No Cussing Allowed – An Open Letter to Cussers

Talking About Cussing - An open letter to cussers

My blog is a no cussing zone.  But some of my favorite blogs don’t have the same policy.  I wish they did.

Dear Cussers,

I really don’t know what else to call you.  Is “cusser” OK, or would you prefer “user of obscene language.”

Let’s stick with cusser.

Maybe it’s just me, but I really wish you would stop typing all four letters of all those cuss words.  Honestly, I can fill in the blanks for myself.

Maybe it’s because I from the south, but I was raised that ladies don’t cuss.

Since I cuss like a sailor in bad traffic (especially when the kids aren’t in the car), I’ve modified that rule.  I personally think it should be that ladies don’t cuss in writing.  Or on film.  Really, anywhere that it’s documented.

I love the rest of what you write.  I think you’re really funny.   But I have to read you in secret.  I worry that my children will glance at my screen and see exactly how to spell that word.

Right now, we’re holding firm on the cussing thing.

Unless daddy is driving, they really believe that the “s word” is STUPID.  They also the the “f word” is FAILURE.

I’m good with that.

I believe in holding firm.   When I taught High School Geometry, I wouldn’t let the kids say “suck” or “sux” – not because I was a prude but because I just didn’t want the attitude.  They learned to tell me that something existed in a vacuum instead.

There are now 120 adults who can properly spell the word “VACUUM” because I wouldn’t let them mis-spell suck.

I can live with that legacy.

so….

I’d like to issue you a challenge.

Instead of actually typing every single letter of a cuss word, I challenge you to write nothing stronger than “poot” or “sugar” – and still convey the same story.  It’s my belief that you can get your readers to cuss in their own minds without ever typing it.

Sometimes, the humble dot is all you need.

A string of them, all together to indicate the passage of time while words were quietly edited out.

My son was in the principals office today for using what the school called “salty language” but I’d call cussing.  I was so… …. … mad that I wanted to spit.

See?  No actual cussing happened.  It happened offscreen.  But you heard it.

Sometimes, it’s ok to substitute for a similar, less “salty” phrase.

My son was in the principals office today for using what the school called “salty language” but I’d call cussing.  I was so… flipping mad that I wanted to spit.

Again, the slight pause contributes.  You know I wasn’t really thinking “flipping” but what I typed remained “salt free.”

Sometimes, you just have to resort to the old cartoon standby.

My son was in the principals office today for using what the school called “salty language” but I’d call cussing.  I was so !@#$% mad that I wanted to spit.

In this case, you  have no idea what actual cuss word I might have had in mind, but you got the general idea.

Cussers, I’m serious about this.  Can you stop cussing?

If it isn’t funny with the cuss words deleted, then it wasn’t funny with them in.

I challenge you to take your writing to the next level and find a way to cuss without actually cussing.

Check back and let me know how that works for you, OK?

Care to express yourself? Do you cuss on social media?  Do you follow those who do?

[author] [author_image timthumb='on']http://thishappymom.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/DSC_0036.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Houston Mom Blogger Susan Baker has a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood. She has two elementary school boys, one engineering husband, and one cat. She has a thing for eggs, socks, and coffee.[/author_info] [/author]

Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

Latest posts by Susan Baker (see all)

Comments

  1. I’m with you. I try so hard NOT to use salty language; occasionally, it slips. I’m not perfect.

    I definitely don’t and won’t use that language in my blogs or in my Twitter or Facebook. No, I wasn’t raised in the South, but I don’t think it matters. Ladies don’t need to use that kind of language and neither do gentlemen. No matter their ages!

    People think I’m a prude. That’s fine. I’d rather they think that than something else, kwim?

  2. Very interesting post. Stopping by from SITS. I don’t actually use curse words on my blog, but I am not opposed to them either. And I think if I found myself in a situation where I was writing something that truly needed a word stronger than “sugar” I would use it. I will say that it does not detract me from reading blogs I enjoy. I think it just makes someone authentic and real, which is the reason I am reading them in the first place, most likely.
    thedoseofreality recently posted..Open Letter To Jessica Simpson…AgainMy Profile

    • I’ve always objected to sugar. And I find it ironic that we say “sugar” as a substitute for salty language.

      Honestly, I think I’ve said about all I can say in comments on this subject. I can (and probably will) write an entirely new post on the subject.

