I have a question. Or maybe two.
I cuss. Not obsessively or annoyingly, but I do. In the course of a normal conversation with a friend, I will probably cuss. Now, I am careful not to do it in public (I admit I do slip every now and then) and I never will in the house of someone I don't know well or of someone who I know doesn't approve of cussing, nor will I to someone I've just met (depending on the circumstances, of course.) I do slip, sometimes, with people I know well who may not approve of cussing, but there's no malice intended. My question is, what about in my own house? I know some people who will flip out if they even hear a cuss word and who demand that I never, under any circumstances, cuss around them. I think this is ridiculous in my own home. It's my house, if they don't want to hear cussing they shouldn't go to the houses of people who cuss.
On a related topic, I have some acquaintances that will demand a change in conversation topic if it is one they are uncomfortable with. Now, I understand if they are unable to leave the conversation comfortably or if it is bothering strangers nearby, but I have had a "friend" demand that another friend and I stop talking about mental disorders because she did not like to hear it. This was a conversation between two people at a house party of at least 20. She could have talked to other people in the room, she could have gone to join a conversation in another room. We were probably the people she knew least at the party. Was it unreasonable of her to demand we change our topic of conversation just for her?
I suppose the question boils down to, do other have the right to make demands on your speech if it makes them uncomfortable? If so, are there limits? Does it depend on setting?
My answer would be sometimes depending on if the person could remove themselves from the situation, the degree of discomfort (think a person who hates to hear cuss words attacking you over one that slipped when you banged your knee vs. over a conversation consisting entirely of cuss words with a few nouns sprinkled in), and if the person is demanding or simply asking. There's a big difference between, "DON'T EVER CUSS AROUND ME!!!!" and, "Hey, would you mind not saying that? It makes me uncomfortable," with many degrees in between. Do you agree? Should I be as offended by the demanding attitude as I am?