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LDS Almost Curse Words

WARNING: This section contains almost suggestive language. If you are easily offended, faint of heart, lily white, or Amish, please scroll up now.



Heck (commonly preceded by “oh, my” or “what the”)


H-E-double hockey sticks



Gosh (commonly preceded by “oh, my”)




Darnit (sometimes preceded by “Gosh”)




{ 23 comments… add one }
  • Sharilee10 July 1, 2007, 8:17 pm


    Oops! Is there one I don’t know and use!?! Well . . . okay . . . there are a lot of them I don’t use, but there are some of them I do.

    I’m not sure what kind of discussion is appropriate here, but my feeling is that if they are being used in place of swearing, they are basically swearing. However, I also believe that many, if not most of them, can be used very innocently, and not be swear words at all. After all, technically they aren’t swearing and only become such if they are being used as a replacement for where one would normally swear.

    That’s my 2 cents. I’m excited to hear everyone elses.

  • Melinda July 1, 2007, 9:05 pm

    And then there is just exclaiming, “oh, swear!”

  • Lewis_Family July 1, 2007, 9:50 pm

    I don’t get that though and I will try to explain. If never there had been swear words, do you think you would still make an exclamation when you stub your toe or hammer your finger? So granted the world does use swear words in those cases, when I say dang why is that not ok? What if dang were around before the other form? Does that make sense? I am trying to make a case here but it is so hot in my house… or it could just be me and my prego body, that trying to get this thought across is proving to be quite difficult.

  • Sharilee10 July 2, 2007, 12:10 am

    I can’t imagine stubbing your toe and not exclaiming something! It’s the same as when something comes at you unexpectedly and you flinch or duck or whatever. SOMETHING is going to escape your lips when pain shoots through your body– it just doesn’t HAVE to be offensive. I believe there are many times when SOMETHING is appropriate to be said, but we would never want it to be offensive. If in anger you shout, “Oh my heck— yada, yada” I think that’s basically the same as swearing, because you are really meaning the swear word. However, if you say in pleasant surprise, “Oh my heck!” or “Oh my gosh! That’s wonderful!” there is no swearing applied. Intonation is EVERYTHING, IMHO. Perhaps “Oh my goodness” would be better, but in some circumstances it could sound pretty pruddish– not that it is good that the more innocent word SHOULD sound pruddish. Maybe there’s something wrong with me to even think that.

  • mlinford July 2, 2007, 1:28 am

    In our house, we have tried to take the approach of avoiding the appearance (although children around here are better than mom on that point). Our favorite expressions are “Oh wow” and “Ratsamatootsa!” (My five year old will correct me anytime I say oh my _____ (goodness, even), because we came up with “oh wow” to get rid of the ‘my.’ It may sound silly, and maybe it is, but when I first heard my son take the name of the Lord in vain accidentally, that was enough to make me want to do something to keep us far from that line. It’s been good for me, too, because really, I think “oh my gosh” really does come too close (even though I still sometimes use it). (In my mind, no matter how we use the Lord’s name, if it’s not in a reverent way, it’s not a good thing, so I tend to think that not using its derivative is probably better, too. But that’s just my two cents.)

  • Alison Moore Smith July 2, 2007, 1:36 am

    I stopped using “Oh, my gosh!” about 16 years ago when I heard my 4-year-old say it. I didn’t realize how much it sound like taking the Lord’s name in vain. It’s easy to cure yourself, too. Just tell your KIDS to correct you. They love that.

    Still, I think we can get really weirded out by the whole thing. I mean, why is it OK to say, “Ratsamatootsa!” or “Scrappin!” but bad to say, “Scrud!”? They’re all just made up expletives, really.

    FWIW, I do say, “Oh, my goodness!” and “Holy cow!” enough that, at least in the latter case, I have a reputation. Someone at church recently said, “Holy cow!” and a woman in the ward said, “That sounds like Alison.” :shocked:

    I say other things, too, but if you ever bring it up, I’ll deny it.

  • SilverRain July 2, 2007, 4:49 am

    When I stub my toe, I say “OW!” Sometimes I say “OWA” because that is how the Germans say it, and it’s funny.

  • Sharilee10 July 2, 2007, 8:08 am

    I think “oh my gosh” really does come too close

    No doubt it is hard to tell sometimes and can sound like the ‘real’ thing, and I absolutely agree that

    In my mind, no matter how we use the Lord’s name, if it’s not in a reverent way, it’s not a good thing,

    I LOVE “Ratsamatootsa!,” but I’d have to really train myself. As far as ‘Holy Cow’ goes— I didn’t even realize that was in my vocabulary until Saturday when I spent the day with the woman from Wisconsin who was here. I don’t know that SHE noticed anything– but I found myself saying it all day and wondered where in the world it came from. Have you been saying it in here, Alison!?! 🙂 Just kidding— I haven’t seen it that know of, but it’s definitely part of my vocabulary now, and much better than most of the alternatives, so I think I’ll just hang on to it!

