Outdated customs/etiquette you hope die — Scope | Disability forum
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Outdated customs/etiquette you hope die

66Mustang
66Mustang Community member Posts: 13,030 Disability Gamechanger
edited September 2023 in Coffee lounge

Thought this could be a nice topic and not too controversial.


Someone on another thread mentioned that in their opinion the etiquette of keeping your elbows off the dinner table was outdated and silly in the modern world because it doesn’t do anyone any harm. Apparently it was invented when diners used to fight at mealtimes because having your elbows on the table was seen as an aggressive gesture…these days fighting at the table is less of a problem!


What customs that are still respected today do you think are absurd and/or outdated?


A few of mine…

1. The neck tie. It used to serve the specific purpose of keeping your shirt done up but now we have buttons. The tie literally serves no purpose other than aesthetic. If anything it is an inconvenience, and being a little bit dramatic, maybe even a minor hazard.

2. Not taking about money. I think it needs talking about more, not less. People don’t understand enough about money and we need to increase understanding. Also using innuendos to talk about money. Saying “a 6 figure sum”, no, just say the amount. All that said, people can still talk about money without being brash, I think boasting is still vulgar.

3. “Ladies first”. Today’s society is meant to be one of equality, well that has to work both ways. Why should someone get favourable treatment to the seat on a bus or get to go first at a door purely because of their gender? It goes without saying if someone was pregnant or disabled I still would go out of my way to make things easier for them.


What do you have?! :smiley:

Comments

  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community member Posts: 15,858 Disability Gamechanger
    Well, as a lady I'll go first....! And 'thank you.'
    I would look at this the other way around, & perhaps some of us who are older appreciate the respect that we feel some still offer us. It could be argued that not everyone is deserving of respect, but why not keep any harmless tradition going?
    As I sometimes use elbow crutches when out (& just try opening a shop door whilst safely using them), I really appreciate someone opening one for me, which seems to be becoming less frequent. I always say 'thank you,' but I've seen a man open a door for a woman without the woman saying this, which in itself I find quite rude. You sound like a gentleman by the way!
    Another thing that I appreciate is the gentleman walking on the outside of the pavement nearest the road. I thought this was because a gentleman needed his sword arm free to protect the lady, but apparently was also supposed to protect her from muck thrown up by passing carriages in later centuries.
    Not swearing in front of women in mixed company....... A little while back my neighbour politely asked a group of young men to tone their language down. The one who had been swearing the loudest apologised to me for which I again said, 'thank you.'
    Customs may seem archaeic, but some of us of an older generation still appreciate common courtesies & what were considered good manners.

  • woodbine
    woodbine Community member Posts: 11,285 Disability Gamechanger
    Elbows off the table? I rarely eat at the table usually in front of the TV to watch the news, neck tie? in recent years I have worn black ties at funerals and not otherwise, ladies first SM insist !
    2024 The year of the general election...the time for change is coming 💡

  • Sandy_123
    Sandy_123 Scope Member Posts: 43,585 Disability Gamechanger
    I love old customs my son was driving us once behind the undertakers, going to a funeral. We were about 4th car behind, on the roundabout and a car stopped to let him go. He was oh right you letting me go???? I said yes go as he was hesitating. Explained that it was out  of respect. 
  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Community member Posts: 2,555 Disability Gamechanger
    Lying to family members about liking something that's unsuitable.

    I never did understand this.  I have a family member who I bought unsuitable gifts for at least 2 years in a row because they didn't tell me they were unsuitable.  I was also regularly told off as a child for politely saying that I didn't like something.  Apparently it's ungrateful to be honest...then in the next breath you're being told not lie!  Social situations are hard enough to navigate as it is, I really don't think we need all this unnecessary extra confusion.  :#
  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community member Posts: 13,030 Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks for the interesting responses!

    @chiarieds  I appreciate the honest post and that people are able to disagree without the thread getting nasty (though knowing you I wouldn't expect the opposite from you!!) - but I would say I am not opposed to ALL old tradition, the ones posted are just a few I feel are perhaps doing more harm than good. Especially money being a taboo subject - I think people grow up knowing very little. I have to say I do believe in respect hold open doors, try to walk on the outside of the pavement and don't swear - to everyone - I just believe in equality and don't believe a certain gender deserves more respect than another. Hope that makes sense!

