I have been reading many posts about bullying online. The most recent post was Gini Dietrich‘s “Seven Tips for Dealing with Online Trolls”. She gives great advice on how to deal with them while weaving in a story about her encounter with a not-so-nice mother.
Gini’s advice and the comments left by others are spot-on. What turned me on my head was the story of the, ahem, “mother”, that she encountered. I think you should read the story for yourself at spinsucks.com, as it is her post.
With that said, let’s jump to the fact that it was the behavior that irked me to no end. My comment was as follows:
“My question is, “How do we instill good manners again?'”. For example, we have taught our daughter to say “please” and “thank you”, etc. She addresses adults as “Mr. Jeff” or Ms. Susan”. (She is 7.) Yet, the other day, a neighbor and my hubby got into a discussion about manners. The neighbor’s child is 2. In summary, the neighbor would not teach his daughter to address adults as “Mr./Ms.”; we would be called “Susan and Jeff”. Hubby said, “Not in my house”.”
I agree with hubby. I was raised with manners. And, I didn’t get to use first names with Mr. or Ms. I used last names, “Mr.Smith”, etc. I still say “yes, ma’am” and “no sir”, sometimes to people younger than me!
Neighbors always comment on how well-behaved my daughter is when out and about. Strangers have expressed pleasure and are awed that she uses “please” and “thank you”.
People are impressed with her behavior because they don’t see many kids using manners. Let me repeat that: “they don’t see many kids using manners”. It blows my mind that kids with manners are the odd ones.
Manners begin at home. Children imitate now just what the hear, but what they see. If you don’t say “please”, or if you flip someone off, they will begin to think it is okay. It’s not. What we learn as a child influences our behavior and choices for the rest of our lives.
I like to think that if we focused more on manners (and many other things) as we used to do, we wouldn’t take to so freely acting any way we want in public.
What do you think about missing manners these days?