Tuesday, October 24, 2006
TV vs The Real World
I don’t get many opportunities to come into contact with the secular and non-Jewish world.
I don’t exactly live in a secluded place far away from civilization.
I cross path daily with gentiles but rarely exchange more than a word or two.
I studied a couple of ears amidst mostly non-Jews, but I haven’t remained in contact with anyone and my co-students were young and unmarried.
My whole concept of how average, poor and rich non-Jews live comes from television.
Although a little naïve in general, I’m not to the point where I believe that TV series and even ‘reality’ shows portray real life accurately.
Young fathers are never quite as patient as in sitcoms and women are hopefully nothing like they are represented on dramas and as desperate as shown in ‘reality’ programs. And sadly kids are rarely as street smart and wise as depicted.
A repeated theme though caught my attention as almost every show, by different writers, have a recurring line that bothers me greatly.
When moms address they children and refer to that child’s father they always do exactly that.
In my sphere a mom talking to her child will say ‘Daddy(tatty, pa) is very proud of you’.
Never ‘Your father is very proud of you’.
When I first noticed a TV mom doing that, I started paying attention and see if this was a one-time line.
But it wasn’t, and it weren’t just the divorced mom’s talking like that to their two year old and 18 year old it was every mom, even the happily married ones.
As if they needed to confirm over and over again that the men in question was indeed the child’s father.
“Mommy, can I play outside?”
“Ask your father”, she answers.
Is this just the language of a few writers, or is this common in this world I know so little about?
"your father said"
"go to your mother"
"ask your mother"
"go ask your father"
hear it all the time everywhere jewish and non jewish
happily married couples and not happily married
attends que ton pere rentre du travail..
on ne dit rien a ton pere!
i think ure right about the observation.. :)
I too think that the your father is a rather impersonal way of interacting and/or communicating with a child.
Us Jews express ourselves so differently. Maybe it comes from the colorful language of Yiddish (at least from my grandparent's generation.) I often think that my own children will miss out on this experience, having grown up in a community with so many goyim. It will be intersting to see.
Of coure, there is always the command, and nagging, and telling one's children, go do this! I cannot get away with that anymore sadly.
I still think it’s too impersonal.
Kasamba-To do what?
Mookie-It sounds better like that
va chez papa..
attends que papa rentre du travail..
on ne dit rien a papa!
Nemo-I never hear it, but I can’t claim to know all Jews :)
Jemima3-if you do it exceptionally then it will have the desired effect.
Barbara-You make a good point, saying “your father” in Yiddish wouldn’t work at all coming from a child’s mom.
Do you understand Yiddish?
Muse-unfortunately I think you’re right.
And when speaking to my kids, I always refer to my husband as "Abba." I don't think I've ever once said "your Abba." I've never even realized that I do that, but now that I think about it, it would sound very formal and distant to add the "your."
I think it's the healthiest way to talk to the kids about either parent.
on another note I it irks me when spouses call each other mommy or tatty the first time my husband called me mommy (even though he was doing it infront of the kid who asked him something and he said lets ask mommy "mommy....") I was like " i sure as hell aren't ur mommy!! that put a stop to that!
I think that reality shows are showing a certain range of people and even though a lot is a set up I think these people exist. The worst must be the families shown in the "super nanny"... but there must be families like this living among us... or what do you think?
Just a thought:
Negative = distancing = father
Positive = embracing = daddy
How do you do it?
Anon-I certainly didn’t mean to each other, and when upset it’s sets the tone quite well.
Fill in: “….. is very proud of you”.
converseley...a generation ago...no one called the father Dad..or Totty..(in jewish circles)..rather always in 3rd person out of respect...Der Totte....
Sara-if there's a specific intention behind it, it's a great way to let the kid know he's in trouble.
But that only works if 'your father' is the exception.
David-true, and kids had more respect towards their parents but absolutely no bond.
i try to stay away from saying that - even when im upset about something...
i find the feeling is disharmonius - when expressing 'YOUR father' - rather than Dad..
Seriously, though, it's interesting how everyone has such different views on this one. I personally say the 'Daddy, Totty' line rather than 'your father'. 'Your father' sounds like I'm talking to my neighbor or something.
You are right that it is more respectful like that.
Working Ema-exactly, your father is perfect when talking to someone about their father, except when that father happens to be your husband.
i think depends on the person, their mood and the situation... not necessarily to with not being jewish.
I threw out my TV when I got divorced. She got a bigger one.
thought of you immediately
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