OK, OK, just relax. Don’t be fooled by the title- it would be impossible for me to completely eliminate my use of profanity. In my opinion, even the F-word has its place, and I am a firm believer that using the precise, calculated speckling of expletives can only enhance your storytelling. For real. Sometimes, the perfect drop of the word a$$hole makes a narrative go from ho-hum to hilarious. However, one can over do things, and there is a time and place for all epithets.
So why the sudden desire to curb my F-bombs, you ask? Let me tell you a little story about my day yesterday.
While my six year old was getting ready for school in her bedroom, I struggled to get my toddler’s socks on. While I stretched and pulled, I casually commented, “These aren’t going on worth a shit!” (I often take full advantage of my oldest child’s absence in an effort to integrate as many non-emergency swear words into my dialogue as possible.)
“Shhhhttttt.” Sophie parroted.
Shit is right. Oops!
Later that evening, I sat at the kitchen table with my husband, while Sophie messed around with the cheese pizza on her highchair tray. Izzy was outside playing, having already finished her dinner. I bit into the side of my mouth- hard. “Fuck!” I swore, tasting blood.
Then, clear as a bell, came my toddler’s sweet voice, “FUCK!” Every single consonant was articulated crisply, leaving no question of what word she had just uttered.
It’s over. We have officially reached the end of the “Safe Swearing” period. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I go out of my way to use profanity around Sophie, but, given her age, I have felt that thus far I could get away with cursing in front of her without any ill consequences.
The Shit Ship has officially sailed at my house.
It’s time for me to make a concerted effort to find alternatives to my old buddies, F, S, JC, and GD.
“For Christ’s sake” is probably out, too.
May I present:
- I’ve found that “For crying out loud!” works nicely as an alternative to “For Christ’s sake.” It’s honestly almost as satisfying. The only problem is, when my six year old says it, it kind of sounds like she’s swearing.
- The other day, I became flustered while driving, and unexpectedly, out popped the word “Duckface.” Not sure how it happened exactly, but I realized it was a nice blend of “F*ckface” and “D*ckface”. Try it.
- I use the word “Monkey” instead of swearing a lot. Variations include, “Son of a Monkey!”, “Mother of Monkeys!” or simply, “Monkeys!” (Except once when Sophie pooped on the bathroom floor and in a moment of chaos, I burst out with the word “Shitmonkey!” So close.)
- Try on the old Will Ferrell Elf classic- “Son of a Nutcracker!” Deeply satisfying.
- We often say, “Mr. Pa-dinky!” when one of us stubs a toe, falls down, or drops something. Don’t hate on it until you’ve tried it.
OK, I’m all ears! In the comments, tell me what favorite expressions you use during times of stress and frustration! (I would love to hear your helpful suggestions for non-swear words, as well as your favorite curse words, too! I’m not a prude, after all…)
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