Author Topic: The Etiquette of the Childfree  (Read 45774 times)

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Piratelvr1121

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #120 on: July 12, 2012, 12:52:19 PM »
My bf, when I first met her, had 5 cats, I think it was.  Okay, yeah, it was five (had to list the names in my head) and now she's down to 2 and one pup.  She jokes that she only has a maternal instinct where animals are involved.  I always get annoyed when people snort at people treating their pets as part of the family. 

Having both furry and human children, I really do consider our two kitties to be part of the family. I'd no sooner turn one of them out than I would one of my human kids. Actually, considering our kitties are still young-uns at 4, chances are that our oldest two will leave the nest before the kitties will leave us.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

MissRose

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #121 on: July 23, 2012, 08:46:21 AM »
Parents, please don't assume that because I don't have children of my own that I "don't have a family" and therefore should be perfectly happy to work all the holidays.  I have a beloved husband and come from quite a large family.  Sometimes they like to see me on holidays.  Even if I didn't have anyone else in my life, I am just as entitled to my share of holidays off as are you.

For some of my fellow childfree...by all ever considered holy by any of humankind, please stop whining.  Legitimate complaints are one thing, but honestly, sniveling about how a child crossed your path at Chuckie Cheese or that a pregnant woman dared appear in public before you when you walked by the local mall's maternity shop starts veering into the realm of idiocy.

And that's not as much hyperbole as you folks might think.

My best friend has complained about the bolded in the past, always being expected to cover shifts for those with family because she's single and doesn't have kids.  She still has a family in her sister and niece, as well as her sister's in laws.

I thoroughly do not like the fact in the past that my mother told me to work all holidays so that those who had their own kids could spend time with them.  I did work some so I did not have to deal with her, but at the same time I do have family even if I have no children of my own. 

I work in a call center, and there is a reasonable expectation that you may have to work holidays if the coverage is needed.  It is told to you when interviewing the potential for any shift, any time, any day so no reason why people need to complain.  To those with children: please do not pull the children card constantly to not work a holiday or 2 so that the singletons (or married) without children can either relax with family (or alone if they like).  The burdens of holidays and weekends shift be more equal in jobs that need to have sufficient workers to do the work especially if a place is 24x7.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #122 on: July 23, 2012, 09:18:22 AM »
I haven't had many jobs that required working over holidays, but when I did, I didn't pull the "family" card, cause I knew I wasn't the only one with family.  That and having an aunt who was a nurse and would work Thanksgiving and Christmas despite having two kids taught me that it just comes with the territory on some jobs.

And with one job, if you worked Thanksgiving, you didn't have to work Christmas, so it was a fair trade-off.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

snowdragon

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #123 on: August 04, 2012, 10:33:34 AM »
Piratelvr1121, then in my experience that makes you an exception. In every call center I have worked in ( and I've worked in a few) the holidays were give with  rabid priority to parents, same with weekends. I have friends who have never in 7 years had a weekend or holiday off - simply because they don't have kids.

 For the parents: They are YOUR kids, not your friend's and babysitting issues are YOURS to deal with" telling your CF friends "we need a sitter before we can do XYZ" is not fair.  YOU need a sitter before YOU can do XYZ not the friend. It is not their job to arrange for sitters and implying that this is their issue is rude. We understand that sometimes there are last minute glitches but when you sign up for a course in January and the babysitting situation changes on June 1st, while the class is in August, the time to tell the CF friend is not when they are 45 minutes into an hour long drive to pick you up.  And telling them as I said above " We need a sitter before WE can do XYZ." is not right. nor is bringing a 10 year and a 7 year on what was to be an adult only class - and telling the CF friend to "Suck it up, pumpkin, I have kids" is unfathomably rude and inconsiderate.
  And no your friends with or without kids are not responsible for your kids babysitting OR for making child friendly plans. Etiquette says that must reciprocate - so instead of letting CF Sally do all the inviting - make kid friendly plans and invite CF Sally, but it's not her job to entertain your kids. She's friends with you, not them. She didn't have them, you did. All this "We" stuff is just you being rude to her and to your kid


CF: if your friend is reasonable and does not foist responsibility for her kids on you, forgiving the very occasional last minute glitch will foster the relationship.  Things happen to everyone, let a few things slide as long as it's not a pattern.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #124 on: August 04, 2012, 02:05:46 PM »
Well I figure that just because one doesn't have kids doesn't mean they don't have family they might like to see over the holidays. :)  Or would just like some time off, period.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

Outdoor Girl

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #125 on: August 04, 2012, 02:17:53 PM »
I'm not married and don't have children.  In the past, I've had people try to play the kids card on me.  To which I responded, 'I have to travel 3 hours to see my family; if I work this holiday, I spend it completely alone.'

Opened their eyes a little bit and from that point forward, holidays were more fairly split.  One person still insisted on taking all holidays off and since they had seniority, they got to do that.  But at least I only had to do my share (well, shared amongst everyone but one) rather than all of them from that point forward.
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GreenEyedHawk

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #126 on: August 04, 2012, 03:47:43 PM »
Years ago, I worked at A&W, which is (locally) well-known for the Mothers' day and Fathers' Day specials they run.  On Mothers' Day, they were expecting it to be madly busy at our store, so it was required for every single staff member on the roster to be there.  All of us.  One supervisor, K, railed against this the entire time, saying that of all of us, she should be the only one allowed the day off, as she was the only one who was a mother.

Okay, you know what?  Granted.  I didn't disagree with her too much.  It was her attitude that the holiday was meaningless to the rest of us.  Never mind that we might have wanted to spend it with OUR mothers, right?

