Friday, March 8, 2013

Please civilize your children!

Tonight we went to services. Boo wanted to sit with her friends, and I feel that children should sit with their parents, so we went and sat with Boo's friends too.

I hate sitting with children at services.

No...I hate sitting with other people's children at family services.

I have no problem sitting with my class when we have services during Hebrew School. I love sitting with Boo and Hopper. But people need to civilize their children.

First of all, half the kids were wearing jeans and sneakers. Now, I realize things aren't as formal as they used to be, and I'm willing to cut everyone slack for wearing snow boots today, because it's snowy. But jeans and sneakers don't belong in Temple at Shabbat services. You're sending kids the wrong message by letting them dress that way. The message you want to send is that this is something special and we have to act like we're fancy: fancy clothes and fancy manners. Of course manners at Temple are different from other places. We sit in rows like the theater, but we don't clap and we do sing along. But we're definitely calm and quiet and we pay attention.

That's my second of all: teach your kids manners. Teach them to stand up when everyone stands, to sit when everyone sits, and to shut the hell up when the mourner's prayer is going on. You can even explain that it's a prayer we say for people who died and that people are sad when they say it so we have to be kind to those people. But teach it.

Otherwise, someone will be standing there with one hand on her husband, who's saying a prayer for his dead father, and the other hand trying to stop your son from hitting your daughter with a stick. I'm not saying who, but someone. And that person will not be getting the sense of peace and community she came to services to find.

It's not fair to let your children's bad manners get all over everyone else. So please, civilize your children so I don't have to.

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