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To ask a friend not to swear in front of DCs?

(38 Posts)
JudgyPrude Fri 31-Dec-10 17:55:11

Friend of a friend is going to be at a NYE party tonight.

She's loud, funny and opinionated and I do quite like her but she swears a lot

AIBU if I ask her not to swear around the DCs? I really don't want to have to explain to my DCs what a f*cking c*nt is?

But (1) I don't want to start a fight in someone elses house and (2) I could just be being a bit uptight

charliesmommy Fri 31-Dec-10 17:56:25

I would certainly say something.. along the lines of "oi, children present... language!!"

I hate people swearing in front of children.

maxpower Fri 31-Dec-10 17:58:13

That's really difficult. I wsa lucky in that my friends naturally moderate their language in front of DD and subsequently they've all had children of their own. I think if you're going to say something, it'd be better for you to have the conversation now, before you get to the party.

Maisiethemorningsidecat Fri 31-Dec-10 17:58:50

YANBU - a lighthearted "hey, watch your mouth please!" should be enough to let her know she needs to zip it without starting a fight.

Hate it when people swear in front of children - so ignorant.

mutznutz Fri 31-Dec-10 18:01:42

Do you honestly think you could just be a bit uptight? i.e, do you think using the words f*cking c*nt around young children is ok? It's ignorant in the extreme.

But I have to say, her reaction might be to tell you to f*ck off and take your children away from her sad

As long as you're prepared for that, then give her hell...I know I would if it were my kids she was swearing around.

berri Fri 31-Dec-10 18:08:25

If her reaction is that then she's not a person you want to be hanging around anyway! YANBU - sure a lighthearted telling off will do the trick, it's often just habit with big swearers.

taintedsnow Fri 31-Dec-10 18:13:30

Handle it as a joke. It will give her something to think about (she might not even have realised she's doing it) but won't start a fight. She's being out of order, but you don't need to make everyone's night uncomfortable by calling her out in front of others. You wouldn't be wrong to have a go, I'm not a fan of swearing around children either, but I don't think you should cause a scene.

JudgyPrude Fri 31-Dec-10 18:20:11

Thanks for the replies - it is tricky as she's not my friend but is friends with a very good friend of mine. mutznutz - I didn't think it was unreasonable not to like swearing around DCs but there are a few who take the view that its only words.

Fortunately when we have been at such gatherings before my DC have not been around to hear it although others DC have and I have seen the parents do a cringing raised eyebrows at one another but no-one says anything.

Vallhala Fri 31-Dec-10 18:31:22

I'm going to go against the majority and say that whilst I can see entirely where you are coming from, this is an evening party and thus presumably predominately for adults and also it's in someone else's house. The woman might argue that YABU and that it would be a different matter if it was a kids' party or in your own home.

I'd be inclined to say that it is down to the host to lay down the rules in their home, not you, regardless of your good reason. (And yes, it is ill-mannered to swerar in someone else's house as if she were at home but for all I know the host might have no objection to it).

Maybe the more politic way would be to pull the host aside when you arrive and ask him/her if they wouldn't mind politely reminding X that your DC are present.

mutznutz Fri 31-Dec-10 18:41:54

I'm not sure I'd want to get the host involved really. I think as a parent personally it's down to me to politely remind others that my children are present when they're swearing. Also it's kind of a good thing for the kids to witness their parents politely standing up for what they believe in.

Maisiethemorningsidecat Fri 31-Dec-10 18:52:30

Getting the host involved would mean that the OP's friend would know that her behaviour had been discussed behind her back - surely that would be more likely to cause an arguement?!

I'd prefer to leave the host out of the equation - less awkward for her, and as the parent I prefer to decide what's acceptable for my DCs to hear/see

Opinionatedfreak Fri 31-Dec-10 18:57:59

ermm. I confess that I swear like a trouper. Not attractive at all but a nasty habit that I have failed to shift from my (v. posh) school days.

I do try very hard NOT to swear in front of people's children but sometimes I forget.

If one of my friends were to ask me not to swear they would need to do it an very very careful way to avoid me taking significant umbrage. One of my friends got upset because I said 'shoot' in front of her kids.

My opinion of her and her ability to parent rationally diminished even further. (We have had many disagreements about child rearing and our friendship is only just surviving).

