I can only remember 1 word being officially off limits in my household as a kid. It was the F word. Our family’s F word was not THE F word. I had never even heard THAT F word before (and wouldn’t until I was a teen). Our F Word was “Fart”. I have no idea why my mother banned that word, but we never dared speak it. Instead, we had to call it a “Froggie”. Again, no idea why. Made no sense to me as a kid and none to me now.
So, as a kid, my list was short & weird. The current list of words off-limits for our household seems to grow weekly. A first grader brings home a lot of words. A spouse that works in a manufacturing plant brings home a lot more words.
For each word off-limits, we’ve discussed why it’s inappropriate and what alternative words we might use instead. (Name calling is off limits and there is no alternative word choice).
Our current list:
Shut-up = Please stop or be quiet
Loser = Falls under the no name calling rule
Retard/Retarded = Usually, the word silly or goofy fits here.
Stupid = Falls under the no name calling rule or use “not thinking”
Fat = Unhealthy
Hate = Dislike
Jerk = Not nice
Fart Head = (gasp!) Falls under the no name calling rule
Idiot = Uneducated
Jesus Christ! = Holy Cow! or Oh my!
Whenever a word from the list is used by any member of the family, we all call them on it. There is no jar of penalty pennies etc. In our house, a stern look and mild blast of guilt works just fine.
You may have noticed our official list doesn’t include cuss words, we haven’t had to deal with that yet. I’m sure it’s just around the corner though. Holy Cow, it will probably happen when some not nice, not thinking, uneducated, person doesn’t know when to be quiet around our kids. That type of person would probably froggie in front of them too! Oh my.
I’m hosting the link today where my blogger friends have written on the same topic. Please check out their thoughts on the off-limits words in their households. Maybe there are a few we should all add?
Photo Credit: Greg Johnson