  3. I don’t use any curse words on my blog (sorry, I cannot use the word ‘cuss’), but it is not at all a deal breaker for me to see it on some one else’s blog. As long as they write well otherwise, that’s all I care about!
    On the other hand, it’s wonderful that your boys still don’t know the F word. My elder one learned it from older kids at his school a year ago! :(
    Roshni recently posted..‘And that was against the rules’My Profile

    • Roshni, “cuss” is probably a Southern colloquialism. I grew up hearing it, so it’s a natural word for me. However, I can understand that “curse” is more accurate and closer to Oxford English. If we wanted to be fancy, we could use expletive. Regardless of the term used, I think we all know what we mean.

      I suspect my kids know some vocabulary words I wish they didn’t know. They just have the common sense not to use them around adults. The reality is that our kids learn stuff we wish they didn’t know. All we can do is help them put that “stuff” into perspective.
      susan recently posted..Mr Picky and the Peas – Epic BattleMy Profile

  4. Phew, it’s done. My formal response to your open letter above.
    The Cussing Police
    What say you?
    Leah recently posted..The Cussing PoliceMy Profile

    • Leah, I have carline and soccer today. I can give you a fully focused and articulate response when the kids are down. Until then… I’m so sorry that I can’t respond to your post in the thoughtful manner that it deserves.

  5. I mentioned that creating a “Sailor Alert” graphic was on my to-do list this week – well, after yesterday’s discussion I felt compelled to get that accomplished.

    May I introduce my new site mascot, Salty the Sailor (you can call him Magnus – I do.)He’s really swell. He’s dedicated his whole life to keeping everyone on “high alert” if there should be a b-a-d word on my blog. Come meet him. Say “Hi!” and don’t worry – there are no swears on Salty’s page.
    Leah recently posted..Meet Salty the Sailor, You Can Call Him MagnusMy Profile

  6. great post babe…I think it really opens up great discussion. I have an alternate twitter and write fan fiction with lots of curses, but have pulled away from that but do need to finish the stories.

    Since I have started blogging again, I have found that I curse less and need to model for my son how to be a proper and good man. I want him to be able to express himself without cursing. I won’t accept negative comments about other people, so then I can’t accept cursing them.

    • Cuss: An annoying or stubborn person or animal: “he was certainly an unsociable cuss”. Also, informal word for curse.(free online dictionary)

      Curse: A solemn utterance to invoke a supernatural power to inflict harm or punishment on someone or something. (same source)

      Puts it in perspective for me.

      • I use the word curse for it all, I know it’s not proper, but we include to be the cussing and derogatory words. Does that make sense? LOL don’t want you to think I am moron, LOL

        I should refer to it as a “mean or uneducated words” when son gets older.
        karen recently posted..Organizng Dinosaur’s RoomMy Profile

        • I love that you use the word “curse” because that’s what it is. Referring to is as cussing (in Southern it’s more like cussin’) softens the blow. Cussin’ someone out sounds normal and almost fun. Cursing someone sounds… serious. It’s a great way to refocus the discussion back to the original objection to the words.

  7. Such diverse and interesting views of swearing. Reminds me of an old joke…
    “Have some Irish in ya?”
    “No.”
    “Want some?”
    Bahahahahwhwhahaha

    Should you cuss or shouldn’t you cuss on your blog? Should you cuss or shouldn’t you cuss on social media? If you do cuss, how much is okay and when do you cross the line? Where is that line and who gets to decide where the line is? Are some words okay and others off limits? Is swearing in a another language ok?
    Poo vs Crap vs S4i† vs ….
    Well fear not, this cussing blogger will give you my point on all these questions in my post tomorrow. PLUS I will be introducing everyone to my new mascot “Salty the Sailor”. Salty will be there like a beacon of morality to warn everyone, “Ahoy! There be swearing in these here waters! Abandon ship if ye must, ya prim and proper blow-hole!”

    And just because I can’t help myself – and I’m sure I’m not the only one thinking it – “Guess who’s coming to dinner” is no where near as funny as “Knock, Knock Mother F’er.” It. Just. Isn’t. Sorry, Susan.
    Leah recently posted..Tuscan White Bean Dip RecipeMy Profile

  8. {Melinda} Like I tell my teenage daughter, swearing really doesn’t elevate your argument or opinion. In reality, it distracts from it. Of course, in my house growing up, butt was a dirty word. And, yes, I’ve become my mother. :)
    Mothering From Scratch recently posted..You’ve been warnedMy Profile

    • Holly Jahangiri
      Twitter:
      says:

      Are you kidding? The only phrase of Chinese I can remember without crib notes is…well, not nice.

