How to Stop a Young Child Swearing – 8 Top Tips

Are you wondering how to stop a young child swearing? Bad language can sound bad at the best of times – but out the mouth of your child it just sounds even worse. I am going to hold you accountavble here and you may need to enlist a friend to give you an honest opinion – but how bad is your bad language?


Guess we all need to know how to stop swearing.

The first time a parent hears their child use a swear word it usually comes with shock. How could your sweet, innocent child use profanity? Unfortunately, children absorb all the words that they hear and they use them as well. So what can you do if your child has begun to sprinkle naughty words in their conversations?


How to Stop swearing

How to Stop a Young Child Swearing

How to Stop a Young Child Swearing

Read on for my top tips on How to Stop a Young Child Swearing.

Keep Your Language Clean

When preschool aged children use profanity, they usually do not understand what the words actually mean. What the child is aware of; however, are the feelings behind the words. One of the most important steps a parent can take to stop their child from cursing is to monitor their own use of language. If your child hears you swear in a particular situation, your child has a good chance of repeating the same word when they encounter a similar situation. It is also imperative that you ask other adults that use profanities to refrain from cursing around your child as well. Most adults will not mind.


Monitor Music and Television to Stop a Young Child Swearing

Profanity is a normal part of the language in our society so we often do not pay attention to the swear words that are used on the TV, the radio, or at the movies. Try to limit your child’s exposure to offensive language through these channels. Remember that each parent has their own idea of what is okay and what is not, so while one family may believe that what is on network television and on the FM stations are perfectly acceptable, you may not.


Playground Potty Mouth – How to stop swearing

When your child goes to school for the first time he is going to be exposed to other children who have been raised differently then he has. Potty talk may well be a thing. That also means that the other child may use words that you deem unacceptable. If your child comes home with a few new words do not be surprised. School is a wonderful place for your child to acquire new language- good and bad.


Have a Poker Face

When a young child uses a swear word for the first time, his parents may want to laugh, scream, rant, or go running for the bar of soap. It is important, however, to not react. Stay calm.  Young children may enjoy the extra attention that the word is giving him, even if the attention is negative.

Making a big deal out of a bad word may guarantee a repeat performance! Instead, calmly get down on your child’s level, look him straight in the eye and tell him in a firm voice, We do not say that word.’ When you are done, get up and continue with what you were doing. It is important to minimize the attention your child receives from cursing.


Suggest New Feeling Words to Stop a Young Child Swearing

Children often do not know how to talk about how they feel or even know exactly how or why they feel a particular way. Your child may use curse words because they are lacking the proper descriptive words such as I am mad or She hurt my feelings.

If this is the case, help your child learn new words by replacing poor words with good words. For instance, if your child tells you that Lily is a _____ then respond by saying, That isn’t a nice word. Do you mean that Lily made you mad? Modelling the proper usage of words will help your child more than most people realize.

More tips on how to stop swearing ( for parents)




A book like my Create Your own Calm both helps kids manage their temper and  become more skilled at talking about their emotions.


create own calm


Stop a Young Child Swearing

How to Stop a Young Child Swearing – Suggest Clean Alternatives

If your child continues to use curse words, suggest clean alternatives such as darn it’, shoot’, wow!’, oh my gosh!’, and meanie’. Some children enjoy the sound of ridiculous words and will be more likely to repeat silly curses such as hogwash’, malarkey’, and H E hockey sticks’. There are too many curse alternatives to list so do some research and find some words your preschooler will want to use.


Swear jar

Does your child get pocket money? Keep you and them in check by using a swear jar and sending your treat money right to it if either of you curse. Then when it’s full donate it to a charity. You will all soon learn a better way to express yourself.  Rif your home of the swearing habit once and for all.


Set Up Consequences to Stop a Young Child Swearing

If your child continues to use profanities, use swift, non-dramatic, and gentle disciplinary action such as immediately telling your child, using that word results in a pocket money fine. If your child persists on using poor language ask yourself why? The use of bad words and phrases may signal that something is bothering your child. Talk with your child in a loving manner and accept that young children find that is difficult to express their thoughts and feelings with words so it may talk more than one or two talks to figure out the problem.

The faster that you as a parent or guardian stops your pre-schooler from swearing, the easier it will be. Also keep in mind that although swearing at a young age may seem amusing, once your child enters  school, swearing will be looked upon by the teaching staff as a major problem.

Stop a Young Child Swearing – do you have any tips you would like to add?


Further reading on how to stop swearing

How to raise kids with good morals

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