I’m a curser. I’ve got a filthy mouth when I deem it’s appropriate. Notice I say “when I deem”. That is my caveat for those times when it was actually not appropriate, but I wasn’t able to contain myself.
I tell you with shame that it was once said by the construction site supervisor of our development that I have “the worst mouth [he’s] heard on a woman”. We had a few “little” problems (like 17 leaks in our foundation the first spring) that I didn’t feel were getting….enough attention….from the builder.
So it is with a sense of bewilderment that I realised I don’t swear as much as I thought I would when I write here.
My son (almost 13) got into some trouble this week at school for using profanity with his friends on school property. All three boys come from what I call “swearing households”. They are exposed to swearing on a regular basis. Being in a small community, you get to know families of your kids friends, so I also know their parents have the same take on it I do:
I swear. I am an adult. You are a child. You may not. I have lived “x” number of years, I know what the words mean and how their slang use became what it is today. I am intelligent enough to know, not only when it is appropriate company in front of whom to use that language, I am capable of replacing those words or deleting them entirely, as is called for. In my home, we have the right to speak our minds openly. My kids may not swear, they haven’t “earned” the right yet according to my rules. (I’m famous for my outrageous rules, but that’s a whole other story)
That being said, I’m not one of those not-my-little-Johnny-moms. And I know that, at least the oldest, is swearing. It was inevitable. (I grew up in a swearing household too)
But not where you can get caught!!!!
Imparting the wisdom of this to a child is, altogether, a frustrating experience. Not the don’t-get-caught part. He got that. It’s the how to not get caught…like: don’t do it where there are grown ups or snitches around in the first place….sigh…son…
There are too many folks in the world who are offended by that kind of language to demean yourself by using it indiscriminately. When we colour our message with the distraction of too many curse words, we risk losing the message. It’s interesting to me that I can draw this line so bravely in the sand yet stand on the other side of that line and defend my right to swear if I want to. when and where I want to.
All of my favourite bloggers are eloquent writers who are very selective about when and where they might place a curse word. I think I’m either innately aware of the boundaries swearing would put up or I’ve subconsciously modelled myself after my blogging role models.
Do you swear in life? How about your blog? If you’re like me, where yes in life but not so much in your writing, are you surprised? I’m curious.