      Doesn’t everyone learn the naughty words first when learning a new language? I think the most creative is German. You can just string a bunch of them together to form a whole new concept in scatalogical description.

      In French, it just sounds like a string of endearments.

      • Holly, is cussing in ways the common person can’t understand any more acceptable? I guess that would go back to the reason one refrains from cussing in the first place.

        For those who are motivated by an internal standard (perhaps because they think it is a sin) then cussing in a different language would be just as unacceptable.

        For those who are motivated by a desire to comply with social standards and not offend, then cussing in a foreign language would be a fun and entertaining way to flaunt the rules without getting in trouble.

        But even within the English language, there are some cuss words (CR–) that are much more tolerated than others (the notorious F bomb that Mr Cheney indulged in on the senate floor).

        For those who are not cussing based on a moral standard, is it any different to cuss in our heads but not have the words come out?
        susan recently posted..No Cussing Allowed – An Open Letter to CussersMy Profile

    • I can tolerate butt (although my mother can’t). Personally I use “that’s stupid” as normal conversation. It wasn’t a swear when I was growing up, but our school now treats it as such.

      So apparently, what qualifies as a cuss is subjective. Hmmmm…

      Are we really just talking about the F bomb, or are there other words that are shocking to see in print?
      susan recently posted..No Cussing Allowed – An Open Letter to CussersMy Profile

  9. New question – are you a cussing snob? Are some cuss words acceptable while others are forbidden? Or do you only cuss in a foreign language?
    susan recently posted..Fertilization and Ice Cream – My Kids Make Me LaughMy Profile

  10. Holly Jahangiri
    Twitter:
    says:

    ::strolls in singing, “It’s my blo-og and I’ll cuss if I want to, cuss if I want to, cuss if I want to…you would cuss too if it happened to YOUuuuuuu!”::

    Don’t you just love Leslie Gore? I know, I know. I’m no Leslie Gore and I ought to sing solo more often – solo you can’t hear me. Or maybe tenor. Tenor eleven miles away.

    I once got my hand slapped on writing.com (by one of the WORST offenders in the cussing department, I might add) for using the word “@#$%!” (Yes, the TOS says “no using substitution cuss words in G-rated forums,” but hey – I was just quoting Donald Duck, okay? Well, no, NOT okay, apparently… Flaming and hilarity ensued, and somehow I ended up being made a Moderator over there, once I agreed to play nice and keep my @#$%! out of the G-rated forums.) So @#$%! won’t always keep you out of trouble.

    I had this discussion with my DAD a few weeks ago on Facebook. First, he promised not to judge back when we Friended each other. (I’d argue that “Friended,” as a verb, is a MUCH worse “f word” than whatever it was you had in mind.) Second, he failed to take context into account, or to express concern over the real issues that had driven me and my daughter to talking like Merchant Marines. I think it’s fair to raise an eyebrow at the language, but only if you also bother to read what’s been said. Otherwise, you don’t get a vote.

    I can see the counterargument, of course – nice people are so offended by cuss words they tune out and miss the more important message that comes with them. I get that. Sometimes, the message isn’t aimed at the more sensitive audience members. (For example, I wouldn’t dream of cussing in a children’s book, but if I wrote erotica without mentioning – well, you get the idea – THOSE readers would be bored and boring my readers is unacceptable – it’s beyond the pale!!)

    Speaking of children’s books, I have cleaned up my act considerably since having two of them published. My own children are past following my example either way (they talk like their peers, and I’m not even sure whether half the slang would be considered a cuss word or a polite expression of disdain), but now I have other young readers to consider. Yours, maybe. So – one blog is definitely a cuss-free zone. I make no promises on the other – the one linked above – ESPECIALLY in an election year. (Why yes, I DO hold our politicians to higher standards than I sometimes exhibit!)

    I had one forum owner I worked for, years ago – he ran GEnie’s Writers’ Ink RoundTable – and he had two major requirements:

    1 – that we could all properly SPELL the “f word”; and

    2 – that we could construct the proper plural possessive – it was “Writers’ Ink” not “Writer’s Ink.”

