Author Topic: Do you speak?  (Read 11239 times)

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joraemi

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #60 on: November 10, 2012, 09:42:38 AM »

**as a side note I'd like to think we can give the docent the benefit of the doubt that they thought they were being helpful/appropriate**

I'm sorry but that's going to be asking too much from me.  I heard the tone and she wasn't trying to be helpful.  She was being plain ole' mean. 

I understand how people in an online forum can give her the benefit of the doubt, I get it.  But me, I just can't. 

Now, days later, her tone still irritates me.  Granted, no one knows how annoyed I was by her as I ignored it and have only mentioned it on eHell but I'm seriously considering sending an email to the organization.

Have to agree with Roe here. There's no positive slant I can put on this question (in my mind) that makes the question 'Do you speak?' come across kindly. At best, it's snarky and condescending. At worst, it's downright nasty.

I don't even need to be there to establish 'tone'.

I'm with you, bloo!  And I just can't get past the idea that if the docent (or staff member) had said this to an adult and not a child, no one would be suggesting responding back with a sweet "I'm just quiet/I didn't hear you at first, my apologies etc".

I don't give her the benefit of the doubt because I can't imagine she would say this to an adult.

Good point.  I was just, you know, *hoping*. AND since Roe has clarified that she was being snarky with her tone that does leave absolutely no doubt about her intentions.  So disturbing. >:( 

Did you write a letter or make a phone call to the museum to point out this person's behavior??




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Roe

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #61 on: November 10, 2012, 11:57:05 AM »
No, not yet. My dad just left this morning so I haven't had time though I'm not really sure what to say.

GreenEyedHawk

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #62 on: November 10, 2012, 01:49:22 PM »

**as a side note I'd like to think we can give the docent the benefit of the doubt that they thought they were being helpful/appropriate**

I'm sorry but that's going to be asking too much from me.  I heard the tone and she wasn't trying to be helpful.  She was being plain ole' mean. 

I understand how people in an online forum can give her the benefit of the doubt, I get it.  But me, I just can't. 

Now, days later, her tone still irritates me.  Granted, no one knows how annoyed I was by her as I ignored it and have only mentioned it on eHell but I'm seriously considering sending an email to the organization.

Have to agree with Roe here. There's no positive slant I can put on this question (in my mind) that makes the question 'Do you speak?' come across kindly. At best, it's snarky and condescending. At worst, it's downright nasty.

I don't even need to be there to establish 'tone'.

I'm with you, bloo!  And I just can't get past the idea that if the docent (or staff member) had said this to an adult and not a child, no one would be suggesting responding back with a sweet "I'm just quiet/I didn't hear you at first, my apologies etc".

I don't give her the benefit of the doubt because I can't imagine she would say this to an adult.

Good point.  I was just, you know, *hoping*. AND since Roe has clarified that she was being snarky with her tone that does leave absolutely no doubt about her intentions.  So disturbing. >:( 

Did you write a letter or make a phone call to the museum to point out this person's behavior??

I'm mentally hearing the docent's tone as the same as if you'd sarcastically ask, "Are you stupid??"  Coirrect me if I'm wrong, Roe.
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Twik

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #63 on: November 10, 2012, 08:52:57 PM »
The woman was extremely rude.

I give tours at our middle school for propspective familes. Sometimes I have adults but frequently I'll have groups of kids. On the whole, the kids are much more quiet than the adults. The kids may be overwhelmed by the whole process (think about applying to college, but you're 10 or 11yo) or meeting new people or being in a new place. Or just being shy. I wouldn't call a kid rude unless they did something active like deliberately turn away from me. If they don't respond, I'm more likely to chalk it up to a very busy environment with lots of sensory input (much like a museum, hmmmm.)

It's my job to bring the kids out of their shells. It's a delicate balance between prodding and giving them space. It starts with making sure that I have their attention and asking them questions about themselves -- find a kid's interest and sometimes it's hard to get them to stop talking. "Do you talk?" would guarantee that I lose them for the rest of the tour.

I guess my vote is not just "rude" but "not very competent." As a docent, I'd be thrilled that a kid was so engrossed in the exhibit that he didn't notice me. The point of the place is the exhibit, not the docent.

As usual, Art explains things so well.

The guide was not entitled to a response from a child who didn't know her, any more than she was entitled to demand one from an adult. And imagine the embarrassment if she had decided to ask it of a child who literally didn't speak, rather than just being shy or slow to answer.
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joraemi

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #64 on: November 14, 2012, 05:51:26 PM »
No, not yet. My dad just left this morning so I haven't had time though I'm not really sure what to say.

I know some folks who would probably love to help you with that. >:D




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Roe

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #65 on: November 18, 2012, 08:34:40 AM »
I finally did send an email but all I got back was a "We appreciate your email. We will take your email into consideration" type of response.

Oh well.  At least I tried. 

edgypeanuts

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #66 on: November 18, 2012, 11:38:46 AM »
I finally did send an email but all I got back was a "We appreciate your email. We will take your email into consideration" type of response.

Oh well.  At least I tried.

