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I followed a thread yesterday on Twitter about whether or not to call teachers by their first names.  I’m a firm believer in first names for everyone — kids and adults alike, with the exception to that rule being “call the person what they wish to be called.”

When I was a teacher, I went by my first name because I believed that it sent the message to the students that I saw us as equal partners in their education.  I was there to guide them towards knowledge, but it was their job to pick it up.  Which didn’t mean that we were best buddies and on equal ground in all facets of life.  But in the role we played in each other’s world — student and teacher — we needed to be working together towards a common goal, rather than me pushing them along, or dragging them, or forcing them to learn 5-part essay format (for the love of G-d, could they please just learn the fucking essay format?)

And that meant first names unless we were both going to go by last names.

With the twins, we’ve always used the adult’s first name unless we’ve been specifically asked to use the person’s last name (for instance, if the person introduced themselves as Dr. So-and-So, we call them Dr. So-and-So.  If there is no introduction, we go with the first name).  We’ve also taught them to show respect to all people, but especially to show different types of respect to different types of ages.  Not that one age receives more or less respect, but instead, we concentrate on different types of respect for peers, adults, and super-adults (great-grandparents, for instance, or the lovely old ladies who walk slowly through the food store).

Did you call your teachers by their first names?  Would you want to?  Where do you stand on the first name/last name issue?


We survived the first day of kindergarten.

They were excited to get to the building, but when we walked up to the door for drop-off, the Wolvog became wide-eyed and quiet, saying goodbye to us in a daze while he allowed himself to be led inside.  The ChickieNob burst into tears and screamed, “I’m scared!  I’m overwhelmed!  I’m overwhelmed!” and begged us not to make her go to kindergarten because “there are too many kids!  Too much noise!”  But she too allowed herself to be led inside.

I walked back to the car with Josh and drove home in tears, and once he left for work, cried like an animal.  I sat on the sofa and did one of those screaming cries, not caring if the neighbours heard.  I literally felt as if my skin was being yanked inside out, with all my organs spilling to the floor and rolling away to the far-reaches of the room.

And after I was done crying that animalistic cry, I moved to just lightly crying while I boxed up hundreds of books to donate, and cleaned the front hallway, and Googled how to fix my dishwasher, and emailed Josh about how I wanted to take apart the dishwasher when he came home that night, and started trying to take it apart without him because I felt as if he might give me some resistance to this idea.

I baked cinnamon challah for the Wolvog’s breakfast.  I baked nutella cookies.  I looked through what little I wrote in their baby books and promised I would take the time to backpedal and fill them out.  I looked at beach pictures.  I went to the food store and the drugstore.  I looked at the clock and realized I still had four more hours to go until pick up.

It was a long day.

I got to the school 20 minutes early for pick up and sweated inside my car rather than be the first one at the door and admit how desperate I was to get my kids back.  They left the room excitedly chirping about their day and the new kids they played with.  And all was well.

Until nighttime came and I realized yet again (because this realization comes at me in waves) that we no longer had our days to ourselves.  That our days belonged to the school — at least until next summer.  Every time I realize this, it fills me with the same grief I felt the first time I realized it.  Some things, perhaps, don’t lessen with time.  Such as … well … waves.  Even if 20 have smacked you down, it doesn’t mean the 21st is any gentler.

Being the stupidest parents in the world, we took the kids to the beach the weekend before school began.  We played mini-golf and lazed about on the sand and jumped in the water and gazed at wild horses and picked up whelks and ate ice cream every night.  We got home an hour or two before bedtime, about 14 hours before the first day of school.  Josh and I commented on how there was literally no traffic on the Bay Bridge in either direction, and we reasoned that most intelligent parents wouldn’t throw their kids in the car and drive to the beach right before the first day of school.

But we all needed the distraction.

As I drove home from the second day of drop-off, still crying and my heart hurting, I was both thankful and regretful that we had that beach time.  The thankful part is easy to understand.  The regretful part is that if I hadn’t tasted such happiness right before letting them go, it perhaps wouldn’t be such a contrast.

