Questions tagged [united-states]

Questions that have a specific focus on people in the United States, or American culture.

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183
votes
10answers
38k views

How to ask a vegan to stop telling me about veganism because I am not interested in it?

I work in an office with a couple of vegan coworkers. If I bring any animal products to lunch (even cheese, which they can smell), I'm likely to get a long earful about it. In the past, I've listened ...
161
votes
10answers
38k views

As a pedestrian, how to get someone to stop following you in a car?

Sorry, I just never had these situations occur until I moved into a neighborhood. Usually, we (well, my dogs) get most of our exercise in a large, unused field near my house. The people on our way ...
148
votes
3answers
21k views

I was mistakenly identified as a criminal, and this has caused rumors. How can I convince my friends that it is all a mistake?

A while ago, I was at a popular, busy local nightclub (this is in the Unites States) and ran into a friend of a friend. Let's call her Anne. After a bit of conversation with Anne, and mutual name-...
130
votes
18answers
22k views

How to get spouse to empathetically listen to problems instead of offering solutions?

My spouse and I have a recurring problem. I will try to talk about my day, which may include a tough problem that has been frustrating me. Before I've even had a chance to explain what is going on, he ...
121
votes
14answers
24k views

Is it acceptable to violate table manners in public due to my disability?

I have a tremor, which varies in intensity. I recently ordered a sandwich at a restaurant, which was pretty easy to eat, but I gave up trying to eat the salad, because I was unable to do so with a ...
119
votes
18answers
50k views

How to talk to a girl who's sitting next to me but wearing headphones?

Over the past couple of weeks, there's been this really cute girl who sits near me inside a coffee shop, which has a cozy, "productive" vibe to it -- everyone's doing work on their laptops. I want to ...
112
votes
17answers
31k views

How can I respond when someone asks me when I'm going to get married to my girlfriend?

Frequently I'll have my friends and family tease me, or ask questions about when my girlfriend and I are going to get married. Sometimes, they'll even make these kinds of jokes to me while she's ...
106
votes
9answers
13k views

How to intervene in a random abuse/harassment situation?

To be clear, this is not a situation where it is an abusive relationship. This was an interaction that took place in an impromptu manner in a public setting. I was relaxing at an outdoor area in a ...
101
votes
6answers
21k views

How do I deal with other people's screaming children in restaurants?

I want to start off by saying that I'm not referring to "family friendly" restaurants or other venues where a loud, informal atmosphere might be expected. I'm specifically asking about dining ...
97
votes
17answers
30k views

How can I politely ask my date to not use her phone unnecessarily during dinner, without ruining the night out?

When I am on a dinner date with a girl (generally in her early twenties), how can I politely tell her that I am annoyed and feel disrespected when she unnecessarily uses her phone to send text ...
97
votes
11answers
24k views

I have been asked to keep a secret about a surprise that I believe will end poorly

My parents have been divorced for roughly 40 years. The separation was unpleasant, as divorces frequently are, but so were the following decades. They have not spoken to each other outside of a ...
96
votes
11answers
26k views

How to deal with (male) friends mocking me about my weight choices

A while ago, I went through a phase. I gained weight, lots of it. I'm not proud of what I had become. Recently (the last four months) I have been going to the gym regularly, losing weight and getting ...
94
votes
15answers
27k views

How can I avoid coming across as condescending when telling a coworker I can't work on an issue right now?

Being a programmer, I largely run on the logical/factual side which tends to get me in trouble with my emails being read in tones not intended. One email, I even was sat down with my boss for being "...
94
votes
11answers
30k views

Complimenting a female co-worker without coming across as flirting?

I am asking this question for a friend. My friend is straight, male, and married to a woman and loyal to his wife. He is a somewhat socially awkward person. He works in an office of software ...
90
votes
19answers
31k views

Sketchy “friend” recently revealed true colors, is attending my wedding. Should I un-invite, and if so how?

I have a very tricky situation that has come up. I am getting married in two weeks (as the groom, age 39), and my fiancée (bride-to-be) has invited a close friend "Lucy" who is bringing her own ...
87
votes
6answers
23k views

How can I give out my telephone number to my neighbors without implying anything?

