Do you have potty mouth?

November 19, 2012 | By | Comments (57)

My kids are shocked too.

As I get older, I’ve noticed that my language has been getting worse. I’m not sure if I’ve been listening to too many Jack Palms audiobooks by Seth Harwood, or if I’m just getting too lazy in my “old age” to find something more creative or descriptive.

I’m also not afraid to admit that there is something very satisfying about dropping the F-bomb.

Of course my children still consider the S word (stupid) and D word (dumb) to be verboten so you can imagine their reaction when mommy accidentally throws out a string of expletives that would make Tony Soprano blush.

I know I should stop swearing and have considered some of the ideas I’ve found online including using a swear jar to collect money each time I curse (there are several available on Etsy including this one from EngravingByT), or replacing curse words with alternatives.

I’m just not sure “Really?” is going to be quite as satisfactory a response as “You’ve got to be sh***ing me!”

One of my colleagues at work has a strategy of replacing curse words with equally satisfying replacement words. For example, someone I may describe as an “a-hole” is a “jack wagon.” A camper I used to know would call people “Humperdincks” instead of something more explicit.

It’s certainly not very professional for me to have such a potty mouth, so I’m going to do my best to clean things up.

What words do you use to avoid potty mouth?


  1. Meredith

    My seven-year-old dropped something this morning and said “Oh… crackers!” It made me laugh so hard that I’ve decided to adopt it for myself.

    November 19, 2012 at 10:55 am
  2. Jen T

    Krisin – I’m with you. I don’t have the time or energy to think of something more creative and I really do like some “curse” words. They give emphasis! And really, if I’m not calling someone something, is it really that bad to say those words? I mean, who says they are naughty?

    November 19, 2012 at 10:56 am
  3. Shannan McClain

    I think many of us struggle with this. I find myself saying the stupidest things (and stupid is a curse word in our home!). Son of a snapping turtle is probably my strangest thing I say… I have no idea where it came from! All we can do is our best to protect their little ears at home! Heaven knows they hear enough out in ‘the world’!

    November 19, 2012 at 12:44 pm
  4. richard dinaso

    just stop it!
    choose to stop!!

    November 19, 2012 at 12:50 pm
  5. Brittany

    I know I find shaking a little old lady fist in the air just as satisfying as flipping the bird…

    November 19, 2012 at 3:02 pm
  6. Julie

    I really like to curse and completely agree there is something that feels freeing about dropping the F bomb; however, I do curse too much in certain situations where I should control myself. I try to substitute the S word with Sugar and the F bomb with Fudgemuffins. Yeah, it’s a food theme I guess.

    November 20, 2012 at 8:21 am
  7. Debbie Baechle

    I learned to curse on the golf course. I raised five great children and now have ten wonderful grandchildren and my language is awful. I really try to keep it clean while the kids are around, but when I am with the girls I become a sailor! It does feel good sometimes however!

    November 27, 2012 at 12:01 pm
  8. Cheryl

    My go to is “son of a sushi”, whatever that means. When I do let my potty mouth go off around my kid (usually in the car at other drivers) I laugh and tell her “I am such a bad role model…you shouldn’t hang out with me so much”. She just laughs and says she knows what not to say unlike her mom.

    November 28, 2012 at 12:02 pm
  9. Addie

    I do have a rather extensive vocabulary. So when I feel the need to go that route, I usually use long words that they don’t know the meaning of and are not sure if they were told off or not. I love the look on their face as I walk off. Try learning a new long convoluted word of insult each day and use it throughtout the day until you get it down pat.

    December 7, 2012 at 2:25 pm
  10. Linda

    That’s stupid and immature.

    December 8, 2012 at 9:06 pm
  11. MaggieM

    OR- as my precious Southern grandmother would say “Stuck in a ditch!” It gets the job done without lowering oneself ( thanks for the good example, Nanaw)

    December 10, 2012 at 2:24 pm
  12. Anna

    I have always thought that the fact I cussed like a sailor was not a bg deal since I didn’t do it in business situations. However, recently I was out with a group of couples and found out they didn’t like one of the women because of her cursing. I brought it up to my boyfriend who has commented quite a few times about the fact he raised his grown sons not to cuss. He’s twenty-five year old son had made the comment that I was really a good person, but that I had a “Potty Mouth”. I was mortified. I’m now going back to the old classics of “Bless Your Heart”, and trying desperately to find an intelligent word to replace my F Bombs with. Wish me luck.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:40 pm
  13. Ettie

    Myth Busters demonstrated that using curse words (as opposed to close-sounding words) enables people to endure more pain, so real curse words are proven to actually release more emotion. I too am trying to curb my curse words because I have a 13-month old who will soon copy my words; also, my husband hates it when I curse. It is embarrassing how much I struggle with this habit. My solution is to try to meditate/pray to attempt to increase my patience and use the same phrase (Holy Buckets!) over and over—so I reach for it first before “Ohh…SH**T!”

