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Old 04-11-2010, 07:51 AM
 
2,605 posts, read 3,840,134 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoExcuses View Post
FYI, A child being respectful to an adult is different than what the adult wants to be called. For a child to call an adult by his or her first name takes the sense of boundary from the child. It blurs the line between child and adult and puts them on common ground. They aren't and shouldn't be.

No child is on equal ground as an adult. They haven't lived long enough.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Occam's Bikini Wax View Post
So you don't give a crap about other adults' wishes in how they want to be addressed? That isn't teaching your child maners and respect, that's teaching them that other peoples' feelings and wishes don't count. If an adult asks my child to call them by their first name, I respect the wishes of that adult. My kids are completely capable of respectfully addressing someone by the first name.

However if an adult wishes to be called Mr. or Mrs. then my child follows that request. It's all about respect of an individual's feelings. Personally, if anyone ever makes the mistake of calling me Mrs. or ma'am, I gently correct them and tell them to please address me by my first name, because that is how I identify myself.
Bully for you.

You're right, I "don't give a crap" how another adult wants to be addressed. What I DO care about is that my child grows up understanding that kids are not the same as adults and she is not to presume that she is. She is to respect adults as a whole and understand the boundaries. She is not a personal friend of an adult and shouldn't call anyone who is grown up by their first name. No child should IMO.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colddiamond102 View Post
As a kid, I was taught that it was yes/no/sir/ma'am. If you became more aquainted with the adult, you may eventually slip into putting a mr/miss in front of their first name IF and ONLY IF they told you to do so.
For example, the parents of a very good friend of mine were eventually addressed as "Ms Sue/Mr Jim" I still call them that to this day. Addressing a senior citizen with a Ms *firstname* is only done if you are very good friends with that person.

The first time I was personally called ma'am surprised me (I was 18), and while at 23 Im still getting used to it, I would expect it out of a child, and would indeed raise an eyebrow if one tried to call me by my first name uninvited. Even then, a Ms. would be expected to be attached to it.


Exactly.
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Old 04-11-2010, 10:26 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,333 posts, read 39,723,743 times
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And how do you feel about DOCTORS you have never met in your life who come in the room and address you by your first name and expect to be called Dr. XYZ. This really ticks me off.


I'm 63 and have resented this since I was first going alone to doctors. It breeds a one sided sense of respect andd familiarity. I actually screwed up my nerve once time and said "I'm fine Bob, how are you " to a new doctor. He laughed and said "Touche" He was my doctor for many years and often told me my answer was a very important lesson he needed to learn. He thanked me for how I handled it and we still joke about it. We are both now on first name basis and he asked if we could be.

How do you feel about that?

And boundary lines are not blurred with respectful honorifics regarding young children. It's just good manners. We have had teachers compliment us on how our kids address them and say it is very rare but speaks volumes about how we are raising our children.
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Old 04-11-2010, 12:13 PM
 
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I tell children to call me by my first name, except for my Sunday school kids who call me Miss Lisa.

I always instruct my kids to call adults Mr. x or Ms. X until the adult tells them it's ok to tell them by their first name. Most parents prefer to be called by their first names, but a few want to be called Mr. or Mrs. and I respect that.
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Old 04-11-2010, 12:18 PM
 
Location: WI
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Unless an adult says specifically that they would like to be called by their first name, I expect my kids to call them Mrs., Ms., Miss or Mr. This shows my kids that adults deserve respect and not calling them by their first name (unless they say to) is a good way to show that.

HOWEVER - where I live (upper Midwest) if a kid said yes ma'am or no sir to an adult it would probably be taken as a joke. So no, I don't make my kids say ma'am and sir but they definitely have to say Mrs. and Mr.
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Old 04-11-2010, 12:58 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
And how do you feel about DOCTORS you have never met in your life who come in the room and address you by your first name and expect to be called Dr. XYZ. This really ticks me off.
It's the same thing. First names are used by people who are familiar with each other, on a more personal level.

I still use Mr. and Mrs., or Sir and Ma'am for those older than I. I was raised that way. No one has ever complained.
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Old 04-11-2010, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Denver area
20,777 posts, read 21,272,055 times
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Quote:
This is from the double whammy of being raised in the South and also my having Army Colonel for a father
Hmmmm....I had a Navy Captain as a father (equivilant to an Army Colonel) and was raised with Midwestern values but lived pretty much everywhere EXCEPT the South...It was very rare to EVER hear anyone use ma'am or sir -other than my cousins in Oklahoma. And I never heard anyone called "Miss firstname" except Sunday School teachers when I was very young and later my own kids' preschool teachers. Nothing wrong with it but I really do think it has more to do with where one lives than a universal benchmark of manners and civility.

Last edited by maciesmom; 04-11-2010 at 01:24 PM..
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Old 04-11-2010, 01:58 PM
 
2,605 posts, read 3,840,134 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maciesmom View Post
Hmmmm....I had a Navy Captain as a father (equivilant to an Army Colonel) and was raised with Midwestern values but lived pretty much everywhere EXCEPT the South...It was very rare to EVER hear anyone use ma'am or sir -other than my cousins in Oklahoma. And I never heard anyone called "Miss firstname" except Sunday School teachers when I was very young and later my own kids' preschool teachers. Nothing wrong with it but I really do think it has more to do with where one lives than a universal benchmark of manners and civility.
I've known military families who are very strict about Sir and Ma'am.
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Old 04-11-2010, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Denver area
20,777 posts, read 21,272,055 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoExcuses View Post
I've known military families who are very strict about Sir and Ma'am.
I have too...and non military families...I've also know military families that weren't...and non military families...which was my point. But the military families that were strict about that usually (though not always) had a Southern heritage. My heritage is Midwestern farmers...and using ma'am/sir wasn't typical of the area. Also, my dad always felt he got enough of the "sir" at work and specifically DIDN'T want that to be what he was called at home. "Dad" worked for him....
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Old 04-11-2010, 02:22 PM
 
Location: GLAMA
16,584 posts, read 31,767,742 times
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I'm born and raised in Southern California, but my parents were raised by Southern parents, so I was raised with sir and ma'am. When I started school in 1959, I was the only kid in class (and probably the entire city of Inglewood) calling the teacher ma'am.

I didn't require it of my kids, but I drew the line at "yeah".
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Old 04-11-2010, 05:49 PM
g10
 
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It's interesting. I don't think that simply using 'sir' or 'ma'am' shows respect. Our children do not use 'sir/ma'am' at home or school but we do expect them to have good manners, be polite, respectful.
And I say that I don't think that it necessarily shows respect because my teenage nephew has lived with us in California for almost 2 years, he is from the South, he says 'sir' and 'ma'am'. He has a...lively personality and he gets into some minor trouble at school from time to time. And he has figured out that he is quaint with his 'sir' and 'ma'am' and I think that he has come across quite a few teachers and administrators who go a little bit easier on him because what a respectful and polite kid he is with his 'sir's and 'ma'am's (and I think he plays this up a bit).
He had an assistant principal tell him one day, he didn't have to do the 'ma'am' thing and he told her 'I can't help it, it was beaten into me'. Which resulted in a phone call home, 'are there other things we need to know about his background?' No, it was not literally beaten into him...but he is automatic about it, even when he's not trying to get out of trouble.

My husband told him one day, you know it sort of stops being respectful when you're saying it to help you get out of trouble.
What was his response to 'does that make sense?'. 'Yes, sir'

Most of the time he's very sincere in using these terms, but outside of the region where it's expected - he plays with it a bit when it benefits him...
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