Episode 270 - Family Reunion Tee
In this episode of Awesome Etiquette
Welcome to Awesome Etiquette, where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On today’s show Dan and Lizzie take your questions on forced family t-shirts, congratulations cards and where to send them, thank you notes for engagement gifts and repairing relationships with in-laws. For Awesome Etiquette sustaining members we talk about flower girls not invited to the reception. Plus your most excellent feedback, etiquette salute and a postscript segment on awkward moments that we can all relate to courtesy of Buzzfeed.com
Speaker 1: maybe it's just that you don't know how to use social, couldn't see that's old fashioned,
Speaker 1: watch how busy post and then post to act as host and hostess, they know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person. Real friendliness.
Speaker 1: Hello and welcome to awesome etiquette where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On today's show we take your questions on forced family t shirts, congratulations cards and where to send them. Thank you notes for engagement gifts and repairing relationships with in laws for awesome etiquette sustaining members. We talk about flower girls not being invited to the reception
Speaker 1: plus your most excellent feedback etiquette salute and a postscript segment on awkward moments that we can all relate to courtesy of buzzfeed dot com. All that's coming up,
Speaker 1: awesome etiquette comes to you from the studios of Vermont Public radio and is proud to be produced in Burlington Vermont by the Emily Post Institute. I'm lizzie Post and I'm dan post sending and by the time this show airs we're going to be like two weeks away from Halloween but it technically is our recording to catch up on Halloween. So sorry to drag everybody back. But no apologies necessary. Yeah, Halloween. Such a great holiday. It is. But this year we were in a torrential downpour in my busy Burlington neighborhood. I'd like 5 to 7 trick or treaters flood warnings, high wind warnings and they weren't joking. It actually all happened like people are looking outside going, whoa! You know like my basement started leaking like thing is flooding like things like that were going on and these kids were just trying to get out and get some candy. It also left adults with very large bowls,
Speaker 1: can I promptly put in our new office space? We've once again moved offices at the Emily Post Institute but we keep jumping around the same building we do and I just, I was like okay we don't come here but once a week I'm going to leave all of the snickers and Milky Ways and all these things, they're well I know where I'm going this. Well I was thinking of when you used to keep all the leftover Halloween candy in your desk drawer. I was like I wish dan still had that like
Speaker 1: candy deposit drawer. Okay so I have such a typical parent story,
Speaker 1: I was really excited about Halloween. Of course we've been planning a costume with Anisha for months and it was not an exaggeration, she wanted to be a witch. We have lots of options. Okay, I was going to say and that takes months to plan.
Speaker 1: Her mother did a professional job on the costume. There was a pointy hat, there was a layer dress, I took care of the broomstick. Um and then there was a last minute change, we just had to be a princess but we also had multiple Halloween party. So we tried different costumes out at different times.
Speaker 1: Dad was really excited why? Because it's Halloween and I wanted to go trick or treating, it's cute to dressing well and the four month old got to wear the bee costume. Oh the little bumble and then we just got poured on. Everyone was soaked. The little point on the hat was like pointed down and I want to paint a picture. The umbrellas in the trunk of the car were too small, they weren't the big golf umbrellas, they were like the little travel umbrellas.
Speaker 1: So we had to small umbrellas for four people were like huddling under these tiny umbrellas and just get an initial, just wanted to go back to the car after three houses. She got it, she got it in her mouth and that was it. I'm done, I'm happy, I have candy and sugar. We're good dad, don't you want to keep going there? It's right there the next day. We haven't visited the so and sos yet. No, and there was a house at the end of the street, there was a daycare family, they had a garage with hot chili and adult beverages and
Speaker 1: my brother was texting that you have to make it to the end of the street. We didn't make it.
Speaker 1: Oh man, it was still fun, it was still fun. That's really good. My nephew didn't, I think he just put on his little monster sweatshirt that he had last year. He didn't, he's too and so they didn't take him trick or treating or anything but and it was pouring rain, but
Speaker 1: I was impressed. A lot of the kids that came by, you know, they said some of the little ones still don't quite know what to do. And so they opened the door and it's just like you're waiting and they're like,
Speaker 1: I don't know,
Speaker 1: but I was really impressed with how many kids did say please and thank you. You know, and it was, it was really cute and a lot of the adults, you know, said please and thank you as well. And I only got one teenager not dressed up at all with just a, you know, a sack asking for candy. And I was like, I was like, come on, just a little, here you go. But you know, at least like, you know, tape a piece of paper like assigned to you that says I'm a, this like, you know,
Speaker 1: but it was kind of a sad quiet Halloween.
Speaker 1: It wasn't as wet last year, but it was pretty wet last year also. And there's now talk in the parent circles, are we ever going to get a dry, perfect autumn fall. Halloween fingers crossed. There's always next year, always next year and until then they're always etiquette questions, let's get to it.
Speaker 1: Yeah.
Speaker 1: Mhm,
Speaker 1: awesome etiquette is here to answer your questions on how to behave if you have a question for us, you can email it to awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com, you can leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind, that's 8028585463 on twitter. We are at Emily Post Institute on instagram, we are at Emily Post institute
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Speaker 1: Remember to use the hashtag awesome etiquette in your post so that we know you want your question on the show and sustaining members, remember to put sustaining member somewhere in your message will answer your question from a smaller pool on the sustaining member site where you can access all the bonus questions as well as an ad free version of the show.
