But I really, especially, hate it when other grown-ups (of the non-family member/close friend variety) randomly call me "mom". (I don't mean saying "ask your mom if that's okay, little dude" That kind of momming is for descriptive purposes and just makes good sense). I mean the use of "mom" as an admonishment. It is always accompanied by a particular tone-of-voice, and the calling out/tone really gets me going.
Here are some examples:
Stranger calling out your parental neglect - this one is often spoken sharply and is a particular favourite of the older-than-me-been-there-before crowd:
- "Watch Mom - your child could fall!" (note that I was standing right beside my child at the time,) or "Mom - ______ isn't very safe, you know!"
- "Mom, child shouldn't be _________ (running, jumping, laughing, talking, breathing, whatever) here."
- "You just have to be tough, Mom, and make her cry it out."
- post-falling off a chair in a food court and whacking his noggin, someone once turned to me and said: "He really shouldn't have been up there, Mom!" Thank you. Thank you very much.
It's the soundtrack to the spectator-sport that is mothering.