We all accidentally swear in front of our kids. You’ve done it. I’ve done it.

We all do it.

Shoot happens. But I will say, through the years, I’ve tried relentlessly to use substitute swear words in front of my kids. Unfortunately, when something happens that’s out of my control……I panic. I forget. I temporarily lose “mommy” control. And although I want the oh-so-satisfying profanities to release themselves into the wild, I catch myself. And I try NOT to say THAT eff-in WORD at the last minute.

For example:

* When I ran downstairs recently, took one wretched whiff and realized my dog had gone #2 loosely all over the family room rug, my kids heard me scream, then shout, “SHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHhhhhh

UUUUUUUGGGGAR.”

* When I burned myself on my daughter’s cute mini cupcake maker, (which I swear was modeled after Arrested Development’s illegal-in-the-U.S. Cornballer machine) my kids might hear: “HOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLL

LLYYYYYYYY

SHHHHHHHHH

HHHHHuuuugar” spew out of my mouth.

* When I hit my elbow (for the umpteenth time) on the corner of the kitchen counter, all they hear is:

“Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuu

uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu

uuuuuddddge.”

These words are incredibly lame. I know this. But they must be used….most of the time at least. Or else my children would think their mother is indeed a sailor.

Other favorite phrases in my house that my grandmother frowns at, but I think are passable for good parenting?

– “For the love of…… Christmas”

– “Dang it”

– “Jinkies”(Courtesy of Scooby Doo!)

– “Beetle juice”

– “Flippin'”

– “O M Goodness”

– “Mother of Pearl”

– “Praise Jeebus” (thanks to Homer Simpson)

– “Fahrvergnügen”

– “Holy Tamale”

– And my personal favorite…”Son of a……”

I’m not an idiot. I know my kids don’t live under a rock. I get that they recognize REAL swear words. They watch PG and PG-13 movies (from the 1980’s, mind you) sometimes. It’s all about the ear-muffs, right? When they hear a bad word, my husband and I will warn them, “Ear-muff it, kids. If you accidentally hear it, NEVER use that word”. And they jokingly cover their ears. (Foot note: This method of parenting is courtesy of Vince Vaughn’s role in the movie Old School, thank you very much.)

But as long as I am their mother, I will keep trying! Gosh help me, I will keep trying.

For the record, when my daughter started talking, she had a difficult time putting T and R together. As you may have guessed, almost everything beginning with T or TH winds up sounding like F. This is not a good thing for a variety of reasons. Every time she would see a fire truck, my youngest child would shout out the F word, (and I’m not talking about flippin) repeatedly, for everyone to hear. And all my substitute phrases, along with my mommy pride, would fly out the window. Son of a, holy, for the love of…Mother of PEARL!!

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