Swearing has become commonplace in our society largely due to TV and the movies - not to mention bumper stickers. Children today hear bad language in grade school that used to be reserved for high school. But that doesn't mean you have to listen to it. Here are some suggestions:
- First: Have a rule that "swearing is not allowed in our house". You can enforce that. And tell him not to swear around teachers or other adults. Enforcing this is more complicated, but back-up the school. Then accept the fact that how your youngster talks with his friends in private is something you can't control.
- Second: If your youngster swears around you or other adults, send him to his room for a time-out. If he does it repeatedly, ground him for a day. But don't wash his mouth out with soap; that is too barbaric.
- Third: When your child is angry at someone, suggest he tell you about it without swearing. If he can't, suggest he swear in his room or hit a pillow.
- Finally: You won't be able to get your youngster to give up any four-letter words that you continue to use. Have you tried "darn it" lately? How about "rats"?
If you have other questions about swearing, consult your healthcare provider.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Author and Senior Reviewer: Barton D. Schmitt, M.D. FAAP
Last Review: 6/1/2008
Last Revised: 6/1/2000
Copyright 1994-2008 Barton Schmitt, M.D. Parent Advice Messages.