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#31 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 06:32 AM
 
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Yes, I swear in front of the kids.  I censor myself a little bit in the interest of letting a few bland words get through, but my children have a full vocabulary, and know how to use it.

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Originally Posted by ChooChoo View Post

The way I see it, words are just words. It's the way you use them that matters. I would rather my child say, "What the f#ck?" in general than to ever hear him say "You're ugly" to someone. I don't mind swearing as long as it is not negatively directed toward someone. Words should never be used to hurt someone, regardless of the word.
 

yeahthat.gif  And because I'm more concerned with how the word is used than with which word it is, the longest lecture dd has ever gotten for inappropriate word use was about the word "starving".

 

 

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Originally Posted by LRMamaS View Post

How do you handle this topic with other parents?  The anti and pro cursing camps are two very disparate parenting choices--once the kids pick up the words, they're bound to repeat them in front of their friends.  And for someone who's very anti, there's a perception of loss of innocence that's hard to reconcile.  But it's so hard to bring something like this up--do you, or do you just suck it up and handle it with your own kids?  

 

I usually hang out with families that I have a thing or two in common with, so this hasn't come up much.  The kids are aware that some people are offended by profanity, especially the use of religious words, so they do try to watch what they say in certain groups.

 

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I agree that intent matters more than specific words, but I do think that people can be stereotyped and have negative social consequences if it becomes a steady and habitual part of their vocabulary. I say that and at the same time I have friends who swear a lot and it doesn't bother me or cause me to think negatively about them. However I know that there are areas in life where you will be more respected with a different vocabulary. Honestly, I'm wondering if I have to check myself on this and consider if I'm a bit snobbish in this area. I will do a bit of self reflection on this issue.

 

I think a notable lack of swearing can lead to negative first impressions just as easily as excessive swearing can.  I don't know how true it is, but I've heard that a little swearing makes a person seem more trustworthy.

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We swear in front of the children.  What words are and aren't "cursing" is so arbitrary, I don't see how any particular small set should be off-limits.

 

We don't use ableist, sexist, racist, or other slurs.  That's different.

 

I do encourage the children to use absurd curses when possible-- we use a lot of Shakespearean curses (thou spotty cur, thou carbuncle, thou wretched insolent knave, etc.) and a lot of supervillian/mad scientist curses (curse you, ironic timing of the universe!, etc.).  But that's less because I dislike the Lenny Bruce set and more because I think it's fun to play with language that way.  It helps redirect energies into creative outlets, usually quickly leads to giggling, and doesn't hurt our vocabularies, either.


I have to start doing the Shakespearean curses thing.  Shakespeare is a minor obsession among dd's friends anyways, so it could easily catch on.

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#32 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 07:15 AM
 
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#33 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 08:07 AM
 
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I realized I had to pull it in a bit when DD (now 4yo) started repeating them back to us, and saw that I didn't enjoy being on the receiving end.

She did need a little coaching but so far she's keeping it to moments of intense anger or frustration, and we're better about it too. We were a little loose before. On the other hand, the words have been de-mystified now, so they carry less taboo which seems to lesson the motivation to use them.

 

I do try to curb the use of "God" while swearing, out of respect for others. That one's harder for me though, I seem to use it a lot, and guess what- it was one I got in serious trouble for when growing up, so there is definitely some truth to the fact that if you suppress something it comes out in droves later!

 

I'm trying to use "rats" and "nuts" more but they just don't have the punch...They're better for milder disappointments though. "Freakin"" is helpful too.

 

I totally agree with pp's that name-calling is different and not okay.

 

I think I live in a modest town because so far I haven't run into other parents who swear excessively when both the children and myself are around, or who have tried to silence me (I seem to be the one most-likely-to-swear). I'm also curious to hear if anyone else has encountered this and what they did.

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#34 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 08:53 AM
 
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I did have an instance where my dd was 3.5 and she walked in the house before I did.. The dog didn't get put in her cage before we left and had pooped on the floor... I hear from the top of her lungs "Mommmmmmmmmmm, the dog shit all over the carpet!" It was very hard to not laugh much less correct her.

