Questions tagged [politeness]

Questions where acting with consideration, tact, deference, or courtesy is important. Include other tags for cultural context! For questions regarding someone else being rude, use the "rudeness" tag instead.

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26
votes
3answers
12k views

How to tell a busy professor that I don't mind if he answers my questions when he has time?

I am self-studying a course. Two years ago I began to use some lectures by a professor from the United States (I'm from a different country). He is retired now. While watching his lectures, I began to ...
6
votes
3answers
781 views

How to stop my mother from questioning my decisions out of selflessness?

Quite often (say, 3-5 times a week), my mother will ask me something, I will answer, and she will question whether my answer is legitimate or whether I'm just answering what I think she thinks she ...
17
votes
5answers
7k views

I sent an email about an urgent message, but want to call instead. How to correct?

Note: this is not a situation I am currently facing, but I have faced in the recent past. I apologized afterwards, which helped, but I'd rather learn how to fix the problem before it even occurs. My ...
2
votes
2answers
408 views

How to give a gift that was declined on the basis of welfare of the gifting party without being rude?

I am attending the wedding of a very close family member soon (45 days). This family member and their fiancé need new phones, their current one doesn't seem to last 30 minutes of use with a full ...
35
votes
4answers
7k views

How can I politely decline to guide a student?

I am a lecturer in a department in which undergraduate students have to do a final-year project guided (= supervised) by a faculty member. Faculty members do not have to guide students: those who do, ...
0
votes
0answers
67 views

Which behaviour should I have? [duplicate]

When my direct superior is angry, he is nervous and not patient, so he explains me an information, but bad... I can't understand, he chews his words, should I insist over him to have the required ...
33
votes
6answers
8k views

How to politely ask people to pick up the litter they threw, especially if they don't own up

I live in India. As far as I know, littering is not much of a problem in other countries, but India has always been a place where even the adults teach their children: "Beta, yahin pe phek do, sabhi ...
2
votes
2answers
520 views

How to avoid being a wallflower in a group conversation

Is there anything I can do to avoid being the only person who doesn’t say anything in a social group setting? The obvious answer is to talk, but I find it difficult to (i) find the right time to ...
49
votes
10answers
11k views

How to communicate to a new coworker that I am not comfortable being touched?

Last week a new coworker joined our team, and yesterday we were both invited to eat lunch in the work cafeteria with some other colleagues that I have known for around a year and a half. As he, ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

How to tell beginner pickleball player they shouldn't play?

Often a lower level pickleball player will come to a day set aside for advanced players. (Pickleball has 4 people on a court &usually played at community centers.) It seems if I am nice to them ...
2
votes
2answers
471 views

How to let people know I am fine?

When I'm sitting by myself, people sometimes come to talk to me or ask me if I'm okay. I suspect this is because when I'm not controlling my expressions, it looks like I'm scowling or frowning, and ...
2
votes
1answer
772 views

How to proceed after being ignored on Dating app?

Events: I matched with a woman on Facebook dating, had a short chat with long delay between messages, but all seemed very enthusiastic. In the end she agreed to have a beer with me, I suggested a day ...
6
votes
2answers
438 views

How to make eye contact while talking with more than one person?

My question looks similar to this question but in my case, I am the one doing the talking and not the listening. So, in an office environment or while talking to friends, when I am talking and two or ...
7
votes
1answer
522 views

How to tell a doctor or nurse to speak to me in technical details without being rude

I have regular appointments with nurses and doctors due to a long term but not serious health condition. It's often a new doctor or nurse I see each time so I have to try to judge how best to ...
2
votes
1answer
367 views

How many “bise” (kisses) should I give?

Context Let's assume we are in a COVID-free environment. In France, depending on where you are, we give different amounts of "bises" (kisses on the cheek) in greeting. For example, we give ...
3
votes
1answer
759 views

How do I chase a teacher who hasn't replied to my messages despite reading them?

I'm studying a course remotely, and sent my teacher a message on Teams about 10 days ago now, asking a question. No response, but I can see the read receipt. Hoping to prompt a reply, I asked another ...
45
votes
10answers
29k views

What do you do if someone is telling you something you already know about, such as a fact or something that happened?

One thing that has been happening lately is that people will tell me something that I already know. Naturally, I respond saying something like, "oh I heard/read about that". However, I feel like when ...
11
votes
3answers
4k views

How to communicate with neighbour with banging door without making her uncomfortable

I live in Australia in a block of flats. We are the middle flat of three. Each flat has a front and back balcony. Due to the nature of the flats the back doors will bang in the wind if not secured - ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

How to tell an employee that someone in their shop is not wearing a mask?

(Without looking condescending or like I'm telling them how to do their job) The other day, I was at a shop and someone was not wearing their mask (it was hanging on one of their ears, so they clearly ...
8
votes
2answers
649 views

Dealing with Extremely Chatty Housemates

I am a graduate student at the moment and sharing a house with undergraduate students. What I've noticed is that a lot of undergraduate students who are studying let's say relatively soft subjects ...
43
votes
4answers
6k views

Showing a homeless person that you care about their well-being

Every day, when I go to work, I pass by a homeless person. At first, I just waved hello to them, but now I shake hands with them and, when doing that, they will start asking me questions (like "how ...
11
votes
8answers
11k views

How can I get someone to stop paying for my meal?

I have a good friend and every time we go out for a drink or dinner, he always insists on paying. That sounds good to have someone pay for you but it's actually not. For a start, it's kind of ...
5
votes
2answers
524 views

How do you respond (in a reasonable manner) when a less-educated friend suggests reasons for your current psychiatric disorder?

My friend suggested that a recent and ongoing flare of my autoimmune disease was causing my ongoing depression. She is a very close friend, and I love her dearly, but she is much less educated than I ...
22
votes
3answers
7k views

How do I politely turn down requests to show wedding photos?

I got married recently and have changed my name at work. People have noticed and are now asking for wedding photos. How do I tell them politely that no, I'm not going to show them? Lying and saying I ...
43
votes
12answers
20k views

How should I ask people to stop over explaining things?

Most people that I interact with on a daily/regular basis seem to need to over explain and qualify every statement. An example would be: I'm heading out shortly and your car is blocking the drive. ...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

How can I politely tell parents of kids to stop playing with my son's toys/equipment to give him and his friends a chance?

Quite often we go to the park, or host a party and we have a few things like Stomp Rockets or Jumpers or other such things/toys. There are quite a few kids who look at longingly and want to come over (...
2
votes
1answer
408 views

Boss tells me to face him when talking [closed]

So I was talking to my boss in the hallway today. During part of the conversation I turned to face somewhere to the left side of him for ~ 20 seconds, I think I got restless/bored from standing still....
5
votes
1answer
473 views

How to politely address the rude accusations being thrown your way?

I don't know if the title of this post is explanatory and descriptive or not, but I shall be giving a detailed insight of my problem below. Situation: So there is this committee in our college who ...
43
votes
9answers
8k views

Why is it socially not acceptable to point at someone with your finger?

I am on the autism spectrum and I tend to point at things, including people. The other day, I was talking with a coworker about some tasks I needed them to do and, while I was talking, I was also ...
7
votes
1answer
82k views

How can I politely ask someone to call me? (As opposed to me calling them)

I recently contacted a restaurant where I had a bad experience, and a manager got back in contact with me. At the end of the email, they said: I would very much appreciate the opportunity to speak ...
4
votes
1answer
662 views

Preventing strangers from touching my phone without causing negative response

The typical scenario is as follows. I go into a store and ask a question. During the conversation, I need to show them that they actually do carry an item I'm inquiring about (or maybe that something ...
3
votes
2answers
782 views

How to ask potential wedding photographer about low number of reviews

My fiance and I are looking at wedding photographers. She found one she says is perfect (matches our budget and preferred style). We talked with him over the phone yesterday and he seemed like a great ...
13
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I prevent people from touching my laptop screen with their finger?