Speaker 1: Mhm
Speaker 1: mhm
Speaker 1: mhm
Speaker 1: Our first question is titled forced family t shirts,
Speaker 1: I bet you can guess where this is going. Hi lizzie and dan, thanks for such a great show. I'm excited to listen each monday. I just finished reading higher etiquette. Oh yeah, thank you so much and learn so much. Thank you for such an informative and useful book And so pretty it is. We were talking about that just the other day. It's a really pretty book
Speaker 1: question. My family has been told for the second year that we're hosting the yearly extended family get together.
Speaker 1: This is fine and we are certainly logical hosts given various other family members locations and houses,
Speaker 1: some people will be staying with us and everyone else will generally be here a lot meals hanging out over the four days.
Speaker 1: I'm cool with that
Speaker 1: One of the family members last year on their own initiative had t shirts printed for everyone that reference to specific family sport event that was planned.
Speaker 1: This family member clearly does enjoy commemorative shirts and items from charity runs, etcetera.
Speaker 1: I think a picture was taken with some family members in their shirts but they didn't all fit and they didn't match the weather etcetera.
Speaker 1: I didn't go to the sport event because it wasn't a thing I usually enjoy and I needed to cook for everyone.
Speaker 1: This year, we all got a message from this family member
Speaker 1: quote,
Speaker 1: I'm having shirts made again, cousin t updated the design. It would be great if you could send me X amount of dollars to help pay for the item.
Speaker 1: Is there any way to gracefully declined without looking like a cheapskate and a spoil sport?
Speaker 1: I don't want the shirt, it's not my style. I don't want to pay for it. I don't want to be at the event, the shirt references again this year because I don't want to go and it's always the same day as the big meal and that I feel responsible for as the host.
Speaker 1: I love my family, but I don't feel the need to have matching items.
Speaker 1: If it had been phrased as a choice. If you want a shirt, send me money, I would find it easy to say, no thanks or if they just want to spend their money to get them for everyone because it was really meaningful to them. I would of course just say thank you and try to wear it while they were here.
Speaker 1: Even though I would find the gift uncomfortable given this person's tales of money woes,
Speaker 1: my spouse already decided that sending money was the easiest to keep the peace this year. But I would love ideas for this if it comes up again or any similar situation where someone tells you you're receiving a quote unquote gift and then ask you to help pay for it. Thanks, awesome etiquette Tracy
Speaker 1: Tracy. I have to start by saying, I'm a little bit jealous about a giant family reunion that has no dorky t shirts. It's really my other side of the family does these and we have coming up in june,
Speaker 1: they're really, really, really fun and like we have coveted like our t shirts from the eighties when we did like the 100th anniversary of our property. Like it was, it was like a thing, it's a thing and it was a fun thing. I've never had one. I've seen the families in the airports where they're clearly all coming or going from this event because they're all wearing their matching t shirts and
Speaker 1: as a teenager, I would have been mortified. I would have wanted to be as far from that
Speaker 1: group as I possibly could. That self identified t shirt wearing group as I possibly could have been and now I just want to be part of something that dorky. It's really funny because our family and not to make this all about our family. We will answer Tracy's question, but our post side of the family, we like we use like weddings and big events like that as our get together time and we had Jill's last year, so I feel like everyone's like set and
Speaker 1: I'm the only one left. So well, you know what I mean? It's like, but I feel like if we tried to instill like institute this at the, at the Emily Post family at our post side of the family that it would be like
Speaker 1: guys really like another trip that we all have to eat a bar vacate. Like no, no, no no, no, like, you know, even though we all would like the idea, we would also be like, no, like we don't want to do this. Whereas the other side of the family, it's like everyone's like on it and ready and it's so exciting and fun and it's just so funny how different families have kind of different personal styles of celebrating
Speaker 1: and then we get to the crux of this issue that within those families, there's then different styles of celebrating and
Speaker 1: Tracy would clearly like to just celebrate the thanksgiving weekend by by providing that great meal and that great hosting experience for people,
Speaker 1: I can really get behind that because it is just money and family harmony is priceless. It really, really is. I don't want to ignore the question because it's a good question, is there a way that I could reply to something like this, particularly if I see it coming again and again and again, or if I just want a good answer to this because I want to feel good about my participation and I'm doing a lot, I'm investing a lot of time and probably resources in this. So there was a part of me that when I read this, it was like, it was feeling for that like something kind of getting dumped on you, You know, like, uh you know that moment where you're like, uh just hadn't asked me to pay for it. If you'd asked a little differently,
Speaker 1: this would be so much easier and I want to respect that and and also respect the fact that it makes me want to come up with something that's kind of like eye for eye on it. And so the only thing I came up for that was you could respond something like,
Speaker 1: oh thanks for including me or us. You know, you and your spouse, we've still got our shirts from last year, so we're all set even though he's referenced that there's a new design and you could say when we're ready to re up, we'll let you know and jump in, you know, that year.
Speaker 1: And I thought that would be a way of just kind of like turning the table a little bit, but we don't really like to do that to people in etiquette, it's not like a ha, you throw this on me, I'll throw this on you, you like watch me get creative, you know? But the part of your answer that I like is the sort of playful, good spirit of it,
Speaker 1: because that's the spirit that these shirts are being made in. So to respond with too much
Speaker 1: angst about, it doesn't feel like it's emotionally coherent. I agree with that too. I think if you tried to respond to this with boy Uncle G I, I really wanted to talk to you because this is,
Speaker 1: it's really a big deal when you, you ask somebody to pay for something that they haven't agreed to and it's tied to an event. If you explain it all out to him, it starts to really suck the fun out of what Uncle G who have now just anonymously name this person is trying to do. But I also feel the imposition and the annoyance and we do have a culture where um, a lot of us are in a space of, of trying to minimize the amount of stuff that we come in. I mean Marie condo
Speaker 1: that the condos phenomenon has just made people
Speaker 1: really comfortable with getting rid of things and environmental reasons people are really concerned about accumulating a lot more. And so you can see where all of a sudden
Speaker 1: there's actually a really good etiquette space to find good language for declining participation in
Speaker 1: events or um, yeah, I don't know what else you would call them, but just events for any type of gathering where you're accumulating a lot of stuff. I think about the trade shows that we go to where, oh my gosh, the amount of little dinky things that you get at those and some people are thrilled to collect them and other people think of them as cumbersome junk.
