I saw a conversation on Facebook not long ago about swearing, and it got me thinking – do I swear too much, and should I stop? After thinking about it – the answer to both is ‘no’.
I do swear. I never, ever use the ‘c-word’, but apart from that, I use pretty much all of the ones you can think of. My Facebook statuses quite often have the odd swear word in, when I am having a rant, but I am not one to swear every single time. I also try not to swear for no reason – I don’t usually drop swears into random sentences, (unless I’m drunk, and then my language is appalling!). It is usually used as an exclamation, or if I’m hurt or angry.
I try to avoid swearing in front of children, our own and anyone else’s, as I do hate hearing kids swear, but I’d be lying if I said the kids haven’t heard us swear– last week we had disaster after disaster, with water pouring from our boiler and no water in the house For four days – I *may* have said ‘fuck’ a few times in their earshot. Harrison has said ‘bloody’ once (“I’m not a bloody climbing frame!” to his little brother), but immediately knew he shouldn’t have said it – saying “I not say that again”. I think that although we should try to avoid swearing in front of children, it is ridiculous to think they will never be exposed to it – it is in films, on TV, hear it in the streets. I think it is more important to teach them that that sort of language shouldn’t be used for children. Someone has argued that point with me before, asking why it is ok for adults to swear and not children – there are lots of things adults can do that kids can’t, and kids need to understand that. I’m not naive to think that as they get older they won’t swear – I know they probably will, and although I would like them not to, I would be a hypocrite if I told them off. I think teaching appropriateness will be the key then –for example, if you’ve dropped something heavy on your foot ‘shit’ is excusable (when they’re much older, I’m not on about a five year old saying it), but shouting ‘Fuck you’ across the street is not acceptable at all, no matter what your age.
I do try to think about the company I am with as to the language I use. My mum and dad are laid back with language, so if I am child-free around them, I would have no problem with swearing. However, my Nan doesn’t like hearing females swear, so I would of course avoid using anything stronger than ‘bloody’ in front of her. However, when it comes to my own space – not just my own home, but my ‘virtual’ space, such as my blog, Facebook or Twitter, I use whatever language I want. I don’t have to worry about my children seeing it or hearing it and my opinion is that if someone doesn’t like what I write, they don’t have to read it – they can unfollow and unfriend. I don’t actually swear much in my blog, there may be the very odd ‘shit’ somewhere, but generally it is quite clean. I guess it reflects how I use bad language in real life – using it only when appropriate, and so far I’ve not needed to use it. I also tend not to swear very much on Twitter, probably not to waste valuable tweeting space, but also because I guess 90% of my followers don’t know me in real life. I am also aware that I am a brand ambassador for a children’s and baby store, and it is also a way of me building contacts. It would be unprofessional to use very bad language – the odd ‘bloody’ might slip in but nothing too bad. But Facebook, yes. The people on there know me and how I speak in real life. It is closed and private profile, where I ‘virtually’ socialise with my friends. If I was out at the pub with them, I’d swear, and that is how I see it.
What do you think about swearing? Do you think it is acceptable?
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