Should You Swear in Front of Your Kids?


I’m a bit profane. I don’t consciously try to have a dirty mouth–I brush my teeth everyday– I just grew up around people who used curse words and did not make a big deal about it. They were just words like any other words, and they had their uses. Now I’m a bit profane and the mother of three toddlers, and as I debate a swear jar I’m stuck with the question, do I really care if my kids swear anyway?

Why would it be OK to swear around your kids?
I’m sure some of you are reading this going what the #$%! lady, how could it possibly be acceptable to curse around your kids? It’s all in our perspective. There was a time when words that are now entirely not OK under any circumstance were common and even popular parts of everyday vocabulary. They didn’t become naughty until someone decided they weren’t appropriate or that they broke with the all-important law of politically correctness. I love words. I’m a writer. They’re like my hammer and chisel, paint brush and easel, my pan and whisk. I don’t see any sense in eliminating any words from my vocabulary, especially ones that so perfectly capture emotion as many so-called four letter words people say I shouldn’t say. Further, I see the error in making that which we don’t want our children to say taboo and attention grabbing. Yes, if every time your kid says, “truck” and it sounds like something not-so-socially-smiled-on that rhymes with truck you freak out and pull out your big ole bag o’ reaction, they will do it again.

Why wouldn’t it be OK to swear around your kids?
I may be foul mouthed, but I’m not oblivious. I recognize that just because I have no issue with profanity from the mouths of babes, that doesn’t mean the world will excuse the action. If I raise my kids to think they can say swear words and they go to school and share their filthy vocabularies, chances are I’ll have a problem on my hands from both the school and other parents. I could be setting my children up to be labeled the “bad kids” that other parents don’t want their kids around because they’re foul mouthed little heathens.

So, should you curse around your children?
I can’t answer that question for you. Personally, I have tried to curb my profanity for their sake, but I will not teach them that what is typically considered a curse word is inappropriate or has no place in their vocabularies. My approach is to simply teach them such words are for adults and that they may say them when they are older under appropriate circumstances.

What’s your take on swearing in front of kids, yay or nay?

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