1.50 POLITENESS -- PSYCHOLOGY ABUSE TERMS, CONCEPTS
MEANING: Good manners that convey respect and consideration of another. Standards and practices of politeness vary from culture to culture but all have the same goal, to make people comfortable and to feel at ease.
RELEVANCE TO ABUSE: Politeness, at its core, involves consideration for another which is the opposite of abusive behavior. Basic politeness should be habitual and be used everyday, all day, between parent and child, husband and wife, teacher and student etc. Saying please, thank you and you're welcome, for example, goes a long way to preventing abusiveness and not allowing the pattern of abusive communication to take over. Children should be taught politeness from the moment they can speak. It should always be required from adults and children.
Naturally politeness, like anything else, can be perverted so that when "thank you" is said sarcastically, it is no longer polite, for example. Polite manners can also become a class distinction. Upper class people may ridicule others with rough manners because they do not know the rules of 'polite society'. In this case politeness is used as a barrier. In the world of the 21st century, people with 'street smarts' have made a point of being rude. They want to counter polite behavior which they see as an improper class distinction. While I agree that politeness can be used abusively, especially when it comes to class and background, I think that politeness is essential and people with 'street smarts' need to redefine politeness so that it works for everyone.
PERSONAL NOTE FROM RICK DOBLE: Why include politeness? These basic words and rules of polite communication are well understood within a culture, people respond to politeness positively and it is hard to be abusive and polite at the same time. Everyone intuitively knows the rules for politeness, so relearning or insisting on this behavior is not a stretch.=== Explanation of Politeness
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