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Do you have a teenager?

September 24, 2008 by in category Blogs tagged as , , with 2 and 0
Home > Writing > Blogs > Do you have a teenager?

This may be a tricky issue, as some children may view parental advice with suspicion, but I’ve just experienced a major hand-shaking event with various friend’s children & friends of theirs.

I feel compelled to alert parents: in addition to the drug, alcohol and sex conversation, you need to tell/show/explain to your child how to shake some one’s hand. Yes, I experienced a lot of ‘dead fish,’ ‘limp noodle,’ ‘wet dishrag’ and ‘consumptive squeezes.’

I wondered if anyone had explained to them what a handshake was supposed to be–not that all adults are free of the aforementioned problem, but this seemed excessive, perhaps indicating cluelessness.

I don’t want to go all Dale Carnegie on you, but he has a point. A handshake is a big first impression, and surely it’s not too hard to offer a firm grip, a brief squeeze and release. You can even throw in eye contact for extra credit.

Maybe it’s an issue of a child/young adult not feeling confident, but I don’t care–act it, at least. Surprisingly, confidence will come and people will give you the benefit of the doubt for starters.

Reach out and touch someone…properly.

Unsolicited advice from Isabel Swift

2 Comments

  • Anonymous
    on September 24, 2008

    Nice! Though I think the salute may be thought to be over the top for most social situations…

  • Anonymous
    on September 24, 2008

    My daughter grew up going to March ARB with her dad, who is a civilian aviation photographer. She learned to shake hands firmly, salute and say “sir”. She met a 4 star general at Nellis once, shook his hand, told him “It’s nice to meet you, sir” and garnered big kudos for her dad with it. I think she was about 14 at the time…

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