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Teaching Good Manners

by Sue Hubbard, M.D.

I have been noticing how many of my little patients have such nice manners. It is hard to watch a toddler say “thank you” to their doctor even after they have had a shot, but their attentive mother is wiping tears while simultaneously teaching good manners.

Teaching manners is still an important part of good parenting and as my mother said to me, “good manners never go out of style.” Teaching those manners has to begin early from those first thank yous, to good eye contact and a firm handshake, and personal thank you notes.

Thank you notes are another art that my mother insisted on. When my boys were younger we would sit down together after birthdays and Christmas and carefully write a hand written note to their grandparents. It was fun to watch their signatures mature from thumbprints in ink, to first wobbly letters, and eventually signed in their “adult” mature style. ┬áThe grandmothers still talk about these notes.

So don’t let manners in your house become a lost art. Teach those little things like please and thank you, boys opening doors, offering to help clear the table when having dinner at a friends, and always respecting adults. If you can get them to write thank you notes, their grandparents will be proud too!

That’s your daily dose, we’ll chat tomorrow.

Send your question or comment to Dr. Sue!

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