Conversations with Goddammit

I’m guilty.

You know those sleeveless, white undershirts that guys wear? What do you call them again?

Wife beaters, that’s it. Eh, I didn’t forget, I’m just sad that I use that kind of language. I have called sleeveless undershirts wife beaters. In my opinion, the word wife beater makes me a thousand times more uncomfortable than the word fuck. Of course that’s just me and I’m only one person who happens to have a mouth like a truck driver.  Oops! Did I just stereotype truck drivers? Now that’s fucking offensive!

Words are powerful. There is unbelievable power in words, not just in literal meaning, but in cognitive association. I know a few wife beaters. I know a few wives who have been beat. These men claim to love their wives.  I find the idea that the word love is used to explain abusive behavior offensive. I’d rather hear 100 cocky teenagers drop f-bombs in the arcade than to hear one WIFE BEATER talk about LOVING his wife after I have seen what love can do to the beautiful face of a woman in an abusive relationship.

This word association/irritation brings me to my topic for today’s blog, bad words; naughty, dirty, inappropriate and offensive words and the shame surrounding them.

Recently my children were around an older woman who swears. A lot. Her favorite swearword is Goddammit. She says this when she is happy, sad, discussing the weather, cute puppies, groceries, shoes, mammograms, marshmallows, the price of gas, etc. It’s not only an adjective for her. Goddammitt modifies every noun, verb, and adjective in her entire vocabulary.  I might not have mentioned how much I love this woman, but I do. I love her. My kids love her as well.

My kids also do the most incredible impression of her. The first time I heard it, I laughed so hard that I cried and peed my pants a little. I think that might offend some people. They might think this is bad parenting.

I believe that there are much worse things a person can do than to use foul language, yet I also think foul language is foul. As with all things, there is a time and a place for bad words. Research has shown that swearing after an injury actually helps decrease pain. Just the way a person can associate anger with a word can help them cope with pain. That fascinates me. Words ARE powerful.  I personally couldn’t drive without swearing at people. If I didn’t swear, I’d have to crash into them. Other drivers are assholes.

My new favorite YouTube e-motivator, Paul Crik, does a bit about swearing and children. It’s so good that it’s almost offensive. I’m offended by his intelligence and common sense approach to helping people SEE themselves more clearly in such a simple and entertaining way. Fucking brilliant is what I say.  It offends me when people are smarter and funnier than me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yetuXnjNNz0

I want my kids to understand the power and the limitations of language. By NOT getting upset at their hilarious attempts to understand the mixed messages about language, I am attempting to help them learn, IN CONTEXT and in a safe environment, how to communicate using different zones.

I also just want to say that if you disagree, I don’t fucking care.

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  • Brilliant! Couldn't agree more. LOVE the title, the baby picture, and the sense. I'm a big cusser, and I am so glad to know that swearing actually helps with pain, because I have always said big bad words when I get hurt and now I know why. I can tell my mother to fuck off when I cuss in traffic too. Other drivers ARE assholes. Why are you and I the only ones who are not?

    Thank you!

  • In reply to JaneJane:

    it makes me feel all sassy and cocky that you said brilliant. ha! my goal in LIFE, something on my bucket list is to NOT think hateful thoughts while driving.

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    Oh My fucking GOD, this is awesome and hilarious!! I've been told by all my church friends that I curse a lot, yet when they tell me, it's never in a way that makes me think they're offended by it.... hahahaaaa!! FUCK!

  • In reply to Paula Singleton:

    i believe that God would be much more upset about the hateful things people do in His name than the occasional slip of the tongue when someone swears after splitting their head open, right? God is way smarter then we mere mortals.

  • I fucking LOVE your dirty mouth! I'm known in my "circle" as the chick with the potty mouth...and I secretly think people envy my "fuck you" attitude. I say what they are thinking. And I agree about the power of words. I swear in front of my son (in moderation) and I let him know he is free to say whatever he wants and use those same words, once he turns 18 (hahaha!). I'm no polly prudette - I know he'll swear when he hits puberty and hangs out with his friends - I just want him to know WHEN and WHERE and the context in which that kind of speech is acceptable or unacceptable. I love your fucking blog...you're tits!

  • In reply to Reckmonster:

    a potty mouth usually also has the gift of gab. i bet you keep 'em rolling. xo

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    At first, I was a little taken aback, I will admit, at your blog title. Then, I read it. Wow! I love you, and I totally agree! I don't call the four-letter words "bad" in my house because I don't want my kids to associate them with being a horrible person. Here, they are "grown up words," and mommy is a grown up, so mommy can use them. :)

  • In reply to Kristen:

    the title does throw people........i'm used to that. won't ever change. can't. it's all about balance and lots and lots of conversations with kids.

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    They are JUST words!! If you use them correctly they have true super power!! I KNOW people are totally jealous of me because I will say whatever the fuck is on my mind and they are afraid to. Envious asshats!!!

    BRILLIANT WRITER AND FUCKING FUNNY WOMAN!!!! :)

  • In reply to EllenC:

    thanks, ellen. i have a blast writing and living life. i'm happy you are doing it YOUR way. keep it up.

