Monthly Archives: January 2017

Swearing: Lewd or Liberating?

By Andrea Freedman

Do you ever find yourself swearing too much, to the point where your everyday speech is regularly peppered with four letter words?

Sometimes it seems as though there is no better way to express oneself other than blurting out a swear word. Swearing often relieves tension and in some cases can add humor or flavor to our vocabulary.

I myself am guilty of swearing. If I stub my toe or bang into something, my reflex is to immediately yell out a swear word. Any time I am frustrated, exasperated or just need to unload or get something off my chest, I find there is no better remedy than swearing with abandon.

People are a little looser these days in the way they speak. There are those, however, who still find what they consider cursing scathing and offensive and some households that actually forbid the use of foul language.

In my opinion, swearing, while not necessarily considered classy or refined, has its place as long as we exercise just a little self-control and keep it within certain boundaries.

For example, obviously it is inappropriate to swear in a business or professional setting. Of course if you swear at your boss (like we all would love to do at times), it should only be done after you’ve put some money aside so you can end your tirade by telling him or her where he or she can shove the job and then walk out the door in a dramatic fashion.

Swearing at someone in anger can sound hateful and mean. Still, so often it is tempting to tell someone to go “F” themselves or just to “F” off or call them a nasty name laced with profanities. But while that may feel good at the time, sometimes these words can hurt and even cause irreparable damage to a personal or business relationship.

As for swearing in front of older people goes, some of them do it just as much as, if not more than, younger people. Then there are those like my grandmother, who detested swearing and proudly boasted that my grandfather never uttered a “dirty word” in front of her during their entire marriage.

She cringed when she heard gratuitous swearing throughout a movie. A film like Scarface, however, for those of you who remember the movie, was actually made more amusing, memorable and funny in some parts because of the swearing. When the swear words are dubbed in re-aired television versions, the movie actually loses something.

I remember when my parents used to whisper swear words, not only when I was a kid so I wouldn’t hear them, but also later in life; that was until I explained to them (especially my mom) that if you are going to do it, do it with gusto as it is not as therapeutic or effective if the words are said timidly or meekly.

For the most part, I don’t think swear words are considered as “dirty” as they once were, as long as you know your audience and your surroundings, try to be respectful when possible and have some decorum if you do sense that someone thinks your mouth needs to be washed out with soap!

Swearing may not be the most intelligent sounding or polite way of expressing oneself, but sometimes, !@#$ does it ever feel good!

 

Copyright © by Andrea Freedman 2017