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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6
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I take issue with inappropriate statements without offending people?

I live in North America but in the particular area I live in there are more Asians than Caucasians. I sometimes hear things I find racist but am afraid to speak up fearing a negative response. Just ...
6
votes
1answer
551 views

How do I correct someone using the incorrect plural?

I am working with / instructing a new intern who is frequently using the incorrect plural of a technical term, for example, ‘Gooses’ instead of ‘Geese’. I’m fine giving him technical instruction ...
6
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3answers
568 views

How to politely minimise frequency of Mum's requests for visiting

I've been living with my girlfriend for nearly 2 years now. About once or twice a month, my Mum wants to visit or meet up somewhere. I don't mind doing this occasionally (say 6 times a year), but she ...
6
votes
2answers
471 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
758 views

How to tactfully give someone a chance to leave without compromising the conversation

At social events I have found I am some-what guilty of getting into in depth discussions that may occasionally drag the other person/s away from the main group. Most of the time this is fine, based ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

How to sign off an e-mail after finding out a work contact is out of the office due to a family emergency?

Background I am liaising with a client about a project. My main contact works off-site a lot but is fairly responsive with e-mails. She e-mailed me with a status update of a pending task and when I ...
5
votes
4answers
16k views

Is it OK to stop saying hi to people that you have no interest in? [closed]

I got introduced to this person in my neighborhood by a friend, and for a couple of times I said hi to him out of politeness. He also does not have a very close relationship with my friend. I don't ...
5
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3answers
1k views

Politely telling someone a claim they shared on social media is false?

My question is similar to this except the person is usually not passionate about it. I have friends who post things about vaccines causing autism, how bell peppers have different genders, and other ...
5
votes
3answers
610 views

In the US, is it polite to ask someone's name whom I just met in the elevator at work? [closed]

I just met a person in the elevator at work, and he seemed friendly enough and seemed to strike up a friendly conversation with me. Is it okay if I ask what his name is in this short conversation so ...
5
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5answers
906 views

How do you get someone's honest opinion about your cooking?

The flip-side to this question about being asked one's opinion on food they didn't like; What things should you keep in mind if you have cooked or are cooking a meal for family or friends, and would ...
5
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2answers
1k views

How and when to best approach a stranger about a “wardrobe malfunction?” [duplicate]

So a “wardrobe malfunction” can basically mean someone’s fly being open or someone’s dress, skirt getting bunched up in a weird way in their underpants. If I am dealing with friends, acquaintances, ...
5
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2answers
885 views

How to politely repel negative suggestive comments about the work morale or atmosphere?

I am part of a group of software developers who work remotely in different parts of the world. Some of us work in the U.S. and some in 3 other countries. The colleagues that work outside of USA are ...
5
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3answers
1k views

My coworker invited me to go camping. I hate camping but instinctively agreed. How can I back out?

I'm an idiot and I've always had the "nice guy / pushover" mentality which I've been working on personally and have steadily gotten a lot better at overcoming. This one caught me by surprise and I ...
5
votes
1answer
497 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?" ...
5
votes
3answers
334 views

How do I schedule an event with multiple people?

A few examples I've struggled with is scheduling scrimmages with a VR League I play in; I have four people on my team's availabilities to manage in conjunction with 5 others on a different team each ...
5
votes
1answer
420 views

How to apologise/thank college for being flexible with accommodation?

I'm going into my 4th year of University. I lived in college-owned accommodation for the first 3 years. I balloted in January for a college-owned room for 4th year, but this summer (June) I signed a ...
5
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3answers
1k views

How do I tell someone I won't drive them anymore, when they have no car?

Background: To get a technical diploma I started to attend school last week again and will be there till may next year. I'm currently 22 yo and I'm generally a very agreeable person. The school is ...
5
votes
1answer
457 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
740 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
492 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
673 views

Politely recommend budget help to a friend who owes me money?

To address duplication concerns, this belongs on IPS rather than workplace stack exchange or finance, as I would like to address the specific issue of recommending budget help, and handle this as a ...
5
votes
3answers
512 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
3answers
891 views

How to express to my parents that I need more freedom

I'm a 14 year old boy living with both my parents. I'm often talking to my friends about something, rather it's about what they did yesterday and about what just happened. A lot of times it seems ...
4
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2answers
3k views

How can I tactfully point out that someone misunderstood me?

Yesterday at work I had the same misunderstanding with two different co-workers. I'm working on a website with both an English and Spanish version. I explained over Slack that I found the resource ...
4
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5answers
2k views

How can I explain to my partner that my online interactions are important to me to reduce their frustration when I talk about them?

How can I explain, to my partner, that my online interactions, particularly here on Stack Exchange, are important and of value to me with the goal of them not feeling frustrated that I'm "wasting" my ...
4
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5answers
3k views

How to politely repel a flattering comment

Working in an average university, it's pretty common to get flattering comments from students (who more often than not pass it just to please the teacher), but recently I am facing a new problem of ...
4
votes
1answer
572 views

How to identify and approach persons of low income with the aim to help [closed]

I apologize in advance if this seems distasteful in any way, I'm genuinely trying to be helpful. I live in a low income area in the UK, however I am fairly comfortable financially. It pains me ...
4
votes
2answers
531 views

How to ask if I can use a rewards/points card at a paid lunch?

