Yes, I Swear At My Kids

I swear at my kids.

Yes, I said it and I meant it. Each and every day, I swear at them.

I’m not ashamed to admit it.

Our kids can be assholes. Tell me your child hasn’t ever deserved to be cursed at and I’ll call you a liar.

I’ll even go so far as to say that I believe that swearing at my children makes me a better parent.

I’m not talking curse words like “dammit” and “hell.” Oh, no. I pull out the big guns. Those four letter ones of which I am such a big fan.

Now, I would never actually shout obscenities directly at my offspring. Obviously.

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But, when Lily is screaming that I ruined her life by taking away the hot pink hair dye which came with her new Moxie Doll that was staining the entire first floor of my house, I may just have seen the ords “shut the fuck up” float over her head in my imaginary commentary of the scene. And it may just have kept me from really losing it with her.

When Even is thrashing on the floor because I didn’t let him have a third bag of Goldfish before lunch, singing a little ditty that goes “Shut the fuck up, you pain in my ass. Shut the fuck up, my dear.” in my head, somehow, makes the moment more bearable.

And, Ben’s incessant whining can be blocked out by my asking “are you ever going to shut your little fucking mouth, you annoying child?” in my head. Logically, I know the answer is “not likely,” but just asking always makes me feel better.

“Are you fucking kidding me?”

“Just fucking shoot me now.”

“Fuck off, sweetheart.”

Does saying these things mean that I love my children any less than a non-swearing mother? No. Does it make me a bad parent or role model? No, I don’t think so.

Because, by thinking these awful things, I keep myself from actually saying anything terrible to them. Which, I argue, would be far worse.

It’s a coping mechanism, of sorts. A tool to survive motherhood.

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So, next time your child is screaming at the top of his lungs that he doesn’t want that shower or need to brush his teeth or that no, he will not stop taunting his sibling despite a hundred and three warnings, flip him off in your head.

I know he deserved it.

About the writer


In addition to being the founder of all things Scary Mommy, Jill is also the New York Times bestselling author of Simon and Schuster’s Confessions of A Scary Mommy and Motherhood Comes Naturally (And Other Vicious Lies)

From Around the Web


Heather 3 weeks ago

I curse at my kids, use sarcasm, tease them, ; my father did it to me and its character building, helps your children build a strong sense of humor, sharpens their wit, and serves as a coping mechanism for you and I was much closer to my father for him doing so…and its certainly better than beating the crap out of your kids. My kids don’t love me any less for it. And if you’re not exercising curse words while they’re young, you will be eventually cursing them out when they’re teenagers…so in reality what is the difference?

? 1 month ago

When I was around 8-12 my dad would just beat me upright the head, so when I was actually 12 I was polite and did everything right because I knew that I would have a bloody nose and a stomach feeling like bull shit, but that was back then when parents whipped and hit boy’s.

Mackenzie Slack 5 months ago

This made me feel really bad…because I do, in fact, swear at my kids…loudly and to their faces. : (

Darcy 6 months ago

I just tell them they are being assholes when they are. They usually agree and change their tune. Nobody wants to be an asshole. Easy breezy.

Grace 6 months ago

I absolutely cuss at my kids. They are 13 years and 15 years old now and sometimes it’s not just in my head anymore. I try to keep the thoughts in but when my 15 year old is throwing an absolute shit fit because I refuse to allow her to dress like a whore I tell her so “No respectable young woman living under my roof with MY name us gonna walk out of MY door looking like a 2 bit whore! Go change your damn clothes and throw those out! Better yet bring them to me and tell me how the HELL you got them in the first place!!” (actually quote from me to my 15 yr old from yesterday). Or when she thinks she’s grown and can step to me I will tell her to stop acting like a bitch because it doesn’t suit her well.

