We can’t stand it when other people do it. Seinfeld did a whole episode on it. And yet every parent does it. When we talk to our kids, especially when they’re young, we often refer to ourselves in the third person. (MIni-primer: I is first person. You is second. And he/she/anyone’s name is third person.)
Give me one good reason we say things like:
MOM: Mommy doesn’t appreciate you putting m&ms up your sister’s nose.
DAD: Dad needs alone time in the bathroom.
BOTH: Your Mommy and Daddy love sweetums very much.
(Which really blows because you’ve referred to three people in the wrong person.)
Every kid figures out what “I” means the minute they want something and are willing to pound the table to get it. They use the word. You use the word. But somehow, when we want to correct them or emphasize a point, we turn into this strange other person.
In Elaine’s case, she ended up going out with creepy Jimmy, not the cute guy at the gym. I’m surprised more kids don’t go off in search of some other mommy or daddy they keep hearing about who loves them very much.
Further proof that kids are smarter than their parents.