Who am I kidding?  There wasn’t any way to set up a scenario where I would be okay seeing them go.


I got my period on the first day of kindergarten.  It was 21 days — yes, my norm — but I was still surprised when the cramps came mid-day and I saw blood in the bathroom.  It was like a sign from the universe, delivered like the Soup Nazi, “no kids for you!”

They’re my firsts.  They are also most likely my lasts.  And that is the strange thing about having twins, you have double, but you only get to go through each stage once.  So everything is a first.  And a last.


1 Gail K. { 09.01.10 at 8:13 am }

I’m glad that your kids enjoyed kindergarten and that you have survived as well. It will get better (or so I’ve been told).

As for the question you posed about first names, I disagree. I don’t think that children should call authority figures by their first names because, in most cases, adults can’t either. Think about when you are pulled over by a cop. You don’t call him “Bill”, you call him “Officer Jones” and, when you go to court to fight the ticket, you don’t call the judge “Sarah” you call her “Judge Smith”. The same should be true in a school. I used to be a middle school teacher and I required that the students call me Mrs. _____ (last name withheld for privacy) and I also required their parents to call me that. I called the parents by their proper names (Mr. ___ or Mrs. ____) and expected the same respect. I was the authority figure and the expert in their child’s education and I did not feel that being called by my first name by either the children or their parents was appropriate.

Family friends are another area and whether or not the kids call the people Miss Jane or just Jane doesn’t really matter to me. If they are friends and not authority figures, then it shouldn’t matter. Just my two cents.

2 Heather { 09.01.10 at 8:58 am }

Glad everyone survived the first day.

I was raised to call every adult by their title and last name. Mr/Ms/Mrs/Dr -last name. I still find myself doing it and have to remind myself that I AM an adult now. I still don’t feel like an adult. The exception was family but it was still Aunt/Uncle then first name. Or my Mom’s very close friends were Ms/Mrs first name. Still to show a sign of respect.

Katherine is in preschool and her teachers introduce themselves and have a sign on the door that they are Ms Jennifer and Ms Crystal so that is what I call them. I never had an adult want me to just call them by their first name. It feels weird to me. I wish it didn’t.

3 N { 09.01.10 at 9:02 am }

4 Stimey { 09.01.10 at 9:15 am }

I agree with you on the names, although I somewhere picked up a habit of making kids put Miss or Mr. in front of the first name. For instance, I would introduce my kids to you as Miss Melissa. It’s a little weird, I know. Every single teacher they’ve ever had has gone by Mrs. (or Mr.), so that’s what we’re used to at school.

I know what you mean about kindergarten. When my oldest went (and my second) I cried. With the third, things were so busy that orchestrating the whole thing kept my mind of the sadness. I was lucky enough to sort of be eased into it. It does take some getting used to not having them around. I called my youngest “my barnacle” because we were a duo for so long. Now I’m a single. 🙁

Dammit, Melissa, now you’re making ME cry.

Hang in there. It gets easier.

5 Anjali { 09.01.10 at 9:18 am }

Big Hugs, girl.

6 Michele { 09.01.10 at 9:42 am }

I was always taught to use Mr./Mrs., as a sign of respect and I’ve never had a teacher- even in college- invite the use of their first name. When I taught CCD, I was Mrs. H., and when I coached kids in volleyball, I was simply “Coach” (and, funny enough, hubs was “Mr. Coach”). To the adults that have an important part in our kids lives which kind of makes the Mr/Mrs designation a little formal, if the adults are okay with it, they are “Aunt/Uncle” and their first name. But, otherwise, Mr/Mrs it is.

7 dana { 09.01.10 at 9:48 am }

what to say. that was like a gut punch. a beautiful gut punch.

8 Emmy { 09.01.10 at 9:54 am }

I’m glad the kids enjoyed K and I hope it gets easier for you.