I have recently purchased a new home and have moved into a neighborhood. I would like to introduce myself to my immediate neighbors and offer them my telephone number in case there is an emergency or ...
86
votes
11answers
42k views

Disclosing my past relationships to my girlfriend

My girlfriend and I are both in our early 20's in the US. We have been together for almost 3 years and have been living together for a few months now. While I've been with other girls before her, I ...
85
votes
17answers
22k views

How do I respond when an acquaintance asks if I'm smart?

I recently graduated college and I am now working as a programmer at a startup tech company for a year. I'm a competent programmer, but I'm definitely not a rock-star. When I'm meeting other young ...
84
votes
10answers
13k views

How do I respond when someone is glad their loved one's suffering will end soon due to death?

I recently had a conversation like this: Coworker: I just wanted to let you know that I'm probably going to be out early next week. My father is on death's door. Me: Oh, I'm sorry to hear that....
83
votes
14answers
37k views

How do I politely explain to my neighbour that I don't feel comfortable being alone with her in her house while my kids play?

We recently moved into a new neighborhood, as did our neighbor, Jane. I have two young girls (4 and 5), and Jane has a boy and girl (7 I think?). My kids love to play with them, and her kids seem to ...
83
votes
10answers
26k views

I offered to help neighbor, how to discuss compensation?

I saw my neighbor post on social media that they wanted help with some computer related tasks. We have never met or had any interaction before. I offered to come help them for no compensation. They ...
83
votes
10answers
27k views

How do I gently reject an indecent proposal?

Background People: Bob, John and Alice are old acquaintances of mine. They are a little older than me, mid-to-late twenties. We are not close friends, but we get along together well and see each ...
82
votes
14answers
31k views

How to enforce a “No Shoes” policy in my apartment?

I like to keep my apartment floor clean, as I enjoy walking around with bare feet after a shower without having to worry about them becoming dirty. As such, I don't like shoes beyond the doorway in my ...
79
votes
13answers
24k views

Responding to being told to “smile” by a stranger?

This seems to be a fairly common scenario. Since I don't work in a public environment anymore, it's been something that hasn't crossed my mind in a long while. However, today while paying for a few ...
76
votes
11answers
24k views

How do I tell students at a school I volunteer at to stop flirting with me?

Occasionally, I head out to volunteer to teach robotics programming at an all-girls school in my area. For context, I'm male and age 20, and the students are adolescent females in 7th and 8th grade (...
75
votes
23answers
23k views

Is it rude to ask someone where they are from originally? [closed]

Introduction This question is different from this excellent one, since it is not about tourists. The differences will become clear later on, I hope. I will, as usual, use fake names (Alice and Eve ...
73
votes
10answers
24k views

How can I ask my girlfriend to split gas money for a long trip?

A situation came up with my girlfriend where I drove her to an event that she needed to go to that was a two hour drive away (so a four hour round trip). After we got back, I charged her for half of ...
73
votes
12answers
25k views

Asking a coworker to discontinue his chivalrous acts towards me?

I've made a friend, Bob, in my workplace who is too much of a gentleman for my comfort level. Initially, we became fast friends due to our shared interests and political beliefs. We often message ...
71
votes
21answers
24k views

How do I deal with a mother who won't take “no” for an answer?

My mother is quite single-minded in getting what she wants. Unfortunately, she also has only a single tactic: trying to convince me every single time we talk. Most of these things are products or ...
69
votes
9answers
19k views

Responding to my mom's remarks about my love life when she refuses to accept/acknowledge it

Background I'm the only child in a religious, conservative family. We do not see eye to eye on many current events, as they often only watch a single (biased) news source, and stand their ground on ...
69
votes
11answers
28k views

How can I politely tell a family who invited me for dinner that I'm still hungry?

This is about a friend's family and what would often happen during dinners (mom in her 50's, dad in his 60's). Examples One time, the mom had cooked 1 packet of ravioli for 5 people, and she urged ...
68
votes
17answers
22k views

Is it rude to drive at the speed limit on dangerous roads when another driver wants to go faster? [closed]

Each day, I drive through a heavily wooded area in a nature reservation (in the United States). The roads have many twists, turns and hills, and the speed limit is 25 miles per hour. Cars going much ...
67
votes
15answers
16k views

How to tell friends something goes against my religion?