Speaker 1: And so we do really have these two mindsets now in our culture and balancing them is a little bit more than just, oh, take the shirt this year and every year and then just get rid of it or, you know, or the other way speak up harshly against it or really put up a firm,
Speaker 1: I'm sorry, I'm gesturing with like a, you know, hand, the virtual stiff arm stiff arm, Thank you. That's what it's looking for. So when I think about the mechanics of that decline. Yeah, I'm thinking about things like being very specific and being very candid. So
Speaker 1: I'm not going to participate this year. Thank you for doing this for putting this together for everyone. Exactly. So you appreciate their effort and you decline and that's, that's enough. If you're doing it ahead of time, you can head it off a little bit, you could
Speaker 1: let someone know, I'm all set on t shirts this year, I've got a lot going on as I planned for the big meal. Thanks for thinking of me. Or if you have heard that it's happening and you're able to send that message ahead of that or if you're thinking about something like this, I know that I'm going to be opting out this year
Speaker 1: and I think that's sort of advanced notice might also be advisable. And again, it doesn't need to be a big deal. You don't need to get into all of the reasons and the differing philosophies or all of the longer explanations and reasons why you'd rather not participate. I do think though, that one of the ways you can finesse this response of just saying, oh thanks, the two of us are going to be in it this year, but thanks so much for doing this for everyone else.
Speaker 1: I thought one way to really encourage that.
Speaker 1: You do think it's a good thing that this uncle is doing this for everyone, is to offer to take a picture of everybody offer to make sure that a photo gets taken of everyone who participates in the game wearing their game day shirts. You know what I mean? And that that might be a way to show him that you're really for it. It's just not for you.
Speaker 1: I think underneath our whole discussion is the awareness that because there was an initial etiquette faux pas ie, someone's
Speaker 1: made a decision and then they're asking for money after they've made that decision and you haven't been given an opportunity to participate in that decision making.
Speaker 1: You're
Speaker 1: kind of in the clear, you're off the hook in terms of an obligation
Speaker 1: to respond in the affirmative, I like that you said for this occasion, I'm just going to do it because it's easier,
Speaker 1: but there is an allowance that you get because not every mark has been hit
Speaker 1: up to this point. Are you are you suggesting dan that when someone is rude to you, you can be rude back? No. Okay. And that becomes the trick how you are able to wrap your no reply in a package that doesn't say
Speaker 1: I'm saying no because you were just rude to me and as long as you haven't done that,
Speaker 1: you're in pretty good etiquette shape here
Speaker 1: Tracy. We hope this helps and we hope your family has an awesome time. This thanksgiving weekend. Well, the purpose of a party is to have fun together. But what else makes a good party? It's the skill of the host and the skill of the guests in making the party fun for everyone and if some guests forget this, well, anyone,
Speaker 1: even another guest can help get the entire group together. Again,
Speaker 1: our next question is about a card disaster
Speaker 1: Dear Lizzie and Dan. I'm a new listener to the podcast and have been enjoying it immensely. This past week, I've had a card mailing question come up here is the background. I've been working at my current job for a year. Last week, a woman in my section announced that after nearly 20 years in the same position, she has accepted a new job elsewhere
Speaker 1: and we'll be staying on for one more week at our institution.
Speaker 1: She declined a retirement party. But over the weekend I did purchase and write her a congratulations card.
Speaker 1: We have not worked together closely. I'm still fairly new, but she has always been kind generous and thoughtful towards me.
Speaker 1: I plan to leave the card on her desk monday morning. However, on monday a natural disaster very close to our institution occurred and we have been ordered to stay home all week because the institution is being used as a base for emergency personnel. This means that we will miss her last day.
Speaker 1: And this brings me to my question, what do I do with the card? I do know which institution she is going to. So I thought of re addressing it, adding an extra note to say, hi, I wanted to give this to you in person but couldn't. So I'm mailing it to you instead
Speaker 1: And then sending it off after I know she started, is this a good idea or will it be awkward? I don't want her to have my personal address so I would put my work address for the return. Is that even more awkward? I am conflicted because I think 20 years of service should be acknowledged and I don't want my effort to be in vain.
Speaker 1: But I don't want to create a strange situation for her at her new job.
Speaker 1: I would never have guessed that natural disasters could make a simple congratulations card. So stressful lizzie and dan, thank you for all the hard work you do to continue your family legacy of teaching. The importance of consideration, respect and honesty In our digital age. They are more needed now than ever. Thank you so much in advance for any advice you are able to offer
Speaker 1: sincerely disastrous card writer.
Speaker 1: What a great question. And I get the disaster. The particular she was in a disaster. But there is a disaster in play here totally hope that everything on that front is
Speaker 1: working out as best it can.
