Is it every appropriate for your kids to use words such as “shut up,” “suck,” “stupid,” or “I hate you?” Many parents are ambivalent about what is acceptable in a changing society, and are inconsistent in their response to their children’s use of such language. Parents differ significantly in their tolerance level of what words are considered acceptable for their children to use.
1. Make sure that you and your spouse agree on what words are unacceptable.
2. Clearly communicate your expectations to your children.
3. Expectations without consequences are simply wishes. Beginning at an early age, implement consequences when your child uses inappropriate language.
4. Rather than simply punish your children for using words that you find unacceptable, teach them other ways to express their strong feelings and emotions.
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