I always called teachers Mr./Mrs. Whatever and my students call me Mrs. Last name. I’m find with parents calling me by first name, but ask that they not in front of students. I also make it a point to call my students by their last names sometimes. They get such a kick out of it.

9 Betty M { 09.01.10 at 10:06 am }

At my school teachers were Madam or Sir. I dont advocate going quite that far! At my daughter’s school teachers are either Miss/Mr whatever and occasionally their first names whereas classroom assistants seem to be first names only. The head teacher and the deputy heads are always Mrs/Miss/Mr . Generally I encourage Mr/Ms/ for teachers, Professor/Dr /Mr /Ms for medical professionals and first names for all our adult friends.

Sorry your first day was tough but glad your kids had a good day.

10 Journeywoman { 09.01.10 at 10:14 am }

Sorry the first day was tough.

With regard to first names, D calls every kid in his class Mr. or Ms. Lastname and expects to be called Mr. J. or Mr. Journeywoman. He says that he expects respect from them and he will, in turn give it to them. He is a very popular teacher.

Myself, I am fortunate that I am to this day in touch with two of my teachers. My fourth-grade teacher Mrs. T and My 7th grade Spanish teacher Mrs. W. At their request I TRIED to call them by their first names, (Eileen and Linda respectively) and I just Couldn’t. It seemed like I wasn’t respecting them.

11 a { 09.01.10 at 10:19 am }

You might want to get the crying thing under control now, because it might embarrass them if you’re wailing and clinging to their legs when you drop them off at college. 🙂

It seems like I read somewhere that once a child learns to walk, every step they take is one away from you. It must be especially hard for you since it was so difficult to get them where they are today. I wish I had something to say to make you feel better, but I suspect that this is just something you’re going to have to get used to.

We were raised to call everyone Mr/Mrs/Miss Lastname. Society has gotten much less formal in that regard, and I have much confusion over what to tell my child to call people. The teachers at the daycare are Mr/Miss Firstname, but I’m sure it will be Mr/Mrs/Miss Lastname when they go to school. I think that level of formality gives an added air of authority to teachers – not respect, but authority. One of the brothers that taught at my high school would address us all as Mr/Miss Lastname, which gave us a more serious attitude toward his classes. So, to recap, I think a formal address of a teacher acknowledges the authority of the teacher, while a formal address of a student indicates a level of respect for the student. Meanwhile, at home, I’m still trying to figure it out.

12 Birds and Squirrels { 09.01.10 at 10:33 am }

I’m glad you all survived the first day. I’m sorry that this is such a difficult transition. I love that you love your kids so much and do so many cool things with them. I would like you to write a book on parenting next!

Are they in all day kindergarten? Whatever happened to half day kindergarten programs?

13 Emily { 09.01.10 at 10:42 am }

Im in my mid 30’s. At school, we called all of our teachers Mr. , Miss, or Mrs. Im not sure that Ms was used that often, even in our west coast hippie town. We were also expected to call our friends parents mr or mrs so and so. I remember the neighbor body in kindergarten, primly informing his mother that he had wiped the dog poo off his feet in Mrs. Codder’s carr. Im not sure how kids today are expected to address their teachers, but I think its rather nice and proper in a society where everything else is so casual.

14 Kristin { 09.01.10 at 10:56 am }

If an adult says it is ok to use a first name, I’m ok with it. When I introduce my kids to some one, I use Mr. or Miss (it’s a southern thing) in front of their first name…like Mr. John or Miss Christa.

Oooooh, Nutella cookies?!?!?!?!?! Would you share the recipe?

I’m sorry the first week of kindergarten is shaping up to be so rough. {{{Hugs}}}

15 Rebecca { 09.01.10 at 11:00 am }

I’m glad they and you survived.

I didn’t call a teacher by his/her first name until 6th form college when I was 16. It was so weird! But I liked it.