Speaker 1: I like the idea of sending it to this former coworkers work. But I also get that you're worried that this might not be appropriate
Speaker 1: not knowing the industry that you work in or the field of work that you're in. It's a little tough. But given the circumstances I think this is going to be fine. It's I mean we have stuff show up at the Emily Post Institute all the time. You know what I mean? I've certainly had to be the case where if someone didn't have my home address or chose not to reach out to me specifically to get it that they use the office address to send me something that's probably more personal in nature. And I understand this is a new job and it's like, it's a little bit strange. I think as long as she has made it clear to you that she's going to this new institution,
Speaker 1: that she hasn't kept her new place of work secret if you didn't find that out, like, you know, by seeking it out, you know, on the side, I think that it's okay for you to send something there. If she wasn't trying to hide where she's moving on to, then I think I think you're in good stead. I also think it's perfectly fine for you to put your work address in this,
Speaker 1: This was a business colleague, this is a business colleague has moved to a new business. I kind of just think there's nothing wrong with keeping it all in the business sector, even though the note is slightly personal in nature, it's definitely personal. Professional, very congratulatory note about a professional achievement, accomplishment milestone. So you're in pretty good shape here, disastrous card writer. We hope that this small piece of advice helps in a difficult time. That particular method of being thoughtful that works every time.
Speaker 1: Yes, everywhere you go, people talk about thoughtfulness.
Speaker 1: If we watch carefully, we'll see just what thoughtfulness is.
Speaker 1: Our next question is entitled engagement gifts,
Speaker 1: dear lizzie and dan, I'm newly engaged. Yeah. And some of our generous friends and family have been so kind as to send gifts to congratulate us on our engagement.
Speaker 1: I'm wondering whether I can convey my thanks in the same way I typically would for a birthday or holiday gift or if because this is wedding adjacent, I need to respond in a more formal way. I know that sending thank you cards is a must for wedding and wedding shower gifts.
Speaker 1: Typically when I receive gifts, while I love sending thank you cards, I tend to send them to people. I have a more formal or less close relationship with and respond with less formality to close friends and family thanking them with an excited call or text. What is the appropriate response for engagement gifts that we receive?
Speaker 1: P. S. If we had an engagement party where we received gifts, I would definitely send thank you notes, but receiving a gift in the mail feels like it might be a different situation, curious to know your thoughts. I love this question. Me too. So I want to give awards to anonymous for the term wedding adjacent event. I love it. And does a wedding adjacent event kind of skew our formality needle a little more towards the formal.
Speaker 1: My immediate answer is if you have a feeling like that's happening, Yes, because that will give your wedding a more formal feel if you start to treat it as a more formal event or experience if
Speaker 1: you feel, and I'm going to say it in your heart, that needle pulling towards. I want to formalize these relationships experiences and moments in ways that
Speaker 1: make them stand out or feel memorable
Speaker 1: to me and to the other people involved,
Speaker 1: go for it, indulge those feelings, indulge that sentiment, that inclination. And I think you'll be rewarded. Big picture in the long run. I think so do. I think that sending a note is the right thing to do. I think the occasion warrants it
Speaker 1: and I think that it's you mentioned you love writing notes. This isn't like, you know, this isn't something that sounds like an arduous awful, you know, task. And so I think that it is really nice when
Speaker 1: this is an extra special moment in your life and the engagement period is a special moment, just like the wedding itself is a special moment and then the marriage is a special thing.
Speaker 1: It's a different time in your life. It's different from just being in a couple. You know, it's it's a couple who's going to get married. I think that these people are saying this is a moment worth celebrating. I think the response should be, this is a moment worth worth writing a thank you note for.
Speaker 1: I get what you mean though, because I do a very similar thing where with close friends and family, I often do call or text you. It almost gets more personal when you have that direct. Oh my gosh, I just opened the thing that you sent me. And it's so cool. And the person on the other line is going, we're just so excited about your like, that's a wonderful phone call. And I know my cousin well enough to know about this feeling that she has about the personal quality to that more informal thanks. That it's in many ways the gold standard. And it's why I was
Speaker 1: a little surprised when I saw all bold in your show notes are not all bold, but all caps send a note. And I was wondering how those two things were playing in your mind. Yeah, they were playing at the space of um because we do this familiar thanking so often with people who we've, kind of just agreed, we don't need to write thank you notes to, you know, that a phone call would be more welcome. You've heard me mention on the show for years that my Godmother actually instructed me to not write her thank you notes anymore. Because she wanted she wanted the phone calls, she wanted the text message. She wanted the personal moment of connection with me. And not that the note didn't, but she gets to talk a bit with me if we do it via text or via phone. And I love that. And it was great. So, I don't want to diminish how important that is. But you have this regular group of people that you do this with. You know, that it's okay to be in this familiar good zone with.
Speaker 1: And I think it's really nice every now and again, just like couples who have fabulous dinners every single night, decided to go out for dinner on a date night. Think of this as like your date night. Thank you note with the people who are close in your life. Like you write it because they're making you feel extra special, celebrating an event in your life.
Speaker 1: You make them feel extra special by writing that note, taking it
Speaker 1: up a notch for this as opposed to not. And it doesn't mean you can't do the other when your nephew Danny calls his uncle Peter Mr post at work every once in a while. It's nice to have those options, Those formal options too,
Speaker 1: take a relationship and broaden the possibilities within it. And this is one of those special moments.
