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How do you handle Swearing?


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#1 blessedby2

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 05:21 AM


My b/g twins, now 7, are starting to watch some tv shows with us - "Amazing Race", "Survivor". DH and I enjoy these shows and it's fun for us to watch with them. My only problem is the swearing that is done on these shows. DH and I decided once we had our kids that we would stop swearing around them. So our house is a swear free zone. It took some getting used to, but we are now used to it. Now when I hear a swear word I am immediately thinking, "Are the kids around?", or "Are they going to pick up on this (and start saying them too)?" I feel that children should not be saying such words and find it disrespectful. I am a Lunchroom Supervisor at a Middle School and hear way to many of them from kids. We want to raise our kids not to say them. But, they are starting to hear them and from TV and friends at school.

So...how do you raise your kids to know about swear words and not say them? Do you tell them the words, and then tell them they shouldn't say them? Or, do you wait until they say them and then tell them?
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#2 Dielle

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 05:41 AM

We don't swear either. I do sometimes say "crap" but that's about the extent of it. My husband has a few more, that I do get on him about if the kids are around. I'm pretty sensitive to swearing, so I think I tend to react when I hear something really inappropriate on TV, and even sometimes point out that it was unnecessary to say that. If we get a movie that has much swearing at all, we'll turn it off. Once in awhile, one of the kids picks up a word somewhere that I don't want them using. I will usually explain what it means in an age-appropriate way and tell them why we don't use it. I don't get upset or punish them at all if they didn't really know. Most of the time, that's all it takes and they don't use it anymore. A few times, I've had a toddler use a word a few times to test boundaries. Then they get in a little trouble... They need to apologize and maybe sit in time out for a bit to think about the right things to say.

The funniest one I can think of was when Trey was about 4 and not yet reading. He and Sage were in another room talking and Sage yelled out in her best tattling voice, "Mom, Trey said the c-r word!" Trey responded, "I did not! I said 'crap!'" I think I might have been laughing too hard to really discipline anyone.
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#3 becasquared

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 06:56 AM

We swear around our kids, and we tell them that they're adult words and when they're adults they can use them. Of course, my two are not quite five yet, so things might be a bit different when they get older. I don't want to have to explain to them when they overhear someone at a restaurant or at a store cussing, at least this way they're already exposed and understand that they're not supposed to say them.
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#4 NINI H

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 07:28 AM

This is a bit of a pet peeve for us in our house. I grew up in a house that did not swear and had very few euphemisms, as did DH. So cursing is completely off limits. We tell them what the words mean and why one should not use them. Then we also tell the kids that there are many words in our language that are much more useful and descriptive that they can choose to use. We tell them that cursing is unneeded and they will come across much more intelligent if they use other words in their vocabulary. I'm sure they might test their boundaries in their teen years, but they will still be punished. I realize that we are on the extreme, but it didn't hurt me in the least to not curse/swear.
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#5 BellaRissa

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 10:08 AM

I'm hypersensitive to swearing - I was raised in an uber G-rated house. We don't watch TV much...just 1 hour a week on Saturday morning (the girls LOVE Wild Countdown & Ocean Mysteries) so that is not a problem. I explain to the girls that they will hear strange words from other kids & they will be able to tell by others' reactions that they are probably bad words. I expect that my girls will ask me what a word means one day & I will tell them in age-appropriate terms....but will likely burst into tears & explain they are to NEVER say it again now that they know it's bad. Hopefully they will absorb my family value that swear words are never to be used.

That said....my fiance never swears either....but he watches TV. He is very protective of the girls - in some ways more than me since he is horrified that I let them say "butt". We have discussed that he will need to watch TV in the bedroom or wait until the girls are completely asleep. There will be no movies in the house...unless the girls are at school.

I worry about the girls at their dad's house....I can't control their environment there. I know he doesn't swear....but as they get older he might let them watch movies I would object to. That makes me really sad, but I'll deal with it when the time comes.
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#6 JicJac

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 02:57 PM

My son got in trouble at school for giving someone his middle finger. Umm.. really? IF he did that, 1) someone told him to do it or 2) he wasn't really doing it on purpose. The twins were discussing this in the car coming home that day and Audrey said (while showing Clayton her middle finger) "See, I can do it." They know now not to do it, but so far language has been fine and if there are any issues, I will tell them it is not an appropriate word to use.
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#7 rubyturquoise

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 10:05 AM

We swear around our kids, and we tell them that they're adult words and when they're adults they can use them. Of course, my two are not quite five yet, so things might be a bit different when they get older. I don't want to have to explain to them when they overhear someone at a restaurant or at a store cussing, at least this way they're already exposed and understand that they're not supposed to say them.


I don't use the really big ones around the girls, but they do have teenaged brothers. Same thing, some words are for adults. I don't freak out, because freaking out gives it the allure of the forbidden.
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I let my kids watch Simpsons and Spongebob and science shows, but I don't let the little ones have any kind of videogames. I let them eat soy products, but not store-bought cookies or cakes. And I let my boys use the men's room alone around age 7!

#8 MonkeyMama

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Posted 17 May 2012 - 12:33 AM

I came from a home where I was not censored from very many things at all and I only believe in censoring to a certain extent. I try not to swear around my boys but of course I am not perfect. We dont watch much TV but I do allow them to watch some movies that may have swearing in them. I am also really open minded and I know that kids will be kids and they are going to say those things around their friends, but I do my best to teach them that they are not appropriate and that they are adult words. It seems they are hearing more and more all the time because they will come home and ask me what they mean. I just tell them honestly and let them know why its inappropriate and they (so far) seem to be satisfied with that.
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#9 AmynTony

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Posted 17 May 2012 - 01:03 PM

we just tell them they're "mommy and daddy words" - and they think they're funny...

truly they are "just" words...as my Freshman English teacher would say - we place far too many labels on words...
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#10 MarchI

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Posted 17 May 2012 - 06:52 PM

I TRY REALLY REALLY REALLY hard not to swear. But I have twin 2 year olds. So far the oldest understands good words and bad words and which ones we should use most of the time. The babies have no clue but understand the intonation means mommy is not happy. I'm working on it.
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#11 Heathermomof6

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 10:53 AM

I honestly don't worry about it too much. I figure my kids are going to hear things whether by us or tv or in public. I honestly get more upset if one of them says "f*g" Or "retarded" more than I do if they swear.


Edited to add- if they do swear I just ask them not to.
Edited again to put. * instead of an a in that awful word.

Edited by Heathermomof6, 18 May 2012 - 11:00 AM.

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#12 momotwinsmom

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 11:48 AM

They learn by hearing it, and then as the parent, you telling them it is not an appropriate word to say. I try not to swear, but having 4 kids sometimes you just let one go. My kids are usually shocked when they hear it from me, and they know they are not allowed to say it. I know the older ones respect my wish on this, because they often tell me that their friends say bad words or that they tell them to say a bad word, and they won't.
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#13 sweetfrangipani

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 08:34 PM

My husband's vocabulary is full of the worst swear words you could ever find, we have quite a few swear jars around for him and Aliah even has a book where for a month she wrote down 20-50 cents for every swear he said (and what time he said it lol!) I think he owes her over $200! I don't really swear (I say really because I can let it rip if need be :-) ) and I didn't really encounter any problems with Aliah when she was younger. Like others have said, if we heard the words, I would tell her that it's an adult word and that it's not appropriate for little children to use them. I am of the group that there are sufficient words in the dictionary. I also don't watch or let DH watch shows that are rated over 15+ when A is around.
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