  • Fucking nice! Now I don't feel like such a reckless parent when I blast Tupac all the way to sports camp! Mothafucka, I 'Hit 'Em Up'. She loves that shit.

    Keep it real cause the kids smell your bullshit a mile away anyways, I always says.

    Btw, you fucking rock.

  • In reply to the7thnote:

    thanks for commenting and i love me some tupac. my kids prefer katy perry.

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    LOL Girl I read your post daily and you never cease to amaze me. I love the way you think. You also make me not feel so bad about the way I raise mine when I see another intelligent woman teaching hers as I do. Keep up the great work girl and F*ck FB if they can't take it!~*

  • In reply to Rose Yen:

    thanks for the loooooooooooving. i think there are those of us out there who don't sweat the small stuff because we see the bigger picture.

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    In reply to Nicole Knepper:

    Amen sister. I am so tired of people acting like they are so much better than everyone else. But if I remember right we ran away from England to get away from the prudes : )

  • In reply to Rose Yen:

    seriously, just had this discussion with a friend. all the shame children are raised with. it's a tragedy that any child has to feel shame for being human in any way and that includes the times in childhood when they are discovering the miracles of their own bodies and learning how to use language. cheers!

  • I'm having a hard time with this.

    My husband and I are in very different worlds on how our kids use language. He overuses "foul" language, and the kids follow his example. I use these words more to make a statement than in everyday use. For a long time, I said every word imaginable all the time. Until I said them at a most inappropriate time.

    I've tried to explain to the kids that if they get used to using words that may be offensive, you WILL slip. And I was right. Over and over. My youngest are 18-year old twins. The girl twin does sound like a trucker. I am afraid of taking her to places I go; including restaurants. With reason.

    So I ask each of you, what would you do?

  • In reply to miriamhyde54:

    it's a hot topic, miriam. no question. parenting in general is an area where respectful disagreements are the healthiest way to handle differences between friends, but within the family? more complicated. the point of this blog is that words have the power we choose to give them AND that learning about context and such is a helpful way to help kids understand.

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    My mom is forever on my ass about my language, specifically the use of "GD". For some reason, this phrase irritates the hell out of her and my younger sister. I happened to say this phrase while talking to mom and sister, and got my ass chewed by both of them for using the Lord's name in vain.. I told them both sorry, but I don't realize I am saying it, and I don't have any intention of cleaning up my language..

    Besides, in all technicalities, if something is going wrong, you could say that God DID damn whatever it was, so therefore is not using the Lord's name in vain, simply pointing out the obvious.

  • In reply to Keisha Ruff:

    moms are like that. when my kids swear, i don't like it. i get it......

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    In reply to Keisha Ruff:

    I fucking swear... I do... I admit it. I try not to, because then I have to hide laughing my ASS off when a kid mimicks swearing & be all parental & wise.
    But, the 2 things that I don't like are GD & JC. So when my kids, or mother, or husband, says either... I get on their ass.
    I am not telling you what to say or how to say it... but if it makes your conversations with your mom & sis more pleasant, how about maybe trying to re-word? Cheese & Rice! is a fav... So is Gross Ham!

  • In reply to Katie:

    those are sensitive words. it used to bother me as well but then i got right with God and we worked out the important stuff. i no longer sweat the human rules. i just serve humans for God.

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    hilarious.

  • glad you liked it. twas fun to write.

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    please remove the photo attached with this blog posting. this photo is of my daughter and has been taken without permission from my personal flickr site. the text on my photo was put on by someone else.

    i'm not against your blog at all, i would just appreciate my photo being removed.

    thank you.
    jenny

  • In reply to jenny gg:

    done and done. xo

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    In reply to jenny gg:

    thanks so much for changing the pic lady - you're aces with me. for what's it's worth, i totally get that the site you got the photo from is "at fault" - not you - i've emailed them directly.

    love your blog!!

  • In reply to jenny gg:

    you are welcome and your daughter is adorable. i've seen the pic floating around for awhile now with all different captions. it's a mom thing and i'm glad you like the blog and i'm wish you luck trying to wrangle this thing because it seems like a task similar to putting toothpaste back into the tube. good luck, luhv. :)

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    Love this - I am an avid "truck driver" cusser as well! Other drivers are "jack asses" to me - And when my oldest daughter was 2 she called my MIL a jack ass - using the word in a sentence in the correct context - my MIL said it was an accident and that she didn't know what she was saying - my MIL was wrong, took me a little while to figure out she had learned it from me, because I would always say it out loud when we were driving and she was in the backseat!
    Nothing makes me feel better or relieves stress as much as a well put together string of cuss words! Well that and a good drink, heck even a bad drink - as long as it has alcohol in it!

    http://www.facebook.com/FromMyFrontPorch

    http://jentsfrontporch.blogspot.com/

  • In reply to Jennifer Campbell:

    ok, jen. i guess i have to approve links now, so i approved yours and plan to read some of your front porch wisdom. thanks for commenting and i hope we run into each other more often in the blogosphere!