    December 12, 2012 at 11:53 pm
  14. Kay

    I have found over my life time of being around certain people who curse it quite frequently is because they are angry over something not neccessarly related to the current event. Swearing is a sign to me that I’m angry about something and either do something calmly about it or accept it…

    December 14, 2012 at 3:27 pm
  15. Mrs. No-Swear

    hello every last one of you is so pathetic — swearing is simply a sign of weakness. When you feel infuriated with something/someone, swear words are the first that comes to mind for the weak.
    However, the strong minded like me can handle just about anything….and still not swear. Self-control. Its not a habit, don’t even try and say that “you can’t get stop saying the curse words” b/c we all know its not true. ANyone can stop if they set themselves too — and matured a little. Its a TERRIBLE influence for the younger generations.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:07 pm
  16. Lisa

    Mrs. No-Swear:
    It’s people like you that make it difficult for the rest of us to find non-curse words to accurately describe :)

    December 23, 2012 at 3:37 pm
  17. Mrs. No-Swear

    Shut up lisa

    December 23, 2012 at 11:21 pm
  18. Beverly Keenan (I’ll bet that was a surprise)

    My language was driven snow through the years of motherhood. My kids corrupted me.

    December 24, 2012 at 6:31 pm
  19. RJ Coatney

    My language has also gotten worse over the years. I was in the army and was married to a drill sergeant so you can imagine the language that I heard all around me. I tried to make sure it was kept clean around my girls and fortunately we had no boys to carry on the swearing. When I felt like swearing I used “son of a sea-goin’-sailor” which I learned from a friend. For the F word it was “foo-bar” and for the S word we use a made-up word such as “shize-ola” or something similiar. Even still, I do let the occasional “F” bomb drop when I get really angry, especially when the teen-age grandson I am raising decides to steal, lie, and argue about it. (Yes, we are in counseling for him.) My girls knew what words they could and could not use (as does my grandson) and they didn’t use them until well into adulthood. It’s a matter of parenting.

    December 26, 2012 at 6:27 pm
  20. Nan

    Wow Mrs. No Swear! Saying “Shut Up” is so much more mature than swearing!!

    December 27, 2012 at 8:12 am
  21. Grace

    EXACTLY, Nan!! Mrs. No-Swear is a pompous, self-righteous “word that rhymes with witch”. I loathe people who think they are SO much better than other people, especially when they’re hypocrites to boot!

    I’m a 60-year-old mother of 3, grandmother of 6, who drops the occasional F-bomb when nothing else works as well. I just try not to use it very often, because it loses its impact with overuse. But words are just words, and as long as I don’t use them around my kids or grandkids, and as long as my husband is willing to put up with me (he wouldn’t say the S-word if he had a mouthful of it).

    Mrs. No Swear, the way you judge others is just as obscene as the words they use. Get off your high horse.

    December 29, 2012 at 4:31 pm
  22. Alfred the Great

    i love to swear

    December 30, 2012 at 4:30 pm
  23. Linda(supporter of Mrs. No-Swear)

    Hello guys. In this world of today don’t you think we should watch our mouths in view of our children growing up and being the next generation in this beautiful world? I think that Mrs. No-Swear has a point. I have a 6 year old and want her to grow up like a child should…not how you must be dragging your kids up with that language.

    December 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm
  24. Linda

    Alfred the Great:
    I would like you to smarten up…i happen to know you personally…we went to school together back in grade 12 i think…(my it was a long time ago)… and think that you should set an example because of your age.

    December 30, 2012 at 9:38 pm
  25. Alfred the Great

    when you get to my age it doesn’t even matter so leave me be Linda!

    December 30, 2012 at 9:43 pm
  26. Alfred the Great

    yeah i remember you! you were always spiritual like that!

    December 30, 2012 at 9:44 pm
  27. Linda

    I am not that word you called me…please…this dosn’t link to what we are talking about..! Don’t you care about your 8 children and 10 grandchildren that you have an influence on?

    December 30, 2012 at 9:47 pm
  28. Linda

    You got nothing to say to that? Seems like it. Oh well some day the world will change…for better.

