how do you have them address adults?

Discussion in 'The Toddler Years(1-3)' started by lovelylily, Oct 9, 2010.

  1. lovelylily

    lovelylily Well-Known Member

    My two are little parrots these days and I am eager to teach them all the words I can think of. It wasn't until recently though that I realized it might not be appropriate to be teaching them to address adults by their first names. That's what we are currently doing. When I was young, it was rude to address any adult by their first name. The only really proper way to address an adult was Mrs/Mr/Miss <last name> Now I don't even know a lot of the last names of adults I interact with. Like the moms at playgroups and stuff. So what does everyone else do? Am I worrying about this too soon? I would rather just start the way we mean to go on, but I am not even sure what is polite anymore!
  2. ldrane

    ldrane Well-Known Member

    If it is someone that we are really close to it is usually just their first name. BUT...if it is a teacher, neighbor, acquaintence, is usually Mr./Ms. <first name>....for younger people and Mr./Ms. <last name> for elderly people. I don't know if that is necessarily the correct etiquette, but that is the way we do it. :pardon:
  3. Fossie

    Fossie Well-Known Member

    We do the same. It probably stems from my kids being in preschool and referring to their teachers as Miss First Name, but pretty much everyone that I am introducing them to is Miss, Mrs., Ms First Name unless they are older and I myself refer to them by the last name and then it is last name. I guess it just follows my comfort level with the person and what I call them - meaning if it is a good friend of mine it is Miss Jane, but if it is a friend of My Mother In Law's it is Mrs. Smith.
  4. maybell

    maybell Well-Known Member

    we do it similarly.. but I guess we do "Aunt" <first name> for a couple of my best friends..
    and then the rest are just "Mr/Miss" <first name>...
    and like pp said if its an elderly couple we do last name, like our neighbors - they are in their 80s.

    at a preschool situation where I helped out last week the teacher had the kids all address me as "Mrs" and my last name. but for me, with people I know, I just do their first name.
  5. Utopia122

    Utopia122 Well-Known Member

    Adults are Mr or Mrs and their first names if they are familiar to us and my husband and I know them well. If they are complete strangers, then they are Mr. or Mrs and last name, just as I would address them. Family members are addressed by their first name. And as pp said, elderly people are addressed formally,
  6. Trishandthegirls

    Trishandthegirls Well-Known Member

    Almost every adult my kids know is addressed just by their first name (neighbors, parents of classmates, etc.). A few people have introduced themselves as "Miss Karen or Mrs. Emily, but that's been the exception rather than the rule. Maybe I live in a relaxed community... the adults who put a title in front of their first names come off as kind of silly around here so pretty much everyone goes by first name.

    My girls' teachers are technically "Miss Kristen" and "Miss Amber" but the kids usually just call them Kristen and Amber and no one seems to mind.
  7. ckreh

    ckreh Well-Known Member

    For close friends we use their 1st names at their request. Anyone else is Mr. Bob or Miss Patty for example for those we know, but are not close family friends. We didn't want to use Uncle or Aunt except for the actual ones because that is how we grew up and as adults it is weird when a cousin is called aunt still.
  8. fuchsiagroan

    fuchsiagroan Well-Known Member

    I think there's a lot of regional variation with this. Our kids call their preschool teachers Ms. [first name], and same goes for staff at Gymboree and Music Together. Other adults (our friends and parents of other kids) they just call by their first names. But of course if I'm ever in doubt, I ask someone what they prefer.
  9. mhardman

    mhardman Well-Known Member

    I grew up in the south and everyone was Ms. first name.I liked it as it is still casual but shows respect. I would ask their preference. I think most people now like just first names.
  10. lovelylily

    lovelylily Well-Known Member

    I like the idea of Miss/Mrs/Mr first name. I thought about that but wasn't sure if it was silly. I know that is how we had kids address us at daycare and other childcare situations. Thanks for your input!
  11. kingeomer

    kingeomer Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I also do the Mr. and Mrs/Miss with the first name if I don't know the last name.
  12. Aeliza

