MY DAUGHTER swears. She could be playing with Minecraft and then a Creeper (a Minecraft monster that explodes when it gets near you) would suddenly explode near her and destroy a structure she laboriously made and out comes a pretty loud, “Dang it!” It results to round eyes, raised eyebrows and open mouths when other people hear her. It causes shock to some people that foul words could come out of an innocent looking five year old. But as for me and my husband -- we won’t even look up from whatever we are doing.
Yes dearies, our adorable little angel swears. She says her “Dang it!” with as much feeling as when I say my “Shit!” or my husband’s “Letchugas!” It’s her swear word and we allow it and don’t make a big deal out of it.
I believe that she needs to express her frustration, just like the rest of us. And I think I don’t have the right to lecture her when I can’t even stop myself from saying, “Shit!” I would rather let her swear than act like a sanctimonious little – person? See, I tried to be nicer and substituted the last word with person and it just doesn’t have the same bang to it.
If I refuse to let my daughter use dang it, and insist that she doesn’t swear at all because little kids shouldn’t -- what is she supposed to do -- bite her tongue, clench her teeth and suck the frustration in? Really, are we adults even capable of doing that? No. So why do we expect our kids to do it?
Swearing is a natural reaction to a natural phenomenon. You can’t accidentally bump your head while rushing and say, “Thank God Almighty!” That’s just unnatural, blasphemous too, if you ask me.
So I let my daughter swear. And apparently, I’m not the only one to see why kids should be allowed to swear. French preschool children are allowed to have their own gros mots (bad words). It may not mean anything at all like caca boudin (kaka boo-dah) which means poo-blood-sausage.
French parents do not really promote swearing but they don’t really sweat it when their kids come home and start saying those kiddie gros mots they learn from their peers. And the cute thing about it is that only little kids use them. Kiddie swear words! So French!
Gordon Ramsey (the famous chef), hit upon the idea of substituting swear words with food words. His kids use shitake for shit, asparagus for ass, and fructose for the F word. I just might actually do the same in the future.
Right now, I have limited my daughter’s swear words to dang it. I put my foot down and told her never to use stupid or idiot to express frustration or to describe someone. She has not said the F word yet, thank God, but if she ever does, it would fall into the category of “If you don’t know the meaning, don’t use it” words. Or maybe I would just totally ban it, even if she would later learn what it means.
So far, she’s happy uttering dang it and I am ok with that. Let her swear over spilled milk than cry over it.
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