Thursday, June 10, 2010

That’s Miss Jackson, if You’re Nasty

The old rules were clear. You would be Miss Bennett as the oldest daughter, Miss Elizabeth as a younger daughter, and later Mrs. Darcy.

To keep using the example, I was never Miss Bennett or Miss Lizzie, and have never had a single person call me Mrs. Darcy, except perhaps a telemarketer calling at dinner time. I’m Lizzie at work, at dance, with friends.

And so far, I’m Lizzie with Q-ster’s friends.

I didn’t used to worry about he addressed other adults because it was so exciting that he was willing to address them at all. “Hooray! He said Hi,” instead of hiding behind me. Time has gone by and he’s more confident talking to and about the parents of his friends.

“Charlotte said that our sand castles were nice.”
“Catherine was really busy today.”

It sounds weird, coming from a five year old. Somehow, it seems like he should be saying, “Mrs. Collins said . . . “ and “Mrs. De Bourgh was . . .” On the flip side, it will be really weird to be regularly addressed as Mrs. Darcy.

If you have children, what do they call their friends’ parents?


Bob said...

Guess it's American vs British.

Stimey said...

I usually prompt my kids to say Miss or Mr. [first name]. I'm okay with whatever kids want to call me. But if a parent has a preference, I will always go with that.

coldspaghetti said...

Everyone in NOLA refers to folks by Miss or Mister. Adults to adults, kids to adults, etc., etc. Which is a good thing, because no one can pronounce our last names.

Anonymous said...

I am kind of lost on this one, myself. As a kid I would address my parents' friends as Mr./Mrs. until invited to do otherwise. But I myself would find it odd to be referred to as Mrs. Strocel, and I think that most of my contemporaries would agree. And yet, some level of decorum seems required. I just am not sure what it is.

Lara said...

Growing up, I always addressed adults as Miss/Mrs./Mr. until told to use their first names. My mom was "Mrs." to all my friends until I was in college, I think. And my dad was always "Mr." because he was a teacher at my school.

It's funny hearing adults say it would be weird to be addressed as "Mrs. Whatever," because I'm "Miss David" (or, you know) EVERY SINGLE DAY during the school year. I'm so rarely addressed by my first name! :-P

Holly at Tropic of Mom said...

We follow what (I think) is a Southern tradition and say Mr. or Miss Firstname. But yes, as a kid, I used to say Mr. or Mrs. Lastname unless they told me differently.

mayberry said...

Around here, it's almost always Mr./Mrs. Lastname, or sometimes Mr./Miss (? don't know why) Firstname. So I always start by having them call the adults Mr./Mrs. Lastname, and if they request something else, we go with that.