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How to Deal With a Child Cussing

Parenting Q and A


My 2 1/2 year old has started cussing. I do not know how to get him to stop I have tried spanking, telling him its a bad word, taking toys away.. nothing seems to work. His father and I are divorced and I cant seem to get the father to help with keeping the same punishments for the same "crimes". - Kim

I would just ignore it. You're giving him attention everytime he says it, even though it's negative attention. Don't react, don't say anything, don't smile, just act like he didn't say anything. - Paula

What's he saying? I don't think it's that horrible a crime, really. At 2 and a half, they are especially like birds which mimic what they hear and even the tone of someone's voice. My son does this, as did my first-born.
I'm much more laid back with the second than I was with the first. I realized that the less of a deal I made of a cuss word slipping out, they wouldn't see it as a big deal, either. And, as they become older, and you are better able to reason with them, they will understand that there are some things that adults do that kids just can't do. - Amy

I believe it is child abuse to use soap or any thing in a childs mouth to punish it. But obviously I am considered abnormal because I have never touched my child in anger. Not so much as a swat on the backside.
I believe parents need to live by example. If you dont swear, your child wont swear. If they do hear it from other sources all that is needed is simply a "we do not say that word in our family" My two NEVER went through a "stage" where they swore. In my opinion thats crazy to consider it a part of normal development.
I've raised two happy normal well adjusted people who are making good contributions to society so I must have done something right. - Kris

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