Carla 6 months ago

i think in the end, it’s whatever works for you. :) I curse in my head, it’s stress relieving. Ever read that book “go the fuck to sleep”? Funny, totally right some nights, and entirely human. Just like all of us. Thanks for the honest laugh . I needed that this morning

Kari 6 months ago

My 3 kids aged 13,11 and 5 bought my husband and I a swear jar for our 15th anniversary gift. 6 months later, it’s overflowing. The kids are saving up for a Hawaiian vacation…

theman 7 months ago

You girls are evil, and this is why your kid doesnt grow up right

    theman 7 months ago

    And probably be in prison.

Arabella 9 months ago

Lol! I thought I was the only bad mother singing the swearing ditty in their head! Ahhh it is good to know there are other mums out there like me:) If DH knew even half the stuff I say in my head to him,i would be in the shit big time! lol!

Micki 9 months ago

I always tell my kids to “shut the fuck up” and “chill the fuck out”!(in my head) Really makes me feel better! Meanwhile, if they ever say shut up to anyone, they’re in big trouble!

sparkle 10 months ago

Thank you for this post. I sweared at my kids this morning and felt bad afterwards. Glad I am not alone.

Sexist 11 months ago

I know HE deserved it.
mhm. boys are always the bad ones

divorceddad 12 months ago

Grow up.

Sa 1 year ago

What about the ones that do it all the time? I think you verbally rape your children each time you do it. You take their innocence away. Parents in poor areas should be the last ones to do this, I hear it all the time. I cringe. The thought of my wife screaming bad words at my kid….she’d be rolling down the stairs.

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E. 1 year ago

To Scary Mommy and all you other scary mommies out there: If you are only looking for a place to vent about the frustrations of raising children, I can understand, but if you are looking to justify your childish and abusive actions towards your children, you won’t get any justification from me or many others who have raised children too. (Yes, I know I’m on the wrong website.) Firstly, if you didn’t really want to have children, I’m sorry you have found yourself in this fix. Just like you, those of us who wanted to have a family also have faced similar frustrations as we welcomed motherhood. It is the hardest job in the world and the most important one. If you don’t believe that statement, that is your major problem. You will fall into bed every night of their childhood, totally exhausted, not even expecting to get a good nights sleep, because surely, someone will need you in the night. This will go on for years. They will make incredible on your time and resources, make monumental messes, defy you, and they won’t thank you for many years, (until they have children of their own) but if you expect and demand obedience from the beginning, you will save yourself and them. You will experience no greater pride and glory than realizing that you have raised a child to adulthood who is whole, healthy, and someone who contributes to society. You will never stop worrying about them and hoping that the best comes to them. I had a mother too and two grandmothers. Not one of them every cursed me and I never cursed my children. You had a child or more than one. Now they come first, not you. The only spoiled brats visible on this site are the scary mommies.

Balkarye Julnx 1 year ago

What’s point of having kids if you’re just going to cuss at them and tell them that you want to kill yourself because of them? You are completely illogical. And if you’re saying they deserve it, then they must be misbehaving? But does cussing at them really help that? That’s like telling them, “Cussing isn’t good you dumb ass.” And then you go on to say you don’t think your being a bad role model?

Kids prespective 1 year ago

From the other side of the fence I’d say you a disgusting mother to swear at your kids. Teach them to be positive NOT negative and you sound completely negative. I’d hate to have a mom like you but don’t worry once your children are grown they’ll come to terms that there mother was a retarded / fked up person that swore at them all time and leave your Lonely ass all to your miserable self. Just because your not happy in life doesn’t mean you have to make your kids miserable to. I agree us kids can be FUCKERS but you don’t need to tell us you dumb ignorant bitch. We make mistakes and will learn. You should always be a good romodel and be happy around your kids not swear at them. Kids learn from the mistakes they make and with a bitch mom swearing at them all time won’t help anything. Take some corses you fkd in the head woman. Sit down and talk to your kids calmly it’s works and they won’t hate you in the end :)

