Do you cuss around your kids?

Guest post by Emi
By: Lord JimCC BY 2.0

I’ve always thought that if I ever have a child, I will inevitably cuss around my kid(s) — I kind of cuss like a sailor. Whenever I am near other people’s children, I try my best not to cuss just because I know a lot of people don’t like it. But I don’t personally mind it, as long as it is not used in a hateful or violent manner.

I’ve been thinking lately that I’m not sure how I would handle the situation of cussing and my own kids. On the one hand I would not want to censor myself or my child, but on the other hand I don’t want to needlessly offend others around us. I know that if I or my child cussed in earshot of others, we may be judged incredibly harshly because of that.

I don’t have children yet, but I want to ask how Offbeat parents how they handle cussing/cursing around their children.

Have you chosen not to cuss around your children, or to just let it all flow? If you have chosen not to cuss around your children, how do you handle it when other people do? How do you approach those people and/or how do you talk to your children about these words?

If you have chosen to cuss around your kids, how do you keep it from being an issue when they are out of the home?

Comments on Do you cuss around your kids?

  1. We swear pretty freely around my ten-year-old. They aren’t the only words we use by far and the “naughty” words are used in adult to adult conversation anyhow. I’ve never heard Bravin swear in the six years I’ve known him and neither have we ever received any such complaints from his school or anyone else. He knows that they are adult words and he’s not old enough to use them.

    When he experiments with “edgy” humor or the like I do tell him that some jokes are best exchanged privately with his peers and that some adults may not like to hear them, so to be carefulwhen pushing the proverbial envelope. (This is mostly poop humor at his age.) Context and audience are always important factors regarding conversation and though it may seem that I’m just giving him permission to say taboo things behind closed doors I’m hoping that I’m arming him with practical tools.

    On a related note, I’ve been trying to nip the “gay” and “retarded” slurs in the bud. I think the concept is still a bit too foggy for him but I’ve tried to explain that there are lots of people who are gay and mentally retarded and there isn’t anything wrong with that. So, when you call people those things in a mean way you’re saying that gay and disabled people are bad. He’s Korean, so I try to use the example of explaining to someone that you’re Korean versus calling someone Asian in a bad way. Anyway, he came home the other day with another piece of fifth grade playground drama to share. Mid-story he stopped let me know that he doesn’t say “gay” like his classmates, he just calls them “homos” instead.

    ::FACEPALM:: Needless to say, we revisited the lesson.

  2. When our child first started talking, we limited our cursing because we didn’t want for her to repeat the word in a place where it wasn’t welcome. (i.e daycare, her great grandparent’s house) However, when she was old enough to understand discretion (which happend for her around age 3 but that would vary from person to person) we were a lot more free with our cursing. She’s five now and seems to have a pretty good handle on when it’s okay and when it’s not. Once or twice she’s slipped up, but all I had to do is remind her to use “school words” and she knew exactly what I meant witout explaination.

  3. I cuss up a storm. I love cuss words! When my daughter (now age 9) first used sh*t in front of me about 3 years ago, I took her aside and talked to her about her choice of language. I explained that some words are not appropriate in certain situations, and that certain words would get her into trouble at school. We agreed that although she would not get into trouble at home for language (though she shouldn’t be using bad words as a young person), she would get into trouble at home if she got into trouble at school. (I also had to explain that my mom would flip out if she heard her cussing!)

    So far, so good. She understands that some words are appropriate, and some aren’t!

    Aside… I had a proud mommy moment with her when she was about 4/5 – she was talking about food that is bad and said, “that’s not as bad as eggs on a fucking pancake!” I didn’t really dwell on the bad words – drawing attention to them was the last thing I wanted to do. But she did use it appropriately!!!!!

  4. I am a mother of a two year old girl. My husband and I slip up sometimes and we point out “that is a mommy word” or “daddy word” she knows them, has repeated them, but the way we address it as not being bad, just not a word she should use, she has never used any cuss words in conversation. Now when she hears people say it she is like “that’s mommy’s word” or “daddy’s word!” lol

  5. I’m having my first in June and I swear A LOT. We Canadians are gifted swearists. I’m not sure what’s going to happen. When I was a teacher abroad, and when I’m around my mother, it just turns off so maybe that will happen with baby. Hard to say. My cousin swears around her three nieces and nephews all the time and they know that those sent words they can use. I dunno. Part of me thinks if my kid swears at home (not at people, or in anger (i dont swear that way, just hilarious emphasis as far as i know)) maybe I really won’t care. For now it’s hard to say. I guess we’ll see what happens.

  6. i talk trashy dont mean to… just do.
    my kids no way. when or if they say grown up words i ask if they have hair in their arm pits answer is no so no useing grown up words my 9 year old will look in mirror to see if she has hair yet lol 3 year old tells every one even grandma hey dont say thoses bad words he helps us alot lol

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