    Aeliza Well-Known Member

    I believe saying Miss/Ms./Mrs/Mr. <Last Name> is a bit too formal and more often that the last names are harder to say (If the person's last name is much easier to say, I may tell them to use the person's last name instead). Assuming I meet the person first, I'll ask them how they'd prefer to be addressed by children. If it's on the spot that I'd like my boys to address that person, I'll say <Title> + <First Name>. It's a little more casual, but polite. If the person wants to be addressed differently at that point, I'd hope they would correct me at that point. It's reasonable to hope a person does that, but I don't assume they will. If it's at a business like at their pediatrician's office, I will tell them Dr. <Last Name> as that is what I'd call that person too.
  13. MichelleL

    MichelleL Well-Known Member

    This is just what we do. If we don't know their last name we just use the Mr./Ms./Miss and their first name. And then we go by what the others will say. Some will say "oh please, call me Michelle" so then we do and I let them know the person said they don't mind being called by their first name. A lot of our close friends prefer first name only, which is fine by me. Sort of lets my girls know that it's an exception not a rule for us. It works well for us.
  14. becasquared

    becasquared Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    Their daycare teacher is shocked that A&R call her "Ms. First name" because most of the other children just call her by her first name. I want A&R to continue to use the Mr./Ms.first name until they decide to stop.
  15. Poohbear05

    Poohbear05 Well-Known Member

    We're in a military community, so ours is a little different. We teach the kids to call EVERYONE Mr/Miss/Ms. <first name> including the teenagers right next door. The teachers at daycare are all Ms <first name> with the exception of the Director who we call by her last name. When we take them to work, it's always <Title/Rank> last name. When we're out and about, if we get introduced to someone, that's how we introduce the kids (if they use first names with us, so will the kids. If they introduce themselves with last names, then the kids use last names)

    We are also very big on teaching them to say Sir/Ma'am. I don't necessarily think of this as a military thing. My parents never taught us this, and looong before I came in the military, I used to address EVERYONE as 'you guys' and had an elderly woman ask me why I addressed her as a 'guy'. In HER mind I was being very disrespectful, but in MY mind and our generation, the term 'guys' was/is loosely used to refer to everyone and doesn't have a specific sex assignment. Anyways this conversation clued me in to how I could change myself to show more respect for everyone, and I want my kids to act the same as they grow up.
  16. Jen620

    Jen620 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    Our neighbor who used to watch the girls is Marilyn. Our older neighbors are Mr/Mrs. first name. The first friends we made are Desarae and Shella. But now that they are in school their teachers are Mrs. last name. I sub there too, so I am Mrs. last name to all of their friends and the kids at school. Ellie's after school day care provider is Miss Maggie; she's also my 7yo's best friend's mom, so she's become Miss Maggie to all the girls.

    We seem to be using last names for all their friend's parents and first names with a title for our older neighbors that we might not see everyday.
  17. seamusnicholas

    seamusnicholas Well-Known Member

    I had the boys calling my friends by their first names until recently. I want them to call them by their last name like me and dh did with our parents friends growing up. I thought they are now old enough to remember last names so I taught them their last names and we used the last names for the first time last weekend. When we were leaving, I had them go to each adult and say my Mr/Mrs last name.
    With people I dont know well, we do Mr/Mrs first name.
  18. Leighann

    Leighann Well-Known Member

  19. NINI H

    NINI H Well-Known Member

    I don't have time to read all the responses, so forgive me if I repeat something someone else has said. We use Mr/Mr/Ms and Last name. If for some reason I don't know their last name, I ask. Then we know how to address them. Family is addressed by title also, Aunt, Uncle, Grandma, Cousin (when an adult). Children are called by first name. It gives the boys a respect for authority and elders. We use Yes Ma'am and Yes Sir also.
    I'm actually put off by a child calling me by my first name. Some parents don't teach them to ask how they should address people. If I were asked and then said they should use my name, then it's appropriate. But a child just coming up and using my first name, shows no sign of respect. My father was a
    Air Force Brat, so maybe it comes from his upbringing. But I have a feeling that it's also quite common in the south to show respect to elders.
  20. Minette

    Minette Well-Known Member

    Mine address nearly everyone by their first name, unless they're a family member (or their one honorary uncle). That seems to be the standard here. (We live in a town where fleece and jeans are considered dress wear as long as they're clean.)

    My parents were sort of hippies, so I grew up addressing most of their friends by first names too -- it was sort of a shock to me to reach school age and learn that I was supposed to call my friends' parents Mr. and Mrs. :laughing: But I'm told that kids even call their teachers by first names now (at least in Boulder)! :woah:
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