Natalie 2 years ago

To be honest it’s just words, my mum swore all the time when I was little and still does (I am 15 now) and it honestly never crossed my mind as a bad thing, I knew that adults could swear and children couldn’t, and that’s the way it should be. People say “don’t swear because they will copy you” well then learn them that it’s not a thing children can do and only adults are aloud. You don’t see 5 year olds trying to make the dinner because their parents do it, I am 15 and I don’t swear In front of adults, and even if you as a parent doesn’t swear, your kids are bound to here it at school or just outside, it can’t really be avoided so I say it’s no big deal, swear at them if you want, it did me no harm and I am a nice person.

anonymous 2 years ago

Im a kid and I agree with Jeremy , It actually is depressing and I am about to start cutting if my mom doesn’t stop swearing at me! She’s always swearing around my friends to, so it makes me look bad

Ashley 2 years ago

I know these were done a year ago…. But I’m 20, my dad was a stay at home dad hat loved to swear. Calling us motherfucking retards if we left our crayons on the table. Yelling in our face you stupid little shit get the fuck out of here. I have 4 younger siblings. I’m 10 years older though. I’m fucked up because of it. By boyfriend that I lived with for 3 years. Turned around and yelled at me when we were drunk. And he hit me. I wouldn’t take it. So cops and everything were called. I’m here at home. And here it is again. I hear my father saying the same things over and over and over. I shouldn’t be afraid of him. I shouldn’t be seeking help online. But I’m gonna say because of your stupid parents out there that think it’s okay to swear your kids. Even just saying fuck or whatever while talk to them. It hurts! I tried to kill myself. Found it wasn’t worth it. So I did drugs for a few moths. Drank since I was 16…. I’m clean now. But here he is. Still making me feel like shit. Doing the same things to my siblings. I hated my childhood. Why be a fucking parent! If you can’t fucking deal with it! My soon to be husband has 2 kids. I would do anything for them. I would rather bite my tongue off then ever swear at them. Because I never want them to grow up like I did. Fuck all you parents that swear at child or children. I’m saying this because the next time me father swears and yells at my siblings. I’m calling the cops. Because he shouldn’t be a parent. It’s because of you parents that he thinks it’s okay. It’s killing me emotionally still! Mentally! Fuck you! I know for damn sure my dad lost respect from me. Today is my dad to say fuck you dad! Because of you parents and your stupid swearing at kids. If he was any worse. I would have killed myself at 15. Thanks a lot! It’s okay to swear at you adults! But never at child! Warning if I ever hear it happening. I’m calling the cops, calling CPS on you ass! Because I’m sick of it. Fuck all you parents that swear at your children. If you hated it when you were younger. Then why the fuck would you do it!

    Natalie 2 years ago

    It’s just words. It doesn’t mean anything if you put it in a certain way, my mum called me a fecking little shit if I was bad, I knew she didn’t mean to hurt me and I never got emotionally upset about it lmao, calm down there is a lot worse Ashley.

MrUniverse 2 years ago

You are horribly mistaken. Yes it is normal to be frustrate but to want to curse is a poor habit that so many people are sucked into. Do not go making the false assumption that because YOU want to curse at your children when frustrated means that EVERYONE will do the same. This is a fallacy that many uneducated people fall into. Not once have I wanted to curse at my children. I get frustrated or even made sometimes yes. Go ahead call me a liar. You do not know me, so don’t make a false presumption. I am not calling you a bad parent I am merely saying that one of your habits throughout life has apparently been to curse and thus this spills over into your parenting style. Now I understand that you are not cursing out loud but all it takes is one slip up and then you start down a very slippery slope. Its far better to work on changing those phrases in your head to less drastic and extreme ones or actually punishing instead of saying doing. A child who has free roam and learns that they can get away with hundreds of warnings is likely to keep going. If this is your problem then you need to learn how to punish and not just threaten. You have to realize that a child’s brain is still developing and they can not put themselves in your shoes. You can not expect them to be capable of operating at a fully mature level. The brain finishes developing around the mid twenties of most adults. Please don’t attempt blogging about this to make yourself feel better. Work on changing your faults to become a better parent. I’m not saying that I am perfect in any way, but I can’t stand seeing parents who have bad habits that in the end will negatively effect their child.