That could also mean we know this person is a problem and are working on it, or that we will coach the new staff more about appropriate conversations.  Many places have a rule about giving a noncommittal response to complaints.

Thank you for standing up for him, though.  I do not understand why people think it is okay to be rude to someone because they are young.  It has been more than 3 decades since a friend of my mom, at seeing me take 2 pieces of cheese off a snack tray, asked me if I liked cheese (yes) and then followed my answer with "does it make you constipated?"  When I paused and said that I did not know what that word meant, they all laughed until I left the area to go play in my room.  I was only about 6, but I did not appreciate being made the butt of a joke I didn't even understand.

Yvaine

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #67 on: November 18, 2012, 12:07:26 PM »
I finally did send an email but all I got back was a "We appreciate your email. We will take your email into consideration" type of response.

Oh well.  At least I tried.

That could also mean we know this person is a problem and are working on it, or that we will coach the new staff more about appropriate conversations.  Many places have a rule about giving a noncommittal response to complaints.

It's probably more of an auto-response meant mostly to inform you the email actually arrived, and no human has had a chance to review it yet.

Roe

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #68 on: November 18, 2012, 01:27:17 PM »
I finally did send an email but all I got back was a "We appreciate your email. We will take your email into consideration" type of response.

Oh well.  At least I tried.

That could also mean we know this person is a problem and are working on it, or that we will coach the new staff more about appropriate conversations.  Many places have a rule about giving a noncommittal response to complaints.

It's probably more of an auto-response meant mostly to inform you the email actually arrived, and no human has had a chance to review it yet.

No, I got the auto response seconds after sending it.  This one was sent by a human.


Roe

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #69 on: November 18, 2012, 01:28:29 PM »
I finally did send an email but all I got back was a "We appreciate your email. We will take your email into consideration" type of response.

Oh well.  At least I tried.

That could also mean we know this person is a problem and are working on it, or that we will coach the new staff more about appropriate conversations.  Many places have a rule about giving a noncommittal response to complaints.

You are right!  That's a much better way to look at it.  Thanks!  :)

csmithy

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #70 on: November 19, 2012, 10:00:54 PM »
Days later and this one is still making me mad. I know that others have responded, but I need to get this out of my system.

The docent was rude. Rude rude rude. When she didn't get an answer she should have either answered the question herself or asked someone else.

I was a very shy, quiet child. Someone putting me on the spot by asking a question and then asking "do you speak" when I didn't answer right away (for whatever reason) would have bothered me a lot. And made speaking in public even more difficult than it already was.

My nephew has autism. He is non-verbal. He looks like every other kid but no, he doesn't speak.

I hope I'll stop being so angry now that I've added my 2 cents to the thread!

I think this story is frustrating me for the same reason.  I was an unbearably shy child (as in, cried every time I had to do presentations in class, could barely muster up words when spoken to, had very few friends, etc), and this question was asked of me many, many times.  It just felt shaming.  It kind of scares me that there are people who don't realize how severe social anxiety can be, especially considering shy people are often mislabeled as introverts - docent would've had no idea why this kid wasn't talking.  But I digress.

I think the docent was rude.  This would've hurt me, especially at a young age.  People never ask, "Do you speak?" in anything but a critical tone, at least in my experience.

Sophia

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #71 on: November 20, 2012, 08:58:30 AM »
I think it is meant to be shaming. 

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #72 on: November 20, 2012, 09:21:13 AM »
I'm an introvert, and there are times when I've been either so deep in thought and my own imagination that it takes me a moment to realize someone's talking to me. I've told DH that it's a good idea to get my attention first before asking me a question or telling me something for that reason.  So I can see how being an introvert could be in play, if Roe's son was deep in thought and might not have been saying much or even heard the woman speak at first. 

It also reminds me of a friend who is even more of an introvert than I am, and is very, very quiet, especially when around others who are talking.  In our group in college we had at least two extroverts which meant C just rarely talked and when she did it was usually in a one on one interaction.  But one night when we were in a pub on campus during the week, C said something and another guy gasped and said "Wow, she speaks!!" Then he went on and on about how quiet she normally is.  Never once actually responded to what C said.

Well then C just got so annoyed by his response that she just shut down and didn't say anything else for the rest of the time we were there. 

So I agree, the docent was rather rude to the OP's son, and it strikes me as shaming too, and I agree that it's meant to be shaming.
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O'Dell

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #73 on: November 20, 2012, 11:17:08 AM »
I think it is meant to be shaming.

Me too.

I keep thinking of the flip side of the comment: "Do you ever stop talking" said to a chatty kid.

Should a kid be taught to observe the social niceties of replying when spoken to in such a situation? Yes. Should a stranger lecture, scold or shame the him if he doesn't? No.

I think you did fine Roe. If the docent is a reasonable person, you got your point across. If he didn't want to get that he was out-of-line, then nothing you said or did would show him that.
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joraemi

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Re: Do you speak?
« Reply #74 on: November 20, 2012, 07:01:27 PM »
I think it is meant to be shaming.

That idea is just so disturbing to me.  What is wrong with people?




Courage is the price life  exacts for granting peace.  ~Amelia Earhart~