  • facethemusic July 2, 2007, 10:50 am

    Okay, my “expletive” of choice is (and I’m not even sure this is how you spell it) “Oy vais!”
    Then there’s “You have GOT to be kidding me!”
    I’d love to do the Elaine Bennis thing one day– shouting “Get OUT!” as in (No way! or You’re kidding!) while simultaneously slamming my open palms into their chest and they go flying up against the wall. :swingin:

    Though I’m not so sure that it would be as funny as it is on TV 🙂

  • SilverRain July 2, 2007, 12:29 pm

    It’s “oi, weh!” Which means, pretty much, “Oh, sorrow!” and is Yiddish, coming from the German root “o weh” of the same meaning.

  • Alison Moore Smith July 2, 2007, 3:22 pm

    OK, so after a decade in Boca with almost exclusively Jewish neighbors, the only way I’ve seen it spelled is “Oy, veh.” It may be how they’ve Americanized it or phoneticized it or something.

    I wrote it into our ward’s roadshow along with all the “Boca ladies” with the New York accents.

    When we moved back to Utah, my third daughter, then nine, could say it PERFECTLY. Kind of swallowing the oy and using an exactly nasal. She’s kind of lost if over the past five years, though.

  • facethemusic July 2, 2007, 5:23 pm

    Yeah, one time when I said it someone asked me when I started speaking Yiddish. But I had no idea how to spell it. My instinct is always to spell anything foreign with French phonetics.

  • mollymormon July 10, 2007, 12:29 am

    My very favorite is what my mother said one time when we were driving down the road and she missed her turn. She said “Oh my coconut ding ball bat!”

  • Alison Moore Smith July 10, 2007, 1:15 am

    Molly, I’m surprised you turned out so well with such a foul-mouthed mother. Oy!

  • Sharilee10 July 10, 2007, 1:48 pm

    Oh, geesh! I wish that was the worst thing I had ever said!

    As far as making up words— My kids are constantly teasing me about the funny things that come out of my mouth. Sometimes you just start to say something and it really doesn’t make sense so you just finish it off with more jibberish. My kids never let my strange utterings go by unnoticed, but I can’t think of any right now. I guess it hasn’t happened lately because there is NO ONE here to talk to!!

    Truthfully, do you know how weird it is to go an entire day and not have anyone around to say anything to!? WEIRD!! Speaking of which, I think I’ll call my kids! My little one was getting homesick on Sunday and asking if he could trade flights with his sister and come home first. I’d better make sure he’s doing okay— or would it make it worse to call? I don’t remember ever being homesick— I never went anywhere— so I don’t know how this works!

  • mollymormon July 11, 2007, 10:52 pm

    There’s a great article in this month’s New Era on this topic. It’s called “Thy Speech Reveals Thee” by Elder L. Tom Perry. In it he says, “Many times in our efforts to refrain from improper speech, we find words to substitute. Sometimes they are so close to vulgar phrases everyone probably knows that we are substituting words and have not really improved our vocabulary.” Of course I thought to myself, “Dang it!”

    While I still believe it’s much better to say the substitute words than the actual swear words (that does show some restraint), I’d never thought about trying to improve my language to go so far as to take out the substitute words. But I do believe we should let virtue garnish our thoughts and if we’re using substitute words, we are aren’t thinking so virtuously anymore. He also quotes Ephesians 4:29 in the article, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.”

    So hey, how about a list of substitute words for swear word substitutes? Like “Oh Wow” instead of “Dang it.” Would “Oh My Goodness” be better than “Oh My Gosh?” Or “Goodness Gracious?”

  • Alison Moore Smith June 5, 2011, 1:01 am

    Hahaha, just ran across this again. You’re just a flippin’ seaterend.
    Alison Moore Smith recently posted…Buttermilk Bacon WafflesMy Profile

  • tyler October 24, 2011, 11:13 pm

    when i get real mad i will call someone a shidiot… sounds a little close though

  • Alison Moore Smith October 25, 2011, 10:16 am

    ROFL Nice.

  • Alison Moore Smith October 26, 2011, 10:20 am

    I actually just saw Molly’s four-year-old question. So I thought I’d answer. I actually tried — for a number of years — the “oh, my goodness” route. And I have to say, it makes you sound like a complete dork. Seriously. As in people collectively and on cue stop, turn, stare, and wonder what you are smoking. 🙂 I kid you not.

  • Tracy Keeney October 26, 2011, 7:26 pm

    Really Alison? Maybe it’s a locale thing. I say Oh my goodness quite frequently and I haven’t noticed anyone looking at me like I’m weird or something. Or maybe they are and I just didn’t see?

  • Alison Moore Smith October 27, 2011, 10:23 am

    Really. It was when I was living in Florida and gave my (then two) little kids the challenge of breaking me of the habit of saying, “Oh, my gosh.” I thought it sounded too much like the OMG that came out of everyone’s mouth every other sentence. “Oh, my goodness” was my replacement phrase.

    In fact, at least a half dozen times people (adults!) burst out laughing when I said it and a couple noted that they hadn’t heard that phrase in ages. I started saying things like, “Oh, wow” or just “oh.”

    It’s interesting to try to replace a culturally understood exclamation with something else. 🙂

  • Emma Crisp April 7, 2013, 7:22 pm

    The favoured insult/expletive in our house is “son of a leek-flavoured tater-tot”. There is also a movement to replace “Oh, man” with “Oh, Haruhi.”

    (If you got that, there is no hope left for you) (>_<)

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