Although aging is a normal part of the human experience, many people still struggle to come to terms with the fact that they are getting older, especially when they’re reminded of it in subtle ways, such as being addressed as "sir" or "ma'am."
No longer addressed with the casual names
A recent viral video by TikToker Joshua Turek (@joshuaturek) has drawn attention to the challenges faced by older individuals who are no longer addressed with the same casual, informal names they once used to be called.
Joshua states how polite people have become
“Is there anyone else in their late 30s getting alarmed at how polite young people have been toward you lately?” Joshua asks viewers.
He explains that he noticed a “concerning spike” in the amount of younger people calling him "sir" in the past few months
Clearly, Joshua doesn’t appreciate these people calling him "sir," as he doesn’t believe that he meets the criteria for that title yet.
He then explains that he would rather be called differently
“That is not my preferred pronoun,” he states, “I still identify as a dude, or bro, or man.”
"Not sir yet"
“You can even call me buddy, which used to make me feel inferior, and now I’m just happy to be included, but not sir, not yet.”
He isn’t even claiming to deserve an invitation to the party or suggesting that he’s still welcome to hang out, all he asks for is not to be called “sir.”
"Keg stand inside my heart"
“There is still a rage that that’s going on inside my heart,” he shares, “Someone is doing a keg stand inside my heart right now.”
Joshua stresses that having wrinkles or dressing in a way associated with older generations does not necessarily mean that one belongs to the "grown-up" category
“I’m not a grown-up,” the man asserts, “Don’t let these wrinkles on my face or collared shirt fool you.”
He prefers to be called anything that's "gross"
He insists that he prefers to be called "dude," "man," "bro," or anything else that's "gross."
He then shared that he can still do a kickflip
He even boasts about being able to do a kickflip, suggesting that he might be considered too young to be called "sir," and asking not to be referred to as such, at least not before he accomplishes what he aims for in life.
"I haven't accomplished anything"
“Give me a few more years before I’m sir,” he asks, “I haven’t accomplished anything.”
Joshua's video resonated with many viewers, prompting them to share their own experiences of feeling old
“I was called a "nice woman over there" and I was looking around for her too,” one user shared.
“Kids in my neighborhood say good morning or good night when I walk my dog…like the way I do when I see and elderly person 😭,” a second wrote.
33 but still feel like 19
“I was baffled when a cashier called me ma'am. Then I saw my reflection and realized I'm almost 33. I swear I was still 19 in my head,” a third commented.
Teen giving up a seat
“When you pull out your ID and they say ‘you’re good sir’,” a fourth shared.
“I was most damaged when a teenager got up to give me her seat,” a fifth commented.
Responding with "thank you baby"
Some people have found that accepting is easier than resisting, with one person writing, “I have fully accepted the ‘ma'am’ I respond with ‘thank you baby’ I'm turning into the cherished older black woman.”
Effects of using polite words
Good intentions aside, polite words like "sir" and "ma'am" seem to have a big impact on how people feel about their age. Perhaps it's time to be more mindful when using these words.
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Sylvia Silverstone is a passionate writer who loves to share her knowledge and expertise on a wide range of topics, including beauty, life hacks, entertainment, health, news, and money. With a keen eye for detail and a talent for storytelling, Sylvia's engaging writing style keeps readers coming back for more.