A couple of friends recently remarked about how they never hear me swear (you know… the F-bomb, S-bomb, A-hole… words that so many use to punctuate their moments of extreme anger, frustration or joy.) I don’t judge anyone else for saying whatever they want to say, but I’m feeling the need to explain why I don’t.
When I was a teenager, I joined right in with all the forbidden word diatribes it took to survive the playground and front yard football games. I generally toned it down in front of authority figures like parents, teachers and coaches. Though I must say I was pretty creative back in the day, with compound cuss words that combined George Carlin’s 7 words with random euphemisms for male and female body parts.
It all changed in my late 20’s when we had our first child. I decided I didn’t want my baby hearing that kind of language in the house and I just stopped. It was that simple. And then over time I realized I didn’t really need “shock value” words to make my point. In fact, I found it more of a challenge to debate someone without calling them names that referred to various sex acts and bodily functions.
To this day, my habit of “keeping it clean” has had an interesting effect on those around me. I hear lots of “I’m sorry” after someone else goes off on a rant, as if they have offended me in some way. It’s quite the opposite. I still laugh at cussing, especially in a comedic context, and I appreciate people who make their point passionately.
So even though I will occasionally let out a frustrated “Damn it” if I stub my toe or my team loses on a last second shot, I generally keep my language G-rated most of the time. It just feels right for me.
How do you feel about it?