    December 30, 2012 at 9:52 pm
  29. No Swear

    Hahaha you guys are so pathetic…..especially you GRACE! For one you have never met me so HOW just HOW do u think you can call me a self-righteous bitch? (BTW thats the first time i’ve ever said or even typed that word)…And furthermore why the hell would you take after your husband who obviously has his head screwed on, the poor guy why did he marry you?!?!?!?!? I must say a 60 yr old women with grandchildren and all should be past the stage of swearing, and especially past the F bomb stage…i tell u its barely passable and down right immature.
    By the way Grace, I got off my high horse a LOOOONG time ago, back in grade 11, the horse has been tied and cleaned ever since i was a wee tot….so sorry, i ain’t got no more horses to get off, and besides it sounds as though someone by name grace needs to start acting her age and stop ridiculing others…. :):)
    I expect a fairly firey response to this one!!

    December 31, 2012 at 9:20 am
  30. No Swear

    Hey ettie
    shit is spelled with one ‘i’

    December 31, 2012 at 9:23 am
    • Kay

      Miss No Swear, and to anyone else who doesn’t seem to want to add something constructive to this conversation. All I can say is, Bless Your Hearts. I’m really working on not swearing. Which is what I thought this thread was about, and not personal attacks.

      December 31, 2012 at 1:32 pm
  31. Linda

    Mrs. No-Swear:
    Get ahold of your self! First you say that you are against swearing and then you swear. Are you even 100% ?!? I think that you should think before you speak!!!

    December 31, 2012 at 1:27 pm
  32. Mrs. No Swear

    Ok fine i guess i’ll be a new person now……nobody likes me……….now i feel all sad inside……. :( :( :(
    I assure u that the last time i checked i WAS a 100%!!!! PROMISE!!!!!!!!!
    Good bye everyone and swear to your hearts content!!!!!!! :):)

    December 31, 2012 at 1:58 pm
  33. Alfred the Great

    three blind mice see how they run….,

    December 31, 2012 at 7:49 pm
  34. C Aquila

    I just plain do NOT see how swearing could make you feel better?! Do you not feel smitten when you drop the F-bomb?! I’m not trying to make you feel bad but to Mrs. No Swear, Linda and Alfred the Great…i suggest you act your age!!!

    January 1, 2013 at 12:39 pm
  35. C Aquila

    Meredith…I love the new phrase ;)

    January 1, 2013 at 12:41 pm
  36. Joyce

    One of my sons first words was the s-word!!! Does that say something about me or my husband?!

    January 1, 2013 at 12:43 pm
  37. Alfred the Great

    your husband needs to judge himself

    January 1, 2013 at 12:59 pm
  38. Mrs. No Swear

    Wow joyce that is so not something u should be proud of. U should be ashamed.

    January 1, 2013 at 1:14 pm
  39. Mrs. No Swear

    Hey lissen plise little aquilla — u know that i act my age 24/7 and just need to make it plan and clear that i am not the swearing, weak, immature type.
    You know me, come ON!!!!!!!

    January 1, 2013 at 1:26 pm
  40. Madrileña06

    I admit that I have a potty mouth. I am trying to change it, but it can be difficult to do sometimes. I want to change because I am a junior high teacher and I’m afraid of dropping an F Bomb or any other word I wouldn’t say in front of my own parents or mother-in-law. I try to set good examples for my “kids” and foul language is not one of them. Happy New Year!

    January 1, 2013 at 1:32 pm
  41. Mrs. No Swear

    That is the attitude Ms. M lady!!! (sorry but your name is confusing) Very good, and that would make an EXCELLENT new years resolution!! :) :)

    January 1, 2013 at 1:35 pm
  42. Jasmine09

    I’ve been trying hard to quit saying the F-bomb and many other swear words that slip out a little too often! Any tips???

    January 2, 2013 at 6:56 pm
  43. Linda

    okay i’m glad that everyone is getting encouraged….happy new years…!!! pls do your best and find other words to use…!! goodbye all.

    January 2, 2013 at 7:18 pm
  44. Kristin Brandt

    As you can imagine, I have found the comments on this post to be really interesting.

    Call me stupid or immature if you must, but I do appreciate the suggestions people have had for swear-alternatives (and can’t believe I missed that episode of Mythbusters). I continue to work on cleaning up my language!

    January 2, 2013 at 8:05 pm
  45. !!!!!!!