I literally laughed out loud when I read this, Alaskanmoma. I could just picture a little girl yelling this out for everyone to hear and not caring that they did. Too funny! ROTFLMAO.gif

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#35 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 09:55 AM
 
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I don't swear around my daughter, but my husband occasionally does (if he is upset by something). He thinks that it is ok as long as the children know it is only appropriate at home and not at school, in public etc. That is how he was raised. I would rather not have swearing at all, just to make it easier. Then it isn't something you have to change in public, you just don't do it. I wouldn't punish my daughter if she said a curse word though, just talk with her about why she felt the need to say it. 

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#36 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 10:24 AM
 
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I occasionally curse around my kids, but I'm careful not to most of the time. Sometimes I have slips when I get mad or am not thinking, but I always tell them that it was a rude thing for me to say and apologize to them. But despite being careful, my son learned how to say "F*** It" from a friend at school. He came home saying it one day, and it took a week to get him to stop. I didn't want to blow it out of proportion, because he's the type of kid that will do things just to get a rise out of people, but he eventually came to the understanding that it isn't something he's supposed to say. Now every time my husband or I have a slip-up, he's the first to point it out and say, "ooooh you said a bad word." 

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#37 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 12:49 PM
 
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No never. I find children swearing pretty horrifying actually.

 

I was raised in a religous home and learned at a really early age what was acceptable in different groups and how to control my mouth. Swearing won't ever be allowed in our home mostly because I think of it as a good exercise in self-control.I am sure the kids will be swearing plenty with their friends and that is  fine. In our home, in school, at work, or sports? No.

 

I'd actually rank "hate" and "stupid" right up there. The kids aren't allowed to say either. DS came home from K with a few "gods" and those went out the door too. I am not religous at all.

 

We don't use the term "bad." Words aren't bad. The meaning and emotion behind them might be fierce and more often than not, it is just habit. We use the term "rude" to describe words we don't use as well as behaviors that are unkind. There is always another way to express yourself.

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#38 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 05:04 PM
 
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My kid is still just a fetus, but I know what I think about cursing in general, and I hope I am able to teach it to her.

 

Basically, I just have a problem with the effects of the words, and wether another way of expressing something is more effective.

 

For example, I kind of get why parents don't like "dang" and "fudge" etc., and it's not just because they are stand-ins for curse words. IMO, there's a whole class of expressions that just really fail at being the right thing to say. At least, if you're actually trying to say anything. For example, let's say this person, whose been getting on your nerves all day does *that thing* one more time, and they really meant it. You can shout out either: "You're such a fuckhead!" or "What is wrong with you? Stop it!" 

 

What do you choose? It depends on the situation, but in most cases, unless this is someone you really just wanna pick a fight with, the second one is more likely to get your frustration and disdain across without completely shutting down the situation like calling them a fuckhead might. But maybe this is a friend, and fuckhead is just your special way of saying "You're being silly!" In that case, why not use your little in-group slang to say things like "Going out with all my bitches!" on a Friday night to just mean whatever your bitches want it to mean? 

 

As for me, I don't curse much at all unless I've been around people who curse casually all day. It just rubs off I guess.

 

But I would never attack someone by calling them a cunt or an asshole no matter who I've been around. That just crosses the line, I think, because the intended effect is very cruel. And I don't want to go there. 


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#39 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 08:51 PM
 
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You can shout out either: "You're such a fuckhead!" or "What is wrong with you? Stop it!" 

 

What do you choose? It depends on the situation, but in most cases, unless this is someone you really just wanna pick a fight with, the second one is more likely to get your frustration and disdain across without completely shutting down the situation like calling them a fuckhead might.

Good point. There is a lot of research that suggests lack of vocabulary is one reason why disadvantaged children have difficulties in school/aggression. There is a huge difference to reacting to a situation and expressing your needs and if you don't have the vocabulary to express yourself and the experience to handle stressful situations without resorting to swearing or violent words or action you can't prosper in a classroom.

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#40 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 09:35 PM
 
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I curse a lot, and a lot of it is around my kids. It's not something I worry about.