S 2 years ago

I’m not shocked that some moms curse their kids in their own internal dialogue when they are having a tough time. what amazes me is not the post, its the response to it. When two ladies here tried to say that cursing is not a good response, and that one should try and deal with the difficulties and frustrations in a more productive and constructive way, they were immediately labeled as ‘judgmental’ by the majority of the swearing moms….those same swearing moms themselves became immensely judgmental and defensive, insisting that it was better to swear in one’s head then to do it to the kid’s face. they then undermined their own logic by admitting that they often curse out loud and their kids pick up on it and have learned all sort of verbal garbage and ‘oh isnt it cute when it comes out of a two-year old’s mouth?’

what i will say is this – no one is perfect, but as a higher species we should always aim to raise the bar and improve ourselves constantly. to this end, refining our language and deleting all foul words from it would be a great start. i havent used an F-word or anything else in that category for decades now. not out loud, not in my head. there is no need to when you realise that there are plenty of other, less offensive words that will do the same job. in our house, the worst words that the kids utter is ‘idiot’, ‘stupid’, and ‘dummy’. They have never heard foul words from their parents, relatives etc. so they dont use them. they have heard them in school and on TV in other people’s homes, but they know that such words are beyond the limits, and they know better than to cross the limits. I am sure that will change when they are older, all kids experiment and challenge the limits, but I am confident that that phase will die out when they’ve had enough and their own ears start to find it an ugly and abhorrent corruption of a beautiful language. why use coarse and uncouth words and pollute the atmosphere with them? I’m not a saint, believe me, I’m actually thinking about hiring a counsellor for me and my son, because while our good days are awesome, our bad days are pure hell. We are both under a lot of stress, and life is testing us to the limits, and we need help. But at least I have acknowledged that I need help and am not exulting in my own weaknesses and flaws. Yes, we are all flawed, but lets not turn it into a celebration, lets work to get rid of those flaws; that’s when we will really have something to celebrate.

Kayla 3 years ago

You’re all idiotic. Is this news? Of course everyone is like “oh man, I totally do that too! Wahht” it’s a fucking thought process. Were humans(not just moms)We think sometimes. Surprising, I know.its certainly not this fun secret game where I playfully say violent and well thought out curses. That’s fucked up. But to be frustrated and express your emotions in your head like a normal person doesn’t keep you from doing something. It’s not a “tactic”. It’s human nature and a pretty natural reaction to a frustrating situation. So,applaud someone for pointing out the fucking obvious.

Bren 3 years ago

There is a LOT of drama over what you can and can’t say to your kids on here. Let me remind you that these short people will one day pick your retirement home.

Jeremy 3 years ago

Oh it is bad for your children. Keep it up and you’ll see cuts on their wrists. Then drugs will roll in and you wont know how to handle that so you’ll throw your problems on someone else and eventually learn you’ve wasted $80,000 by shipping her to a boarding school. Then you’ll get a call from the Hospital saying they found your kid in a ditch covered in dirt and with vomit on their shirt. And eventually they’ll have to be rushed the hospital in the back of an ambulance because they let you know they hate you by cutting their chest open over a dozen times and slitting their wrists open another dozen times. Covered in red liquid holding a knife they’ll tell you I love you then faint. wake up with two men over them in what appears to be an ambulance as they feel several sharp pinches from an IV missing 3 times. Then they’ll leave the hospital with over 50 stitches. And don’t ever, tell your children what they can and can’t do and don’t tell them that they can’t be who they want to be. Or maybe you want to come home one day to find one of your kids with a electrical cord around their neck as they hang from the ceiling with a pale face and blank stare. You sure don’t wanna find them 10 minutes after they hanged themselves and you give CPR and get a pulse but its too late because they are brain dead. then the rest of your life you’ll ask yourself everyday, what if I got there sooner, what if I could have saved her. That’s not the greatest. I’ve seen it, and I am it.

