No Grunting Allowed

There are several Progressive Insurance commercials airing now about the “dangers” of becoming our parents in our words and mannerisms.  Dr. Rick does his best to help his clients who have slipped into those patterns.


They all seem to accurately describe me, from discussing parking at a ballgame to needing a sign to remind me “no fussing, no cussing, and no backtalking”.  But the inherited trait that resonates the most is grunting or groaning when moving from a standing to sitting position and back again.  Crawling in and out of bed is no better.


Jenni brought this to my attention recently.  And she is so right. 


There is an involuntary sound every time I sit on the couch.  I suggested that the couch was simply too low to the floor but I’m not sure it is any different when I move from a barstool at the kitchen island.  Now that this is on my mind ALL THE TIME, I noticed this morning that just moving myself from the back of the couch to the front edge produced a “sound”.  I tried to hide it by clearing my throat.  It may have worked.


I can picture my parents with achy backs or hips sliding into chairs and letting out a soft groan or even a sigh.  My father would throw himself back in his recliner with a light groan but to get back up required a loud grunt.  My mother-in-law was known to repeat “oi, oi, oi” each time she shifted positions.   Yeah, we do that one too.


Last night Jenni and I debated whether these were actually moans or groans.  We considered the vowel sounds used could distinguish which it was.  (Feel free to pause reading at this moment and reflect on your own movements and sounds and see if you agree.)  Our research was inconclusive in determining a difference.


But in an interesting twist, we discussed that in the Bible it says that when we do not know what to pray the Holy Spirit will intercede on our behalf through wordless groans.  Aha! Evidently the Holy Spirit is quite active in our house!


We are only in the first week of this hyper-sensitive awareness to our groaning and grunting.  One day Jenni made it until 10pm before I pointed out a slip-up.  So close.  I, on the other hand, have not made it to breakfast time yet.


There.  Did you hear it? It’s a constant battle.


  • You have our house tapped! Those sounds we take for granted. Several years ago our daughter brought it to our attention, when she said, “Mom, why do you and dad always make noise when you sit or stand?” Nothing like realizing that everyone hears me when I move. :-)

  • It is always good to start the day with humor, and this article did the trick! I could picture you and Jenni laughing as you discussed this very interesting topic! What fun🙂

    Chris Frazier

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