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Old 05-19-2007, 11:20 PM
Location: Between Here and There
3,684 posts, read 10,840,329 times
Reputation: 1650


Originally Posted by Sampaguita View Post
Irishmom - if you don't mind my asking, what region of the world are you in?

I know that in Southern CA if it's customary (ugh) for young children to address adults by their first names. None of my friends' children use titles except for professional titles (Dr., for example).

But in Texas, where I lived for several years, adults were addressed by a title of some sort. Not sure how things in NY are these days but when I was growing up there, we addressed all adults, including our neighbors with Mr/Mrs or the appropriate title.
I grew up and lived in NYC until I was 32...moved to Maryland when my first son was 10 months old. I find a mix of people here some do as I said we do and some don't. But I've never had anyone say not to do it...usually I find once I refer to a familiar adult with the term Miss or Mr. and their first name that the adults like it...and they will then refer to me as such with their kids or the kids will pick it up from my kids. We did that when I was little also, so I always thought that was what to do. Oh and grandparents of close family are also Grandma and Grandpa with their first name attached...Grandparents LOVE that one.

Old 05-19-2007, 11:48 PM
Location: Sandpoint, ID
3,110 posts, read 9,153,223 times
Reputation: 2528
We raised our kids to call family friends with more familiar titles. So instead of last name, it was "Mr. Bob" or "Miss Susan" (regardless of a woman's married status). If that family friend corrects our children and says "just call me Bob" our children are instructed to comply, since it's the most appropriate manners to call a person what they wish to be called versus forcing our view of propriety on the issue.
Old 05-20-2007, 12:29 AM
Location: NW Atlanta
1,372 posts, read 4,755,998 times
Reputation: 419
I live In Ga and it is customary and acceptable for children to title people whom they have been introduced by there parents
EG my name is Kelly

ALL the kids in the neighborhood call me Miss kelly
but then all the kids in my neighbor hood I have known since the were little

At this point I kinda react a little funny when kids call me Mrs .......

In the South this is still considered a sign of respect
Old 05-20-2007, 08:49 AM
548 posts, read 2,392,905 times
Reputation: 356
We use Mr. and Mrs. with our kids. We are in the minority with this, as most we know use "Miss Cindy" or whatever. I don't like that--I think the lines of authority need to be clearly drawn and by letting kids call adults by anything other than Mr/Mrs/Dr I think it's really confusing to them.

I felt wierd about it at first, but now I'm comfortable with it. I've also noticed that although many parents of my kids' friends used to refer to me as "Miss Jane", many of them now tell their kds to call me "Mrs. Jones", and I'm pretty sure it's because they hear me telling my kids to call them by their last name.

I also require my kids to look adults in the eye, say hello, and shake hands (I have not required the "how do you do" which I had to use as a kid )
Old 05-20-2007, 10:01 AM
Location: Coachella Valley, California
15,533 posts, read 35,646,549 times
Reputation: 13126
We taught the kids to use Mr. or Miss. I will allow all you forum people to refer to me as Miss Twinkle.
Old 05-20-2007, 10:14 AM
125 posts, read 423,700 times
Reputation: 136
When I moved to Alabama I noticed my son was told to say, Ma'am and Sir to address his teachers in school. I hated it. I insisted that he call his teachers and all adults. Mr._____ and Ms. _______ or Mrs. _____. A teacher asked me why I did not want my son using Sir or Ma'am and was very surprised that I felt so strongly against it.
Old 05-20-2007, 10:17 AM
Location: NW Atlanta
1,372 posts, read 4,755,998 times
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Originally Posted by justone321 View Post
When I moved to Alabama I noticed my son was told to say, Ma'am and Sir to address his teachers in school. I hated it. I insisted that he call his teachers and all adults. Mr._____ and Ms. _______ or Mrs. _____. A teacher asked me why I did not want my son using Sir or Ma'am and was very surprised that I felt so strongly against it.
I understand your method
I am originally from NY
but for some reson ...in the south... people actually get offended when you call the by "their parent's name" as they say

Mr Brown was my dad
and another thing I have found
especially in teachers
whether married or not it is always Miss ___________
Old 05-20-2007, 10:51 AM
Location: Back in MADISON Wi thank God!
1,047 posts, read 3,236,559 times
Reputation: 1382
I know I struggled with this when I first started having children.Some adult friends with kids did the first name thing,others insisted on the Mr./Mrs. One day, I was having this discussion with some new friends that I met through my second son.I asked one woman if she was called by her first name by her children's friends or if she preferred being called Mrs.? She said,"no,because then I would be Mrs.Robinson!"
For anyone too young to remember "The Graduate" with Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft, she did have a point.I thought it was very funny!
Old 05-20-2007, 11:13 AM
Location: coos bay oregon
2,096 posts, read 8,057,859 times
Reputation: 1273
My kids call those they dont know or dont know well Mr, Mrs. last name....w/sir and ma'am put in. They sir and ma'am their dad and I. If they know the adult well, like family friends, and such, its Miss first name and Mr first name. The kids I coach, either call me Coach Tiffany or Miss Tiffany. At first, most thought this was odd, now, they all do it w/o question and they do it w/the other coaches too. before that, they called the other coaches just by their first names. - anyhow, super close friends, are aunt/uncle.
For grandparents, we got togeather w/each set before kids were born and asked how we were gonna keep em apart - one set is grandma/grandpa, one set is grammy and papa, and so forth. Works pretty well.
Old 05-21-2007, 09:01 AM
Location: Rocket City, U.S.A.
1,806 posts, read 4,993,535 times
Reputation: 843
My daughter will address less familiar persons/neighbors/teachers/doctors, etc. by formal title (or casually "Miss/Mr. First Name")...our closest friends, however, are known by their names (first and last) since they are more like kin...true Aunts and Uncles, Grandmothers and Grandfathers are addressed as such, with some distinction between them.
My daughter addresses her Grandfather's lady-friend as Aunt because Mrs. was considered too cold and removed for her.

As a child I was always bothered by having to call all of my parents' friends "Aunt" or "Uncle" when they were clearly not related to me (felt creepy), would have rather gone Master/Mistress...those folks often told me to call them by first name only, but my parents would not allow it.

Hmmn...I was born yankee and taught Sir/Ma'am. Still use that to this day.

I don't have a problem with a child asking someone one the phone, "May I ask who's calling?" (not "Who is this!?") but I would prefer not to use my daughter to screen calls. Kinda tacky. It sounds to me like the parents have instructed the child to respond that way.

Oh, yes - my toddler also says PLEASE and THANK YOU without prodding.

Last edited by 33458; 05-21-2007 at 09:11 AM..
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