    Heather Feather 2 years ago

    What in holy fuck are you spewing, Jeremy, and how delusional do you have to be to think the sick shit in your non-sequiturious (yeah, I just made that word up) reply has anything to do with what the author wrote? Maybe it was too long for you to actually read? I do realize this was a year ago, and hope you’ve found help since then.

Jacquie 3 years ago

When my 5 year daughter decided to make snow angels in the basement after asking her brother (nicely, I might add) to empty her bean bag chair on the floor. My first words were “Oh my god, seriously”..followed by “you’ve got to be fucking kidding me” in my head.. It took all my restraint not to say the words out loud… This was followed the next week with her plugging the basement drain with marbles because she “wanted to make an ocean”..These are the times when I am pretty proud of my true restraint..Believe me the profanity was flowing(in my head) for a very long time..
All the money, fame and fortune in the world would never be enough to take my kids away from me…But god knows I wouldn’t pay a nickle for another one!!

neo 3 years ago

LOVE IT! I curse too. I don’t think there’s a difference with saying darn, over the word shit. Get over it!

MummyTwoToo 3 years ago

Hmmm, I do it out loud. Fuck it. I have to let it out or I’ll burst. Get real, not all of you commenting here really do just ”say it in your heads”…admit it! ;o)

They’ll survive…they’re happy, fun-loving little rascals. They know when I’m saying naughty words, because they tell me off for it :o)

Helena 3 years ago

LOL! Btdt so many times.

joileana 3 years ago

im gonna pray for you. I know its stressful but youi cant talk to a five year old like that let alone a five month old. Im so sorry if it happened to you but you have the power to create a better situation for your daughter than your parents created for you. You have the power to stop the cycle of abuse so make the choice to use it. Your daughter is not ugly shes the beautiful precious little girl god blessed you with! Say that to her instead even when you dont feel that way. Say it until you believe it and until she believes it. God knows youre stressed but he loves you and he loves your daughter and wants the best for both of you. Just tell him youre sorry and qsk him to help ypu. Cause he definitely will!!!

joileana 3 years ago

i get that dealing with kids is a challenge but swearing at them only berates them and makes them disrespect you more. They may not always act it out but secretly they hate you. They see you as the slut of mothers because youre not respectable in their eyes. If you want kids who resent you later on in life and do rebellious things just to get back at you keep cussin at them. It will most likely lead to them smoking pot so you can smell it sex in your bedroom while youre in the house underage drinking and getting physical with you and cursing you back when they feel like it. Kids will only respect you as much as you respect them. They will aim to get back at you for not being the parent they expect ypu to be. Boys especially want a mother they can respect. If they dona.t respect mom other women will be nothing but filthy whores to them and will get treated?as such. Criminals aren.t born made. They will violate nalaws of the land the same way mom violates motherhood. S

    Joy 3 years ago

    I am not sure your tangent makes the slightest bit of sense…..

Mostly Sane Mamas 3 years ago

I do it too! I wrote a whole blog on my kids and The Swear Jar!

S@$#t! You Owe Me A Nickel!

varsha 3 years ago

I don’t know how parents don’t end up swearing at their kids. My 2 year old can be a total asshole. Sometimes. I usually keep it in my head but every once in a while he does something in particular that just stirs me up and I come right out with it. I feel bad afterwards but if an adult did some of the things he’s done I’d say the same thing not that its right but you know I get pissed. I will in the future do my best to control myself and keep little tirades in my head and not in my mouth because despite the little devils torture he is also on the other spectrum very sweet.

