Yesterday I followed a tweet to this post about teaching your children manners, which generated some thoughts. I believe our society has become less formal than when I grew up, and much less than when my parents grew up. I know my mom would never have considered calling any of her friend’s parents by their first name. While I called many of my parent’s friends by their first names, I dated a guy for three years and never once called his mom by her first name (that was much more about her than me).
My friends and I have debated many times the use of Mr. and Mrs. by our children and with what we are comfortable. I personally am not fond of being called Mrs. DeNike. I will jokingly say “Oh, that is my mother in law, please call me Sarah.” But it makes me feel old and uncomfortable, pretty much the opposite of what the person is trying to convey.
Our family has adopted a hybrid strategy for our children and many of our friends have implemented it too. Our kids refer to our friends and their friends’ parents as Mr. or Miss. [first name] (i.e. Miss Sarah. I feel it shows respect to the person without being overly formal, like they are with teachers at school. I am much more comfortable being called Miss Sarah, than I am Mrs. DeNike.
What do your kids call your friends? Do you like being formal or more casual?
This was also published on my Girl Power Hour blog, Mommy See.