Speaker 1: I also wanted to respond to the specific question about whether it's a party verse receiving the gift in the mail
Speaker 1: because I thought it was really interesting that the
Speaker 1: event of the party made it feel more like a wedding event to the question. Ask her, I'm guessing so it was inspiring this idea that I should respond with a note. Whereas if something was mailed, it felt more one on one and maybe more personal, so I wouldn't be as likely to send a note. And I do
Speaker 1: just wanted to put out the baseline idea that we often say
Speaker 1: you send a thank you note if you haven't had the opportunity to thank someone in person. And even though that mail exchanges a one on one personal exchange from them directly to you, that you haven't had that same opportunity to look them in the eye smile, thank them whatever it is, give them a hug, tell them how much you appreciate it. So
Speaker 1: in many ways you want to keep that thank you note writing option right at the front of your mind when you receive a gift in the mail, it's oftentimes one of those great opportunities to jot down a quick note to let someone know it arrived and that you appreciated it.
Speaker 1: I can't help talking about thank you notes and just bringing up the idea that
Speaker 1: the parties where gifts are opened at the party and you do have a chance to thank the giver. Obviously that goes right to that most amazing. Thank you that Emily always described which is the in person. Thank you being so highly valued.
Speaker 1: The reason why we suggest to write notes even after that type of party
Speaker 1: is because so much happens at that party. And it's like, it's like a whirlwind of congratulations and celebration and everything that taking a moment afterwards to reflect on how wonderful that is and how grateful you are to have people in your life who celebrate you in such a way is wonderful. That's the only way I can describe it, It's it's not like
Speaker 1: your family will disown you if you don't do the thank you know, afterwards or that somehow this in person, thank you at a party. Like this isn't enough. It's more celebrating how wonderful it is through reflection and through the expression of gratitude. And so I try to look at it that way. And again, if you open the gifts at the party or not, it doesn't really matter what matters is that you make sure that that thanks is extended afterwards. And
Speaker 1: we just simply carry that through when you get the gift in the mail instead, that you really want to find that way to make that connection. And
Speaker 1: this note at this time just makes it a little more special,
Speaker 1: anonymous. We're so glad that you found the show and that it's been helpful and we want to add our congratulations to the chorus. Congratulations. You know, that's not bad at all. With a little practice. You'll be a wizard writing letters. Thank you letters is just a town. Some people are born with summer.
Speaker 1: I'm glad you appreciated my help.
Speaker 1: Our next question is titled in laws and instagram. It's a doozy. This is a tricky one. Hi lizzie and dan, I love your podcast. It's fun following your stories and learning little bits of practical etiquette. I've shared your show with many friends and even reference pointers during our bi weekly staff meetings,
Speaker 1: My issue. I have just one brother, two years my senior, he and his wife have been together over 10 years like my spouse and I, my mom loves her grandkids and has historically been close with her daughter in law.
Speaker 1: They live closer to my folks than we do and often see each other. About a year ago my mom made a comment that unintentionally hurt my sister in law. She tried to make amends but the tension is thick noticeable to others.
Speaker 1: Here's the question. Several months ago, my aunt brought up a post my sister in law made on instagram. My mom being a late adopter, decided to install instagram and searched for my sister in law. She couldn't find her anywhere.
Speaker 1: So now my mom's sisters are connected and finally I am yet it appears that my sister in law has intentionally blocked my mom
Speaker 1: and it's not very secret since she does interact with her husband's aunt.
Speaker 1: My mom's feelings are hurt and she just wants the relationship back. But this seems to make it clear that her daughter in law is purposefully distancing herself
Speaker 1: Should my mom approach her script ideas.
Speaker 1: It's definitely deeper than the instagram and I feel the more time lapses, the harder it gets your input is definitely appreciated, signed disheartened daughter disheartened daughter. We're so sorry that this is happening within your family whenever there's tension between two people and
Speaker 1: there have been repairs that have been tried to be made, but we actually don't know how well those repairs efforts went.
Speaker 1: Um, clearly not well enough to repair the situation and make the sister in law slash daughter in law feel better.
Speaker 1: I am curious as to
Speaker 1: whether or not mom could reflect on the attempt that she made to make amends and see if it
Speaker 1: maybe focus too much on defense. Maybe it didn't try to explain something in the right way.
Speaker 1: Oftentimes when an attempt at a reconcile doesn't go well.
Speaker 1: I find it's best especially as the offending party to say, I would really love the chance to listen to how this all affected you because clearly it is, it still hurts enough that we aren't close the way we used to be
Speaker 1: and I would like to find out how to make that better. And that's the kind of thing that it just, it gets at the heart of it. What your mom really wants is her relationship back with her daughter in law.
Speaker 1: And it's literally sometimes just saying let me know what we can do. Talk to me about how it hurt or why it hurts so that I can help make it better.
Speaker 1: And that's I think one of the only places you can go in this type of circumstance, I would not bring up the instagram thing. I tried to find you on instagram and I'm blocked and no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no dance, giving it the thumbs out, get him out of there Like that's not the conversation you want to be having. So
Speaker 1: my instinct is really try to do the reflection of, okay, first attempt didn't go, well, let me open it up. This person's hurting. I also think talking to your son might help
Speaker 1: finding out if he has an inside edge. I mean, we know that it's always best when two people can resolve a conflict themselves directly
Speaker 1: if daughter in law isn't willing to do that right now, talking to son to at least find out what's going on dan. And I do this with each other and through our family members at times just because it's sometimes it is easier to get a little perspective before entering a situation and
Speaker 1: it might help he might be the necessary go between for a moment or two.
Speaker 1: Was he post, you just climbed the etiquette ladder that I was thinking about as I was hearing this question, I couldn't agree more about
Speaker 1: looking for the heart of this issue and trying to address it. And I like your starting off
Speaker 1: point of as the offending party.
