If there is something I am very particular about with my son’s development, it is his language skills. He speaks straight English, not Taglish, not Korean-English.
Today, while I was about to close the door in the toilet, he said, “Mommy, don’t close the door, ha.”
Imagine my dismay!
I know, I know! My parents, my relatives and his nanny all try their very best to communicate with him. They communicate with him in their own way, their own English. So far, they have been doing very well. My son understands them, they understand him. I just cringe every time I hear a sentence spoken in mixed English and Tagalog and… in our case here, it is also most often mixed with Hiligaynon words.
Mid-October, we are going back to Manila. It will be another nightmare. Just thinking about, “Where ba?“, “Why ba?“, “It’s like this kasi…” Whoaaa!!!
At least here in Iloilo, I have the temerity to immediately tell my son, “No ‘Ha’! Just say, Mommy, don’t close the door” without being conscious if I offend or not. My family has been so used to my lack of tact. But, in front of my in-laws? Grrrr!
For my son’s sake, I am actually tempted to put my plan into action. Before coming home for vacation, I planned to tell my son’s nanny to speak to him in straight Hiligaynon and my in-laws in Manila to speak to him in straight Tagalog. I read and I believe that that’s the best way to learn a language. A child just needs to identify the source of a particular language and he will have the capacity to relate to that identified source in a particular language. That would greatly benefit him, not to mention speed up his language-learning skills, and I could relax knowing that he wouldn’t have to learn to speak the Kris-Aquino way. But hubby protested! He might have been thinking, I would offend his parents and his brothers and sisters-in-law. But much as I adore his beautiful nieces, I really, really hate listening to them speak in Tag-lish! I know they are children. But, that’s how their parents speak to them. Of course, it follows that’s how they would speak, too.
Oh, spare me! My Ilonggo-diction may sometimes come out whenever I speak, but I do consciously try to avoid sounding pa-sosyal. And diction is not my issue. If I have my way, I try to speak in straight Ilonggo or in straight Tagalog or in straight English… at least, in so far, as my sentences are structured.
Obviously, I have this obsession when it comes to my son’s speaking skills. Imagine a man trying to sound pa-sosyal in his Tag-lish sentences! A Fil-Am with a twang surely sounds amusing. But a Filipino who was born and who grew up in the Philippines? Stop the pretensions!!! Gretchen Barretto? Ughh!
This ranting has gone too far. LOL. Anyway, this just shows how particular I am with language. Language is one of the two things I notice in children. The other one being, a toddler carrying his feeding-bottle everywhere. I silently cringe whenever I see an almost 2-year old toddler drinking his milk, and worse! his water, from a feeding bottle. It’s going too far if I see a toddler accessorized by his feeding bottle in playgrounds and malls. But hey, this is just me!