16 chloe { 09.01.10 at 11:19 am }

From pre-K through 8th grade I went to a very progressive private school that was founded by civil rights activists. We called teachers by their first names. I didn’t realize how uncommon this was until, as a pre-teen, I started watching television shows like Saved By the Bell. Until that point, using first or last names was totally divorced from the question of respect and authority.

17 Lori Lavender Luz { 09.01.10 at 11:20 am }

Oh, sweet Melissa. My insides are aching for you.

It must be really hard to have the firsts also be the lasts. That stupid Soup/Kid Nazi.

Sounds like the kids fared well, and for that I am happy.

But I am concerned for your dishwasher.


18 loribeth { 09.01.10 at 11:50 am }

My teachers were ALWAYS Mr., Mrs. or Miss (at least, to their faces, lol — behind their backs might have been a different story — I can remember calling various teachers “John Boy” & “Brucie” & “Granny T” & “Black Jack” in conversations with my peers — & the principal was sometimes known as “Hitler.”).

I was in high school (late 1970s) before my Grade 11 biology teacher introduced herself as Ms — but then she was a bit of a hippie. ; ) Some of us got to know her fairly well through after-school activities, & the provincial science fair, & she told us we could call her by her first name outside of the classroom, but I don’t think any of us ever did, at least consistently.

My best friend’s dad was the principal of the elementary school where I went through Grades 3-7. When we’d been neighbours & best friends for several years, his wife asked us to call them by their first names, or even “Aunt” & “Uncle.” Couldn’t do it. Just couldn’t. Still can’t, & I’ve known them over 40 years now & consider them to be my second parents. I can sometimes croak out her first name, but he is still Mr. to me. The most informal I get is “Mr. & Mrs. S.” (like Fonzie’s “Mr. & Mrs. C.” on “Happy Days”).

Although I must say I feel funny when I’m addressed as Mrs. — or worse yet, “Ma’am.” Makes me feel positively ancient. If I were a teacher, though, I would expect to be called Mrs. I’m all for friendly relationships between students & teachers, but there does need to be a line or hierarchy there somewhere, & honorifics are one way of establishing that.

19 flying monkeys { 09.01.10 at 11:54 am }

I still refer to my old teachers as Mr or Mrs So-and-so. I called my professors Professor Whatshisface and even after graduating and becoming and adult I still do it. It feel wrong to do it any other way. I don’t like that my nieces and nephews call me by my first name without putting aunt in front of it. I like being an aunt and for a long time that’s all I thought I would be, plus I’m not their peer. My sister in-law tries to teach my kids to refer to the aunts and uncles by their first names, I really chaps my ass. She will correct them while I’m standing there, my husband in turn corrects her. It’s a fun game. As for the parents of friends, it’s Mr or Miss First Name, it works for us.

Those moments are hard to breathe through. The lasts. And sometimes the firsts. To me the firsts represent another step away from me and another step toward themselves. Which I want them to do…at some much later future date.
Lots of love from a fellow not wanting to look as desperate as I am car lurker.

20 flying monkeys { 09.01.10 at 11:56 am }

(I need to proof read better. Sorry.)

21 Shelli { 09.01.10 at 12:07 pm }

I don’t recall ever using a first name for my teachers, and in college it was always Mr/Mr/Prof so and so. I have to admit though, it feels weird to call David’s teachers Ms/Mrs/Mr especially when a few of them could be my own kids. I am really feeling old now.

So it sounds like a successful first day. For them, and for you. Now if you had said you never left the parking lot, I would have worried… 🙂

22 HereWeGoAJen { 09.01.10 at 12:28 pm }

Oh my, if I had called adults by their first name…well, I don’t know what would have happened because I never did it. In fact, it took me several years to feel comfortable calling adults by their first names once I became an adult. And sorry, my kids aren’t allowed to either. We do the Miss/Mr thing here, Miss Melissa. And yes, maam too.