    I do believe there’s a time and a place, but your point is well taken and I can certainly respect your rules when I’m “under your roof,” so to speak. I can only TRY harder under mine, but I make no promises. :)

    • Holly, the follow on to Leslie’s single was “It’s Judy’s Turn to Cry.” She went and kissed another boy and stole Johnny back from Judy. And then she dumped Johnny.

      There’s a lesson to learn from that if you want to. Or not.

      In summary:
      1. You place a high value on basic literacy (spelling and punctuation matter).
      2. You want to have intelligent discussions about ideas in context, not banter slogans and sound bites.

      I can agree with those.

      I can also agree that you certainly have a right to use whatever language you choose on your own blog. I’d fight for your right to cuss on your URL, and I hope you know that.

      You object (rightly) to people so intent on taking offense that they see one little %$# and can’t stay around to get a sense of the context or the idea being conveyed… particularly when they then decide to write about the @%$@ that was written without ever having read the entire thing.

      Wait… we’re supposed to READ stuff before we have an opinion about it? Are you serious? Where’s the fun in that?

      I find the arbitrary banning of punctuation and cuss analogs curious. Did they also ban innuendo or reference to violence? And does quoting objectionable material (even if it IS Donald Duck) make it any less objectionable?
      susan recently posted..An open letter to my spam friendMy Profile

      • Holly Jahangiri
        Twitter:
        says:

        I think cussing is a form of verbal punctuation. You may have noticed (hah!) if you’ve been reading my Facebook wall in this most dangerous, pre-election, contentious and, er, twitchy season, that the more I get my dander up, the more righteously indignant I become, the more seriously I want others to take me, the more prim and proper my writing gets. When I start to sound like a schoolmarm raised in a convent, you know I’m on the raw edge of angry. But the first rule of the flamewar: He who stoops to profanity first, loses. ;)

        I think it would be odd for certain characters in certain genres to speak like cloistered schoolmarms, although Hannibal Lecter was an interesting study in the possibilities.

        At any rate, I’m glad you understand where I’m coming from, and would defend my right to cuss on my own turf (we’re going to have your friends thinking I’m Miss Saltypants over there – you have no idea how I’m laughing right now, especially after my son read half of this over my shoulder and is now thinking, “What the heck??”)

        It’s odd, but I think, on the whole, the women in my family have always had more colorful vocabularies than the men, so while you may be right that “ladies shouldn’t cuss” (or as my Grandma used to say, “a lady wouldn’t say …. if she had a mouthful of it”), the fact is, ladies DO. Just imagine what those other women are like! 8-(

        • First of all, you don’t have to sound like a school marm just because you don’t cuss. You don’t think I sound like one do you?

          Secondly, cussing about politics is in a unique category. As is cussing in Houston traffic.

          In terms of character development, one of my favorite characters was actually MORE entertaining for the distinct lack of written swear. Go read (or watch) the Hogfather by Terry Pratchett. See?
          susan recently posted..Warning! Don’t Try This at Home – Social Media BlundersMy Profile

  11. I agree with most of what Jean said. I would prefer not to read cussing but an occasional word isnt a deal breaker. But if there’s too much or it’s too bad, I’ll pass. I don’t talk like that and I don’t like to read it.
    Patty recently posted..30-Minute Beef FajitasMy Profile

    • When you read the occasional cuss, are you mentally editing it out of the content? I’ve found myself doing exactly that – editing out the bad words and substituting with bleeps and “sound alike” words.

      But when I do that, the writing loses something. It’s no longer the piece the author intended it to be. (More like a Readers Digest Condensed version.) Is that wrong? When we do that are we doing an injustice to the writer?
      susan recently posted..The word “gullible” is in the dictionary.My Profile

  12. Did you post this on Talk like a Pirate Day on purpose? :) What an interesting post and discussion in the comments! I honestly have mixed feelings on this subject. I do not use cuss words in my blog posts because I made the decision to keep my blog rated “G” as I often have an 11 year old looking over my shoulder. However, I think the cussing in blogs is contextual and it’s my choice as a reader whether I continue to read that blog or not. While I’m not going to be offended to read the occasional cuss word in a blog, I’m most likely not going to continue reading if ever other word in a blog is a cuss word. A couple words for impact is one thing but every other word being a cuss word will turn me off. Generally if I decide to share a blog post on Facebook (no, I’m not on twitter yet but I’m working on it!), I’ll simply put a warning tag that it is not for the easily offended or the kiddos.

