Guess What? There are Health Benefits to Cursing
The other day, I caught my finger as I closed the top of my Nespresso machine to make a cup of coffee. Spontaneously and without thought, I shouted out several curse words. I was shocked that I caught my finger, and it hurt. I felt like a clumsy fool for being so clumsy and called myself an idiot. My mood improved after I smiled.
Recently, a female psychotherapy client sat in front of me very abashed. When I asked why she looked upset, she hesitatingly described a painful procedure at the Doctor’s office. She let out a curse word when the procedure became excruciatingly painful. She blushed and felt ashamed of herself. Both Doctor and nurse assured her they were accustomed to patients cursing when undergoing the procedure.
When we are the smallest of children, most of us learn from our parents that curse words are wrong and we must never use them. These teachings are correct. We all know expressing ourselves in ways considered insulting and in poor taste is socially inappropriate.
Recent research informs us that there are exceptions to the rules regarding swear words. A recent article put it this way:
Using swear words can positively affect your well-being, including pain relief and helping you cope with emotionally challenging situations.
- Studies show cursing during a physically painful event can help us better tolerate the pain.
- Experts say using curse words can also help us build emotional resilience and cope with situations we cannot control.
- Swearing can also provide various other benefits, including creative expression, relationship development, or allowing a variety of people to be in harmony by signaling that you feel relaxed around the other person.
We’ve all had plenty of reasons to want to shout the “f word” during the last two years. Living in a pandemic has given us all cause to express our frustrations, from the confusing restrictions to the fear of what may happen if we contract the coronavirus.
It is essential the keep in mind some caveats about cursing. The same research shows the benefits of swearing did not occur in people who admitted to daily swearing as part of their lifestyle.
Every rule has exceptions. In this context, cursing among friends, especially men, is a way to express warmth, acceptance, and closeness.
Outbursts of cursing, cussing, and swearing can be a healthy coping mechanism.
Swearing can liberate when feeling bottled up with frustration. Curse words can have a calming effect on the complex emotions we are experiencing.
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2 thoughts on “Guess What, There are Health Benefits to Cursing”
This is very interesting, Allan. As someone who was brought up with the threat of washing my mouth out with soap if I swore, I don’t swear, although having said that, I have sometimes muttered a swear word under my breath when I’ve walked into the corner of a door with bare feet, or accidentally cut myself on the vegetable knife. I haven’t noticed whether it makes me feel better, but I’ll be sure to think about it next time. I do have a home help, who is also a friend; she thinks nothing of using the F-word (and occasionally the C-word, which I really hate to hear) in every other sentence in front of me. I don’t feel all that comfortable with it, but she’s been coming to me for ten years, so I’ve got used to it now.
I want to catch up with a few of your other posts this weekend. They are so interesting to read, and I look forward to reading each one. I’m very glad you decided to start blogging and sharing your wisdom 😊.