Author Topic: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...  (Read 14365 times)

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Mental Magpie

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When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« on: January 11, 2012, 10:33:24 AM »
Dark Sister just told me this story and she doesn't know what she should have done.

BG: Dark Sister's future sister-in-law is 40; Dark Sister is 26.  Dark Sister graduated from college at 24 then immediately entered into law school.  FSIL is a college professor.  END BG.

Any time FSIL brings up her undergraduate classes and her students, she says to Dark Sister, "I'm sure you can relate, Dark Sister."  Well no, no she can't; there is a big difference between 26 and 18-22 and between undergraduate and graduate school.  Dark Sister is insulted by the insinuation.  I told her to say, "What an interesting assumption."  Any other suggestions?
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TurtleDove

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2012, 10:37:10 AM »
Unless there is more to this story, I would take it as FSIL trying to relate to Dark Sister and not as a putdown.  She likely sees it as "being a student is something Dark Sister can relate to" and not "Dark Sister is just like someone who just graduated from high school! How twee!"

Mental Magpie

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2012, 10:38:58 AM »
Unless there is more to this story, I would take it as FSIL trying to relate to Dark Sister and not as a putdown.  She likely sees it as "being a student is something Dark Sister can relate to" and not "Dark Sister is just like someone who just graduated from high school! How twee!"

Ah yes, I did say that to Dark Sister.  She said the tone was very condescending, like a sickly sweet voice with a pat pat on the head.

ETA:  I'm still on the phone with her, so I posed it when you mentioned it.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2012, 10:41:55 AM by Dark Magdalena »
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Shoo

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2012, 10:48:13 AM »
Dark Sister should simply ask, "Why do you think so?" and let the question just hang there.

Mental Magpie

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2012, 11:08:07 AM »
Dark Sister should simply ask, "Why do you think so?" and let the question just hang there.

Dark Sister says, "Am I allowed to tell her she is wrong if she actually answers?"

As in
FSIL, "You can relate, DS."
DS, "Why do you think so?"
FSIL, "Because you're in school."
DS, "But I am older than most students and I'm in Law School now, which is nothing like undergraduate school."
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Bexx27

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2012, 11:12:25 AM »
How about, "no, I can't really relate. Law school is so different, you know."
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Shoo

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2012, 11:23:47 AM »
Dark Sister should simply ask, "Why do you think so?" and let the question just hang there.

Dark Sister says, "Am I allowed to tell her she is wrong if she actually answers?"

As in
FSIL, "You can relate, DS."
DS, "Why do you think so?"
FSIL, "Because you're in school."
DS, "But I am older than most students and I'm in Law School now, which is nothing like undergraduate school."

Yeah, I think that sounds perfect! 

Judah

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2012, 03:24:10 PM »
How about, "no, I can't really relate. Law school is so different, you know."

But Dark Sister was, at one time, an undergraduate student.  It's been more than 20 years since I was in college, but I can still relate to my son who is doing his undergrad now. 

I would just ask FSIL why she thinks Dark Sis should be able to relate and see what she says.
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Mental Magpie

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2012, 05:00:51 PM »
How about, "no, I can't really relate. Law school is so different, you know."

But Dark Sister was, at one time, an undergraduate student.  It's been more than 20 years since I was in college, but I can still relate to my son who is doing his undergrad now. 

I would just ask FSIL why she thinks Dark Sis should be able to relate and see what she says.

I'm still in undergraduate (graduate in May! wooo!) and I can't relate to Dark Sister.  Apparently Law School, at least the one that she is attending, is completely different.  I don't think I've ever been that bogged down in my undergraduate career.
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TurtleDove

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2012, 05:05:08 PM »
I'm still in undergraduate (graduate in May! wooo!) and I can't relate to Dark Sister.  Apparently Law School, at least the one that she is attending, is completely different.  I don't think I've ever been that bogged down in my undergraduate career.

I am struggling to understand why the statements are being taken a slight to Dark Sister.  Is it the statements or a more general attitude?  By the way, I am a lawyer and I can still relate to people who are undergraduates.

TurtleDove

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2012, 05:06:16 PM »
I think it is the subject of the post that is throwing me off.  If anyone is making a judgment of someone being less than her, it seems to me that it is Dark Sister making the judgment about people who are mere undergraduates and a few years younger than she is.

Twik

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2012, 05:36:38 PM »
Does Dark Sister do any tutoring? She could always say, "Yes, I can relate to your issues with teaching young people starting university. It does take them a year or so to find their feet in university! We instructors need to be so patient to get them started on the right path. I'm sure we both appreciate the professors who were helpful when we were just starting out."
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Deetee

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2012, 05:41:19 PM »
I think it is the subject of the post that is throwing me off.  If anyone is making a judgment of someone being less than her, it seems to me that it is Dark Sister making the judgment about people who are mere undergraduates and a few years younger than she is.

yes, this.

shhh its me

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #13 on: January 11, 2012, 05:41:33 PM »
   I don't think the statement is offensive or even an interesting assumption.  I think it's logical , if you were an undergrand 2,4, 6 years ago you can relate and may be able to relate more then a person who was an undergrand 20 years ago.   If it's just a matter of delivery or context , then she can say " I'm not sure I can?  What do you think I can relate to?"

Mental Magpie

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Re: When someone thinks your age makes you less than her...
« Reply #14 on: January 11, 2012, 06:16:05 PM »
I wouldn't say that Dark Sister is looking down on people younger than her (not being able to relate to them isn't condescending).  I don't understand that interpretation.  Can someone please explain it to me? (No snark, I just don't see it and am trying to understand.)

I also think the reason Dark Sister feels slighted is because of the tone of voice in which FSIL is saying it, as if Dark Sister should feel like an 18 year old in the wake of FSIL age/experience.  As Merry Mrs Martin put it, it's a matter of delivery/context.

I'll be very honest and say that, at 24, if someone told me I acted like I was 18, I'd be insulted.  I am way different than I was when I was 18 and that all came with age, the maturity, the outlook on life, et cetera.  If someone told me I was just a silly college freshman, I probably wouldn't have anything nice to say.  Then again, I'm insulted when people call me "Hun" because I think it's belittling, which may be causing a bias in my opinion.
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