    • I didn’t remember that today was “talk like a pirate day” until AFTER I posted. You should know me well enough to know that I would have added some salty ARGH puns if I’d know. Maybe ARGHument or PARROTy.

      So you’re saying that there is, in your mind, a difference between someone who uses a bad word once in a blue moon as a way to emphasize strong emotions and someone who cusses routinely as part of their everyday pattern of speech.

      There’s a whole slippery slope conversation that I could go into. But since you probably know where that would lead, I’ll refrain.

      In terms of contextually appropriate cussing, what are the rules? Is it OK to cuss in a church building on a Tuesday but not on a Sunday morning? Is it OK to cuss on the football field but not the classroom of the school? Is it OK to say bad words during traffic jams, but not when you get out of the car?

      Who makes those rules and who is going to teach them to my children? What if MY rules aren’t the same as yours?

      Is it OK to refrain from using cusswords in the twitter feed, but link to a post that is laced with obscenity? How is that different than linking to a post filled with some other universally objectionable content that we all agree should be in our twitter feed? (The same argument applies to facebook newsfeed.)
      susan recently posted..My Kids Make Me Laugh – Ninja for GodMy Profile

  13. Touche my friend! You make some very valid points, but in the words of Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction, “Allow me to retort.”
    1. I think we both agree that cussing is an adult only activity and don’t condone or encourage our children to do so.
    2. I can understand how when you read cuss, you think cuss and then you speak cuss. It’s progressive. I get it.
    3. When it comes to Beyonce my favorite giant metal chicken…C’MON! You will never convince me that the “Knock Knock Mother F’er” caption could be replaced by anything else and even be as remotely funny (or capture the spirit of all of us women who have wanted to seek revenge of some kind on our husbands for telling us not to by anymore towels, socks, or whatever). That caption is priceless. It’s in your face. It’s unexpected – and the secret to a lot of humor is surprise.
    4. I’m sorry you don’t feel like you can share that post (or any cussing posts) with your mom (or others). Why feel the need to censor for them? Pretty sure your mom has seen and said a lot in her life. Let her decide for herself. Warn her if your conscience compels you to, but let the choice be hers. You never know, she just may end up buying a mini-metal chicken like I did to greet her guests at the front door.
    5. Finally, you make an interesting point about “editorial cussing”. Why don’t I edit out my swears when I write? The answer is simple: You can’t please all the people all the time. I feel like it would remove the passion, conversational tone, and intimacy I have with my readers if I were to edit out my swears. I see constant self-editing as part of the whole politically correct BS that is plaguing our country. Swearing or not swearing doesn’t make a one post better or worse than another – it just makes them different – and it is understanding our differences is what really bring us together.
    Leah recently posted..Clean Eating and the Stupidity of AmericansMy Profile

    • Lordy, I just reread my post after I hit the submit button. See what happens when you don’t proof? Sorry for the error. Sheesh. It’s enough to make you wanna cuss.
      Leah recently posted..Make My Monday Morning Blog HopMy Profile

    • 1. Agreed. Cussing is an adults only activity.


      2. Thanks for understanding that cussing is a slippery slope. Like lots of other fun adult activities.


      3. When I first read the story of Beyonce, it was shared on FB. I clicked through, but was not able to enjoy the art because of r-e-a-l-l-y s-l-o-w i-n-t-e-r-n-e-t (I think I threw my phone and said something that rhymed with a salty word over it to be honest.) The post was funny even without an actual photo of the rooster. Try “guess who’s coming to dinner” as a caption and see if it isn’t still funny.

      3b. The “in your face” thing is kind of my point. Remember when your kids first learned a toddler bad word (like tee tee or poot). They giggled every single time the word was said. Not because it was funny, but because it was naughty. Sometimes I think as adults we’re giggling at potty words because there’s a secret toddler inside that still thinks it’s funny. Just hang around a bunch of men who are pooting and see what I mean. Are we really laughing at the cussing posts because they are genuinely funny, or because they said a naughty word.

