Written by Doctor G

Cursing as a Social Skill

I remember the thrill of my first curse word.  I used it correctly, it got all my friends’ attention and it felt good!  I still occasionally enjoy a good sailor-on-leave string of expletives if the moment is right.  What is this trip down potty-mouth memory lane doing on a parenting website?

Well, we have a pretty unusual cursing policy at our house.  It goes like this.

My dear children:  You do know some swear words.  You will learn more.  You will not learn a swear word we don’t know and we will not be impressed with your newly developing vocabulary list.  So here are the ground rules.

  1. A swear word is any word you think might be a swear word, and also: stupid, sucks, hate (especially when followed by a pronoun or proper noun), slang for any body part you can’t show at school, and any word said in a really snotty tone of voice.
  2. What is impressive about learning to swear is learning to control yourself.  If you can police yourself to never say the words “love you Mom” anywhere near your friends, you can learn not to say these words anywhere listed below.
  3. You may not use swear words anywhere that you can be overheard by a grown up or a child younger than you.  I do not care if you thought you were alone, if they are eavesdropping or if they read your lips from 100 yards away.  That is your problem.
  4. When you get caught swearing you will get in trouble.  Not because we think you don’t know these words or will never say them (see above).  You will get in trouble because it is our job to motivate you to use these words so rarely that they will never keep you from getting the grade, job, girl- or boy-friend, or bail bondsman that you want.
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4 thoughts on “Cursing as a Social Skill”

  1. I have to admit….I like your policy LOL!

    Swear words – when they are first learned – seem powerful & fun. parents need to convey the right message about the use of expletives.

  2. Thanks! It works for us – we don’t get any eye-rolling when we correct our sons about this, because they don’t think that we think that they don’t know these words. Follow that?

  3. Love it. You made my day again. I think my parents actually had similar rules without having to voice them too often.

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