Curing Potty Mouth of a Three Year Old

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In the last two weeks my three year old has taken to exclaiming “Damnit” at key moments of frustration and anger. His usage and accuracy when using the word is remarkable and we have tried many methods to attempt to convince him not to use swear words. Unfortunately growing up in New York my household is no stranger to swear words and I am just as much to blame for my kids hearing the words as some of the TV shows they watch.

That being said the more we scold our son for using the word the more he enjoys getting a reaction and this is typical of most kids. So when your own toddler drops a few curse words, trying not to overreact which may cause them amusement is key. Finally now we are just ignoring and reminding him not to swear but he still enjoys trying to bring a rise out of use by testing our patience.

I did threaten to wash his mouth out with soap a few times, but my questions “Do you want me to wash your tongue with soap?” were promptly followed by “Yes” and I decided to finally call his bluff one time and wash his tongue with bar soap only to find he didn’t think it was that bad an experience.

Headstrong and stubborn with a hint of cleverness and brave as the most stout warrior my three year old is virtually immune to any form of punishment imaginable and he can really test even the most patient parent’s nerves. All I can say now is “at least its only Damnit” and he isn’t repeating the F-Bomb ten times a day.

-Justin Germino

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Updated: March 14, 2010 — 3:11 pm