23 one-hit_wonder { 09.01.10 at 12:33 pm }

how poignant. xxx

i’m a teacher and i’d prefer to go by my first name but usually staff (especially admin assistants, for whatever reason) veto that idea. they say it’s a sign of respect for kids to use adults’ surnames. i think i should be able to decide what i want to be called. i don’t get it, but whatever. i always tell students that, at the end of the school year, they may use my first name and they always seem to look forward to that.

24 Tara { 09.01.10 at 12:46 pm }

Oh my heart goes out to you right now, Mel!

As for the first name/last name thing…I still, at my “old” age have difficulty calling authority figures by their 1st names…I, however, do not like being called Miss So-&-So, I like to be called by my 1st name…

25 lis { 09.01.10 at 12:49 pm }

oh, im sitting here crying for (with?) you. it’s bittersweet, im sure, to see them moving through their little lives. hugs to you and please take some solace in the fact that you seem like a really cool and sweet mom. and one that her kids can turn to, which is more than important.

with the name thing, when i taught K and 1 i was made to go by my last name and hated it. when i moved to teaching Pre-K, i loved that the kids were able to call me by my first name. to know the true ‘me’ and not just by my teacher label. i don’t like the space the last name put between the kids and i or the parents and i. i felt much more relaxed and so did they when they could come in and relate to me, not the “teacher” if that makes sense.

anyway i know you haven’t done this much in the past, but i’d love if you’d share some of your kids’ artwork. having daily access to the imaginings of little ones was perhaps my favorite perk of that job.


26 Dora { 09.01.10 at 12:51 pm }

Sorry this is so hard, hon. But glad the twins are doing so well.

I think people should be called what they want to be called. My teachers were always Mr/Mrs/Ms. I’m surprised so many commenters didn’t have any or many Ms teachers. Particularly since I’m so old! Maybe it was a NYC thing. I think past 3rd-4th grade, all my female teachers were Ms. I had many profs in college who went by their first name. Art school, ya know.

Obviously, Sunshine isn’t calling anyone but me by name (Mamamamama!), but I’ll go with whatever the person wants. My parents’ friends were honorary aunts and uncles when I was growing up. I like that. Sunshine has a wonderful array of internet aunties! 🙂

27 luna { 09.01.10 at 1:10 pm }

beautiful and so palpable, your grief.

I like the first name concept and always called my parents friends by their first name, but not my teachers, at least until college.

28 luna { 09.01.10 at 1:10 pm }

oh yeah, and congrats — you all survived the first day!
quite an accomplishment.

29 Tonggu Momma { 09.01.10 at 1:32 pm }

My daughter is in first grade this year. I became very friendly with her kindergarten teacher last year because I was always in the classroom volunteering. Then, this summer, we became even more friendly, even going out to lunch a few times. As silly as this sounds, I had to force myself to use her first name. But then I grew up in the South. And that pretty much says it all.

30 Rebecca { 09.01.10 at 2:46 pm }

Personally, I’ve always been fine with kids calling adults by their first names as long as the adult is okay with it. I’ve never been a big fan of the “Miss ‘first name'” style that is popular in the South where I grew up. Either go with the first name or go with “Ms. ‘last name'” I went to a private hippy-run elementary school and everyone was called by their first names. Then a public middle and high school where everyone was “Mr.” or “Mrs.” In college, everyone was “Mr.” and “Ms.” no matter if they had a Ph.D. or not (except for one prof who everyone called “Dr.” and I’m not sure why.) My advisor from college now asks me to call him by his first name when we interact and I have the hardest time doing it.

When I started teaching college, I was very focused on being “Dr.” because I was only 26 and looked about the same age as my students. I needed something that separated us. Now, my only issue is when students call their male professors “Dr.” and the female ones “Mrs.” even though both have the same rank and background. That really annoys me and it happens more often than you would expect.

31 Amy { 09.01.10 at 3:15 pm }

However I was introduced to someone is what I called them. If I was introduced to you as Mel…I would always call you Mel, not Melissa. If I was introduced to you as Ms. Ford, I would call you that.

For my daughter, most people are Auntie and Uncle right now. DH and I are still trying to figure out what we are going to want her to call people.

