By Barbara Greenberg, PhD, GalTime.com Teen Parenting Expert
I had had it. This was going to be my last visit to this hair salon. I had just overheard yet another conversation between two moms gossiping about their teen daughters' friends.
They were interested in who the girls were dating, their parents' divorces, and the trouble that some of these girls were getting into.
And, yes, the hairdressers were getting animated and involved in these lively chats.
Trust me when I tell you that these were not empathic conversations. They were mean-spirited and catty. They were behaving just like "mean girls.'" They appeared to be delighting in the troubles of others.
Let's flash back to the research results of sociologists-Hallett, Eder, and Harger, at Indiana University which were published in the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography in 2009. They found that teachers, who are supposed to be the ultimate role models of good behavior, also engaged in this savage ritual of gossiping. And, they did this in formal group meetings.
So, I have three questions for our readers.
- Do you know of a gossip-free hair salon?
- Do you think that we teach our teens to gossip?
- Who do you think are more gossipy-teens or moms?
Let's discuss at the nail salon!
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