Mare 3 years ago

Love this blog, I am so glad I am not the only one that does this! This morning in fact it took all that I had not to say all my my favorite curse words out loud when my kiddo came up to me to say he went pee in the kitchen closet! My God! What the fuck was he thinkin! LOL

Daniella 3 years ago

Yesterday I was angry with my 5 month old daughter I started screaming and swearing at her like shut the fuck up you ugly bitch! Etc… She was overtired and was screaming making her go hot and barking I couldn’t cope she was in the car seat so I picked it up and swung it in circles?

    joileana 3 years ago

    im gonna pray for you. I know its stressful but youi cant talk to a five year old like that let alone a five month old. Im so sorry if it happened to you but you have the power not to create a better situation for your daughter than your parents created for you. You have the power to stop the cycle of abuse so make the choice to use it. Your daughter is not ugly shes the beautiful precious little girl god blessed you with! Say that to her instead even when you dont feel that way. Say it until you believe it and until she believes?it. God knows youre stressed but he loves you and he loves your daughter and wants the best for both of you. Just tell him youre sorry and qsk him to help ypu. Cause he definitely will!!!

      Ruby 3 years ago

      Daniella, the way you felt wasn’t good! For you or your child. She is 5 months old and is in danger if you can’t control your anger. Your uncontrolled anger of screaming “shut the fuck up you ugly bitch” at a 5 month old and swinging her in circles in her carseat is dangerous. Your uncontrolled behaviour will get worse over time and can lead you to do things to harm you or your child. You need help, and its okay to admit you do. It will be hard but you need to make the step of controlling your anger and seek help. Seek help through friends, family, or counselors. Tell them what you did and how you feel. People can help you! Dont be afraid of being temperarely seperated from your child to gain control of your anger, you both will be better off in the log run.You need to correct this immediatly! If there is anything I can do to help you, please contact me, Ruby @

sunny 3 years ago! I too say it in my head and sometimes outloud.. my kiddlets are awesome annoying little toads at times.. and none of us have killed each other yet! I LOVE the rules down the side of the blog about NOT judging each other..thats my new favorite thing..apart from this blog:)

Melody 3 years ago

Again, so thankful for this site, this morning “what the f- where you thinking” and “give me a f-ing break” came out loud and clear. I’m not proud but now I think I can forgive myself because I felt like a horrible mother not only for yelling but for yelling bad words to my kid!

Jay 3 years ago

Admittedly I’m in the midst of recuperating from a moment with my duo…hence the reason I googled my desired reaction! Thank you ALL or at least those who do understand for being forthright and unapologetic for being mothers who express actual emotion and frustrations when the role of motherhood is challenged and underestimated.

heather 3 years ago

To the lady that said fu to her teenage son…..quit kicking yourself. If he’s old enough to act like a shit to his mom and tell you he doesn’t care, he’s old enough for strong language. You will live, and so will he. Tell him to quit being a brat. If that’s the worst thing that ever happened to him, he’s a lucky kid. Hugs.

BadMommy 3 years ago

I found this site today by committing a Mommy sin. I swore at my teenage son. He was not listening. And when I said to him you don’t care do you. He said NO. And I said do you mean that? He said Yes. I said I can’t believe that then I blurted out FU….I felt horrible and still do. I feel like I need meds and he is so angry with me. So now he feels like he did nothing wrong and I did everything wrong. So I think this post holds some key things to it. If I had only thought it as I did twice before I said it. I couldn’t hold it in any longer or so I thought. I was just so mad that he wasn’t my child but an unruly thorn in my side at that point. And now I’m paying the price for my crime. I wish I had read this before that incident.

Suzanne 3 years ago

Hahaha…you’ve just summed up the last 12 years of parenting for me….(swearing under my breath or in my head)….who DOESN’T do that!!! And yes, I also am a loving, protective (and dare I say good) mother who would do anything for her child…


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