32 jodifur { 09.01.10 at 5:29 pm }

But just think, soon you will have your first pony?

33 edenland { 09.01.10 at 6:41 pm }

Hey beautiful.

I was here, reading when you hid in the library at the twins daycare … leaving comments, wishing you happy thoughts.

And now I’m here, reading about how you sobbed like an animal with your inside-out skin, reading how you picked them up after their first day and they chirped all the way to the car. I imagine your feelings must be all upside-down right now. Proud, relieved, sad, empty, yet full – of these two little people who are in your life.

And my heart swells and breaks for you, because it must be hard.

I’ll be here when you write about their first day at grade school …. middle school …. college. Car license, dates, weddings. I’ll be here, trying to share your heart.

It’s 8.38am down here in Australia. Rocco is eating lunch for breakfast and I’m behind in commenting and blogging and emails …. but it’s vital that you know how keenly I am thinking of you right now. You who I hugged! I hugged you!

And I’m hugging you again, through the atoms of the atmosphere.


34 Missy { 09.01.10 at 7:12 pm }

I never called any teachers by their first name, but in college it was a different story. For the most part they were “Professor last name” but I had one professor as an undergrad where I thought we were close and I used his first name. In grad school and my philosophy in general now is to use use titles with last names until the situation makes clear they are not necessary.

This philosophy comes from the fact that for some cultures, titles are a key sign of respect. From my perspective, I don’t think using a title means there is respect (or a lack of respect if not used), but I’ve been told by people from other backgrounds that titles are a more important marker of respect. I would rather be overly polite than have someone think I am disrespecting them.

35 Sara { 09.01.10 at 8:08 pm }

Ugh. I know I’m going to be a wreck on Eggbert’s first day of school. You have my sincere sympathy. I can also relate to those first/last issues. Having just one child is the same way. It’s hard. Great to have them, of course, but hard knowing that there probably won’t be more. Sigh.

36 Jen { 09.01.10 at 10:22 pm }

I can’t even fathom the heartbreak of sending them off to kindergarten! Big hugs to you.

In regards to names, I feel like there are so many customs that have broken down in our culture in regards to showing respect. Primarily I think that respect is shown through our behavior whether it be towards someone younger or older than you. However, the delineation of last names to show respect is something that falls under that category for me. After growing up in LA, I moved to Louisiana where not only are teachers called Mr. Teacher but also every yes or no is followed up with ma’m or sir. Outside of school many adults are called by their first name along with a Ms. or Mr. such as “Miz Jen…” I loved the atmosphere of this… For me, I like that there is a separation between friend and teacher.

37 Jonelle { 09.02.10 at 1:12 am }

I was raised much like you if I was introduced to them and they used their first name I called them by their first name. Teachers however, were a different story. In high school our drama teacher was young, a youth leader at the church associated with the school and the best friend of my friend’s boyfriend. One time on a youth night I called him Mr___, and he quickly shushed me and made me call him by his first name. It was hard to get used to calling him by his first name, and then during school calling him Mr___. Even now, 15 years out of high school a few of my teachers are my friends on Facebook and I still stumble and call them Mr___ or Mrs____.

You brought up an interesting point about twins, that they are your first and your last with each experience. I’ve always wanted twins and I guess for me I’ve always seen it as a double experience, but not really recognizing that its a first and last in one go. I’m glad you all survived the first day of kindergarten.

38 Vee { 09.02.10 at 5:14 am }

I am so glad you managed to get through that difficult challenge. I have a few years to go but I am sure I would be howling too. Sending you big hugs.

39 April { 09.02.10 at 9:04 am }

Lots of hugs. The first day of school is hard. For me it was even harder because my husband’s ex-wife forbid us to be involved so he missed his only daughter’s first day of school.

I was raised to call adults as Mr. / Mrs. / Miss Lastname. There were some adults that I knew by their first name, but when half of them attended my church and then I had several as teachers, it got very confusing. I stuck to Mr. / Mrs. / Miss Lastname instead as it was much easier.

