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To expect common courtesy towards my friends and colleagues

(48 Posts)
Evelight Sat 27-Feb-16 15:05:49

There was a time, not so long ago, that DD, now 13, endeared herself so much to any friends of mine who happened to be visiting, that some would remark "I'm coming to visit her", and would plan outings around her. She was really chatty and sociable etc.

Those days are long gone. Nowadays, when I have visitors, the most I can expect is "hi" before vanishing to her room. yeah yeah I get it moody teenagers etc.

Anyway, yesterday, due to logistics, I had her walk with DS to my workplace after school, hang out there for about 20 min before we all went home together. So she did, and i was talking to a colleague and she literally dragged me away after the 20 min, she was late for swimming, I get it.

As we were walking out of the building, we ran into another colleague whom I've worked closely with last yr and is higher than me in the office hierarchy (though not my boss). She is a super sweet woman, with kids of her own thank g, and she exclaimed at my daughter "what a cutie-pie"to which DD rolled her eyes or something, said something like"hi and bye" and continued walking.
My collegue laughed and called after her "I didn't mean that! you're a mature young lady!" and she turned to my DS (10) and said "I can call you adorable" etc etc

Anyway I was sooooo mortified and I actually e-mailed her later apologizing for DD's grumpiness, to which she responded I never even noticed! and an invite to a work event...

I didn't say much to DD- she is generally a good girl with school work and helping round the house and regular babysitting... I remember I was more or less the same toward my mom's friends / family etc, so I guess it's karma...

Bloodybridget Sat 27-Feb-16 15:10:27

Well tbh calling a 13 year old a cutie-pie to her face is pretty cringeworthy, I'm sure your DD felt embarrassed.

EatShitDerek Sat 27-Feb-16 15:12:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Evelight Sat 27-Feb-16 15:15:42

Well, tbh, I agree, and I find the whole "cute" thing a bit embarrassing- I don't like it when ppl remark on "oh you have such cute fingerless gloves" etc. I know it is meant as a compliment, but it's very easy to read some patronising/condescending overtones in that word.

But the point is, in this particular social situation, you shouldn't roll your eyes at your mom's colleague and walk away. Right?

Arfarfanarf Sat 27-Feb-16 15:17:20

Welcome to the teenage years. Enjoy nearly a decade of huffing, eye rolling, stomping and cries of "it's not faaaaaaaaaaair" grin
You'll be doing a lot of disciplining on rudeness grounds.

EatShitDerek Sat 27-Feb-16 15:17:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

defineme Sat 27-Feb-16 15:21:00

Did she actually say hi and bye as one sentence or just that all she said was first hi and then later bye?
if it was the former then my 13 yr old would have been severely told off about that deliberate rudness, I don't embarrass them in front of their friends no matter how inappropriate their friends are.
If it was the latter then thats just teenage awkward shyness and I would be fine with it.

SleepyBoBo Sat 27-Feb-16 15:21:59

Wow - you got off lightly. At 13, if someone had called me 'cutie-pie', I would have given them my very best, saved for special occasions, teenage sneer. I'm not condoning being rude, but she's a teen and quite frankly you can expect a few years of this. I wouldn't have emailed your boss apologising as she was a bit patronising, some people don't really know how to talk to preteens/teenagers though. I wouldn't make a fuss over it - however, I would remind your daughter that manners cost nothing, even if the person talking to them seems to have forgotten that she's not a little girl anymore.

MrsTerryPratchett Sat 27-Feb-16 15:22:57

I used to go with my Dad to work at that age. I would never have been rude to people.

I don't think it's OK and it's not all teenagers. I was foul at that age but never rude at my DDad's work.

ToastDemon Sat 27-Feb-16 15:23:06

Actually yes that's really rude of her.
I was as bad as the next teen to my long-suffering family but I wouldn't have dreamed of being rude to other adults.

defineme Sat 27-Feb-16 15:23:12

You are absolutely right, and if she's rolling her eyes at her she's probably doing it at teachers too...i would be having a lot of words about this.

ToastDemon Sat 27-Feb-16 15:24:11

Oh and I actually did have comments along those lines as a teen - think my mum's friend called me a "little doll" when I was fifteen.
I was happy that people were being nice to me!

defineme Sat 27-Feb-16 15:30:41

I don't think it's reasonable to expect a few more years of this. I think it's reasonable to not expect my child to act like an entitled brat. People say condescending stuff/patronising things all the time, learning to deal with people politely is part of growing up. I often tell my kids to keep it in their heads and talk it over with me later. I give them leeway to strop a bit at home, but in front of my colleagues no way. I took my 13 year old and 11 year old to a works party a few weeks ago-they were patted on the head and all sorts-they took it on the chin and enjoyed the buffet!

Evelight Sat 27-Feb-16 15:30:57

hi and bye in one sentence, but kind of muttered, not clear.

