Monday, October 29, 2007

M, Rudeness, and 100 Posts

My son M is six years old and I LOVE this age. It's like suddenly he's a mini-adult, able to talk about the things that bother him. Able to identify those things without screaming and body-flinging (most of the time).

Today he wanted to go to his friend E's house to see if E could play outside. I said ok and off he trotted. He came home looking dejected.

"Do you know what I don't like about E's mom?"

"What, honey?"

"I don't like how when I say 'can E come out' she says 'no' as soon as I say 'Can E-'"

"Do you mean she interrupts you?"

"Yeah, she interrupts me and it's rude."

We discussed adults and how they can be rude sometimes. He wanted to know what he could do to make someone not be rude. Really, I explained, there is no way to make someone else be polite. You can only be polite yourself and show them how to be.

I'm big on polite, and I don't mind when my son corrects me. When we are reading our books at night I sometimes say "Ok, next one!" and he goes to hand me one, saying "do you mean, can I have the next one please?" Um, yes, that's what I meant.

This is important to do, with my son, because he is so worried about making mistakes or social faux pas. But to see me make a mistake, apologize and correct it as best as I can, he realizes that it's ok to make a mistake.

I don't know what else to say about E's mother... some people are just rude.

By the way, this is our 100th post!


Carolyn Erickson said...

He sounds like a sweet boy! It's hard teaching kids that something is "right" and then having an adult be a poor example.

At times I get frustrated about that, but then I think about how we (most of us) figured it out eventually, so it'll be okay!

Happy 100th post everyone!

Kai said...

At least your son is picking up the fact that what this person did was rude, so he probably won't do it himself.


Rebecca Laffar-Smith said...

Congratulations on 100 posts!

I think it's wonderful how dedicated you are in instilling manners in your boy. I make an effort with my two children as well (7 and 3 years) and it always brings me joy when they use what they've been taught. They often see people doing the wrong thing out in the world and it's a reinforcement, they recognize it and understand that all we can do about that is to lead by example. The fact that they're recognizing the social faux pas of others, even adults is a positive sign that they've learnt the right way themselves.