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    I cuss at and in front of my kids so much they're not even fazed when they hear other people cuss. They have the understanding that adults do say fuck and shit a lot, but that anything done to excess is never good.

    Also, I make sure to convey to them that they will only be allowed to cuss in my presence when they have the money to cover some bills in the house. You'd be amazed what kind of control that exercises over a kid-- "You can have/do ___________ when you can start paying bills and rent". Greedy little bastards.

  • In reply to Lisa Mendez:

    amen, lisa. there are rules to cussing just like anything else. here's the rule. IF my kids are somewhere where the rules are less strict.....the rules of home apply. IF they are somewhere where the rules are more strict.....the more strict rules apply. it's common sense for shit sake. thanks for your comment!

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    In reply to Nicole Knepper:

    I love your blog, and all the women who reply. I raised my kids cussing like a sailor. Is that to stereotyped? Who gives a shit. When my youngest granddaughter was born I told her mother to quit saying fuck every other word or it would be her daughters first word. But of course she didn't stop saying it. So guess what her first word was ... SHIT just like granma.

  • In reply to Janis Engle:

    thanks for the love, janis. my father used to say that the "grandparents club" was the best club in the world. your comment supports his belief. your family is so lucky to have you.

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    Nicole, I'm a truck driver's wife. You weren't stereotyping. Those f*****s have filthy mouths.

    Loved this article, beginning to end!!! LOVE MWDAS!!!!!

  • In reply to Sarah Dicks:

    beep beep! that's why i love truck drivers. when i make the "beep beep" sign, they always honk. of course now that i'm not a cute kid, i have to show them my boobs, but still they go "beep beep!"

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PrD6k8PDr1o

    George Carlin says it all:

    "There are no bad words. Bad thoughts, bad intentions and wooooords"

    It is so very important, especially in today's age, to really teach you kids how to communicate and teach them that every word has a unique value. I'm sorry, but "I really don't care about that" doesn't convey as strong of an emotion as "I really don't give a fuck". If I feel intensely about something, passionately about my topic, and I use words without an intense, passionate meaning, I'm not communicating my thoughts properly.

    Words are so very important and I'm glad to see you (and all your readers) dedicate to freedom of expression and honesty in communication.

  • In reply to CrimsonAnanda:

    may his fantastic ass rest in perfect peace. his book about jesus and the pork chops keeps me company on the crapper. i'm quite sure that history will judge mr. carlin as a great philosopher.

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    I am in awe of your brilliant fucking mind!

  • In reply to Ginger Sandell:

    i feel all snooty and uppity now that you called my twisted mind brilliant. i'm usually described as whacked, cuckoo or manical. oh how i love you.

  • fuck ya (looking around for mom,) FUCK YA!

  • In reply to Curtis Shaw Flagg:

    curtis. I'M TELLING. nah, as long as we kick ass in softball, i'll leave your mom out of it.

  • As always, you crack me up because you are always so fucking right!!!

  • In reply to Tanya:

    omg. please please email or call my husband and tell him that i am always right. oh please. kidding. glad you are laughing, tanya.

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    To this day I cannot comprehend the idea that words are bad... I dont understand how saying poopy head and shit head are different... freakin, and frack, frick, fart, foot... it's all the exact same word if you assign the word the meaning... I try and keep my kids from cussing (6 and 4) only because they cant yet fully understand the meaning and appropriate and inappropriate applications and times -- I swear like a sailor -- and they understand that -- that's how my father was and how his was and I have no intention of changing ..

  • My oldest was between two and three when he did something or another that caused him to yell the word "SHIT!" I was so proud he used it in the correct context!!

    I will say, my husband used to say the word "Jackass" all the time. That was all fun and games until the same child, the one who understands shit, called him a jackass!

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    I know one of my kids or grand kids called there dad shithead, cause he is. I also told my son years ago when he said mom thats a bad word. I said someone said it doesn't make it bad. What if they had said RED CAR is a bad word,everyone would be running around RED CAR RED CAR, when he stopped giggling he said ok if I run around saying it. I told him sure you say RED CAR as much as you want.

  • In reply to Janis Engle:

    you understand. ahhhhhhhhhhh relief.

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    Were you talking about me as the older woman that says goddammit all the time? No, I haven't met your youngsters- but on most other accounts I fit the bill. My 14 year old has now begun telling me to quit swearing so much- I figure that in itself means that I taught him something right? LOVE YOU- thanks for making the rest of us moms feel like part of the cool kids, just plain old normal!

  • In reply to Debbie Kaplan:

    hahahahahaha. seriously, i'm sort of talking about me. i have got to stop swearing. well, no, i don't. xo deb. thanks for your support. who knew that 20 years after high school we'd re-connect?

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    ok, I give, You're Fuckin hilarious! but what do I know, I'm a Dad..no longer a siongle dad, but was for waaaaaay long enough to resemble many of your blogs..particularly the dinner one, which i might add isn't the exclusive domain of the mom anymore...

  • In reply to Kelly Dougherty:

    awwwwwwwwww thanks for writing, DAD.

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