Author Topic: I do not accept your endorsement!  (Read 9734 times)

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Two Ravens

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #45 on: October 07, 2012, 03:35:37 PM »
I don't think anyone is saying it is wrong to pay a compliment. Just that compliments should be about the other person, not the fact that they are validating your point of view.

Also, consider what it is the compliment is for.  Would you compliment someone on something that should be natural and commonplace, like discipling their children? Would you compliment someone for paying thier taxes?

artk2002

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #46 on: October 07, 2012, 03:48:41 PM »
I don't think anyone is saying it is wrong to pay a compliment. Just that compliments should be about the other person, not the fact that they are validating your point of view.

Also, consider what it is the compliment is for.  Would you compliment someone on something that should be natural and commonplace, like discipling their children? Would you compliment someone for paying thier taxes?

Yes, I do think you should compliment someone for something that "should be natural and commonplace." I thank people for doing their jobs. I compliment people simply because I feel nice.

My larger point is: How do you know that someone is saying something nice simply to validate their point of view? To me, that requires a level of mind-reading that I prefer not to engage in. I've found my life much more pleasant since I started taking nice words at face value.

As I asked earlier, would you say something nice to someone to validate your point of view, or would you say something nice simply to say something nice? If it's the latter and not the former, why would you assume that others only do the former?
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -Mark Twain

Rohanna

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #47 on: October 07, 2012, 05:41:11 PM »
So now it's wrong to give someone a compliment?  Guess we're supposed to go through life and not make a single sound to anyone. No wonder so many people feel lonely and disconnected from others.

I have found it safest to simply not speak to parents and children I do not know.  Parents are far too over sensitive these days and anything I say or do will do snapped at or blown all out of proportion. 

This thread further proves that I am doing the smart thing.

To be safe I'll do the same thing from now on.
Apparently I should be doing the same.

Why do people in these threads always say "Oh, parents don't like interferance/passive-aggressive behaviour/condecension? I guess I just should talk to them EVER then". When the exact same behaviour comes from a mother-in-law, co-worker, or boyfriend we don't tend to blame the victim. How about we try to be nicer to everyone?
My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. ~ Jack Layton.

AnnaJ

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #48 on: October 07, 2012, 06:08:45 PM »
So now it's wrong to give someone a compliment?  Guess we're supposed to go through life and not make a single sound to anyone. No wonder so many people feel lonely and disconnected from others.

I have found it safest to simply not speak to parents and children I do not know.  Parents are far too over sensitive these days and anything I say or do will do snapped at or blown all out of proportion. 

This thread further proves that I am doing the smart thing.

To be safe I'll do the same thing from now on.
Apparently I should be doing the same.

Why do people in these threads always say "Oh, parents don't like interferance/passive-aggressive behaviour/condecension? I guess I just should talk to them EVER then". When the exact same behaviour comes from a mother-in-law, co-worker, or boyfriend we don't tend to blame the victim. How about we try to be nicer to everyone?

Errr...victim?  I absolutely agree that a compliment that's really forwarding a personal agenda (You parent like I do/would, unlike those other parents) isn't nice, but I wouldn't say the person they are talking to is a 'victim'. 




Sharnita

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #49 on: October 07, 2012, 06:25:07 PM »
Part of the issue is the idea that there is one "correct" way of parenting in the case described by the OP (or many cases).  Some random stranger doesn't know the kid in question, what happened previously in the day, what is planned for later in the day, etc.  I know that there are some cases where a parent will do something totally different for one kid than another because what works for one won't work for the other. In other cases there might be a whole lot of background info somebody would need to know before they could ever make the call as to whether a parent was handling something "correctly" or not.  For a stranger to walk up cold, not knowing anybody or anything and give a passing grade just seems a bit absurd to me. 

Rohanna

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #50 on: October 07, 2012, 06:25:51 PM »
Well I wouldn't precisely call someone who's got a mildly annoying MIL a "victim" either, but lots of people would use the phrase the way I did too... I meant it as "the person who is/feels wronged". A victim doesn't have to suffer something physical or extreme- you could be the victim of a scam, or peer pressure, or even a "fashion victim".
« Last Edit: October 07, 2012, 06:28:43 PM by Rohanna »
My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. ~ Jack Layton.

AnnaJ

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #51 on: October 07, 2012, 06:31:49 PM »
Well I wouldn't precisely call someone who's got a mildly annoying MIL a "victim" either, but lots of people would use the phrase the way I did too... I meant it as "the person who is/feels wronged". A victim doesn't have to suffer something physical or extreme- you could be the victim of a scam, or peer pressure, or even a "fashion victim".

Ah, got it.  I've been on a grading frenzy today and am apparently still on word choice mode, sorry.

Rohanna

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #52 on: October 07, 2012, 06:53:51 PM »
No worries- I was using the phrase casually not formally :)
My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. ~ Jack Layton.

Cami

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #53 on: October 07, 2012, 06:55:54 PM »
So now it's wrong to give someone a compliment?  Guess we're supposed to go through life and not make a single sound to anyone. No wonder so many people feel lonely and disconnected from others.

I have found it safest to simply not speak to parents and children I do not know.  Parents are far too over sensitive these days and anything I say or do will do snapped at or blown all out of proportion. 

This thread further proves that I am doing the smart thing.