 

My parents didn't swear around us. A few of their friends did, but not much, and my parents didn't encourage it even a little bit. My siblings and I all curse a lot. I think there are a lot of factors involved in whether a kid swears or not. In my case, as I approached my teens, life sucked (total maladjustment to my peer group, as a shrink put it, plus my parents were having issues) and I was really angry a lot of the time, largely due to severe PMS. I also needed to find a way to talk to other kids that didn't result in accusations of snottiness over my "big words". Swearing worked. For many years after that, it was a common way to speak in my peer group, as well. Swearing's just not a big deal in my world.

 

I don't swear at my kids.


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#41 of 98 Old 04-25-2013, 09:38 PM
 
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I think it reflects poorly on me that my first thought was "hell yeah!"  hide.gif

 

(I need to grow up.)

 

Anyway, I tried not to swear in front of my children when they were small, but occasional said something like "oh shit!"  I did teach them the difference between words that are considered swear words and words that aren't, and discouraged them from making it a habit to use swear words, though I never made a big deal about the occasional slip. (how could I? I would have been such a hypocrite)

 

I feel I did an OK job because for several years my kids thought the phrase "the F word" referred to the word "fat" because they knew they they should never call another person fat, but were blissfully unaware of any worse words beginning with F. When one of my DD's was 10, she was talking about the school bus and commented that "swear words are words that adults and kids both use, but never in front of each."

 

One day after school, one of my DDs got in the car and announced that "all boys are a$$holes."  Rather than commenting on her choice of words, I just asked what happened and talked her through her day. Sometimes, the best word to express one's self isn't one that is socially approved, but it really communicates where you are and how you feel better than any nice words could.

 

My kids are teens now. For awhile, I talked to them about exactly what different words mean and how "bad" they are considered, but Urban Dictionary has sadly made that parenting task obsolete.


I think swear words work better if they are seldom used. Its really the overuse of swear words that I'm opposed to. If we seldom use them, then we have something special to pull out when we are really upset. If my kids use a swear word out of laziness at thinking about a more precise word to express themselves, I tease them about and we think up (or look up) more accurate terms. However, if they are expressing genuine emotion, I just meet them exactly where they are.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#42 of 98 Old 04-26-2013, 04:55 AM
 
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When one of my DD's was 10, she was talking about the school bus and commented that "swear words are words that adults and kids both use, but never in front of each."

 

 

That is hilarious and so true!


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#43 of 98 Old 04-26-2013, 12:21 PM
 
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I think it reflects poorly on me that my first thought was "hell yeah!"  hide.gif

 

I love this.


I feel I did an OK job because for several years my kids thought the phrase "the F word" referred to the word "fat" because they knew they they should never call another person fat, but were blissfully unaware of any worse words beginning with F.

 

I'm not sure if I find this more hilarious or more touching, but it's both. (That said, I don't mind being called fat, depending on how it's meant. From a lot of kids, it's not malicious, and I am fat.)

 

When one of my DD's was 10, she was talking about the school bus and commented that "swear words are words that adults and kids both use, but never in front of each."

 

biglaugh.gifSoooo true.

 

I think swear words work better if they are seldom used. Its really the overuse of swear words that I'm opposed to. If we seldom use them, then we have something special to pull out when we are really upset. If my kids use a swear word out of laziness at thinking about a more precise word to express themselves, I tease them about and we think up (or look up) more accurate terms. However, if they are expressing genuine emotion, I just meet them exactly where they are.
 

I swear a lot, but it's mostly because I havery strong initial emotional reactions to a lot of things. So, I probably swear too much, but it's because I'm an emotional basket case, not because I use the words too casually, yk?

 

I sometimes think I blew it somewhere, because ds1 has started (in the last year or two) swearing a lot - as much as I did in my early teens, I think. But, I'm also wondering if it's a college thing. He's in an acting program, and judmoe of the plays his classmates have written, they all seem to swear a lot. DS1 didn't swear anywhere near as much in his teens.


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#44 of 98 Old 04-26-2013, 05:57 PM
 
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I am a swearer. I could help it but I like the extra level of meaning that one word adds to a situation than a more socially acceptable word might. One of my girls had us in stitches when she was a toddler when she pulled all the books off the two bookshelves, stood back to look at the mess then slapped her thighs and said "F***'s sake!" Indeed. It took a while to get them all back where they had been!
 

