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#102786 - 05/09/03 09:25 AM Re: (not so) endearing terms
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803

Well, if you're going to spell it *that way, Jackie. But if you want to express hostility towards my beloved ASp, you gone hafta come through me.

#102787 - 05/09/03 12:26 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
TheFallibleFiend Offline

Registered: 01/23/02
Posts: 1523
Loc: Virginia, USA

This is one of the reasons I didn't read any psych or self-help books before I had my kids. I understand the sentiment, and I think it's partly true. I think these sorts of pet names surely CAN "indicate hidden hostility," but not necessarily so. Usually, I'm cuddling my kids and petting them as I lavish this anti-praise on them. Mixed signals? I think not. My wife used to get extremely irritated when my kids went through this phase where they were calling me "fat bastard," usually in jest, but sometimes in anger. She insisted I was teaching them to be disrespectful to me. OTC, since they've stopped breast-feeding, both girls have been much, much closer to me than they have to their mother. The fact is they idolize me and the feeling is mutual.

OTOH, I'm not without my own issues. I used to exhale sarcasm as most people exhale CO2. I made a conscious decision, however, before my kids were born that I would try to tone it down - an effort at which I've been largely successful. I couldn't take the chance that I'd hurt one of them. In retrospect, I wonder if I've lost an opportunity. Sarcasm is a grossly overused tool and most people who use it often assess their usage far more favorable than their actual abilities warrant. Still, it's a very useful tool - if for no other reason than self-defense against those who use it often.

Which sort of leads in to what I think is the real crux of the matter. I'm not, nor have I ever been much of a proponent for rules. I'm not opposed to families who have lots of them, though we have relatively few. (Rule #1 - no kidding - "Daddy loves you.") I'm happy to let other families do what they think they need to do. More important I think is the issue of family priorities which I've tried to make clear to my kids: 1. health and safety, 2. education and personal development, 3. happiness and general welfare. But these are just things to focus on, not rules, per se. I don't have absolute rules, but rules of thumb and they apply to me as well as to the kids. The main heuristic is "Pay attention." You try something, see how it floats, modify, test, modify, test, etc. While people have a lot of similarities and can often be usefully grouped into categories, we are still individuals and it's important for individual families to pay attention to what's happening with the other members.

You call a kid a poophead and he breaks down crying and you know not to do that again. You call a kid a poophead and he smiles and jumps up for a hug and maybe you're not too wide of the mark. Now, if a parent were really paying attention, they will almost certainly realise beforehand that a particular kid will not respond well to "derogatory" pet names.

Could it yet be some esoteric sign of antipathy? A buddy of mine was talking with one of his acquaintances about energy use and shortages. The fellow asks my friend imploringly, "Frank, are there forms of energy that we don't know about?" Frank pauses for a second and responds, "I wouldn't know." Could I have some latent hostily towards my daughters or they for me? "I wouldn't know."


#102788 - 05/09/03 12:53 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
of troy Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
Helen doesn't readily lend its self to being shortened-Hell! is not a nick name(well not a desirable one!)

and while i realize that there can be hostility in some nicknames, not having a nick name can be sad too.. my parents never used them, and my ex had no special name for me.. (he was usually called Jimmy- not James, one freind called him grif, and a favorite aunt used, and i copied, james the lesser, (at one point, jesus claims James the lesser (or younger) son of (somebody--Zebidiah?) as his favorite apostle)

i have a very soft warm spot in my heart for Faldage, who has often called me ledasdaughter,--i view it as a kindness all out of proportion to our 'just friends' relationship.
names, and naming are powerful tools of kinship...and i think we often use them that way here.. (what do you say Juan?)

many societies have public and private names-sometimes diminutives of given names, sometimes very private family names. I think the our fiend is right, in saying naming is different than name calling.

my other obsession

#102789 - 05/09/03 02:00 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
birdfeed Offline

Registered: 11/19/02
Posts: 180
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Well shux. Onliest thang my husband ever calls me is Uxor, and that so persistently one young (4 year old) friend of ours thought it was my name.

#102790 - 05/09/03 08:41 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
Zed Offline

Registered: 08/27/02
Posts: 2154
Loc: British Columbia, Canada
A boyfriend used to call me TB short for Treacherous B* after I put an icecube down his back at an extremely innappropriate moment. It was an endearment because it was a private joke, used and understood only by the two of us. We always refused to explain it and got a lot of enjoyment out of our friends' frustration.

#102791 - 05/10/03 01:21 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11613
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Well, if you're going to spell it *that way, Jackie. But if you want to express hostility towards my beloved ASp, you gone hafta come through me.
All I can say is that my misspelling is an indication of my unfamiliarity with the term. AnnaS., if I have ever used that, I sincerely apologize. I agree very strongly with what the FF and Zed indicated: that whether it is "okay" to use derogatory nicknames depends primarily on the personality of the recipient and the quality of the relationship between the two people, and the circumstances. At the moment, I cannot think of a single circumstance where I would call her ASp and mean it in a non-derogatory way; and even if I could, I couldn't be sure due to the circumstances of communicating electronically that she would know it wasn't derogatory, and so I just don't use it. Whoever came up with that nick may or may not have meant it derogatorily; and whether they did or didn't, AnnaS. may not have been offended; I can't know these things. I'm not saying this or any other nickname should never be used; but *I would worry that it would cause offense if I used it, so I don't.
I have on occasion called my kids something like "dingle-dobber", when they've done something they know was stupid. BUT--they understand, by my expression and my tone, that what I am really telling them is, "Yeah, you make mistakes; you are loved and accepted anyway". If I ever called somebody an ugly name in the heat of the moment, I would regret it for the rest of my life. I just cringe when I hear siblings call each other "Stupid", or "Idiot"--even on a TV show! And it's ten times worse when the parents do it to their kids.

#102792 - 05/10/03 01:26 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
Buffalo Shrdlu Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/24/02
Posts: 7210
Loc: Vermont
I cannot think of a single circumstance where I would call her ASp and mean it in a non-derogatory way

shirley, that's not what you meant!

formerly known as etaoin...

#102793 - 05/10/03 01:31 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11613
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Dag-gone it now, you KNOW what I meant!!!!!!! C'mere a minute, willya?

#102794 - 05/10/03 01:40 PM Re: (not so) endearing terms
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10538
Loc: this too shall pass
Jackie, two things about ASp:
1) I coined this as a contraction of AnnaStrophic, which is too hard to type; A..S..p, see?
2) I think Faldage was kidding you for rendering it as "AsP".
3) you're entirely too sensitive

oops, that was three(3) things. I lied again.

#102795 - 05/10/03 01:45 PM Re: so endearing
Buffalo Shrdlu Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/24/02
Posts: 7210
Loc: Vermont
C'mere a minute, willya?

who me? I'm just a line o' type...

formerly known as etaoin...

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