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DD's Speech Is Driving Me Mad!

(29 Posts)
User45632874 Mon 30-Oct-17 16:04:11

Hi, Just trying to gauge what is usual.

I realise I am posting in staffroom (have also posted in teens) about DD (age 11) who is at secondary school but thought it might be useful to get some teacher feedback on this one.
Minor in the great scheme of things I know but dd's use of language (apart from a noticeable increase in swearing since starting secondary school), is driving me mad!
I'm not perfect myself but DD describes events along the lines of the following:
"Sarah's been on the phone and she is 'like' so lucky to be getting a new dog."
"She rang me up and told me and I 'went' yeah, I'd love one of those too and she went, well ask your mum."
Obviously these are fictitious conversations but each event that dd relays is absolutely full of 'likes' and people 'went' and not said things and this drives me utterly mad. It is lovely that dd talks about her day etc. and I realise this is no mean feat for a pre-teen but I find myself constantly trying to correct her. I read and write a lot and I refer to this type of speaking as slang, though I have heard grown adults speak like this and on television too. DH says most children speak like this nowadays so perhaps I am just behind the times but in my opinion it does not come across well and dd sometimes sounds as if she is gabbling and the likes are perhaps a type of hesitancy. Whichever way, I seem unable to break the cycle and it feels awful interrupting her - I am afraid she will not want to talk to me if I continue! DD is an intelligent girl and attends a very good grammar school and I can't quite understand why she chooses to speak like this - can anyone advise? I even thought about approaching the school if it is a universal problem, I am uncertain why it grates so much and there is probably little the school would want/could do anyway but I thought I would run it pass someone, I guess I want dd to present herself in the best possible light for her future.

JennyOnAPlate Mon 30-Oct-17 16:06:58

She chooses to speak like that because all of her peers do. I think you just need to try and block it out to be honest; it’s not worth getting into a battle over it.

SnugglySnerd Mon 30-Oct-17 16:08:22

I teach teenagers. They do talk like that and have their own slang just as we did at that age. However the vast majority know not to express themselves like that in writing or a formal occasion such as an interview. They are also taught this in English.
I shouldn't worry. It's an important part of their identity and whilst it can be irritating they grow out of it eventually.

sonlypuppyfat Mon 30-Oct-17 16:10:48

Well like basically like at the end of the day like she will basically talk like how she wants ain't it

Eolian Mon 30-Oct-17 16:16:19

I'm a languages teacher. Most children talk like that! Or a variation of that, depending on where they live. Most of them grow out of it. There is probably little you can do about it, and I wouldn't necessarily even try tbh. Definitely don't approach the school about it - they will think you are bonkers (and they wouldn't do anything about it anyway). It is utterly normal for kids to speak in a slangy way, and probably always has been.

MrsMozart Mon 30-Oct-17 16:17:01

It's a phase. This too will pass.

Fragglewump Mon 30-Oct-17 16:20:17

Good gracious me how terribly frightful. Most teens speak like this to seem cool to their mates. Indeed most humans modulate/moderate their language/accent depending on situation and who they are with. Don’t worry she might soon have a boyfriend called Horatio and start talking very posh.

Nonibaloni Mon 30-Oct-17 16:24:44

I talked like that when I was a teen. And my mum picked me up every time which drove me mad. I could gauge when and where to use it very accurately.
If you honestly can’t stand it to the point that you can’t talk to her, tell her to keep it for mates but if you can stand it let it go. She’ll grow out of it.

elelfrance Mon 30-Oct-17 16:26:31

I would thinkthe only thing you will do by keeping picking at her, is make her stop wanting to talk to you
As long as its not affecting her results in school, let it go ...

LegArmpits Mon 30-Oct-17 16:28:18


notquitegrownup2 Mon 30-Oct-17 16:32:56

I'm sure that I remember hearing a programme on Radio 4 which described the impact of the use of teenage slang on its users. Essentially those who used such slang to identify themselves with a group went on in later life to have a more developed understanding of register and its uses, and were in the long term far more sophisticated language users.

Clankboing Mon 30-Oct-17 16:33:48

DS has a teacher who hates this. He adds a minute to lessons each time a like or right etc is used. He's a good teacher though. Xx

StatueInTheSky Mon 30-Oct-17 16:35:00

do it back to her, like, yaknow, innit, cool, when you went to the dentist and he like went yeah, right, whatever, your teeth are like so cool.

they do it to fit in and need to learn it's not really how people converse,

so I do think a little, like , yaknow, teasing, yeah, like cool might bring it home how like uncool yeah it is

I've three grownups now and none of them talk like that anymore. innit and the teasing did not stunt their growth or anything.

rizlett Mon 30-Oct-17 16:39:21

Criticising and finding fault is the one sure way to drive a wedge between you.