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#45 of 98 Old 04-26-2013, 06:25 PM
 
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It depends on the age of the child, I wouldn't like to see a 2 year old using words like "hate" either but at 4 or 5 and up, it's fine if they at least use it properly. 

I'm more annoyed when people curse because they don't know any other adjectives. Everything is either "gay" or "sh!t". There is a time and a place for all words, but if they're overused, they're not very interesting to listen to. 

I think it's important to teach kids to say what they mean and mean what they say... don't just talk and swear senselessly.

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#46 of 98 Old 04-27-2013, 07:23 PM
 
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But seriously everyone, how do you handle this with friends who have the opposing philosophy?  

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#47 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 05:14 AM
 
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I was raised in a home without swearing and felt I would like the same environment for my kids. However, the partner I was with for the first 5 or so years of my son's life swore a lot. I wasn't very comfortable with it, but I couldn't really stop her and she had a different opinion about swearing in front of children. I mellowed out a little, just from being around more swearing and seeing that the sky hadn't fallen in. My next partner was very strict about swearing and picked up on any swear word said in front of the children or by them. My son gleefully picked up her strictness and now him and his cousin are the ones who shout 'language!' at me if I ever say the slightest thing. I've actually ended up saying to them 'I'm an adult, and if I want to swear in my own home in an appropriate situation then I will!" which is not something I ever imagined I'd say to a child! lol

 

I think they use it as a gauge of my mood. If I'm becoming very frustrated and getting angry then a 'please will you do what I asked' can turn into 'stop taking the piss!' At that point, they know I'm not coping so well and can choose to take evasive action!

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#48 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 06:22 AM
 
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But seriously everyone, how do you handle this with friends who have the opposing philosophy?  

 

Again, can't speak for my fetus yet, but personally, I tone my language down to suit the most conservative person around whenever I am aware of it. I would teach my daughter to do the same, knowing full-well that this may be confusing and hard to do at first, and thus result in some embarassment. I know some people think it's wrong to change your behavior to suit others, but I just think it's polite. I'd also rather she know to err on the side of caution with salty language and to understand why it can lead to being judged as uneducated/crass/etc. if you can't control your language. 


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#49 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 08:25 AM
 
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But seriously everyone, how do you handle this with friends who have the opposing philosophy?  

 

What kind of friends are we talking about? Do they also have children? Is the concern about your children saying words that their children are not allowed to say? Because if there's no direct conflict like that, I think the best way to deal with it is simply not to talk about it.

 

To answer the original post, yes, I use words freely around my son. If they are needed, I use really juicy Anglo-Saxon words like fuck and shit and cock. There is a place for them, and that's the wonderful, delightful thing about English.The language has many words that express the same meaning, but each synonym has its own connotation and place. I hope my son learns as many words as possible because knowledge--including knowledge of vocabulary--is power. The important thing I have to teach him is diction, the art of choosing the right word with the right connotation for the right situation. He's only 1 right now so we'll see how it goes, but I suspect diction has a learning curve as much as anything else. But I wouldn't dream of limiting his word choice. Words are free.

 

However, the OP talked mainly about bigoted or hurtful language. That's a different matter, and I don't consider it necessarily related to swearing. Cruelty is not allowed in our house, and saying bigoted things will get you in a LOT of trouble. There are racial slurs or other discriminatory words one could use, like, say, nigger or faggot. But if my son said a word like that, he wouldn't be in trouble for swearing, he'd be in trouble for being a jerk. It's possible to be an even bigger jerk saying perfectly innocuous words. My father's family used to be called frogs by their neighbours because they were French. A delightful amphibian, but in that case, a hurtful racial slur. Also, without swearing, you can easily say really appalling things like, "I wouldn't want a gay man to watch my children because I don't want my kids to learn about homosexuality," or "Watch out for that Muslim woman in the grocery store; she might have a bomb strapped to her chest." Another dad was talking to my husband about children's programming once and said, "But the trouble with Dora is that our sons might watch it and then want to marry Mexican women when they grow up." yikes2.gif Did he swear? No. Was he disgusting? Yes.