    Thanks @woodbine  :)  he he

    @Sandy_123  yes I love (most!) old customs as well, that's common respectfulness to let a funeral procession go I agree. I was told by my driving instructor...

    1. never overtake a funeral procession
    2. never overtake a military vehicle

    I totally understand the first one but have no idea about the military one, any ideas?

    @OverlyAnxious that's a good one, if I bought a gift for someone I would want to be told if it was not something they really liked. I have told others the same, diplomatically, and it went down fine, so I suppose it depends on the relationship with the person? I think your point could be applied to food as well, when somebody makes you something? I wonder though if a different rule should apply to children and adults in this situation...as children would as I see it take it as an open invitation to refuse vegetables at every mealtime!!! :D 
  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Community member Posts: 2,555 Disability Gamechanger
    66Mustang said:

    I have told others the same, diplomatically, and it went down fine, so I suppose it depends on the relationship with the person? I think your point could be applied to food as well, when somebody makes you something?
    Possibly.  I'm not sure any of my family really had a 'normal' social background (if such a thing exists), so that does make it more difficult. 

    It definitely does apply to food.  My Dad used to say 'none for me thanks' and do a little chuckle when offered certain foods in familiar company.  I'd eat those foods and then have stomach pains for the rest of the night.  It wasn't explained that he was avoiding them because they were IBS triggers...which have been passed on! :D  
  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community member Posts: 13,030 Disability Gamechanger
    @OverlyAnxious that's a shame about the IBS. Maybe his fault for not explaining properly to you?

    Just chatted to a male family member about this thread and asked if he had any others to suggest...

    He agreed with the tie and money ones but not the ladies first. He said he let a lady go first at Tesco the other day and I said I would have done the same under those circumstances but I would have also let a bloke go first. He said if it was a bloke he wouldn't have let them go first. I asked why and he couldn't explain?

    He suggested another one...automatic respect for people in authority - respect should be earned not demanded. I sort of agree but I do tend to show respect for people like police officers or security guards, however if they were then disrespectful toward me my respect to them would be the same as they treated me. It's an interesting debate I think!!
  • WelshBlue
    WelshBlue Community member Posts: 703 Pioneering
    edited September 2023
    I think the only thing etiquette wise I don't conform to is ... don't speak ill of the dead.
    If I thought someone is an idiot when alive, it's not going to change because they've died.
    Vice versa the people who don't like me alive, I don't expect them to mourn me when I step off.

    The others, I always hold the door open, will let people in front of me with less items in queues go first, the few times I've used public transport, and waiting rooms, will always offer my seat to someone who I feel needs it more.  Always give to the homeless

    Others like letting cars out at junctions if I'm sat waiting to move, if everyone let one car in, traffic would flow ?  I will overtake funeral processions, but only if I can get past the hearse too (no dual carriage ways here for 55 miles.)

    As for respecting those in authority there seems less and less  from them, but expect us to bow down.  
    Worst I've seen is young female officers ... horrible attitudes some of them.  The thin blue line  flag should be banned by all forces IMO ... it creates a them and us divide..  Prisoners who've died in custody deserve the same recognition ?




  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Community member Posts: 2,555 Disability Gamechanger
    66Mustang said:
    @OverlyAnxious that's a shame about the IBS. Maybe his fault for not explaining properly to you?
    As you wrote above, it's the idea of taboo subjects and using euphemisms to obscure them so far that no-one really knows what they mean.

    People learn far more by being able to discuss something than just being told that it's not appropriate.
  • Jimm_Scope
    Jimm_Scope Posts: 2,285 Scope online community team
    An interesting thread @66Mustang, I've plenty I think we could probably do away with. Though really I think there are a few that are actively harmful. I think not talking about money and your own wage among your peers is harmful for employees as a whole for example. There are other "taboo" subjects that, because they are not spoken about, can lead to a lot of misinformation and ignorance which lead onto other issues. 