The whole thing was ridiculous anyway; I don't think we had more than a dozen customers all day.  IT was the deadest Sunday I'd ever worked.
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hobish

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #127 on: August 06, 2012, 09:35:27 AM »

Iíve never had a problem with a friend telling me they need a sitter before they can do XYZ. Itís not a slight, itís just a fact. I donít take it as being B listed, or as if they expect me to find them a sitter. Sometimes people just canít RSVP to things right away because they have to find a sitter first. I donít see the rudeness.

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snowdragon

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #128 on: August 06, 2012, 12:43:09 PM »

Iíve never had a problem with a friend telling me they need a sitter before they can do XYZ. Itís not a slight, itís just a fact. I donít take it as being B listed, or as if they expect me to find them a sitter. Sometimes people just canít RSVP to things right away because they have to find a sitter first. I donít see the rudeness.

  The rudeness I see is telling me "WE" need a sitter... SHE needs the sitter, not me. She is making me responsible for her need for a sitter. And then insinuating that since "WE" don't have a sitter, "WE" can't do something planned since January.  If she had said "Snowdragon, I don't have a sitter, I can't do it" Absolutely no problem  or "We don't have a sitter, so I can't go"  - again absolutely no problem but she told me "WE don't have a sitter, so WE can't go." There is a difference that that makes it extremely rude.
 
 Under no circumstances should a CF  Christine be responsible for sitters or be expected to not do something because Penelope Parent doesn't have a sitter...there is no "WE" in finding sitters, it's the responsibility of the parent.


And if they can't find one - telling someone before the date they expecting to do something  is considered polite, especially when you have  6 weeks warning that you don't have a sitter for that date.

And when you know   6 weeks that you don't have a sitter - letting them drive 3/4 of an hour out of their way to  pick you up - that you can't come is VERY rude.  Telling them before they leave their own home is polite and perfectly fine costing them extra time and gas is rude.

Even if you can't go because you have no sitter - you don't get to declare "WE can't do XYZ" you can say "*I* can't do it" but telling another, unrelated adult that they can not do it is rude.


The reason I found out that she did not have a sitter as far back as June was because her son picked up the phone and asked why I was coming and then told me  "Zach said on my birthday ( June 1) he could not sit today,so I don't think mom is coming but I'll get her".( Zach is their normal sitter, and the only other person that she trusts is on vacation in Maine this month...she's known that they were planning to be away for the class date since February.) So she's not had a sitter since June and still led me on that she was going until just before I was due at her house.

As far as I am concerned all of the above are rude in the extreme.

I have a good many parent friends, none of them would expect me, or anyone but their spouse to find a sitter for their kids. If nothing else they want folks they know and trust.  Nor would any one else expect that I not do something I planned to do because of their sitter issues.  Nor would anyone else expect that I would be perfectly fine taking a 7 and 10 year old to a day long class that was advertised as "adult only" .

We signed up and paid for this class in January, she had RSVP'd yes in January. In June her sitter told her could not do it that day, the time to pull out was then or in any of the weeks leading up to the class day. NOT as I was driving to her house.   


violinp

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #129 on: August 06, 2012, 02:58:17 PM »
I think the parent may have meant we in the sense of her partner and herself as a parenting unit, therefore what she meant "Partner and I can't find a sitter, so you and I can't visit."

It's massively rude to not tell a friend you can't be there before the other friend is inconvenienced, however.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2012, 03:01:03 PM by violinp »
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hobish

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #130 on: August 07, 2012, 04:06:04 PM »
I think the parent may have meant we in the sense of her partner and herself as a parenting unit, therefore what she meant "Partner and I can't find a sitter, so you and I can't visit."

It's massively rude to not tell a friend you can't be there before the other friend is inconvenienced, however.

That's what i was getting at. If a friend told me "we" can't find a sitter i would never think that "I" was part of that "we".  I'm not saying it doesn't happen; maybe some people mean it that way. I know my friends don't; it never would have occurred to me they might. 


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lollylegs

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #131 on: August 24, 2012, 11:34:24 PM »
You might think of your pets as children and that's perfectly legitimate, but it also means that you should uphold the same standards that parents are held to, such as don't dominate conversations with talk of your pets, don't express horrified shock if someone says they're not a pet person (yes, I'm petfree, don't judge me!), don't insist upon your non-dog-liking friend patting your dog, and for the love of all that is holy, do not pepper casual conversation with explicit details of their sicknesses and injuries.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #132 on: August 25, 2012, 07:14:49 AM »
You might think of your pets as children and that's perfectly legitimate, but it also means that you should uphold the same standards that parents are held to, such as don't dominate conversations with talk of your pets, don't express horrified shock if someone says they're not a pet person (yes, I'm petfree, don't judge me!), don't insist upon your non-dog-liking friend patting your dog, and for the love of all that is holy, do not pepper casual conversation with explicit details of their sicknesses and injuries.

And please don't insist on taking them everywhere, especially to places they don't belong and you don't have permission to bring them.  Our local park has a section of it where pets are not allowed, but I've seen some people bringing their small dogs, as if the dog is too small to count as a dog, therefore they can bring them.   It's not the whole park that's off limits, pretty much just the part that includes the two playgrounds.  Considering it's a good sized park, it's not like there's not plenty of other room to walk a dog.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

veryfluffy

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #133 on: August 25, 2012, 09:16:47 AM »
I think we are straying into the etiquette of "pets", rather than childfree. None of the behaviour cited in the last two posts is specific to the childfree, is it?
   

Piratelvr1121

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Re: The Etiquette of the Childfree
« Reply #134 on: August 25, 2012, 09:26:08 AM »
True, though in my reply (which I admit it was not made clear), I was kinda comparing how some parents think their child is welcome anywhere to how some folks believe their pets belong everywhere.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata