Goo-Goo GaGa – Why Baby Talk Isn’t Cool.

“Braddy-Waddy, could you pweease help me?”

No, these are not the words of a 4 year old child. No, these are the words of a woman in her late 30’s communicating with a co-worker.

I work for a Big 4 Bank, and as far as office environments go, it’s pretty good. The people are nice, and there’s a real sense of team camaraderie that pulses around on a daily basis. Our office is managed by strong, respectable women. I don’t know much about any of their personal lives, and I’m fine with that. I do know they are both married and also successful at what they do. Whether they have children or not does not factor into their abilities to do their jobs, nor does it affect the ability of any of my co-workers who have children to do theirs.
All in all, I would say I work for a pretty equal opportunity employer. Our office is multicultural and diverse. I can’t spell half of my co-workers surnames, but I know who they are, and a few things about them as people.
Everyone gets along pretty nicely. The usual tensions arise for a team environment, but mostly, everyone is great. Women are given just as much opportunity here as men.

Which makes me wonder why there are women in my workplace who use baby-talk and flirting to accomplish things in their daily role.

Baby talk is something I cannot for the life of me make sense of in any relationship, outside of literally talking to a baby. Or maybe a small fluffy animal of some sort. I am guilty of talking to my Gooby-Doober and my Grumbly-Bear in cooey tones and soft sounds. But they are both cats. I assure you I don’t speak like that in front of any human being. To me, baby-talk is reserved for creatures of lesser intelligence. It is strictly reserved for conversation where words are not understood, but tone is everything. It absolutely does not have a place in a corporate environment.

I have the unfortunate daily experience of hearing a female co-worker speak to a male co-worker in baby-talk. I also have the unpleasant experience of watching said co-worker flirt her way around the team to get things done. And strangely enough, the male co-workers don’t seem to mind. In fact, they respond to it. Not pathetically, to their credit, but they reward the baby-talk and the flirtation with action. It leaves me genuinely confused. Surely, no respectable woman actually thinks this is an appropriate way to behave in an office environment, and surely, no respectable man enjoys it?

Whatever floats your boat in private is none of my business, and I will gladly remain ignorant of any such fetishes or activities you may undertake outside office hours. Just leave the baby-talk or sexual tensions at the door, please. Some of us are trying to be seen as equals here.
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