 

What I'm trying to say, I guess, is that swearing gets a bad rap, and we shouldn't be worrying so much about word choice and we SHOULD be worrying about teaching our children to be respectful, kind, and tolerant.

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#50 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 12:57 PM
 
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What kind of friends are we talking about? Do they also have children? Is the concern about your children saying words that their children are not allowed to say? Because if there's no direct conflict like that, I think the best way to deal with it is simply not to talk about it.

 

It's actually the other way around.  We are very strict about the use of salty language around our kids.  This other couple's kids are the same age as ours.  And the problem is exactly that we are worried about the other kids swearing in front of ours.  So far (to our knowledge) it hasn't happened, but we are aware that their kids are using language we would not want our kids to hear for several more years.  But they are good friends, and our kids are good friends, so it's complicated.  I'm sure this is just the first of many tricky situations we will find ourselves in amidst other parents, but being a newbie I don't really know the best way to handle it (without introducing conflict into our relationship with the other parents).  Most of the responses on here have been from parents who allow swearing, so I'm curious to know how you would prefer it be handled with you.

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#51 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 03:07 PM
 
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It's actually the other way around.  We are very strict about the use of salty language around our kids.  This other couple's kids are the same age as ours.  And the problem is exactly that we are worried about the other kids swearing in front of ours.  So far (to our knowledge) it hasn't happened, but we are aware that their kids are using language we would not want our kids to hear for several more years.  But they are good friends, and our kids are good friends, so it's complicated.  I'm sure this is just the first of many tricky situations we will find ourselves in amidst other parents, but being a newbie I don't really know the best way to handle it (without introducing conflict into our relationship with the other parents).  Most of the responses on here have been from parents who allow swearing, so I'm curious to know how you would prefer it be handled with you.


Personally, I'd prefer that it be handled the same way I prefer many other conflicts (playground rules, dietary rules, etc.) are handled. I'm raising my kids. You're raising your kids. I don't allow my kids to swear when they're little (the only one who's ever really shown any inclination to do so is ds2, and that's because the "big boys" in our complex swear, so he thinks it makes him cool). However, people do swear, and my kids will hear it, even if I didn't do it. In your case, I'd decide whether these people were worth continuing to be friends with, or if this is a deal breaker. If it's not a deal breaker, then...there's really nothing to handle, imo. You talk to your kids about your values around language, and they'll talk to their kids about their values around language.

 

You know...we have multiple neighbours who give their kids regular snacks of candy, freezies, etc. (daily, or multiple times per day, in some cases). My children aren't allowed to eat that kind of food very often. So, if they're offered something by a neighbourhood friend, they have to come and ask me if it's okay to accept. My job is to apply my rules to my kids. It's not my job to tell R's parents that they can't/shouldn't let their son eat freezies six times a day, just because it would be easier for me if R wasn't offering them to my kids all the time. I think this applies to a lot of aspects of childrearing.


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#52 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 04:47 PM
 
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It's actually the other way around.  We are very strict about the use of salty language around our kids.  This other couple's kids are the same age as ours.  And the problem is exactly that we are worried about the other kids swearing in front of ours.  So far (to our knowledge) it hasn't happened, but we are aware that their kids are using language we would not want our kids to hear for several more years.  But they are good friends, and our kids are good friends, so it's complicated.  I'm sure this is just the first of many tricky situations we will find ourselves in amidst other parents, but being a newbie I don't really know the best way to handle it (without introducing conflict into our relationship with the other parents).  Most of the responses on here have been from parents who allow swearing, so I'm curious to know how you would prefer it be handled with you.