I am currently in middle school, and as many of you know, profanity is thrown around in middle school like clothes in a dryer. My religion prohibits me from being profane, how can I tell my friends ...
66
votes
9answers
26k views

How to tell a close friend they've been cheated on when the cheater is my good 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 two close friends, Bobby and Sarah, that I met together almost 3 ...
65
votes
13answers
23k views

How can I decline someone's business card with tact?

I am an engineer in a technical field, but I work regularly with sales, and I am often given business cards by vendors or customers at work. I know that I will never use them, and I almost always ...
64
votes
9answers
14k views

How can I tell my mom to not cause herself so much stress when I'm visiting?

Situation I visit my parents about one time per month, for one to two days. Sometimes I manage to visit them twice, in rare cases I have to skip a month. So we see each other in person regularly (and,...
64
votes
8answers
15k views

How do I announce my presence to someone who is not aware of it without frightening them?

First of all, I'm not sneaking up on people on purpose. But it seems, that I'm quite Ninja-like in my movements and this has caused problems. People are immersed in something (e. g. computer, TV, ...
62
votes
12answers
28k views

Appropriate response when someone announces pregnancy?

When someone tells me that they or their partner are pregnant, my typical response is "Congratulations!" But I have found out that this remark is not always appropriate- notably when the pregnancy is ...
61
votes
12answers
15k views

How do I tell my parents “I don't want to go to church” over the holidays?

This is a little bit of a complicated problem. My mom and dad are both Catholic, and they have a tradition - every Easter and Christmas, they take the immediate family (themselves, me, and my sister) ...
60
votes
12answers
15k views

How can I remind someone to do a task when reminding them makes them less likely to do it?

I have a bit of a problem with my girlfriend, in that things aren't getting done because she is forgetful about things she doesn't like to do. We've had many discussions on the topic, and we both ...
60
votes
4answers
10k views

Dismissing a stranger asking for help without being dismissive of their possible situation?

For some background into the layout of where this situation takes place, my apartment complex has it's own dog park. Within a few hundred feet of the dog park is a large and spacious public park, ...
60
votes
15answers
18k views

Who should identify themself first on the phone: the caller or the person called?

This may be a generational thing. I was taught that the caller always identified himself first. The person answering says "hello", to establish that contact has been made, but is under no obligation ...
60
votes
9answers
19k views

How to introduce metamours without causing awkwardness?

I am involved in a polyamorous relationship. Currently my wife has both a husband (me) and a boyfriend. We like to go out for normal "couple" type activities like dinner dates, movies, and attending ...
58
votes
10answers
20k views

How to politely interrupt recruiters who keep cold-calling me during my work hours?

About a year and a half ago I was waist deep in a job search. Having found a new job, I've since attempted to remove my resume from the internet. However, this hasn't stopped recruiters from finding ...
58
votes
10answers
18k views

How do I indicate interest in going somewhere without inviting myself along?

Sometimes acquaintances or people that I would like to get to know better are setting up some sort of social gathering (bar, party, bowling, etc) and I am not explicitly invited. I know that if I ...
57
votes
13answers
12k views

What is the most respectful way to respond when invited into a prayer circle or other religious activity I don't believe in?

I live in a part of the United States where Christians are a strong majority. I frequently find myself in social situations that involve everyone being asked to join in prayer. I'm not religious, ...
56
votes
8answers
12k views

How to politely receive someone when you don't know how to pronounce their name?

The situation is a one-on-one meeting with someone I have never met before. I don't know much about that guest, just their profession or connection to our organization, not even if they are from a ...
56
votes
16answers
18k views

How to act when people bring a baby to work?

I am uncomfortable interacting with babies because I personally don't find them cute or interesting to interact with. I also am not good at faking positive interactions with babies, because I really ...
54
votes
11answers
10k views

How do I effectively forestall gifts for my birthday?

I have a milestone birthday coming up, and a friend insists on giving me a party. But please, no presents! I don't like stuff to begin with, I have everything I need or want already, and am in de-...
53
votes
18answers
31k views

How do I dismiss a stranger asking for money?

I'm not sure if the answers to Appropriate ways to dismiss street vendors? apply to this situation, as it is about people asking for money without a compensation. That's why I'm asking a new question ...