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Your use of profanity indicates that you are of lesser intelligence

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Or otherwise titled: "I hope you don't speak to your kids that way!"

The sentence that just came out of my mouth, directed at DD: "I would like you to go get dressed. If you're able to do this in a timely manner then you may be able to engage in some sort of recreational activity before we leave."

She's five. I found myself reflecting on that sentence after I spoke it. Many would say that's too advanced for a child of her age, but since she began speaking in sentences that's how I've spoken to her. Not every sentence is put so eloquently. Sometimes I'm brief and occasionally I'm long winded. It provides her the opportunity to hear vocabulary she isn't necessarily exposed to on a regular basis outside of our home. When she doesn't understand, she asks, and I define the word or break down the phrase so she knows.

The sentence struck me. Sometimes my mom rolls her eyes at me because she thinks DD wouldn't understand. She's fairly precocious and I love the English language, as well as I love teaching her about it.

For good measure, I feel like I should throw an eff bomb in here, because my children are also exposed to the gutteral language. So, fuck.

Do you swear in front of your kids? Do you use large words with them?
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by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 7:44 AM
Replies (61-70):
by Anonymous 10 on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:45 AM
Yes and yes. I have a well extended vocabulary and I hope my kids do to. Their little brains are like sponges right now soaking everything up. With that being said I do need to stop on the bad words. I don't direct them towards them but for example, I'll be walking stub my toe on the corner of something and first thing that comes out ahh f***. Then there goes my little sponges saying f***.
by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:46 AM
I try not to swear and when I do it has some serious impact.
I've always spoken to my son as I would and adult as in no baby talk. And I've always gotten comments from friends and family about is vocabulary.
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by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:46 AM

I'm not a big fan of dumbing down language in regards to children. Even the very young ones. I was never one to baby talk them. So, yeah I do suppose I use adult speak with my kids. And yeah, Sometimes a foul word slips in there. 

by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:47 AM
Yes and yes. I do swear in front of my kids but I am and have come a long way on cutting back. My mom was a wonderful Christian woman who ONLY swears once in a 100 year span. My dad is a career military man, raised in a bar (not an adult drinker tho due to his childhood experiences) and swears in almost every sentence he speaks! Hahaaa! I call them the odd couple! Swearing was a part of my vocab although I almost never did in my mom's presence until I was an adult.

As an adult I speak to my children at a pretty high intellectual level and not only do they understand but they respond with vocabulary above their age level. I have a personal love for vocabulary though; I find words to empower an artistic quality. Beautiful and powerful... and my kids get the side affects from that.

Back home, deep in the country, many of the old timers, including my dad, swear often. I don't even notice it. However, out and about when I observe young people swearing obnoxiously... I find it to be trashy. Thus, the conscious change in my own behavior. I will probably never completely omit the cuss words from my vocabulary... but I feel it is a disservice to my children to offer the example that constant or obnoxious use of cuss words is acceptable.

Intelligence does allow one to identify a explanatory word to describe a circumstance with out lowering ones self to profanity, yes, I agree. But there is still some little bit of power in looking someone straight in the eye and saying, "Fuck you, motherfucker." without turning red! Hahaa! This art is in teaching them at which point you switch paths to the straight up nitty, gritty. For me, as a woman, it is usually a circumstance where a man is being a little too sexually pushy (from my single, bar days!) where I set intelligence aside and go for the jugular! Hahaa!
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by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:47 AM
Sometimes and yes I use big words
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by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:48 AM
Yes to the first. I have a very large vocab as well and so do my kids(well except my 10mo old lol) we dont cuss. Maybe a shit if I crunch my toe or something but even then usually not. You arent necessarily less intelligentb if you cuss it just makes you appear so .
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by New Member on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:50 AM

our boys, 24 and 21, never really swore, at least in front of me, but i'm sorry to say our 17 yr old daughter has pretty bad language.    i don't know if it's a difference in Catholic high school, like our boys attended, and public school, or that's just kids now.  i find myself swearing, tooo, but honestly, as a Journalist and general lover of words, i've often found it funny that people are so offended by the word fuck, even seen in Shakespere, but they generally discuss other things that are more horrible to me, the shooting of young children in school, deaths in horrible accidents....even their loves lives that most of us don't want to hear about.  but, that's just me, an old journalist from Texas, i guess.

by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:51 AM

I use large words with my children and they understand me. I use large words with my students and they look at me like I'm crazy. I'm all for improving the vocabulary of everyone I can.

by Ruby Member on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM
I do both. My kids know swear words are grown up words and they aren't allowed to use them until they are adults. If I use a word they don't know they ask what it means. But they're fairly intelligent and can usually decipher meaning from context.
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by on Jan. 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM
Yes to both questions.
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