 

I think its important to help kids learn that families come in all sorts and hold all sorts of values. "Timmy can say that word in his family, but in our family i'd prefer you use X instead" or something like that. If you want to maintain your friendship maybe not really hang any moral value on your choice (saying "timmy's mommy doesnt care if he's a little pottymouth but i want you to sound educated so no cussing allowed!" probably wouldnt endear you to your friend! ;) )  My oldest son got "scolded" once when he was about ten by another child in our homeschool group because he used the word "god" (as in "God, this game is so hard!") Personally i felt it was more "unchristian" to make my son feel like crap/embarrassed (because all the other kids suddenly were like "yeah! thats against god!!! dont say that!!!") than whatever harm supposedly would have come to the little christian boy for hearing it. It bothers me more seeing kids take a holier-than-thou attitude when a friend makes a different choice. Doesnt have to be about language...a friend's son went on and on about how horrible plastic toys were and how they are made in china and full of toxins, and wanted to know if our juice was organic blah blah...it just made him look really judgemental. 

 

Hopefully if your friends know you dont like cussing they will tone it down in your presence and hopefully you'll lighten up a bit in theirs. ;) And everyone can get along....


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#53 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 04:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah I have to agree that different families should be able to have the rule they want. This is true for words like "hate" too, and I have an example. My daughter hates a certain food, and said she did when discussion about that food came up, and a little girl said, "She said hate! That's a bad word! She shouldn't say that!" And then the little girl's mother gave me a lecture about the word "hate." I don't honestly care what they think about the word "hate" and I didn't want a lecture about it. I just said, "I'm fine with her saying 'hate' so long as she doesn't say it about a person."

But this goes back to my opinion that I don't follow a policy that the strictest parent's rule wins every time we're in a group. If another child isn't allowed to go up the slide, I don't make my kids follow that rule. If another child has to eat lunch before play at the playplace, I don't make my kids follow that rule. There's a tendency that, rather than all parents in a group coming to an agreement, that all follow whatever the strictest rule is, and I just don't like that tendency at all.

And I'm not really strict about my no swearing rule. I let my kids know that people don't respond well to hearing kids use certain language, and suggest they might have an easier time in life if they choose something else, and I might give some suggestions. I don't want them to pick up swearing, but it isn't a hill to die on issue for me by a long shot.
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#54 of 98 Old 04-28-2013, 07:28 PM
 
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When my kids were younger and we homeschooling, we were frequently around more conservative families because we lived where *most* homeschoolers were Christians and were homeschooling partly for religious issues. Both my kids could understand that while in  *our* family, it isn't a big deal to occasionally use a swear word, in some families, it is a super big deal. So big of a deal that some mothers do not want their children around other children who use those words. I listed specific moms who felt most likely felt that way.

 

My kids understood that avoiding certain words in certain contexts was important for them *to get what they wanted* i.e. -- to play with some kids they really liked. It wasn't anything I ever enforced, I just explained reality to my children.

 

Both my kids could understand this by early elementary age, and one of my kiddos has special needs. It's not a super tough topic.

 

Just as we all get to decide what the rules are in our family, other families get to decide if they want their kids around ours. In this issue, the friendships were more important to my kids than being able to say sh*t.


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#55 of 98 Old 04-29-2013, 05:44 AM
 
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But seriously everyone, how do you handle this with friends who have the opposing philosophy?  

I guess I don't know yet... ack!

 

My son is just three, so at this point it's completely within my control who we hang out with (outside of daycare for him of course), and everyone so far agrees on most things... I just find I get together more with the fellow mothers who share a lot of my same parenting ideals.  It truly hasn't come up yet.  

 

I guess maybe I'd have a discussion with my son about how families have different rules, and that may be how things are at so-and-so's house, but we still have expectations about our behavior in our family no matter where we are... something along those lines?  And I mean if it was F this and sh*t that, I'd probably honestly talk to the parent about it to be sure he or she was aware, and if they truly didn't care I'd probably not encourage future socializing.  I think when kids are small (under 10? 12?) that's my parental right to decide.


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#56 of 98 Old 04-29-2013, 07:22 AM
 
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We swear around the little one. If we are getting to sassy with it then I tell people to calm down, or at least not have raised voices using the words. My daughter said the f*ck once, and maybe sh*t twice. Now a days she just says "Shoot" all high pitched. They are just words, but we hold our tongues for other people's children.