Speaker 1: That means the onus is on you. If that initial apology didn't have the desired impact. And at first I was thinking rise to the level that it needed to based on how the offense was experienced by someone, but you don't even have done that though. But for whatever reason it didn't land. And
Speaker 1: I think your first best option is to circle back and really try to get to the heart of that. And
Speaker 1: I loved your idea of asking someone how it impacted them, saying, essentially, clearly what my perspective on it wasn't enough. What I brought to the
Speaker 1: equation didn't equal out
Speaker 1: balance, didn't restore a balance to this relationship. So I'd like to hear more from you
Speaker 1: because I care about you because I care about this relationship and I'm invested in repairing it if possible or making it better. I just, I'm with you. I think it's so good. I think that's where it has to go. And
Speaker 1: I was just sitting there listening to you talk about it with a furrowed brow and a feeling of concern that I was sure was on my face. That's why I said out the door when you brought up the instagram because that's not the heart of the problem. And instagram is not the heart of the problem. It's just showing us there really true. I mean aside from uh certain daughter mentioned that other people notice this tension between these two. So it's very clearly still there. I think there is another possibility here. And
Speaker 1: it's worth mentioning. And I think one of the reasons I like your idea of talking to your son, if you're the mother, your brother, if you're the sister trying to get a sense for the state of play here. What's going on is that sometimes someone is also holding onto a grudge or hurt or a slight in a way that's not healthy where there
Speaker 1: might be some responsibility on that side of this equation as well. And
Speaker 1: someone who can deliver a message of, I know you're hurt.
Speaker 1: This is a really important relationship. This is about grandma and her grandkids as well as your feelings. And
Speaker 1: I think it's important to do some work to repair this relationship and
Speaker 1: starting to figure out whether there is an appropriate course of action that involves that person also taking some responsibility for repairing this relationship might involve that larger constellation of family members. It's funny that's not where I thought you were going to go with that. I thought you were going to say that talking to the brother
Speaker 1: or the sun depending on whose perspective we're looking at from
Speaker 1: might result in getting the answer of sometimes people just need more time and you know, my wife just needs more time. She doesn't get over things quickly or it hurts so bad that it is, it's taking a lot for her to move beyond this and
Speaker 1: she just needs time and space and time and space for some people is three weeks for other people. It's five years
Speaker 1: And it is so hard in our lives to help others understand that the five year path is painful and long and tough and usually unnecessary, but at the same time trying to get someone else to rush through their emotions get over something faster. I mean I've had a therapist for 11 or 12 years now and let me just tell you we're still talking about some of the same thing because
Speaker 1: some things are things you will battle your whole life. My hope is that that's not the case with whatever it is that that happened between these two. Whatever that unintentional comment was, we're talking about one moment, it seems like and that's why I like the idea of kind of pushing this a little bit at least trying to investigate a little bit more
Speaker 1: and reopen the topic of trying to find forgiveness here, find balance again. Here.
Speaker 1: I would so much rather stew in my own juices than talk about a problem. So I also kind of appreciate, you know, you totally are that guy. The willingness to engage a little bit too hopefully accelerate that process a little bit totally disheartened daughter. We hope that our advice can help with some gentle steps forward
Speaker 1: towards repairing this very important relationship.
Speaker 1: It's worthwhile to know many ways to settle disputes.
Speaker 1: Thank you for your questions. You can send us updates, comments, feedback on our answers or your next question to awesome etiquette at Emily Post dot com. You can also leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind that's 8028585463 on instagram. We are at Emily Post institute on facebook. We are awesome etiquette and on twitter we are at Emily Post instead.
Speaker 1: Just remember to use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your post so that we know you want your question comment or feedback on the show.
Speaker 1: It's time for our feedback segment where we hear from you about the questions we answer in the topics we cover and today we hear from heather in Chicago,
Speaker 2: hi lizzie and
Speaker 1: dan. This
Speaker 2: is heather from
Speaker 1: Chicago and
Speaker 2: I love yourself so much.
Speaker 2: So thank you for that. Um I was just listening to episode 264 about the
Speaker 1: feet up, seat down when
Speaker 2: you're in the bathroom
Speaker 2: and I thought I'd
Speaker 1: share um in my home growing
Speaker 2: up we always had
Speaker 1: seat down being mostly
Speaker 2: girls. But when I became an adult I discovered
Speaker 1: that when
Speaker 2: You flush the toilet, the tiny particles of grossness can go up to as far as six
Speaker 1: feet and even
Speaker 2: sometimes further.
Speaker 2: And so ever since I found that out
Speaker 1: in my home now we always flush
Speaker 2: with the lid down. So it's not just about,
Speaker 2: you know, there's more girls or more boys in the house, it's more about being sanitary. So I
Speaker 1: thought I would share
Speaker 2: that
Speaker 1: and love
Speaker 2: love love yourself so much. Thank you so much. Bye
Speaker 1: heather. I want you to know that we just had to take a minor break from recording in order to both geek out on how much we actually know of the study that you're talking about and how
Speaker 1: we we just literally spent a good three minutes talking about different toilets and situations, we know where because they don't have lids or because they have automatic flusher or because they have really strong flushes
Speaker 1: that this is going on all the time and it's so much worse than having to just put a toilet seat up or down the toilets that flush before you've actually like gotten out of the space or lifted yourself from the seat. I mean, come on, you add that to this fact and boom, you're gross,
Speaker 1: You're gross. Um, I think that the lid down is the best way to go. I really, really do. My big question though is this this question comes from episode to 64 and the circumstances they were in were office toilets
Speaker 1: and in more commercial spaces as opposed to residential spaces. We often have toilets without lids, there are no lids to put down, it's often just the seat and so what do you do? And there's, there isn't much you can do other than choosing to bring your own sani wipes and do it, which nobody really wants to be doing. That does happen, but we are hitting the grossness tolerance level probably of the show and I really want to appreciate our listeners for bearing through it, but
Speaker 1: um it's a great point. I think your solution is a fabulous solution. We have, we have said it before on the show that if everybody puts the lid down, everybody's lifting something up
Speaker 1: and things are staying clean. Things are staying clean. If there is a lid, this would in some ways
Speaker 1: paved the way for kind of a new default because as you finish up, you close everything down to flush and clear and everyone starts fresh.
