Friday, November 4, 2011
That's Mrs. 'Cross The Pond to You, Kid.
Granted, I feel far to young (read immature) to be addressed as Mrs. but it would be nice to have the option. Most of my friend's children call me Cate or X's mum, or Erin, my first name. I'm guessing it's okay for the little ones, but once they start turning 8 or older, I'd prefer they address me formally.
Why? Respect, perhaps. But I think it's more for the position of authority. I notice that kids can be really sassy toward their parents - even downright rude. Discipline is much more relaxed nowadays - and I'm not talking about spanking - I'm talking about what kids can get away with now. I would never, in a million years, have talked back rudely to my parents - my mother in particular. You cross my mother and you'll walk away with a limp, I promise you that. I don't allow Cate to talk rudely to me. She tries, God love her, but when she does she is punished appropriately - the punishment is tailored to the crime, as it should be.
Mind you I'm not the greatest disciplinarian, and I have much, much to learn. But I do try to keep a level of respect 'round the place. And when I have guests, I expect their children to adhere to my rules, even if their parents are not enforcing them. But sometimes I get backtalk which I don't like. I cut off one 'friend' for something similiar and I'll cut more if I have to (don't really want to).
But I digress, the issue here is whether to have my daughter start calling my friends by Mrs or Mr and whether I want to have my friends kids do the same for me. What do you think?
I know I'm an old fuddyduddy, but there are some things that I think should apply: you should give up your seat for the elderly, pregnant or handicapped, you dress for church, you send thank you notes, and you respect your elders. That's not too much to ask is it?
I still address my parents friends and my childhood friends' parents as Mr, Mrs or what have you - and I always will. Where I come from it's a sign of respect and I know they appreciate it. I have been invited to call several people by their first names and then I do, but otherwise they get the Mr and Mrs treatment.
Even to this day, when I meet someone who is older or in a position of authority I call them by their surname. I couldn't imagine meeting President Obama or Prime Minister David Cameron (even though he IS younger than me by a few months) by their first names! And I MUST call my doctors by Doctor - even when invited to do differently - because for me to have faith in them, they must be in a position of authority - not an equal. Madness, perhaps, but it's the way I was raised. And I like it.
How about you? What do you think?