It would also v. much depend on the child if they are > 10 I would think they were being OTT - you should HEAR the language that age group used away from parental ears.

I would, however, never use the c**t word as I hate it (but f is totally fair game).

Doigthebountyeater Fri 31-Dec-10 18:58:25

Is it me {blush]? Only asking because DS1 spelled out 'bollocks' in fridge magnets today and said, 'Look mummy it's that word you always say.' I love swearing (am N.Irish if that counts for anything) but I have to remind myself that all people to not regard swearing in the same light that I do.

BTW, if it is me, tell me to my face!!!! (Actually it isn't as I am not going out tonight). It could be done in a light hearted fashion, couldn't it?

Opinionatedfreak Fri 31-Dec-10 18:58:48

PS: You could well be describing me but I think I'm going to a child free thing tonight!

Maisiethemorningsidecat Fri 31-Dec-10 19:23:41

I think it's only polite to respect other people's wishes when it comes to swearing, and be able to accept that people may not wish their children to hear you.

My 13 year old I'm sure is now swearing like a trouper in front of his friends, but what I've taught him is that people do get offended by swearing, and that he should respect that by being mindful of who's in earshot.

A1980 Sat 01-Jan-11 16:44:28

The odd word such as crap or bollocks in front of children probably wouldn't make me say anything.

But frequent use of words such as f*cking and c*nt is ignorant and offensive in the extreme whether or not there are children present to hear it.

It depends on how you say it. Something light hearted along the lines of, I don't want my DC's repeating that at school, etc.

CalamityKate Sat 01-Jan-11 17:03:53

Hum... If it were me, it would depend entirely on how old my kids were.

Mine are 7 and 8, and therefore old enough to know what are "bad" words. I don't think that spending one evening in the company of a sweary adult is likely to result in them going to school and saying "Miss, Miss - I lost my fucking lunch box, I can't find the cu*t anywhere"

However if they were younger and likely to repeat stuff in innocence I'd have to say something. But then if I were the swearer, I'd think it was fair enough if someone said "Look, profanity doesn't offend me but could you ease off a bit - it's just I don't want the DC's calling MIL an old twat even though she is one haha" and made light of it.

LadyBubbaAndBump Sat 01-Jan-11 17:06:53

I'm a bit of a swearer although have modified my language massively around my and other DCs (I'm also a school teacher, apparently it's frowned upon in education too! blush grin)

I recently said fuck and bugger very loudly in front of my and other DCs (two seperate occasions). Luckily fuck hasn't caught on, but bugger did blush shock - the kids using it are 3!! Luckily my friends have been very understanding so far (although, come to think of it, I haven't seen any of them since hmm grin).

I would do as others suggest and say it light heartedly if she does slip up, but I wouldn't say it beforehand...

LadyBubbaAndBump Sat 01-Jan-11 17:08:52

rofl @ the possibility of kids saying "Miss, Miss - I lost my fucking lunch box, I can't find the cu*t anywhere" Calamity. That would make me laugh!

Alouiseg Sat 01-Jan-11 17:16:23

Sometimes children need to know that there are words that an adult can use but a child can't.

Maisiethemorningsidecat Sat 01-Jan-11 17:26:22

Not to keen on the "don't do as I do, do as I say" approach tbh. It's up to adults to set an example - it's how children learn

Maisiethemorningsidecat Sat 01-Jan-11 17:26:36

too keen even

Vallhala Sat 01-Jan-11 17:33:54

I'm with Alouiseg. I drink Scotch but I don't expect my daughters to, I sleep with a 53 year old man but I don't expect the girls to do that either! By the same token it's reasonable for me to swear and not to expect a child to do it just because I do, so yes, "don't do as I do, do as I say" works for me, Maisie.

Maisiethemorningsidecat Sat 01-Jan-11 18:55:45

Yes, but these things are all illegal for children to do, so not great analogies! Swearing on the other hand is a behaviour that you've chosen - ie, do as I say, not as I do.

WimpleOfTheBallet Sat 01-Jan-11 19:00:28

I have some friends like that OP...I just don't take my kids with me when I socialise with them...they sometimes take theirs but mine stay away.

I don't think it is on to impose your morals on them when they were fine as they were before children arrived.

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