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jokes' About KidsDEAR MISS MANNERS: I congratulated a co-worker family. He spoke back

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I congratulated a co-worker on the new addition to his family. He spoke back through pronouncing his son used to be boring: that all his son does is sleep, consume and soiled his diapers (not the time period he used, however I desired to easy it up for you).

I have labored with disabled children, so my first response was once that a lot of humans would be extremely joyful to have a "boring" child.

He probable has no concept that my husband and I are infertile. Other human beings have complained to me about their youth and (hopefully) jokingly supplied them to me. My response to them is, "If you supply them to me, do not assume to get them back." Any recommendations on how to reply to these examples would be notably appreciated.

GENTLE READER: Such human beings assume that they are being humorous — and that they are sharing what they trust to be a frequent experience, however definitely is not.

However, being complicit in their humor through providing to steal the infant may additionally solely be encouraging them. Miss Manners suggests that you bypass the unamusing banter and say wistfully in return, "It all sounds lovely, actually." This need to no longer always betray your situation, however disgrace them into admitting that it surely is.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: At a gathering 4 years ago, I courteously greeted a younger father and mother, though I do not recognize them well, and stated whats up to their 6-year-old daughter, Mia. Mia glowered at me and stated nothing. Her mom said, "She's no longer speakme today."

This took me via surprise, so I responded, "Well, please inform her that I stated hello." The mom curiously took fantastic offense and said, "She can HEAR you! She's simply now not talking!"

I used to be so embarrassed and caught off-guard that I assume I stated "Oh, my," and stepped away. Four years later, the mom and Mia nevertheless appear to regard me with contempt. I do not comprehend what I did incorrect in this very awkward situation. Did I cope with it badly? What have to I have executed differently?

GENTLE READER: Silence and glowering appear to run rampant in their family. Barring ailment or a incapacity (and even these must come with an clarification from the parent), Mia's response was once unacceptable. It is incorrect to instruct a baby that ignoring humans with imply looks, if and when they sense like it, is desirable behavior.

Your response used to be now not solely justified, it used to be the solely swish way to have treated it. It truly did no longer advantage a four-year grudge. Miss Manners recommends that you keep away from this household in the future — as it appears that they have made it not possible to do otherwise.


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