Perhaps work on why it annoys you so much - after all it's really your problem and not a problem for your dd.

She's a smart girl - she'll know when to talk proper!

MyBrilliantDisguise Mon 30-Oct-17 16:45:06

Look up elaborated and restricted code, as discussed by Bernstein, a sociologist, and talk it through with her. It's very interesting - I found a lot of sociology mind-blowing when I studied it in my teens.

DeleteOrDecay Mon 30-Oct-17 16:48:04

Don’t most pre-teens/teens go through a stage of talking like that? I know I did. Pick your battles, leave her be, she will probably grow out of it.

stayathomegardener Mon 30-Oct-17 17:09:28

My Mother used to pick me up on this repeatedly as a teen.
It made me stop speaking to her and certainly prolonged my poor language for years in defiance.

Good luck...

User45632874 Mon 30-Oct-17 19:10:59

Thank you. Very many varied and interesting responses and one teacher who picks up on it; I would like to shake that teacher by the hand and encourage other teachers to follow suit and I don't mind if this makes me look like I'm bonkers. I remember a cousin attending a private school back in the day and receiving elocution lessons and wouldn't mind if this was re-instated along with drama classes.
I have heard dd in conversation with adults telling them about school and sometimes this makes me cringe, to me in conveys a lack of confidence which is never something that dd has lacked. There seems little I can do because it is so ingrained now. I have tried the teasing approach and all I can do is hope that she grows out of it, I certainly don't want to drive a wedge between us but neither do I remember speaking in such a way as a teenager.
Yes, I'm thinking later on in interviews and so on and I am concerned because I hear some adults speaking like this so I don't feel fully convinced that it is an easy habit to shake but I am hoping growing maturity will enable dd to realise the error of her ways.
I think I will take a look at some of her English written work to ensure it is not being used there - or else it could become a matter for school but I would be very surprised if this was the case.
It is some consolation I suppose, to hear that some other children are speaking in this way. I know of one other parent who was driven bonkers with this but she has successfully managed to tame the beast using all the methods (including financial incentives) I have used but for me so far this has failed. Perhaps it is time to admit defeat!

MaisyPops Mon 30-Oct-17 19:15:24

If she spoke like that in my classroom then I would remind her we speak in standard english in the classroom because ut's important to know how/when social or regional varieties can/can't be used. (I always liken it to me using regional grammar out of class but would never teach in it)

At break or lunch etc I wouldn't be bothered. Teens have always spoken differently and had their own slang/ expressions.

User45632874 Mon 30-Oct-17 19:34:23

Maisy, thank you. I think it is important to speak correctly in class and would feel relieved and reassured to think more teachers would pull children up on this.
'Like' is a filler in my mind. It conveys to me that the speaker is unsure about what they are saying and these filler type words seems to inflict girls an awful lot in my opinion (not sure about boys). Is this a sign of the times? Are girls feeling less confident in being able to express themselves? Maybe I am looking too deeply at this but it is interesting and could be a symptom of a more widespread societal issue. I don't remember it being so prevalent thirty or so years ago but perhaps that is just my memory now that I am ancient! I know a young teacher at dd's primary school used 'um' a lot when you spoke to her, I don't think it is directly linked to intelligence. Interesting.

MaisyPops Mon 30-Oct-17 19:36:44

There's a lot of studies into language use which suggest fillers are more common in girls. There is probably part of a gender element, but in my area it's fairly common for boys and girls as a regional thing.

lunar1 Mon 30-Oct-17 19:41:42

The one that really gets to me is, so I turned around and said...It’s not just teens either. The amount of turning around some people do it’s a wonder they don’t fall over from dizziness.

User45632874 Mon 30-Oct-17 19:53:02

lunar, I raised a smile at this one ' I turned around' I am sure some of my elderly relatives use to say this. Mind you and you know what I mean are other alternatives, I have heard adults use too. A while ago I spent some time with someone who constantly said 'you know what I mean' after almost every sentence and then to my horror I started using it too for a brief time - it was contagious but I became aware of it and was able to shake it.

Trailedanderror Mon 30-Oct-17 19:57:20

Gosh you're determined to get backing to tackle her on this aren't you?

QuackDuckQuack Mon 30-Oct-17 19:57:43

I work with someone who recounts conversations like this:
He turned round and said X.
So I turned round and said Y.
Then he turned round and said Z.

Most of the time I can tune it out, but occasionally I get a mental image of the conversation with the two people involved spinning around.

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