Speaker 1: I kind of don't mind it. I like that heather your feedback is going into my top five of all time. I really appreciated um the thinking here and we appreciate all the feedback we've received on this question. It's not quite splitting pizza toppings level or accessible stall level those so far, our two biggest responses but this is definitely climbing the charts. So thank you for your input and thank you for supporting the show.
Speaker 1: Thank you for sending us your thoughts and updates. Please keep them coming. You can send your comment or update two awesome etiquette at Emily Post dot com or leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 K. I N. D. That's 8028585463
Speaker 1: mm.
Speaker 1: Mhm.
Speaker 1: It's time for our post script segment where we dive deeper into a topic of etiquette and today we're going to talk about awkward conversation. There was a really fun piece in Buzzfeed recently but I just laughed at and immediately when I was reading it, I thought, oh my gosh, our listeners like right in with moments like this and
Speaker 1: they're often moments where you actually all you all instinctively know there's not much you can do but cringe and say sorry or just let it go and you know remember for next time
Speaker 1: but they're also really common everyday. Easy. The wrong word comes out of your mouth, the wrong gesture gets made. You know, it's it's amazing how much we can have happened to us in a day. That is so unintentionally awkward and they can be deliciously funny too. So we thought that we would read a few of them
Speaker 1: from the article on Buzzfeed, which we will share on our social media
Speaker 1: accounts.
Speaker 1: The first awkward conversation happened in the elevator, the elevator doors opened up and a guy walked into the elevator. It was just me and him in there and he said I love you
Speaker 1: and I'm not rude. So I said I love you too.
Speaker 1: He gave me a weird look and pointed at his bluetooth
Speaker 1: Number two is about a food truck convo. So I'm at a food truck and this guy walks up and says I'll have my usual and the guy working says, I don't know who you are.
Speaker 1: Yeah, that's great.
Speaker 1: This one happened at the bank, I work at a bank and this lady came in with this one by the way is sad and cringeworthy. This is one of those moments where you just go, oh lesson learned,
Speaker 1: I work at a bank and this lady came in with $150,000 check and to make conversation. I was like Oh wow I wish I had one of these.
Speaker 1: Then she dead pans. It's a life insurance check. I would rather have the person.
Speaker 1: Oh
Speaker 1: so painful. I mean that's just like, oh it's it's that moment that reminds you, oh that's right. Like not everything comes from good things even if it looks like good things and
Speaker 1: okay, lesson learned.
Speaker 1: The next example is about a retail situation.
Speaker 1: A guy at paxson asked for my number while I was cashing out and I was like, I'm sorry I'm not really interested. Ha ha! This man looks at me and goes, I meant for the rewards program.
Speaker 1: Why am I the dumbest human being alive? You're not, that is a relatively normal mistake. Yeah. I think it's really funny how like even even in this world where were also used to every single register, we could ask for our email or our contact number something. It's just you know, you're in that mode, your
Speaker 1: whether you're in a relationship or not, you're just thinking, people are into each other and asking each other out left, right and center and boom,
Speaker 1: uh huh.
Speaker 1: This one is acute customer service conversation,
Speaker 1: Lucas writes, I meant to say hold on for a second and give me a minute to a customer and it came out as hold me for a second. What a monday I'll hold you Lucas.
Speaker 1: Next up we have another retail situation
Speaker 1: Yesterday at target. The Cashier said your receipt is in the bag and I responded with you too. So I've been dealing with that for the past 18 hours but I'm slowly coming to terms with it, which is cool. I like that. He specified 18 hour. So funny
Speaker 1: this cheese conversation,
Speaker 1: New developments. Apparently my mom is not even home. And the person I hear puttering around the house is the carpet cleaning service. I've been yelling grill me a cheese at them for the last 20 minutes.
Speaker 1: Okay, I'm gonna
Speaker 1: just put on my I believe this hat for a second, you would really yell that at your mother if it was your mother in the house, jeez.
Speaker 1: Our next one is also about a sandwich, just been down Tesco getting a sandwich and some crisps. And the lad at the checkout asked if I wanted to go for a drink. I told him I've got a fella, so was flattered but I couldn't, he said no, it's part of the meal deal.
Speaker 1: Never leaving the house again.
Speaker 1: Once again. Now you can feel good with the person up earlier who thought that the, the asking for the number was about getting a date.
Speaker 1: This one cracked me up because it reminded me of just how someone else's handwriting can just look so foreign to you.
Speaker 1: My teacher gave me back some papers
Speaker 1: And on it. I thought she wrote Salsa. And I asked the person next to me why the teacher wrote Salsa on my paper. And the person next to me was like um that says a 59 out of 59. Not salsa.
Speaker 1: I am so dumb. The five and the not like it ends up looking the way the person wrote it like S. A. And then the slashes the L. And it's great job. Salsa. Salsa. What kind of great is that?
Speaker 1: The Fist Bump Combo? I Like This one.
Speaker 1: Three years ago, a cute guy I worked with wanted to give me a fist bump. I thought he was pretending to hold invisible microphone. So I leaned forward and said, hello.