To be safe I'll do the same thing from now on.
Apparently I should be doing the same.

Why do people in these threads always say "Oh, parents don't like interferance/passive-aggressive behaviour/condecension? I guess I just should talk to them EVER then". When the exact same behaviour comes from a mother-in-law, co-worker, or boyfriend we don't tend to blame the victim. How about we try to be nicer to everyone?

How is "You're doing an excellent job at parenting" condescending, PA, or interfering? It's a compliment. A simple compliment. It's a serious stretch or rather, a deliberate twist of meaning (that reveals more about the recipient's world view than the intent of the speaker) to view that as anything other than a simple compliment.

kareng57

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #54 on: October 07, 2012, 07:00:57 PM »
So now it's wrong to give someone a compliment?  Guess we're supposed to go through life and not make a single sound to anyone. No wonder so many people feel lonely and disconnected from others.

I have found it safest to simply not speak to parents and children I do not know.  Parents are far too over sensitive these days and anything I say or do will do snapped at or blown all out of proportion. 

This thread further proves that I am doing the smart thing.

To be safe I'll do the same thing from now on.
Apparently I should be doing the same.

Why do people in these threads always say "Oh, parents don't like interferance/passive-aggressive behaviour/condecension? I guess I just should talk to them EVER then". When the exact same behaviour comes from a mother-in-law, co-worker, or boyfriend we don't tend to blame the victim. How about we try to be nicer to everyone?

How is "You're doing an excellent job at parenting" condescending, PA, or interfering? It's a compliment. A simple compliment. It's a serious stretch or rather, a deliberate twist of meaning (that reveals more about the recipient's world view than the intent of the speaker) to view that as anything other than a simple compliment.


I very much agree.  I loved getting complimented on my kids' behaviour when they were young, and did the same for other younger parents when I got older.  I think people simply like to see future adults behaving in a nice way.  It's indeed OOT for anyone to refer to "those other parents over there" - but I don't think a smiling "hey, you sure got that right!" is necessarily condescending.  It's all in the tone.

It's indeed tempting to withhold compliments to strangers at all, if they're going to be micro-analysed as in this thread.

Rohanna

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #55 on: October 07, 2012, 07:12:21 PM »
A "compliment" can absolutely be condecending- depending on tone, time, place, and phrasing. I've had men compliment me on things that they'd *never* compliment a man on, and it's rubbed me rather the wrong way "YOU can change a tire? Awesome"....why is that awesome? Would it be awesome if you saw a man do it? My husband gets the same thing from women "You change diapers? That's so nice you help your wife".... he's a parent too, why shouldn't he?

Getting a compliment like the one the OP did would make me feel like the person thought they were "above" me to be handing out praise like that- it smacks of boss/employee or parent/child interaction (you handled that perfectly- here's a gold star!). It's much better to simply say "What a well behaved child" or "Your kids were so good during dinner", or "what nice manners".

 Direct the comment as a pleasant observation about the kid/children- not an appraisal or evaluation of the parent.  The former just seems like you noticed a positive attribute, the latter feels like you were under judgement or evaluation.
My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. ~ Jack Layton.

lollylegs

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #56 on: October 07, 2012, 07:12:39 PM »
I have found it safest to simply not speak to parents and children I do not know.  Parents are far too over sensitive these days and anything I say or do will do snapped at or blown all out of proportion. 

This thread further proves that I am doing the smart thing.

That's not very fair.  I agree with Rohanna, I think everyone was having a pleasant discussion about the OP and this bitter, 'Fine, I won't say anything to parents ever because all they'll do is yell at me,' really drags the tone down.

artk2002

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #57 on: October 07, 2012, 07:39:58 PM »
I have found it safest to simply not speak to parents and children I do not know.  Parents are far too over sensitive these days and anything I say or do will do snapped at or blown all out of proportion. 

This thread further proves that I am doing the smart thing.

That's not very fair.  I agree with Rohanna, I think everyone was having a pleasant discussion about the OP and this bitter, 'Fine, I won't say anything to parents ever because all they'll do is yell at me,' really drags the tone down.

And I disagree with you. Your "pleasant discussion" consisted of accusing us (those who give unsolicited compliments) of some very nasty motivations. Accusations without one shred of evidence.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -Mark Twain

TootsNYC

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #58 on: October 07, 2012, 07:42:49 PM »
I don't think anyone is saying it is wrong to pay a compliment. Just that compliments should be about the other person, not the fact that they are validating your point of view.

Also, consider what it is the compliment is for.  Would you compliment someone on something that should be natural and commonplace, like discipling their children? Would you compliment someone for paying thier taxes?

Exactly! You want to compliment me? Say, "you have lovely children!"

I'll beam and think it's wonderful.

Say, "It's nice to see how involved you are with your kids" or "I like the way you handled that!"

But don't say to me, "it's nice to see how involved you are with your kids--other parents aren't."
And ESPECIALLY don't say (in the OP's original example): "so glad you're not like OTHER parents."

Sharnita

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Re: I do not accept your endorsement!
« Reply #59 on: October 07, 2012, 07:49:10 PM »
I do think that once or twice it seems like my nieces or nephews have had their behavior complimented when about 5 minutes before the complimentor has crossed their path they have actually been snarly or otherwise misbehaving a bit. Mom or dad usually ends up wincing a bit.