Is it condescending to call a 20-something "young man"?

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    Dec 02, 2010 7:06 PM GMT
    So, I have a tendency to jokingly refer to guys younger than me as "young man". Some take it as a joke, but a few have taken offense. My question, esp. to you 20-somethings; does that term sound patronizing or condescending to you?

  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Dec 02, 2010 8:28 PM GMT
    I find most people do prefer to be addressed by their name if you know it.

    If not, I think calling someone 'young man' is fine if you are geriatric.
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    Dec 02, 2010 9:15 PM GMT
    Kaizen, I was having sex before you were born, young man. icon_wink.gif

    -Doug
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    Dec 02, 2010 9:30 PM GMT
    I just call them "boy".
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    Dec 02, 2010 9:45 PM GMT
    unfounded7 saidI just call them "boy".


    This one can be somewhat offensive, unless it is a term of endearment (weird I guess).

    Also hate it when people refer to me as kid.
  • disasterpiece

    Posts: 2991

    Dec 02, 2010 9:47 PM GMT
    I guess it depends on the context, Kaizen.

    I can imagine many situations in which I would be offended by being calling as such, and many other situations in which I'd think it's funny or charming.

    Everything is relative ;)
  • Little_Spoon

    Posts: 1562

    Dec 02, 2010 10:15 PM GMT
    I love being called boy.


    XD
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    Dec 02, 2010 10:34 PM GMT
    I never got in the habit of calling guys "young man," but I do always say "sir" when I address any male, and not just during sex.
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    Dec 02, 2010 11:13 PM GMT
    A couple of my clients refers me as "young man" to this day.
    I am 58.
    This to me is a complement, not an insult at all.
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    Dec 03, 2010 3:37 AM GMT
    Git off mah lawn, young man!
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    Dec 03, 2010 3:40 AM GMT
    I don't have an issue being called 'young man' by someone. I find it kind of flattering. I mean, I am rather young and a 'man' to some degree so I think it is appropriate. Now, being called 'boy' would be a different story.
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    Dec 03, 2010 5:45 AM GMT
    cmhoh1985 saidI don't have an issue being called 'young man' by someone. I find it kind of flattering. I mean, I am rather young and a 'man' to some degree so I think it is appropriate. Now, being called 'boy' would be a different story.


    Good. In that case I can tell you you're an extremely handsome young man and you'll just have to accept the compliment.

    lol!



    -Doug
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    Dec 03, 2010 5:51 AM GMT
    I personally think it's ridiculous to get upset over something like boy, young man, sir, etc. Especially if the intention of an insult was not present. People just need to get over themselves, the world unfortunately doesn't revolve around you... It revolves around me. icon_smile.gif
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    Dec 03, 2010 5:51 AM GMT
    unfounded7 saidI just call them "boy".


    Sup, gramps. icon_lol.gif
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    Dec 03, 2010 5:58 AM GMT
    People have names and you should call them by it, that's why some get a bit defensive
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    Dec 03, 2010 5:59 AM GMT
    I would very much prefer someone to use my name but not gonna make a fuss if someone says something else in passing.
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    Dec 03, 2010 5:59 AM GMT
    Kaizen76 saidSo, I have a tendency to jokingly refer to guys younger than me as "young man". Some take it as a joke, but a few have taken offense. My question, esp. to you 20-somethings; does that term sound patronizing or condescending to you?



    Anyone who takes offense to "young man" is an asshole, UNLESS you say it in a pejorative manner to connotate that you're superior or smarter than them on the sole basis of your age.
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    Dec 03, 2010 6:40 AM GMT
    To me, it is a complement at any age.
    At age 45, I was called "young man" the other day (at at hardware store in Berkeley). I thanked the man (who was probably about my age) who said this to me and told him that he made my day.
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    Dec 03, 2010 6:51 AM GMT
    I love it , when these nice little older ladies , adress me as " young man " ....icon_smile.gif
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    Dec 03, 2010 6:59 AM GMT
    not really.
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    Dec 03, 2010 7:04 AM GMT
    Nah, as a 20-something I don't consider myself that young, and it wouldn't offend me a bit... if anything it just makes you sound older to those you are speaking to. If someone does get offended, they're just overly sensitive. Punch him in the arm and tell him to stop being dramatic.
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    Dec 03, 2010 7:33 AM GMT
    Timberoo saidI find most people do prefer to be addressed by their name if you know it.


    Yup, I agree with that. But if someone's calls you "young man" and is joking about it or saying it in a gentle/caring way, I mean, who wouldn't like that.

    I'm live out in a more rural or country-ish area right now and kids/teens here seem to call people "sir" a lot. I honestly can't stand it. Its way too formal when you're buying a slurpee and someone calls you sir. They must have military dictator parents or something that trained them that way.

    I think that in situations where respect and caution are called for (you're talking to a city official who can over turn your parking ticket, your drill sergeant, a cop that has you pulled over for doing eighty, an executive who might fire you, or the dali lama or something) then "sir" is fine. But for someone in your community or your workplace or your life that you're going to see on a pretty regular basis, no. It just puts up a wall between you and the person you're talking to.

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    Dec 03, 2010 7:55 AM GMT
    I have no issue with 'young man'; especially when said in a joking or caring manner, it's an endearing compliment icon_smile.gif Even to be stopped in the street with 'excuse me, young man' can be special.

    However, to be called 'boy' would make me feel like a child, someone to be ordered around, and bring out the petulant anti-authority rebel in me ^^

    The context in which 'young man' would be condescending, though, is if you used it in a tone to suggest that a younger person is naive or less intelligent due to their age.
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    Dec 03, 2010 7:58 AM GMT
    Kaizen76 saidSo, I have a tendency to jokingly refer to guys younger than me as "young man". Some take it as a joke, but a few have taken offense. My question, esp. to you 20-somethings; does that term sound patronizing or condescending to you?



    You can call me "sir".
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    Dec 03, 2010 8:42 AM GMT
    I like it when I'm called "Young man" or "Boy" by an older guy. icon_redface.gif