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Am I being unreasonable about bad language?

(15 Posts)
yuma Wed 17-Aug-11 14:23:08

I have a teenage son (almost 17) who has gotten into the habit of casually swearing. He uses the "s" word a fair bit as well as the "f" word in conversation. I tell him off when he does that in front me and try to get him to stop. My partner thinks I should just let it go and that its normal and as long as he doesn't swear in front of children or in an abusive manner (he doesn't do either) it shouldn't bother us when he does swear. I still bothers me when he does though, am I being unreasonable in expecting him not to?

IloveJudgeJudy Wed 17-Aug-11 14:29:04

I think he shouldn't swear in front of you or the younger DC, so you are right to say something if he's saying it in your hearing, but you can't stop him swearing. It's the way nowadays (I have DS nearly 17). DS does try and force the boundaries sometimes, especially if he's telling an amusing story. He will say the whole word and I ask him not to, but he says the story will lose its force if he doesn't say the whole thing, but I still ask him not to.

I would suggest not to get yourself worked up about it too much, though. He sounds like a nice person in general and that's a great thing, isn't it?

create Wed 17-Aug-11 14:32:09

I agree partly with your DH, in that 17 yos are going to swear, but I agree absolutely with you that it is essential that it doesn't become so "normal" it's an uncontrollable habit. He must be able to control himself in front of children, interviewers, his future MIL etc and his mother, who doesn't like him swearing, is one of those people, in front of whom swearing is inappropriate.

I'll never forget the sharp intake of breath when DH (then newish boyfriend) used a (minor) swear word in front of my mum shock

One of my warmest moments involving young people was when a group of youths were behaving laddishly in a train carriage on the way home from a football match. One of them told the others to mind their language because (my) Dc were present. They did and apologised too smile

worraliberty Wed 17-Aug-11 14:39:06

YANBU I think it's about respect.

I don't swear in front of my Dad and I'm 42. My eldest is nearly 20 and he apologises if he lets a swear word slip in front of me.

If he can control it around the kids, he can control it around you.

LostMyIdentityAlongTheWay Wed 17-Aug-11 14:41:20

I think it's a real lack of respect for parents. Of COURSE teenagers swear - adults do, I do - you probably do too... but it's all about having language for teh home and language for outside of the home. He should know better frankly and exercise better judgement. (no implication there, that you haven't brought him up to know better, I assure you...)

i'm nearly 40. I would never swear in front of my parents, yet at home I have been known to cunt and fuck and everything...

I think it's very poor of your DH to roll over and accept it, thin end of the wedge. After all, many teenagers toke and get drunk - is that going to be alright as well?


MadamDeathstare Wed 17-Aug-11 14:42:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

squeakytoy Wed 17-Aug-11 14:42:47

I never swore in front of my parents even as an adult, but it does seem to be completely acceptable now for teens to swear in front of theirs. I dont like it at all, and did used to pull my stepchildren up on it when they were in their teens.

MadamDeathstare Wed 17-Aug-11 14:43:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Thumbwitch Wed 17-Aug-11 14:46:48

YANBU. I still either avoid swearing in front of my Dad or apologise if one slips out (or if it's actually necessary, which some people will say it never is, but it relieves tension so much better than non-sweary words) and I'm 44.

I didn't swear much at all until I was about 16 and started going out with my first BF - his parents were divorced and he and his brother did weekends at their Dad's, weekdays at their Mum's. So the all-male weekend household was a no-holds barred swearathon. I kinda got used to it and joined in.

I am still quite bad with swearing although I do try very hard not to do it in DS's hearing; DH is worse than I am and forgets far more. We will be lucky if DS starts school without saying 'shit' and 'bloody' - he's already well into saying "Jeeeeezz-usss!" (thanks DH) and "Oh my God!" (yeah, ok, that one's me) despite being told not to. blush

EdithWeston Wed 17-Aug-11 14:47:42

As your DP agrees DS is capable of controlling his swearing (level, and in whose company), then there is no logical reason whatsoever why he should not desist in front of you.

I think that teaching children to be "fluent" in to versions of their language - one for with mates, one more formal - is an underrated thing. It will stand him in good stead for future employability (and impressing his eventual partner's parents) if he can effortlessly switch to the non-sweary version. Practice at home will help this.

Gonzo33 Wed 17-Aug-11 14:49:02

My Dad still picks me up on my language now and I am 34! My Mum swears like a trooper though, so it's all her fault grin

Insomnia11 Wed 17-Aug-11 14:50:49

It's not "the thing nowadays". I remember having to mind my language coming home from university to stay with my parents (mid 90s), where among friends swearing was just normal speech.

CurrySpice Wed 17-Aug-11 14:54:11

I swear ALL the time blush but never in front of my mom shock

It's important to get a handle onwhen and where it is appropriate to swear and when and where it i s not

create I had a similar thing. Some lads (15ish?) where swearing in front of my young DDs and I asked them to stop. I expected a mouthful of abuse but they all said "sorry miss!" and looked sheepish and stopped!

marge2 Wed 17-Aug-11 15:00:54

My DS1 (8) is coming home from school with swear words learnt from his friend who hears them at home from his older siblings (older teens). Despite my protests that those are not nice words to use and people will think badly of them and telling them off when they use those words, DS2 is picking up on them, and I have heard him call DS1 a 'bitch' during an argument. (He doesn't know it's the wrong word to call a boy, and I'm not about to give him an 'advanced' swearing lesson).

I fear very much DS2 will then become the 'sweary' kid in Y2 who is the one teaching the others the swear words and our family will get the bad reputation.

Sooooo. What I am tying to say is ... Please stop your 17yo swearing in front of his younger siblings.

StrandedBear Wed 17-Aug-11 15:03:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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