Sometimes it’s best to just ignore them, rather than making a big deal of it, but that can prove to be tricky when you’re trying not to crack up at the sound of the f-bomb being practiced in such an angelic voice, as demonstrated in a video shared by dad James LaPorta on Twitter.
The journalist and former US marine put on his best poker face when in the car with his soon-to-be two-year-old, who is repeatedly saying the word “fuck”.
And it’s not one of those “sounds like a swear word, but could be another word” scenarios. He’s literally just swearing.
“As a former US marine, now a father, there is perhaps one word I should try to cut out of my vernacular around my soon to be two-year-old,” the dad tweeted on 27 September.
Rather than react to the word, he simply stayed silent while making awkward facial expressions to the camera.
Speaking to HuffPost UK, LaPorta said: “I’ve been pleasantly surprised as to how many other parents have experienced the same thing within their own families. It’s clique to say, but we all sometimes take life too serious and laughter tends to be the best medicine.
“Regardless of race, creed, religion, sexual orientation or gender, the human experience, in certain aspects, is a shared experience. I hope we can focus on that and share a laugh - we all need one.”
According to child psychologist Amanda Gummer, he did exactly what parents should do in this situation. “I’d say ignore it in the first instance,” she previously told HuffPost UK.
“It may just be a one off and drawing attention to it could make it more of an issue than it needs to be.”
Justine Roberts, Mumsnet’s CEO, agreed, adding: “Not reacting and not acknowledging early experiments with swearing may be enough.
“Don’t laugh (in front of them), whatever you do. But making a negative fuss can itself be reinforcing. Remember the key is: ignore, ignore, ignore.”