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why shouldn't you say "Oh my God"??

(31 Posts)
lovealatte Sat 16-Apr-16 13:37:45

My 4 year old has picked this phrase up, quite possibly from me unfortunately. Obviously I pick him up on it when he has said it and tell him it's not a polite thing to say. Instead I try to say oh my goodness or oh my gosh - recently he's said "no mummy that's not polite" when he's heard me say these, and I've said no these ones are ok. He just told me "God is someone who lives in heaven so why is it not polite to say god?" (we aren't religious but he has picked this information up when we have tried to tell him who god is - he asked). I am a bit stuck! I ended up telling him some words just make people feel sad when they hear them so we try not to say them. Any better suggestions???

SissySpacekAteMyHamster Sat 16-Apr-16 13:42:45

Told mine that you are using God's name in a sweary way when you say "Oh my God" and it might offend people (especially at the c of e school my eldest goes to).

Got mine into the habit of saying gosh instead.

BertieBotts Sat 16-Apr-16 13:42:58

It's blasphemous. It's against Christians' religious beliefs to take God's name and use it to indicate surprise or shock, because that is disrespectful. AKA "Taking the Lord's name in vain". You could explain that it's one of the ten commandments which are written in the Bible which is the religious book that Christians follow and what the other nine commandments are. (Even if you don't know all of them - most of them are things like don't kill, don't commit adultery, children obey their parents).

Some people don't like oh my gosh, either, because they believe it's just a thinly veiled usage of god.

I'm not religious so it doesn't bother me at all and I don't stop my DC from saying it although as they get older I do let them know it's not appropriate in all situations and that some people don't like it.

Akire Sat 16-Apr-16 13:45:00

Because if your using it as a swear word it is rude! Just replace it with oh Mohammed oh allah etc seems bad taste no? Think because it's used so much it's not seem as a swear/curse it's just a phrase. To me it's a name of someone important in my life id rather people say shit fuck whatever instead- thanks!

Crikeyblimey Sat 16-Apr-16 13:45:40

I don't like it because it feels disrespectful to any Christians in earshot, plus it sounds too harsh in my opinion.

We say 'oh my goodness' in this house (and da is a teenager so probably says much worse when I'm not there but 'goodness' has stuck).

EBearhug Sat 16-Apr-16 13:52:21

It's blasphemy - taking the Lord's name in vain. How you explain that to a 4yo old, though...

I'm still slightly mentally scarred by the vehemence with which my mother told me off when I said "oh my god" in the course of relating some tale to a very Christian elderly relative when I was about 11. (She told me off about it once said relative was out of the room; relative didn't seem very bothered, but maybe they were just being polite. I think possibly my mother was feeling bad at me showing her up with my lack of understanding of the Ten Commandments in such company.)

Anyway - most people won't be bothered unless they are practising Christians. It will be easier not to say it if it's not a habit. I have a few worries about how much swearing I've got at work, (which is mostly MN's fault.) smile

If you're not religious, is it a big issue?

lovealatte Sat 16-Apr-16 14:06:20

Just to be clear - I understand it's blasphemous. It's just tricky to explain why to a 4 year old. We aren't religious but I still don't like to hear him say it.

albertcampionscat Sat 16-Apr-16 16:36:52

Wow. It's pretty harmless. I I'm very surprised anyone gets offended by that. Would you also mind the Irish 'Jesus, Mary and Joseph'? Or 'Heavens!'?

strawberrybubblegum Sun 17-Apr-16 07:43:55

'It's because people say that when they are angry, or when bad things happen. A person's name is special. I love your name 'X' because it makes me think of you. I wouldn't like it if people said 'Oh my X' whenever they were cross or something bad happened, because it would seem to link those bad things to you. I want people to only use your name when they are speaking about you.

To some people, God feels like a real person who they love. They will feel sad in the same way if you use God's name that way. I don't mind, because I don't believe in God. But I try not to say it because I don't want to make people sad. I find that if I never say it, then it's easier not to make a mistake and say it when someone is there who could get upset.'

(Skipping the sentence on not believing in God if you don't want to get into that yet grin )

albertcampionscat Sun 17-Apr-16 10:12:10

I suppose, but I've usually heard Oh My God said by teenagers when they're happy or excited.

BertrandRussell Sun 17-Apr-16 10:14:32

I just told my children that it's not an expression we use because some people don't like it and we try to be kind and considerate to other people.

Passmethecrisps Sun 17-Apr-16 10:18:48

I am not at all religious but I don't like it weirdly. It makes me wince when I hear it.

My dd is just younger than your LO. I think I would tell her it doesn't sound nice and we use a different word. I use goodness or gosh. Actually, I am more likely to either say fuckshitballs or jeepers creepers.

InsaneDame Sun 17-Apr-16 10:19:36

I think it is easier to explain to your child if you are Christians. I would just say it's not a very nice thing to say as it's using a name in a negative way - I gave my son the example of replacing the word God with his name and said he wouldn't like that much. It's a bit easier for him to understand as we are Christians and he goes to a RC school. I've also banned 'oh my gosh' as it sounds too similar. We have just gone through a phase of him saying 'oh my God' as one of his best friends says it regularly. I explained that I don't care what his friends say as they aren't my son, which he accepts! He has just made up his own exclamation of 'oh my boy!', I guess he feels he is safe with that one!

InsaneDame Sun 17-Apr-16 10:20:38

Oh I love jeepers creepers, I'm going to steal that one!

BertrandRussell Sun 17-Apr-16 10:27:25

"I think it is easier to explain to your child if you are Christians. "

Is it? Well, I suppose you could say that if you break the 3rd commandment you'll be eaten by bears.........

Personally, I found "Please don't say that, it upsets some people" quite sufficient when they were little. And ""Religious people don't like it when the name of their God is used as a swear word" when they were older.

StuckMelia Sun 17-Apr-16 10:30:29

Just say "Oh My Gosh" to avoid arguments.

AuditAngel Sun 17-Apr-16 10:34:01

I really hate this, my DD is going through a phase of it which I correct every single time. I also gate it when other children say it in my presence, including the DD if a friend who I know is religious (her DD and my DS went to same RC primary).

I have actually avoided giving a lift to one child since every other sentence out of her mouth last time was "oh my god", they are not religious, but I don't want it in my car or around me/my kids

InsaneDame Sun 17-Apr-16 10:36:35

Bert as in the child already knows, loves and respects God so can understand why it shouldn't be used in that context a bit more than a child who hadn't been brought up a Christian.

BertrandRussell Sun 17-Apr-16 10:47:20


I have different reasons for my children not using it. Don't see why your is any easier.

BertieBotts Sun 17-Apr-16 10:47:45

DS has adopted "Oh my flippin' pancakes!" confused

insancerre Sun 17-Apr-16 10:49:13

Oh my days is what I use as I work with children and I'm a positive role model

TurtleEclipseofTheHeart Sun 17-Apr-16 10:57:11

Strawberry that's so perfect I'm going to store it up for a few years time!

tsonlyme Sun 17-Apr-16 11:09:13

To avoid random lightning strikes?

InsaneDame Sun 17-Apr-16 20:43:23

I said I think not it is. Was just offering my experience, jeepers creepers....... hmm

InsaneDame Sun 17-Apr-16 20:44:23

In response to BertrandRussell ^^

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