    Keep it up Kristin! Of course nobody is calling u stupid or immature. I still every now & again have to polish my own vocab b/c of the foulness that escapes occasionally!!! :|

    January 2, 2013 at 10:45 pm
  46. Gabby

    Irrisistable topic!
    I do believe it is a good sign when unwholesome language from one’s own mouth bothers the conscience; nice to know it’s not just me!
    So, swearing being a learned behaviour means that it is a habit that can be broken.
    For me, the principle of substitution works, “Fine!” being my personal favorite.
    I find the single syllable, said with vehemence, to be very satisfying:)
    Because early speech patterns tend to return under stress, I personally have experienced swearing without intending to or even hearing myself .
    We were being followed by two creeps and my friend remarked on it as I was frantic and being chased in our vehicle.
    My other two favorite substitutes are “Sons of biscuits!” and “Buckwheat!”
    Thanks for a neat little article, Kristin, and for making me smile!

    January 7, 2013 at 4:40 am
  47. Carolyn

    If one has an adequate vocabulary one does not need to use foul language. You can substitute things like (fiddlesticks) for BS (bologna soup). When we lived overseas, I learned the phrase Dumb s—-t, but only when driving. It’s taken a while to be eliminated from my vocabulary.

    January 7, 2013 at 1:42 pm
  48. Lindsey

    Mrs. No Swear, I seriously thought you were kidding in your first post. As a piece of satire, it really works.

    I agree with those who say that one doesn’t “need” to swear if you have a decent vocabulary. But who says you can’t swear just because it feels good? I consider myself to be bilingual. I can swear when I want to and turn it off when I need to (most of the time). Am I a little worried my kids will pick up my naughty little habit? Sure. Would it be the end of the world? Probably not. There are worse habits to pass on. Like internet trolling, for example.

    January 8, 2013 at 9:05 pm
  49. mamsmd

    I too have a sailor mouth, and actually have tried so many times to stop. My kids think shut-up, stupid, fat and dumb, as well as moron, idiot and fool are bad words, yet I drop F and S bombs. What does that teach my kids? That I am a hypocrite and don’t practice what I preach? No, it reminds them that I am imperfect, just like them. Sorry folks, this is a fallen world and we are all depraved so ALL of us are hypocrites whether it’s with this or something else (the prophet Jeremiah said “The heart is wicked beyond measure, who can fathom it?”); HOWEVER we are called to perfection as Christ was perfect. We will fail and that is why God gives us grace and mercy. We should do the same with each other (give grace, mercy and forgiveness).

    I believe it is wrong (“Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouth…” “WHat comes from your mouth shows the true color of your heart…” Biblical writers had it right all along. Really? to the person that asked “who says it’s wrong?” ALL of society with or without morals says it’s wrong, as does every single faith and religion!!) and truly, it is ugly, crude and very base. So I for one will continue to clean up this toilet bowl.

    My favorite alternative is from Buddy the Elf: Son of a Nutcracker!

    January 11, 2013 at 3:33 pm
  50. raven43

    I went shopping with my girlfriend when I met a former fellow graduate student. After I greeted him with a FEW words, my girl friend beamed and informed that I “had been saved”. My former colleague replied: “I noticed. She cleaned up her language.”
    Anyone interested in my evangelizing girlfriend’s address?

    January 12, 2013 at 8:05 am
  51. EthelEtta

    My favorite no-swear word is Booger! Say it… you can’t possibly get in trouble.

    January 12, 2013 at 10:36 pm
  52. Ed loren

    A word I use from time to time that makes people laugh is “shapoopie” and then there is the old, ” go FROG yourself” that helps diffuse the F bomb much of the time. Personally I don’t have a problem when someone slips and curses, it is part of human nature. I just want to clean up my own vocabulary. It really is about choices, and working on them. Best of luck to everyone out there! I will use the ” stuck in the ditch” one, that is a great substitute! Thanks Nanna!!!

    January 18, 2013 at 9:16 am
  53. Dedicated To Jeff (The Potty Mouth) And Benoit (The Bee) And All The Other Pesky People Of Cyber Space | Archemdis's Blog

    […] Do you have potty mouth? ( […]

    January 20, 2013 at 12:53 am
  54. Sam

    I try using “son of a bee sting” in lieu of “son of a $&@?!.” Still looking for a suitable f-bomb substitute….

    January 23, 2013 at 5:24 am
  55. Myrna

    I try not to curse at all. I do when I feel sudden pain from hitting or bumping into something. I work at a body shop and my boss drops the F word non stop , constant all day. It drives me insane. I have tried to get used to it, but I can’t. Weekends are specially peaceful, DON’T have to hear any cursing!!!! I wish he could hear how low and vulgar it sounds. Someone said it’s a sign of weakness. I truly believe it is.

    March 10, 2013 at 12:53 am
  56. Edwina Gillman

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    May 27, 2013 at 12:08 am

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