40 MrsLaLa { 09.02.10 at 12:08 pm }

I know what you mean about twins – having double but only getting to go thorugh everything once. Everyone says I’m lucky because I got two with one pregnancy…but I actually *like* being pregnant, and now they just grow up so fast!

I was raised to call adults by their last name – but with our kids we are going by whatever they are introduced as.

41 Soosee { 09.02.10 at 1:24 pm }

Oh Melissa!! The last paragraph got me good! I’m glad the twins were ‘chirping’ at the end of the day, and that at the end of it, it was a good day for them. As for us.. well.. we just learn to keep it moving w/ the feelings clinging on to us by a hand on our shoulder as it drags behind us, and we’re reminded of it each time we kick it w/ the back of our feet.

I hope it starts to get easier, even though I know that’s easier said than done / felt. But I do wish it for you. xoxoxo

and yes, please share that nutella cookie recipe.

42 Amanda { 09.02.10 at 1:28 pm }


43 Chickenpig { 09.02.10 at 1:36 pm }

So, so true about the first and the last. I wept with misery when N weaned himself because I was sure I would never breastfeed again. I cried when I was pregnant because I thought I would never be pregnant again. I was so sure that having twins meant that I had to be done, that it was over. When I had A, even though she is most likely my last, I am not miserable at every last and first anymore. It is still hard to let her baby hood go, though. Maybe you’ve found out the real reason why the Duggers keep producing.

44 nh { 09.02.10 at 2:39 pm }

Just remember with your firsts and your lasts we are here dwelling with you.

45 Kir { 09.02.10 at 3:59 pm }

OMG, I”m in tears…because this is how I feel lately. Like I was so happy when we knew it was twins, we’d have 2 and be done ..with our family..but it’s hard to have them too..milestones etc, you want to see everything happening, make a BIG deal out of things for each of them, but you don’t have time to do it, the energy or the focus to do it.

I just saw my future and it looks like yours…..firsts, lasts and everything in between. Oh my friend, My heart hurts too.

46 Margie { 09.02.10 at 8:12 pm }

The first and the last at the same time… I totally get the twin thing! I feel that all the time and it’s rough.

47 infertility remedies { 09.02.10 at 8:42 pm }

I grew up in a generation were addressing adults or superiors, or teachers by Mr or Mrs and their last name was looked upon as respectable. Today my children’ s friends address me by my first name rather than Mr. In fact where ever I ago and engage in conversation I always try to learn the persons first name in order to make them feel more comfortable. After all their is nothing more sweet then hearing the sound of your name.!

48 Womens Health Questions { 09.03.10 at 7:07 am }

Actually, when I was younger I really addressed adults with Mr., Mrs., or Ms. with their last name. When I got to college, some teachers preferred to be called with their names but still with the Mr., Mrs., and Ms. When my eldest is already studying they addressed their teacher to Ms. (*first name*). Calling on their first name is really comfortable.

49 LJ { 09.03.10 at 8:42 am }

First off, you are doing so phenomenally. I know this has been on your mind for ages, and you’re finally getting through it.

Second, nope, never called my teachers by their first names. Even with friends’ parents, I just don’t call them anything. “Mr. So and So” is too formal, but “Tom” is too weird…

50 Ellen K. { 09.03.10 at 9:56 am }

This is SO true: “Everything is a first. And a last.”

I’m glad the first week of school is over. I understand it’s emotional for any parent, but the first kid must be the most difficult — and the last — and when they’re combined… ouch.

I was raised to use titles with last names for teachers, instructors, and friends’ parents. My current city is more Southern, and neighborhood children call me “Miss Ellen” and often say “ma’am.” Either way, I believe that children should use titles for adults unless invited to do otherwise. Personally I think the Southern style works well with informal relationships (i.e., anything other than teacher-pupil), by showing both (the invited) familiarity and deference.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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