    One good example of this actually is sex education, prior to it being taught in schools there was so much ignorance around it which led to so many issues. After it was taught in schools there was a very drastic drop in teenage pregnancies and other related issues. It did away with the ignorance that led people to fall into these easily preventable issues.
    They/Them, however they are no wrong pronouns with me so whatever you feel most comfortable with
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  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community member Posts: 13,030 Disability Gamechanger
    Something I noticed seems to have died, not saying I didn't like it before (though found it a bit uncomfortable with OCD) is shaking hands. I think COVID killed it off and now people haven't gone back to it. That said I don't often get myself into situations where a handshake is necessary, maybe once a month if that. I wonder if those who do more often have noticed the same as me?
  • Jimm_Scope
    Jimm_Scope Posts: 2,285 Scope online community team
    edited September 2023
    Personally I'm alright with handshakes being gone. I understand they're traditionally a show of trust in the other but I know, even before covid, a lot of my friends with autism or other sensory/anxiety issues hated handshaking and the expectation of doing it.
    They/Them, however they are no wrong pronouns with me so whatever you feel most comfortable with
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  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community member Posts: 13,030 Disability Gamechanger
    @Jimm_Scope glad someone agrees.

    Does anyone know what the meaning of a firm handshake is? I have an uncle that almost used to crush your hand when he shook it - really painful!!
  • Jimm_Scope
    Jimm_Scope Posts: 2,285 Scope online community team
    edited September 2023
    Gods I hated people that would do like, some kind of strange domineering technique to try and make them "in charge".

    Don't get me wrong, if I do handshake someone I make sure it's a nice grip but why would you ever try to physically hurt someone over it I don't understand.
    They/Them, however they are no wrong pronouns with me so whatever you feel most comfortable with
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  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community member Posts: 13,030 Disability Gamechanger
    While I have port on my mind from my other thread...something that I think needs to go...and a nice story from my family.

    At the end of a meal the women are meant to leave the room while the men drink port and smoke. I believe this happens in the royal family at Christmas but it may have been stopped, and even if so, very recently.

    I have an elderly female relative who was independent & self-made in a time when women were traditionally not supposed to be. She was at a smart dinner several decades ago, a "proper" dinner where etiquette was important. She didn't realise this "rule" existed and when the port came out she wondered why all the women were leaving the table, and sat drinking port with the men. Only when several bottles of port had been drunk did someone mention to her that she was meant to have left, but by that point she had a bit of "Dutch courage" and refused to go. :) 
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community member Posts: 15,858 Disability Gamechanger
    Studies done on handshakes, whoever knew!
    There are only a few circumstances when I like to shake someones hand, but I always do so either when a price has been agreed/successfully negotiated (I do politely haggle!), to show the person has my word, or at the conclusion of a successful transaction, i.e. at the completion of a job well done, after I've paid. For me the latter is to indicate a sincere & appreciative thank you. I have a partially damaged & weak right wrist, so am conscious of nonetheless trying to give a firm handshake, but I don't hold on!

  • Jimm_Scope
    Jimm_Scope Posts: 2,285 Scope online community team
    edited September 2023
    See, while I understand what the article is saying I personally disagree with certain words and suggestions it makes. It assumes that those that are more extroverted are "positive and strong" in a way, and that those with weaker handshakes are actually "weak". That shyness is a weaknesses for example, which I personally disagree with.

    I know these are things that society in general tend to think, but I question if they are good, or even helpful, assumptions. 
    They/Them, however they are no wrong pronouns with me so whatever you feel most comfortable with
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  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Community member Posts: 2,555 Disability Gamechanger
    I've never liked handshakes.  Would be perfectly content to never have to shake anyone's hand again.  :)
  • Jimm_Scope
    Jimm_Scope Posts: 2,285 Scope online community team
    In cultures such as Japanese the closest equivalent is bowing (though they do handshake during business meetings now), where the deeper the bow the more "respect" you are showing to the other. Friends just get a nod of the head, a morning greeting to a coworker might be 15 degree bow, 30 degree bow shows strong respect to an elder/superior and then 45 degree or deeper bow is a formal bow and deeply respectful.

    Of course this comes with it's own issues, many people have back pain or mobility issues that mean bowing is difficult. 
    They/Them, however they are no wrong pronouns with me so whatever you feel most comfortable with
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