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#57 of 98 Old 04-29-2013, 12:17 PM
 
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I grew up with my mom swearing a lot around me, and I have come to think it's really poor behavior. There is the new age American tendency in my family to 'be yourself', 'say whatever you feel', and don't be so judgmental and uptight, man'.  It's a bizarre American sub-culture some of us have grown up in and if you look at the vast majority of the world, boundaries in behavior and speech are not only accepted, but expected, in educated circles.  Why is that?

 

I am so ashamed of my generation when I see a reality TV show.  I know a lot of it is fake, but the vocabulary isn't.   It can look so dumbed down, vulgar, and out of control.  

 

I believe that social boundaries are simply a means to help people understand whether they can feel safe and respected.  In my husband's culture (south Asian), to use a ''bad' curse word is absolutely vulgar and shocking, especially in front of elders or women.  There is a place for that, and my own culture has sadly become jaded.

 

Americans tend to make themselves look trashy to the rest of the world because of this rebellious, over-confident, anti-authoritarian stance.  It's not nearly as cool as it used to be.

 

If we can learn to respect others while at the same time improving our self respect, whether we curse is a secondary consideration.

 

All that said, it makes cursing feel all the more liberating when I am really mad, and I would freely admit I do still do it if my husband and I are arguing in front of my two year old.  I personally think the fact that I am losing control of my temper is just as important as the way in which I choose to express that frustration/loss of control.  I certainly don't want my child to learn that it's acceptable.

 

In summary, I want my son to be able to fit in with educated, self respecting people as he grows up, so I frown on any casual behaviors that could interfere with that, including cursing.

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#58 of 98 Old 04-29-2013, 01:53 PM
 
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DH and I watch what we say but aren't profanity free.  I always think a well placed curse word can be the best adjective in certain situations!  My MIL is completely offended by profanity and DD caught on to being careful around Grandma very quickly.  When DH and I were first married we directed our church's Christmas program. The play we chose used the word "dumb" in one of the songs being sung about the stable animals.  It never occurred to us that there could be a problem but there was an uproar from a few parents about their children singing that word since they're teaching their children not to say words like that. The parents even went as far as wanting me to change the word in a copyrighted play.  I refused to do that and had to give an explanation on what the actual definitions of word dumb were.  I am very respectful of other peoples practices but sometimes individuals can take their convictions a bit too far.  


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#59 of 98 Old 04-29-2013, 02:19 PM
 
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I grew up with my mom swearing a lot around me, and I have come to think it's really poor behavior. There is the new age American tendency in my family to 'be yourself', 'say whatever you feel', and don't be so judgmental and uptight, man'.  It's a bizarre American sub-culture some of us have grown up in and if you look at the vast majority of the world, boundaries in behavior and speech are not only accepted, but expected, in educated circles.  Why is that?

 

I am so ashamed of my generation when I see a reality TV show.  I know a lot of it is fake, but the vocabulary isn't.   It can look so dumbed down, vulgar, and out of control.  

 

I believe that social boundaries are simply a means to help people understand whether they can feel safe and respected.  In my husband's culture (south Asian), to use a ''bad' curse word is absolutely vulgar and shocking, especially in front of elders or women.  There is a place for that, and my own culture has sadly become jaded.

 

Americans tend to make themselves look trashy to the rest of the world because of this rebellious, over-confident, anti-authoritarian stance.  It's not nearly as cool as it used to be.

 

If we can learn to respect others while at the same time improving our self respect, whether we curse is a secondary consideration.

 

All that said, it makes cursing feel all the more liberating when I am really mad, and I would freely admit I do still do it if my husband and I are arguing in front of my two year old.  I personally think the fact that I am losing control of my temper is just as important as the way in which I choose to express that frustration/loss of control.  I certainly don't want my child to learn that it's acceptable.

 

In summary, I want my son to be able to fit in with educated, self respecting people as he grows up, so I frown on any casual behaviors that could interfere with that, including cursing.

 

I guess that makes sense, but I'd like to quibble with your characterization of someone who swears as a poorly educated, reality-television-watching piece of trash with no self respect.