Because of my work, I often bring my laptop with me to show stuff to other people. The problem is that a lot of people end up touching my screen to point to things on it. One developer I worked with ...
36
votes
6answers
11k views

How to refuse politely to play with someone as a streamer

I'm a new (game) streamer, I don't have a massive audience, and I find myself in quite a challenge. Often when I play, some viewers will ask if they can play with me (or us if I'm already playing ...
0
votes
2answers
329 views

How can I ask for recommendations from an acquaintance?

I used to live in city X, and I have an acquaintance Y back then that I have not contacted since I left X. I recently moved back to X (after 6 years) and have some problems at home where I will need ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

How can I tell someone that possibly unwanted body skin is showing?

So the title sums it up, but let me provide an example so it has a bit of context. I am living and working in California in an accounting office, so lax business casual is the usual attire. I am a ...
2
votes
1answer
632 views

How to save face and apologize after a text was taken the wrong way?

Okay, so our coaching has a discussion forum for all members to post questions related to our studies. The group is on Telegram, where I'm registered with a gender-neutral username and a profile pic ...
2
votes
1answer
460 views

How to avoid blaming a single person for issues submitting a group assignment?

I have a group assignment that is due soon. We are only allowed one submission per group (and further submissions, even before the deadline, will be penalized). This group assignment is worth a ...
3
votes
1answer
457 views

How to politely let someone know that their feedback is unhelpful?

I am on a forum where I frequently post creative projects in progress before publishing them. I ask for constructive critique / feedback / opinions on these projects from fellow creators. Sometimes ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Acknowledge someone's presence without encouraging conversation

I have had a friend during my college days. Unfortunately, it was only one directional and she never reciprocated my friendship appropriately. She used me for monetary purpose and mistreated me ...
1
vote
1answer
237 views

How to communicate with employees when requesting documents to minimize response time?

I often face the following scenario: I need to ask for a document, a piece of information or make a request to an employer of a company/organization whose job includes responding to people like me. ...
3
votes
2answers
942 views

How to appear less insensitive when texting with women I would like to date?

I am a male student who has been an introvert almost my entire life, and not having many female friends. Currently, I’m in college and due to the nature of my course, I did not have the chance to meet ...
5
votes
3answers
539 views

How can I refuse to kiss my mother while minimizing the hurt feelings?

Note: this has nothing to do with the current pandemic. I don't like physical contact, especially kisses and especially when I don't fully trust the person touching me. Also, my current relationship ...
4
votes
4answers
852 views

Figuring out interesting questions in friendly or romantic conversations

How can I figure out which questions are interesting and will be pleasant for the person to whom they are addressed to answer? I am a person who has an extreme problem conveying what he wants to ...
6
votes
2answers
489 views

How to politely reject classmates that are constantly asking for my help? [duplicate]

I am in a situation where I am overwhelmed by school mates constantly asking for my help for their assignments and tests. (They have been doing this since grade 10!) And this has resulted in serious ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

I'm a bibimbap heretic - can I eat my food the way I want without coming off as disrespectful?

I enjoy bibimbap. In American Korean restaurants, bibimbap is typically served as a large bowl of rice with individual portions of each topping arranged over it, like so. The traditional way to eat ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Refusing to let people in

I work in a facility where it is open to the public except for a small section. I work in this section and this section requires an access card when entering the door (anyone can buy one, but it is ...
7
votes
3answers
871 views

How can I politely interrupt someone on the phone when I have questions about what they're saying?

I often make and receive phone calls in a business context where the other person talks with too much jargon. Occasionally I need to interrupt them with questions to get a better understanding of what ...
2
votes
1answer
751 views

How to tell our mutual friend that we wouldn't like to spend one of our days with her on our four day trip

Background I am in a relationship with this girl who came to do her master's degree to my university for one year. We met in the Russian society and hence have mutual acquaintances from there. Since ...
5
votes
1answer
559 views

How to politely tell someone to clean their nose? [duplicate]

Today at work one of me colleagues was talking to me but I had no concentration on what she was saying because there was something on her nose and I was thinking about "how am I supposed to tell her?" ...

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