Why I don’t like rude words
I have never been one for swearing. There was a zero tolerance policy when I grew up and I can’t recall a single occasion of hearing my parents or wider family swear. It was never worth swearing, the repercussions would have been serious.
At the age of around 7 I started getting those feelings of anger that only people above the age of 6 really feel. The kind of anger that doesn’t cause you to cry but just makes you want to scream so that the feelings boiling up inside can get out. With no prompting at all I developed a ‘rude’ word. This word was one that I used whenever I was really angry, and it was so satisfying to say! It felt like I was pushing all of that anger out of my body.
I would get angry, the feeling would swell up inside me like a big fiery ball and then it would come out of my mouth really fast with me shouting,
Don’t laugh! It was a very serious word to me! It formed my mouth into the perfect shape to grab all that anger and throw it out. Pouff!
Of course nowadays if I shouted Pouff in the street people may think I was being homophobic, but I promise you, I came up with that word first!
I didn’t even realise it was a replacement for a ‘swear’ word. I didn’t really know what swear words were. I only knew that there were certain words you weren’t meant to say; like ‘willy’. The main swear words were introduced in my school a couple of years later, when we were all grown up at the age of 9 or 10.
‘Fuck’ has the same kind of feeling as ‘pouff’ I think. It is short and has the same powerful push of syllables to get that anger out. ‘Shit’ doesn’t have quite the same effect. Try it…
I was renowned for my absence of swearing as a teenager. Whereas other teenagers were punctuating a swear word into at least every other sentence, I only swore when I felt it was really, really necessary. I never swore when happy or sad (I cried instead). I didn’t swear when I was mildly annoyed.
I swore when I was ANGRY. And then, everyone around me knew that what I was saying was serious. I was FUCKING ANGRY!! It was incredibly effective!
So I absolutely have nothing against swearing. It’s a useful tool for expressing your feelings and getting the anger out from inside you without punching anything. But I do wince whenever I hear someone swear. In some circles people think that if you are against swearing you’re prim and proper, or you are too ignorant to see that it is ‘just a word’. I disagree. I know it’s just a word. And I am not afraid to use it. But it’s an angry word full of tension and negative connotations. People aren’t using it for the purpose it was intended.
I hear people swearing all the time. I mean aaall the time.
“Wow!” or “Gosh!” have been replaced by an excited, “Fuck!”.
“Oh dear” or “Oh no” have been relegated to a sympathetic, “Fuck…”.
“Fuck Yeah!!” is a common swap for the old “Yay!” or “Hooray!”
It fits any kind of exclamation like, “Fuck!” instead of “oWW!”
Frustration seems to be another common usage, as in “Fuck, I missed my train!” instead of “Aaaargh my train!” or “Nooooooooo” >head in hands<.
It’s an effective adjective as well, used to describe pretty much anything with no particular meaning at all. As in, “Where’s my fucking pen?”, “That’s a fucking great bag”, or “It’s a fucking box!”
There is also the use of the word as an ‘emphasis’ tool, e.g. “Fucking great!” = really great!, “Fucking big” = really big, “Fucking smelly” = really smelly
Then there’s the more ambiguous usage where it is just thrown into any sentence at any time e.g. “What the fuck is that?!”
Now consider the different uses in these sentences:
“What the fuck is that?”
“Fuck! What is that?”
“What is that fuck?”
It must be very hard, when these words are used so regularly, so commonly, in every day language, to keep it quiet when there are children around and to convince them that it shouldn’t be said. It seems to be one of the most commonly used words!
Please people, this is getting out of hand! Limit the use of swear words for their original purpose- the purpose of displaying anger and getting all of that built up anger out of you in a short, sharp, exclamation.
Think about whether it is really necessary, and whether a more descriptive word could be put to good use instead.
You better do it or I will get fucking annoyed!! (really annoyed!)