Speaker 1: Yeah, hi,
Speaker 1: we're going to close on this last one. But if you want to see more and we do have to warn you, they are explicit. I would say that we've curb some of the language and some of the topics definitely go into other territories. So just be prepared. But we will post the link. So feel free to check it out if you're willing, we'll end on this final one which gets at that wonderful, wonderful topic of to hug or not.
Speaker 1: I am so screaming. I just hugged my dentist thinking he was going in for one. But really he was just taking off my dental bib. I don't think I can ever recover from this.
Speaker 1: Did you know he leans in and you go up and wrap your arms around him
Speaker 1: and you're in the chair to so you're all laying down and stuff.
Speaker 1: The little bib that they put on the crinkling. I I was just going to take this off, but nice to talk to you. Oh dear. It's so easy for all of us to make these simple, simple mistakes, whether it's a word that you mispronounce or it's a mixing of telling someone
Speaker 1: you too when they have said something to you that doesn't apply to them or
Speaker 1: whether it is, it is incredibly, incredibly cringe worthy. We all have these embarrassing moments.
Speaker 1: You are, I think is the best friend of good etiquette. We're all fallible and that smile on your face is such an asset. Thank you for finding this. Thank you for sharing your worried about not doing the right thing. Alright. May be so, but it's also complicated. We like to end our show on a high note. So we turned to you to hear about the good etiquette you're seeing and experiencing out in the world and that can come in so many forms. Today we hear from lisa
Speaker 1: hi lizzie and dan, a big hello from Sydney Australia. I started listening to your podcast some months ago and it has been a constant companion in the car and on my morning walks you guys make exercise easier. Who Ray for that? Keep it up, keep it up, keep it up.
Speaker 1: I've just returned from a wonderful road trip where my husband and I traversed many miles across the country. In anticipation of this, I downloaded a number of different podcasts and audiobooks that I thought would appeal to his taste. Awesome etiquette was of course, at the top of my list, but I suspected that my very concrete thinking husband would not necessarily find it as appealing.
Speaker 1: So had plenty of other options on hand to cater to his super practical engineers brain how wrong I was after listening to a selection of what was on offer, he declared that awesome etiquette was in fact his favorite too.
Speaker 1: I appreciate that we can appeal to an engineer's mind.
Speaker 1: He would often stop the podcast to ask what would you do and on more than one occasion commented, they really do give good advice, don't they? I am simultaneously delighted and surprised to say that he has even asked for an Emily post book on men's etiquette for christmas that's peter post book, essential manners for men. It's in its second edition two. So it has been updated
Speaker 1: as I've reflected further on his interest in your podcast though it occurred to me that perhaps I shouldn't have been quite so surprised after all. Whilst it's true that my husband might not be schooled in some of the finer points of etiquette he does in many ways embody the principles that you so often remind us of consideration, respect and honesty.
Speaker 1: One lovely example of this came not long after our wedding. We were married in 2016 a little later in life than many at the age of 41.
Speaker 1: Those first few months were a happy whirlwind, lots of laughs, but also a lot of change. I guess when you put two people together who have been very happily settled into their lives as singles for a significant period of time, there are lots of adjustments and new routines that need to be worked out
Speaker 1: as a consequence though I was seeing my friends less. We talked on the phone, but I really missed that face to face ketchup.
Speaker 1: One particularly special group were some girls had gone through bible college with
Speaker 1: The six of us live together for four years and have since been a constant support to one another. As we've negotiated the ups and downs comment to single women in their late 30s and early 40s,
Speaker 1: One day, about 12 months after we got married, my husband and I were having dinner together and he casually mentioned that he had bought tickets for us to see the Russian ballet performed live in Sydney and by us. I mean, all seven of us,
Speaker 1: he went on to explain that he knew how much my friends meant to me and wanted to make sure that I was still getting quality time with them.
Speaker 1: He also wanted the girls to know that even though our circumstances had changed, we still loved and valued them and wanted them to feel special. I thought this was such a kind and generous gesture, particularly given the fact that sitting through several hours of ballet was not exactly his idea of a good time.
Speaker 1: But he privileged the relationship over his own comfort and for that I think he deserves an etiquette salute. Thanks lizzie and dan. We really appreciate you lisa.
Speaker 1: I think that's so wonderful.
Speaker 1: Okay so I'm going to go see the ballet russe in about a week and a half. I hope you enjoy it. I may be going to see this and all of her friends know and I'm feeling a little inadequate right now lisa this is such a nice salute and thank you so much for sharing the show with your husband and thank you for sharing your husband with all of us.
Speaker 1: Yeah
Speaker 1: yeah
Speaker 1: thank you for listening and thank you to everyone who sent us something. Please connect with us and share the show with your friends, family and coworkers wherever you cross their paths. You can send us questions and comments and salutes by email to awesome etiquette at Emily post com. You can leave us a message or text at 8 to 85 a kind that's 8028585463 on twitter. We are at Emily post inst that's I. N. S. T. And I am at lizzie a post That's lizzie with an E on facebook were awesome etiquette and the Emily Post Institute on instagram. We are at Emily Post Institute. Please consider becoming a sustaining member. You can find out more about this by visiting awesome etiquette dot Emily Post com. You can also subscribe to them ads version of our show on Itunes or your favorite podcast Pat.
Speaker 1: You can also support the show by leaving us a review. It helps our show ranking which helps other people find awesome etiquette. Our show is edited by Chris Albertine, an assistant produced by Brigitte Dowd. Thanks Kris and Brigitte.
Speaker 1: Mhm.