I have to say, I really hate how rudeness and lack of sociability is "expected" as part of being a teenager. I hate how in all these popular tv shows, teenagers are routinely shown to be sulky/annoyed/unpleasant towards the adults around them, as if this is something that simply happens, along with puberty and periods. Why should a child of 8 have better social skills and manners than a teenager of 13 or 14?

We all hear things that makes us want to roll our eyes, all the time. Like "cute". But we don't do it. As an 8 yr old she wouldn't do it. But as a 13 yr old, she will, because that is how "teenagers behave".

Evelight Sat 27-Feb-16 15:33:27

Thank you defineme! Even though she was hungry, she didn't eat anything at the work event!! And now I remember that I was thinking they would enjoy the fancy crisps and snacks when they got there after school. But she looked at it like it was the plague or something.

Anyway, I am thinking to avoid her coming to work like that for the time beig, though sometimes it just happens.

DiseasesOfTheSheep Sat 27-Feb-16 15:34:37

At 13, I'd probably have thrown up at being called a "cutie pie", and if I'd managed to fight that urge, I'd definitely have expressed my horror at the expression verbally. She was late for swimming and you were lollygagging with co-workers. I'm with your DD here.

PurpleHairAndPearls Sat 27-Feb-16 15:34:46

Hmm I have teens and whilst I accept there is a certain level of eye rolling and "yeah whatever"ing, my DCs also know that in certain situations you act politely - by all means keep interactions brief but they are expected to at least be respectful of social etiquette. These situations include: (off the top of my head) grandparents, teachers, friends' parents and people in workplaces, especially your parents' workplaces!

I expect, and disregard, a certain amount of eye rolly behaviour ("omg I was just going to tidy up mum jeez chill out") but I don't think being between 13 - 19 is an automatic excuse not to be a polite member of society outside your front door. I think it actually does them a disservice to dismiss bad manners with the "they're teenagers what do you expect" line.

MrsTerryPratchett Sat 27-Feb-16 15:35:12

I think that is the age to start learning that you do have to suck it up sometimes. It's a social skill and one that is very useful.

Theimpossiblegirl Sat 27-Feb-16 15:36:27

Don't accept it. I wouldn't accept it from my 2 teens. Teenage grumpiness within the home when their hormones are ruling is one thing, but I can't abide bad manners and would be very pissed off if either of mine was rude to a friend or colleague.

Teens are perfectly capable of being polite, they are polite to their friends' parents all the time (just not necessarily to their own).

Lottie2611 Sat 27-Feb-16 15:38:55

No that's rude. Teenager or not, you should punish her for that. Id never have behaved that way and will not expect my children to either. It's rude and bad manners

Stillunexpected Sat 27-Feb-16 15:41:19

At 13, I would have hated going to my mother's place of work and participateing in some kind of work event. As an adult, I would never call anyone "cutie pie" (are you even in the UK? - that sounds like some kind of awful American expression) and from how you have described events, you were chatting and knew she was going to be late for her swimming lesson and then further stopped to talk to someone else on the way out. Yes, she was rude but she's 13, she's still finding her way and tbh, if you remember that you were the same when you were 13, I'm not seeing the big deal here.

Evelight Sat 27-Feb-16 15:48:51

that is so true that they soooo polite to their friends' parents! So yeah, it's not as of becoming a teenager has suddenly incapacitated their politeness skills! they just think they can get away with it on our side.

She started acting a bit stroppy to my mom - it really, really upset me, esp. as I felt responsible since my sis and I bitch about my mom all the time, so I felt it was her picking up on our behaviour. So I explanied to her clearly that she she never ever act rude towards her, no matter how annoyed she feels. Also I (try to) control the bitching with my sis, although it is hard, since my mom is actually a super annoying, judgey, disapproving kind of woman - and whenever DD was rude to her, I felt secretly sympathetic.

BipBippadotta Sat 27-Feb-16 15:50:16

Yes, your DD was rude. Your colleague was abhorrent. You were inconsiderate. Nobody's perfect.

Having places you're meant to be (where you may be bollocked for lateness), and not being able to get there because you're still dependent on adults who aren't bothered whether you're late, and who patronise you and expect you to smile sweetly all the while... urgh. I wouldn't be a teenager again for the world. No autonomy and you're expected to be nice to everyone.

DD's got the rest of her life to learn to suck it up. That's what adulthood is all about. No need to worry she'll miss the memo.

TaliZorahVasNormandy Sat 27-Feb-16 15:51:02

Even my 8 year old DD would roll her eyes at "Cutie-pie" but I'd tell her off if she was being rude. Though DD is one of the shyest, quietest, mild mannered children you'd ever meet. Hope it stays that way.

Sgtmajormummy Sat 27-Feb-16 15:55:33

I'd have words with her, something along the lines of:

"How you react to my colleagues reflects directly onto me.
Do you want me to be thought of as the woman who brought her children up to be rude, because that's what will happen if you carry on with this attitude."

I've said similar to my two at various stages.

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