Violating social norms

Topics: Sociology, Mores, Experiment Pages: 2 (644 words) Published: April 23, 2014
I experimented with breaking social norms by nursing my baby in a public area without covering myself, I ate dinner with my family and only used my hands, no utensils and my last violation was getting on an elevator with only one other person and I pushed all of the buttons for all floors. The reactions were not surprising, some were quite comical, but I found that the reactions to me nursing my son caused me to feel a lot of anger towards some people. It was an enlightening experience to see how people react to others who break social norms and gave me a great perspective on how I myself have gone through life with certain expectations for how others should behave. In the first experiment, I was at the doctor’s office. It was time for my son to nurse and we were still in the waiting room. There were four other adults and one child in the waiting room. I normally would have put on a cover to nurse him; instead, I discretely had him latch on, without using my cover. I could immediately tell that those around me became uncomfortable. One man made sure to constantly look down and played with his phone, two other patients looked around, but would not look in my direction and appeared to be tense and awkward. There was one woman, who appeared to be in her fifties, who kept staring at me and giving me looks of disgust. After about ten minutes, she came over to me and proceeded to tell me how inappropriate it was that I would nurse my child in public without covering myself. I had quite the debate with her for several minutes until she was finally called back to see the doctor and she complained to the nurse on her way in, about my “horrid public display.” In my second experiment, I made dinner for my family. We had chicken, rice and green beans. I sat down and moved my utensils away from me and proceeded to use only my hands. My fiancé gave me an odd look, but didn’t say anything right away. My four year old gasped and asked me why I was eating like a baby. I laughed...
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