Questions tagged [saying-no]

Questions about how best to approach saying "no", or declining requests. Please explain in your question why just saying "no" is not sufficient.

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28 votes
4 answers
5k views

Is there a way in the European culture to consistently refuse to do small but annoying favors to coworkers and friends without alienating them?

I have recently relocated from my home country, Japan, to Europe to work here for a while in an international team, and I am experiencing a big cultural problem about interacting with Europeans. The ...
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  • 373
1 vote
1 answer
420 views

How to tell landlord that their rent increase is above the legal limit and remain on good terms?

Where I live the price of rent is very high. The government has many rules governing rent. In my experience, it is common for people not to follow all the laws (either out of ignorance or ...
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3 votes
1 answer
363 views

How to tell coworker to learn and do it themselves?

I started using Docusign about 4 months ago. I have a coworker who needed to learn how to use Docusign as well and we attempted to connect so that I can show her how to use it. First attempt was not ...
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  • 31
1 vote
1 answer
360 views

Decline giving personal information to salespeople [closed]

My country is full of pushy salespeople who are asking for a phone number, name or email in scenarios where they are not warranted. Scenario 1: Cashier at a pizza shop asks for my phone number before ...
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1 vote
2 answers
651 views

How to politely say we won't be inviting family friends to our wedding?

My Fiancee and I are getting married next year, and we're currently in the process of sending out the save the dates. I was chatting to my parents about this, who then asked if I would be inviting ...
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  • 111
1 vote
1 answer
525 views

How to better react/respond to a friend who rejects your advice but still keeps asking for your help?

I find that it’s particularly hard for me to help someone when they want my help but I disagree on what’s helpful? Especially when I’m seen as an expert. Instance: Friend for years messages me, By ...
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4 votes
1 answer
859 views

How to better handle my friends passive aggressive comments, preferably so there'll be less/none at all?

I'm a millennial and a lot (too many) of my friends were those who were of the opinion that, immediately following the 2016 election, the best way to demonstrate how much they value love, tolerance, ...
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2 votes
2 answers
479 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 ...
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19 votes
5 answers
5k views

How can I talk to my friend in order to make sure he won't stay more than two weeks?

I recently bought a 3 bedroom house as a single male and as a result I have more than enough space for myself. My close friend has contacted me saying that his landlord wants to evict him and if he ...
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  • 307
5 votes
2 answers
1k views

How do I convince someone that I "Just don't want to be friends again" if they are in denial about it

Almost exactly a year ago, I met this guy through a university society and since we both studied the same subject, I agreed to chat and meet him before lectures a few times. He would message me ...
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  • 59
22 votes
3 answers
8k 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 ...
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  • 331
6 votes
1 answer
628 views

How do I tell my PhD supervisor I want to drop out?

I am going to start my PhD degree this week and I realised that, for personal and professional reasons, I don't want to do it. Personal reasons: I live in a foreign country and I don't like living ...
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3 votes
1 answer
461 views

When hosting a gathering, how to decline to answer the question "who else is coming"?

I'm having a celebration soon. I invited some guests from different friends groups. Some are asking, "Who's coming?" I actually find this question a bit annoying because it's like their ...
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35 votes
4 answers
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, ...
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2 votes
2 answers
580 views

How to tell landlord I don't want him showing my room the day before and during my move

I am moving out of my home. The landlord sent me a message asking what time he can show the place on Tuesday and Wednesday. I didn't realize it right away, but Wednesday is the day I'm moving. I will ...
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  • 81
6 votes
2 answers
726 views

How do I balance saying no and being liked?

I often find myself in the following situation: a friend from work asks to borrow an object, such as a book or my bike or a piece of jewelry they might have seen me wear or money, to pay for food if ...
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5 votes
3 answers
559 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 ...
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  • 17.2k
6 votes
2 answers
528 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 ...
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11 votes
3 answers
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 ...
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  • 111
2 votes
1 answer
779 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 ...
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1 vote
0 answers
117 views

How to avoid telling people about my job? [duplicate]

New people who I meet always ask what I do for work. This question is normal and polite to ask, but I don't always want to tell people what I do for the following reasons: My job is unusual, which ...
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  • 111
10 votes
2 answers
1k views

How to politely get rid of someone soliciting donations at your door?

When people come to the door asking for donations how do you politely end the conversation and close the door? Some of the causes are very worthy but I don't have the money. I had jobs before where ...
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3 votes
2 answers
519 views

How do I politely tell people in public I won't give out my e-mail? [closed]

I noticed recently when I'm checking out at the store, the cashier will ask for my email address, so that the store can send me flyers, coupons, and promotions. In other words, junk. What I've tried:...
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0 votes
1 answer
870 views

How to say 'NO', When someone offer you better opportunity with better salary?

I am a professional Magento Developer, and I have completed my one year and continue my next one year bond. When someone offers you a better opportunity with a better salary but you have to continue ...
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9 votes
1 answer
838 views

How to gently ask my neighbor not to use my bins for their waste?

In the past months, there were several occasions when I found foreign waste in my personal bins. I cannot say, that was my neighbor for sure as I never saw anyone. But the waste type and content made ...
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  • 93
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to say in a courteous but implicit way you are not interested to date?

I have a lady that I've dated once. Since that date, we did not have many interactions except some text messages as she is a MD and my mum has some health issues and we are discussing, from time to ...
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3 votes
1 answer
419 views

How to convey to parents and friends that I want to change my job? [closed]

My parents work for an amazing charity which does a lot of good work. Giving out to people is something they strongly believe in. They encouraged me to also work for the charity after I left school ...
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  • 33
7 votes
1 answer
704 views

Asking for fees for an assumed free service

During my university years, I had designed and developed my department website. It's been many years since I graduated, however, the office IT staff still contacts me if something goes wrong. This ...
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  • 433
6 votes
5 answers
1k views

How can I tell a friend about a future trip without upsetting another friend, who wants me to hold the truth about it?