I am meeting with a recruiter, and she is taking me to lunch (paid for by her company) at restaurant that is local to my company's location. She is unlikely to have a loyalty card at this place ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

How to politely ask a coworker not to disturb me when I have headphones on

I do not like to be disturbed or constantly asked questions while I'm working intently. I use headphones to deal with that, and do not like to be disturbed while I have them on. How do I tell my ...
4
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2answers
2k views

How should I continue to have contact with this girl online?

Context All conversations I had with her are through text messages, games and on occasion through calls. We've known each other for 3 years, with a big pause in between of 1.5 years that ended last ...
4
votes
2answers
555 views

When sitting, how to non-verbally communicate that someone is invading your personal space?

I don't like it when people are physically too close to me. When standing, this isn't a problem since I can move a little and distance myself from the person being too close to me. However, when ...
4
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3answers
504 views

How to say hello without asking “how are you going?”

I try to say what I mean, and mean what I say. Sometimes I just want to say "Hi" or "Hello" without asking the person how they are going. I like to ask how they are or how they are going only when I ...
4
votes
2answers
511 views

How can I explain a phobia when travelling to a non-English speaking country?

I considered putting this question into the Travel stackexchange but this issue feels like it's more to do with interpersonal skills and communication than actually travelling. I'm happy for it to be ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Is negotiating a price perceived as rude in the UK culture?

I am looking to buy used car components on eBay from the UK, I found a good deal, the seller put together a nice kit but I feel a 15% discount would better align the item to the market price. I might ...
4
votes
4answers
823 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
710 views

How can I tell people that I’m not interested in donating to their charity? [duplicate]

Sometimes people will approach me in public places (such as a train station) and ask me to make a donation or to buy an item for charity. Usually they’re positioned at an entrance, exit or in such a ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

How to handle two friends talking to me at the same time?

I am a 19 years old male living in Canada. Sometimes, when I'm having a discussion with friends, two of them will start telling me something at the same time, each of them ignoring the fact that the ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

How to tell someone you don't remember an important event that happened?

Background While it is normal to forget events that happened in the past, there is an event I can't remember at all. This event happened 2 years ago when someone confessed(confession of love) to me. ...
4
votes
3answers
473 views

How to politely decline friends/colleagues trying to persuade me to join a Friday after-work event?

I’m part of a software development team and the people engagement team in our company. This week has been extremely exhausting with both of my development work and people engagement work being really ...
4
votes
1answer
131 views

What should one do when occasionally meeting an acquaintance of theirs with other people being with any of you, potentially unfamiliar with others? [closed]

If you stumble upon an acquaintance, then it is normal for you to have a short conversation, or perhaps even spontaneously plan to do something together right away. But if there are people with you ...
4
votes
2answers
487 views

How to politely tell someone the post they shared is wrong/dangerous/bad advice? [duplicate]

There are many posts on social media that are a load of rubbish and just plain factually incorrect. They often end in “if you don’t share a fairy will die” or some such nonsense having bad luck. I ...
4
votes
1answer
682 views

How to non-rudely exit or change the subject of a conversation where someone is wittering

Sometimes I find myself on the receiving end of what I call "wittering," or for lack of a better term verbal diarrhea. This is essentially where someone will start talking at length, often ...
4
votes
1answer
544 views

Politely declining a request to use my railway card to get a ticket when the person has to stand in the queue

Background: I'm from India. In our railways, we have multiple ways of booking tickets, one of them being the regular way (stand in the queue) and the other, a card which lets you get your ticket ...
4
votes
2answers
906 views

My new landlord tends to stay up late and make a bit of noise, my sleep is suffering

This woman bought the duplex we rent a couple months ago. We live in the upper, she lives in the lower. She and her girlfriend seem to sleep in the room directly below mine and I can often hear them ...
4
votes
0answers
454 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 ...
4
votes
0answers
381 views

Should I try to react to behind-the-back insults in my partner's minority outreach program? [closed]

Relevant identity context, I'm white, my partner can be reasonably seen to a stranger as white, and both of us are genderqueer and LGBTQ+ identifying. I work at a college in Boston, and my partner (...
4
votes
3answers
297 views

Politeness vs. conciseness in writing emails [duplicate]

I often find myself starting sentences with phrases like "I just want to let you know that", "I would like to ask if", "I am writing to discuss", or "I was wondering if" in emails. I could simply just ...
3
votes
3answers
752 views

Politely requesting the office lights remain on?

I work in a small office, there's 6 of us in total, so it's not possible to turn off "some" of the lights without turning them all off. In the UK, we're now in the Spring season, which generally ...
3
votes
2answers
869 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
577 views

How to be Polite without giving wrong signals (because this happened before!)

Few years ago I was super friendly to people (in office setting), and got unwanted attention. So much so that not only I cut off that person (directly said "I am not interested"), but cut off everyone ...

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