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  1. #1
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Question Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Hello! Is 'bitch about' vulgar if I say, 'She's always bitching about her friends'.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Only a tiny bit. My 12-year-old can't say it within my hearing, but you'll hear people say "Oh, he's always bitching and moaning about something or other" in pretty broad circumstances. I'd even say it to my mother.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    I'd say it's more than a tiny bit vulgar. To me, it's fairly vulgar, but only half as bad as a verb than as a noun.

  4. #4
    Tdol is online now Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    It could be a regional difference or maybe I have low standards, but the verb doesn't actually strike me as vulgar, just colloquial (British English speaker).

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Yes, my mother is English, and she uses it freely, but here in Toronto, you can't use it at work, for example, or on the air, it's a fairly strong word, more than a tiny bit obscene, in my view.

  6. #6
    pyoung is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Dear Daffs:

    I would not allow my (12-year-old) students to use it in class, but I'm sure they hear it all the time.
    Because of the influence of the more-or-less recent popular culture (over)use of the word to refer to women in general, the word 'bitch' has acquired a more vulgar sound (to my ear) than it previously had, when I only heard it used as a verb.
    I agree that the expression 'bitch and moan' to mean 'complain' is very common.
    I would not recommend using this expression in formal stiuations or with people you do not know well.

    All best wishes,

    Petra

  7. #7
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Hello All,

    Thank you very much for your help.

  8. #8
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Only a tiny bit. My 12-year-old can't say it within my hearing, but you'll hear people say "Oh, he's always bitching and moaning about something or other" in pretty broad circumstances. I'd even say it to my mother.
    Hi Barb_D,

    Thank you very much for your help. May I ask why you don't allow your kid to say it, but you would say it to your mother?

    In China, we say parents are role model of kids. Isn't it same in the US?

  9. #9
    Searching for language is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    I think it's the old "Do what I say, not do what I do." syndrome.

  10. #10
    pyoung is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Is 'bitch about' vulgar?

    Quote Originally Posted by thedaffodils View Post
    Hi Barb_D,

    Thank you very much for your help. May I ask why you don't allow your kid to say it, but you would say it to your mother?

    In China, we say parents are role model of kids. Isn't it same in the US?
    Hi, Daffodils:
    It seems this usage has very different (unwritten) 'rules', depending on the degree of familiarity one has with others, the setting, and the age of the speaker/listener.

    I don't allow my students to use this phrase in class (actually, they just know it's not 'school language'; I've never heard it in my classroom), and I never ever would have said it to my mother while she was living.

    I don't use it myself, but if a colleague said, "I just can't stand his bitching and moaning anymore!" I wouldn't be offended. The expression I like to use is 'singing the blues,' as in, 'She was singing the blues again this morning over the same old things.'

    All best wishes,

    Petra

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