Soon, I'll be going on a trip for one weekend; "Friend B", who is planning this trip, wants to exclude "Friend A" who will likely ask me sometime during the trip what I'm up to. "Friend B" reiterated ...
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8 votes
2 answers
1k views

Friend is using me to do her (home)work, how can I tell her I want this to stop?

I am a middle school student and I like to think I am a smart person. Typically people ask me to help them figure out problems; but there is one person I am having some trouble with. She sits next to ...
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  • 91
13 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to handle my ex touching me against my wishes when he is visiting our daughter?

I left my daughter's father during the pregnancy because we were having many issues and things with him were not changing. It's been a year since I moved back to my mom's and left him, and my daughter ...
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  • 131
25 votes
5 answers
8k views

How to convey to the people around me that I want to disengage myself from constant giving?

Once I’ve paid rent, bills, petrol, food, etc. I have a relatively small amount of money left over each month. I would get by just fine on this, if it wasn’t for spending the money on other people. A ...
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  • 253
8 votes
1 answer
1k views

Tactfully avoiding sharing food with a friend

Note: one of my best friends is in this situation with her friends, so I'm asking this question for her (from her perspective). I have a friend, Alice, who I was very close with in college. We'd ...
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  • 15.2k
3 votes
0 answers
353 views

How to stop paying for my parent's poor financial decisions? [closed]

One of my parents decided to pay for and renovate an old house with all of their remaining money (inherited, not saved by them). When this decision was made, I warned them that I thought it was a bad ...
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  • 31
12 votes
4 answers
3k views

How to tell my mother not to visit?

I left my mother's home to live on my own 8,5 years ago. Since then, no one in my family has visited me once. Some years ago, my mother even dismissed my idea to visit me when I suggested to do so, I ...
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  • 3,115
26 votes
3 answers
7k views

How to gently end involvement with an online community?

Since 2011 I'm a member of an online community for Animal Crossing players. Sadly many things are changing in gaming world and many of these changes combined with new interests which I have found in ...
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  • 1,111
57 votes
7 answers
15k views

How to dismiss intrusive questions from a colleague with whom I don't work?

I have a colleague of mine at work. He's just my peer, not my boss or a higher rank, I do not report to him in any way. When I'm late for work (for different, sometimes very personal reasons), he ...
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  • 672
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to tell a friend I don't want his help with miniature painting?

I have a friend with which we share a hobby, miniature painting. We both purchase what we need and sometimes get together to paint for the sake of just hanging out. The miniatures I purchase suit a ...
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  • 111
6 votes
1 answer
649 views

How do you politely respond to people who ask too many obvious questions?

I really like helping people and I don't mind helping others with work and assignments etc. However, there are a few people who will take it very far and I've come across this a few times. For ...
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3 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to deal with new awkward sport partner without hurting his feelings?

I recently posted on a facebook page to find a partner to practice my favorite sport. Nothing romantic, I already have a boyfriend, I just want to practice my sport. Some guy (random stranger) agreed ...
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  • 41
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

Declining a date invitation from a friend while minimizing the hurt feelings?

When I was in middle school (around 14 years old), I was friends with a boy (who was outside of my regular "friend group") and so, some friends of mine decided to hook me up with this person....
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  • 17.2k
12 votes
1 answer
968 views

How to communicate to my spouse I can't stand unexpected touch without hurting their feelings?

TL;DR I've recently learned about my autism and still need to understand what it means. I have struggle being touched when I don't expect it and it hurts my spouse when I already tried to explain to ...
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  • 121
2 votes
0 answers
256 views

How can I refuse a dinner with my relatives? [closed]

I have never been close to one of my relatives. The only living thing I like is my dog. We are having dinner tomorrow with a bunch of relatives and friends. My dad will pick me up at 7 pm but I don'...
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  • 29
11 votes
2 answers
959 views

Needy friend uses me to avoid his parents, how do I tell him no?

Background I have a friend whom I have been very close with for a long time. A few years ago, when we were in high school, he came out to me and told me that he did not want to tell his parents, as ...
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  • 233
3 votes
0 answers
257 views

Telling a friend I normally hangout with on a holiday, I don't want to this time [closed]

A national holiday is coming up :) I have a friend (call him Joe) I normally hangout with on this holiday. I also see him on a regular basis. This time I would like to hangout with a different group ...
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6 votes
1 answer
580 views

Helping my mom accept that I can't be available as much as she wants

My mom moved to the same city as my wife and I about 5 years ago. It's always been a bit rocky, but there is probably one theme that comes up the most regularly. To put it simply, her expectations ...
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  • 857
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

How can I tactfully refuse to tell my loving brother my home address?

I'm chummy and cozy with my brother, but he has very loose lips and can't keep secrets - peradventure because he has genetic disorders? Of course my door is always open to him! Rather, my parents are ...
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6 votes
2 answers
1k views

How to ask someone to not try to fix your issues

Sometimes, you talk to someone about a problem you are facing and what you want them to say is something like: Oh yeah, that sucks. However, the person might not get the hint and well instead tell ...
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  • 17.2k
6 votes
1 answer
847 views

How do I politely refuse doing a favor for a friend?

I have a friend who doesn't speak English very well. She once asked me to help her with a small text that had just about two paragraphs and I helped her, correcting the mistakes that she made. After ...
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13 votes
2 answers
3k views

How to tell my ex not to expect sex

I'm a 25 year old man living in France. Last year I dated a 30 year old woman in the US, and kept things really casual (I knew she wanted to be more than dating but it was not reciprocal). Now she is ...
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  • 357

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