      3c. I’m not a big fan of Sponge Bob, no reason other than it annoys me. But I do remember an episode where he split his pants. The first time he did it, everyone was falling down laughing because it was genuinely funny. It was an unplanned slip, and it was legitimately humorous. By the end of the episode, he had run through about a dozen pairs of pants. He would get into an uncomfortable situation or decide he wanted some attention and *boom* he’d split his pants again. I think there’s a lesson there. Dropping the “f bomb” once can get us a huge spike in page views. So the next time we want our numbers to go up, we drop TWO of them. And the next thing you know, it’s in every post. Not because we need it, but because we forgot how to write without it.

      
4. I don’t feel the need to censor content for my mom or anyone else. My mom doesn’t cuss. She’s made it clear that she know what the words mean but that she won’t tolerate them. I respect her enough to not impose them on her. I offered to edit the chicken story for her, and she declined on principle. Same goes for several friends. Yes, there are people who have those kind of standards and genuinely live them. They aren’t weird, uptight, or creepy. They’re actually fun to be with, and I love them. I respect the choices they are making, so why would I mess up a friendship. Periodically, I tell them “hey, I read something really funny but it has cuss words” and they decline to read it.


      5. I’m not suggesting that you please everyone. If we all sounded the same the world would be a boring place. You SHOULD have your own voice, and you shouldn’t have to hold back and be politically correct out of fear of offending people. That’s silly. You say you cuss in real life and that it’s just part of being you. But do you cuss EVERYWHERE? Are there times when you don’t cuss, out of respect for someone else? Are you any less YOU because you aren’t cussing? Of course not. Can you still be passionate and conversational without sounding like a sailor? Of course you can.

      Do you really believe that cussing is what gives you authenticity of voice and credibility with your readers? If so, you are selling yourself short. You are a far better writer than that!
      susan recently posted..No Cussing Allowed – An Open Letter to CussersMy Profile

  14. As I said above, I do cuss from time to time. But I try not to. My kids watch me try not to. Sometimes, they hear me yell “sugar” really loud. Sometimes, they see me stand there with my hand over my mouth until I find other words to say. Sometimes, they seem me try not to cuss and end up cussing anyway.

    They know they are NOT allowed to cuss or use cuss substitutes. They understand why (because they don’t know time or place judgement) and they do pretty well at obeying.

    But then I go off and read cuss. And when I read cuss, I start thinking in cuss. When I think in cuss, I end up letting the cuss words fly out of my mouth like monkeys. And my kids see that too.

    Then they go off and do something they shouldn’t, and I’m left without a leg to stand on because I quit trying not to cuss and just gave in.

    I love the Bloggess. I adored her chicken story. I wish it didn’t have cussing in it so I could forward it to my mom… because my mom really deserves to know why I giggle helplessly every time we drive past the store that sells a giant metal rooster. I wish I could forward it to all my friends who failed to understand why I took photos of a giant metal rooster next to the 6 foot carved wooden bears when we were on vacation. But I can’t.

    My non-cussing friends will NEVER know the joy of giggling a a giant metal rooster and thinking about towels. The crime of that is that the story is just as funny without the “salty” language. I know it is, because I edited them out when I read the post aloud to my husband.

    Yes, you have a right to cuss. I love YOUR choice to not use those words on FB and Twitter and to gently warn your readers. That’s a great middle ground to take.

    Yes, the Bloggess has the right and ability to use whatever words she wants. Free speech is an awesome thing. I personally think she would be funnier if she didn’t cuss. But maybe that’s because the “trying not to cuss” thing resonates so strongly with me.

    In my mind, there is still a HUGE difference between “live cussing” – where it slips out of your mouth and you don’t have a chance to edit it out — and “intentional cussing” — you could edit it out and choose not too.

    Live cussing is, in my world, just going to happen. You have to yell something when you hammer your thumb.

