Having trouble keeping your tongue in check? In our home, we’ve found that a great way to reduce swearing from both our own mouths as well as guests’ is to introduce a “Swear Jar”. We know it’s not an original idea as we’ve seen pre-made swear jars in Hallmark stores, but it’s worked well for us. However, it will only help you if you keep each other in check and enforce the rules on each other no matter what the situation. Here is our charge structure:
- G.D. word (you know what it is): $10
- F*: $5
- Other cuss words: $0.50
Some rules to help make this approach successful:
- If you catch your spouse swearing, make sure they pay up. The same goes for you too! Hold each other accountable, or else this will fail.
- Make sure you inform your guests of your rules early enough. We give the guest the benefit of the doubt until they slip one time. Then we tell them the rules and make them pay for any subsequent cussing. However, with some of our friends and family members, we tell them up front since they’re blatant cussers.
- Extend the rules to all of your property (house, yard, vehicles). It helps your friends to understand and respect your desire to be cuss-free.
- It’s your choice what to include as swearing, but we go with the standard 4-letter words, even h**l and d**n.
- We do not allow prepaying to the swear jar, and no one gets to swear for free. Even our grandmothers and great aunts must pay (as evidenced recently during a trip from said relatives).
- We donate everything from the swear jar to charity. Recently, we donated $50 from the swear jar to a small, local charity through our church, and the charity was quite excited to receive that large of a check (even though it seemed small in our eyes).
Again, the key to success with your swear jar is holding each other accountable and informing your friends and family members in advance or soon after committing their first “violation”. Don’t let their sneers and chuckles dissuade your efforts. Good luck!