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Friday, January 18, 2013

Freak Out Friday: You're Teaching your Baby Swear Words

If you thought you could wait until after baby's birth to clean up your language--particularly those moms eschewing pain meds--think again!

Turns out, baby is learning language while in the womb--and that probably includes swear words!

"In the latest study, published in the journal Acta Paediatrica, researchers tested 40 American and 40 Swedish newborns and found that the babies responded to the distinctive sounds of the language they heard before birth."

Well, that sure doesn't sound like it means much of anything. "Responding" to something doesn't mean you understand it--if someone started screaming at me in German, I'm sure I'd respond--and certainly not that you're apt to remember it and shout it out as your first word.

Let's check the original New York Times article, maybe that will clear things up:

"The babies’ understanding the difference between native and nonnative sounds could be attributed only to prenatal learning."

Learning to distinguish sounds isn't exactly parroting back Shakespeare sonnets, now is it?

A rational consideration of this information leads me to the conclusion that we're all in the clear.

Nonetheless, it's obviously time to panic.

Babies learn language in the womb. Meanwhile, you've been cursing at that asshole who refuses to use a blinker every commute since conception.

You have doomed your baby.

If you are a Good Parent, you will stop swearing immediately and start reading classic French novels to your fetus, in their original language, in an attempt to undo the horrific damage you have inflicted upon your unborn child.

How could you?!?

(Alternately, you could start teaching your child foreign swear words. Because what could be funnier than your toddler cursing at your mother-in-law in a language she doesn't speak??)

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