 

I don't have a television and don't watch reality tv. My son (1) has a full subscription to our local symphony orchestra's season and likes to hum Sibelius to me when I'm changing his diaper. I spend my free time reading classic literature--and if you want a good source of your best swears, by the way, look no further. For social time, I drink single malts with my scotch tasting club. My family--all voracious word users, Anglo-Saxon ones included--are all editors and lawyers and Ivy League attenders and admirers of the opera.

 

We have been called snobs. Actually, we have been called fucking snobs, by other "educated, self respecting people". They all swear too, I assure you, or at least many of them do, and I've never suffered the least inconvenience from it.

 

You seem to equate swearing with having no other vocabulary, or speaking poorly in general. They don't have to go hand in hand. Swear words are not appropriate for the workplace, but are not necessarily inappropriate in casual social situations. You also seem to equate swearing with losing your temper, but I assure you I swear all the time when I'm perfectly calm, and don't associate the words with anger, necessarily.

 

I'm not trying to change your speech habits or your children's, which I'm sure are perfectly fine, but I just wanted to let you know that you seem to have put "swearing people" in a bubble in your mind in which they don't necessarily fit.

 

 

As for the OP's question--what should she do about a family who allows swearing when she doesn't?

 

I'd have to say this: you have rules in your family which are perfectly cool. You can control your kids' behaviour (to a certain extent!) or at least control what they are allowed to do or not. You also control (to a certain extent!) the world they see and the things they are exposed to. However, you can't and shouldn't control your friends' children's behaviour. If your kids hang out with them, they may hear a word you didn't want them to hear. If you can't handle that, don't hang out with them.

 

You may be able to minimize damage, though, in two ways:

1) Have a talk with your friend. Say that swearing isn't allowed at your house and see if she can talk to her kids about that. Depending on the ages of her children, they may understand and tone it down in front of your kids. Then again, they may not.

2) Have a talk with your children about proper language use and what's allowed in your family. Tell them that they may hear other kids say words that aren't allowed, but it doesn't mean they can say them. Again, this may have mixed results!

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#60 of 98 Old 04-29-2013, 05:35 PM
 
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I guess that makes sense, but I'd like to quibble with your characterization of someone who swears as a poorly educated, reality-television-watching piece of trash with no self respect.

I don't have a television and don't watch reality tv. My son (1) has a full subscription to our local symphony orchestra's season and likes to hum Sibelius to me when I'm changing his diaper. I spend my free time reading classic literature--and if you want a good source of your best swears, by the way, look no further. For social time, I drink single malts with my scotch tasting club. My family--all voracious word users, Anglo-Saxon ones included--are all editors and lawyers and Ivy League attenders and admirers of the opera.

We have been called snobs. Actually, we have been called fucking snobs, by other "educated, self respecting people". They all swear too, I assure you, or at least many of them do, and I've never suffered the least inconvenience from it.


You seem to equate swearing with having no other vocabulary, or speaking poorly in general. They don't have to go hand in hand. Swear words are not appropriate for the workplace, but are not necessarily inappropriate in casual social situations. You also seem to equate swearing with losing your temper, but I assure you I swear all the time when I'm perfectly calm, and don't associate the words with anger, necessarily.


I'm not trying to change your speech habits or your children's, which I'm sure are perfectly fine, but I just wanted to let you know that you seem to have put "swearing people" in a bubble in your mind in which they don't necessarily fit.


As for the OP's question--what should she do about a family who allows swearing when she doesn't?

I'd have to say this: you have rules in your family which are perfectly cool. You can control your kids' behaviour (to a certain extent!) or at least control what they are allowed to do or not. You also control (to a certain extent!) the world they see and the things they are exposed to. However, you can't and shouldn't control your friends' children's behaviour. If your kids hang out with them, they may hear a word you didn't want them to hear. If you can't handle that, don't hang out with them.

You may be able to minimize damage, though, in two ways:
1) Have a talk with your friend. Say that swearing isn't allowed at your house and see if she can talk to her kids about that. Depending on the ages of her children, they may understand and tone it down in front of your kids. Then again, they may not.
2) Have a talk with your children about proper language use and what's allowed in your family. Tell them that they may hear other kids say words that aren't allowed, but it doesn't mean they can say them. Again, this may have mixed results!
Exactly. All of it.
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