither do I usually have other things to worry about. My daughter is now 17 her brother 18 so past it as it was school bullying despite him never going to mainstream. Hope yours gets sorted its soul destroying for them.

Hazey I grew up in the north west and phrases like that where 10 a penny so water off a ducks back to myself and many others so to speak I did say its wasn't meant literally in case you missed that bit.

crashdoll Mon 04-Mar-13 17:48:35

It's easier to say it's just a word when a.) you're ignorant and b.) it's never been said to you or someone you love.

hazeyjane Mon 04-Mar-13 18:11:57

dottyspotty2, I was joking! In the same way that I don't think you really wanted someone to kill themselves, I also don't believe you really want someone to play on the motorway - I should have put a grin afterwards to show I was taking the piss, sorry!

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