    Intentional cussing is different. When cussing passes through the editor, I often wonder why. I’d love to know why you think cussing adds to one post but not another and why you think you lose authentic voice when you don’t cuss.
    susan recently posted..No Cussing Allowed – An Open Letter to CussersMy Profile

  15. My, oh my is this a great can of worms to open. Honest. I love and respect that you are sharing your view point on the whole cussing matter. If anyone out there has read my blog, Code Red Hat then you know I’m a cussing blogger. I could go into the whole freedom of speech thing and the right for someone to choose to opt out of reading my blog if the swearing offends them – but we are all smart adults here and that goes without saying. It is a risk I take. I know I could loose readers because I swear. I also know that other readers my be more loyal because I’m being, well, me. Authentic to the who I really am. It’s the way I talk – and I want my readers to know that I’m speaking to them like I would if we were face to face having a cup of coffee. I don’t think I’ve ever dropped an f-bomb on my blog, for me that is going to deep into the salty waters of the swearing pool. Other “colorful metaphors” are fair game as long as they are not used in an insulting or derogatory. way. This is my personal rule. I don’t swear on Facebook – I opt for the #$#@@! method described above. I have dropped a few swears on twitter (and by a few I mean less than .5% of my total tweets). Right at the top of my blog, next to my bio photo I tell my readers, “Sometimes I swear like a sailor – you’ve been warned.” Interestingly enough, creating a “Sailor Alert” graphic to place at the top of blog posts that contain curses is on my to-do list this week. I want to give my readers a heads-up that curses are coming their way if they continue to read, and allow them the choice to opt out of the post of they so choose.

    When it comes to my kids and any other kids that are around me – words like stupid, freakin’, flippin’, bull-snot, or any deviation of a swear or allusion to a swear are off limits. My kids have been hearing me cuss since they were babies. Let me be clear. I don’t swear at my children. They may hear me say, “$hi7!, I forgot we had to go to the bank!” but never, “Why are you being a $hi7?!!” It’s a fine line but an important distinction in my mind. My boys are 13 and 9 now, and I know that my 13 year old swears – but he has never done it in front of me – and actually – he refuses to. I have explained to the boys since they were babies that adults get to swear because they are old enough to know the time and place to swear, children, do not have enough experience in the world to make that distinction. It works for our family.

    This brings us back full circle to your point – is a blog post the time and place to swear? My answer is, for me, yes. It’s my blog. Is social media the time and place to swear? For me? Not really. I find it to be disrespectful to swear in comments on other people’s blogs, or on facebook or twitter. I had to make a decision the first time I swore on my blog – it was hard – but I decided to be, well, just me. Like it or leave it. In fact, Jenny Lawson (The Bloggess) is the person who really made swearing on your own blog resonate with me. It’s who she is, and frankly, her posts wouldn’t be the same without them. You can’t read “And That’s Why You Should Learn To Pick Your Battles” without laughing your proverbial @$$ off if the caption under the photo of that giant metal chicken at her front door was any different.

    If your worried about the kids seeing those swears on screen, then minimize the window, read the post when they aren’t around, or just don’t read. To me it’s no different than waiting to watch a PG-13 or Rated-R movie when the kids aren’t around.

    We swearing bloggers know the risk and understand if our choices aren’t values you can support. At the end of the day, I want my readers to be happy and if reading my blog is stressing them out, I’d rather they be who they are and not read my posts, and me continue to be who I am and write the way I’d like.

    (totally going to point people to this article on my facebook page and get a conversation going – I love that you are addressing this)
    Leah recently posted..The Secret To A Stronger (Happier) FamilyMy Profile

  16. I couldn’t agree more! It kills me to find a post I’m excited about reading and then find “cussing” in it. As good as the post might be, I just exit. It gets to me. I know I’m missing out on some great blogs, but I have enough of my own issues without a-salt-ing my mind with colorful language.

    • There are some blogs I love to read, but my husband can tell when I’ve done it. I start dropping wee bit more salt into our conversations than he cares for.

      There’s posts I would love to share out on twitter, but I DON’T because of the cussing. I have pastors and missionaries that follow me on twitter… I don’t think they want that stuff on their screen. And I enjoy interacting with those folks, I treasure them.

      I know not every blog appeals to every person. That’s fine. I’ve been told that if I’m not offending someone then my blog isn’t authentically ‘me’ yet. Maybe that’s true. But if people walk away from what I’m writing, I want it to be because they disagree with the ideas in my head, not because I lack the vocabulary words to express myself.
      susan recently posted..No Cussing Allowed – An Open Letter to CussersMy Profile

Speak Your Mind

CommentLuv badge

This blog uses premium CommentLuv which allows you to put your keywords with your name if you have had 3 approved comments. Use your real name and then @ your keywords (maximum of 3)

7ads6x98yCopy Protected by Chetans WP-Copyprotect.
%d bloggers like this: