182 votes

Requesting someone to give up their seat to me on public transport if I have an invisible disability?

That might not be the best solution, but how about I'm sorry, I'm not feeling well, can I please sit down? Anyone, no matter how young and fit, might not be feeling well on a particular day, with ...
177 votes
Accepted

Requesting someone to give up their seat to me on public transport if I have an invisible disability?

I'm probably going to Hell for this, but what we might need here is a little white lie. I have an arthritic knee and sometimes this means I end up using a fold up walking stick (available in many ...
105 votes
Accepted

How can I ask a new date to not smoke around me?

In my dating experience, I've found that prying too much about a topic I take an opposing stance on has been problematic. For example, I met someone who was "420 friendly", so to speak, and began ...
  • 22.6k
90 votes
Accepted

How to politely request we don't eat out for lunch on my first day at new job?

Postpone. Schedule the celebration before your friends do, to a date when you'll have money, preferably payday to keep the celebration's purpose, meaning and excitement. Let's go celebrate on my ...
  • 2,809
76 votes

Requesting time off to attend a Pride event

It sounds like your boss is a little nosier than many, but you don't need to reveal details. I've used the following framing when I've needed to request days off but didn't want to say way (for ...
74 votes

Classmate is being deported - how could I politely offer to buy their furniture?

In my experience, offering to help them with the problem is the best way to start. “What’s your plan for moving? Do you need help?” This opens the door for you to be able to then offer to take the ...
  • 2,452
71 votes

How can I ask (or determine) if someone on the phone is human without offending them?

I once worked at an IT-Service hotline. I answered a call like I always do and after my standard greetings phrase the customer said nothing so I asked, "Hello? Are you still in the line?" The ...
  • 1,086
66 votes

A coworker mumbles to herself when working. How can I ask her to stop?

My roommate does almost the same thing. Like everyone, he talks to himself, but at times in a very elaborate manner. He makes gestures, sometimes voice goes up, and sometimes giggles too. It was weird ...
  • 907
63 votes

How to ask someone to not leave their pee on the floor when they use my bathroom?

Sometimes there's no way to be tactful about something. I think this is such a case. You'd like the male nurse to be more mindful of the state they leave the bathroom in after they've used it. You're ...
  • 2,449
62 votes
Accepted

How can I more clearly ask people to accommodate for my autism?

From a communication point of view, your main problem is excusing yourself and giving an challenge-able explanation, while at the same time acknowledging that other solutions exist. As a person with ...
58 votes
Accepted

How do I ask my friend for some of his water on a long bicycle ride without offending him?

Speaking as a former competitive cyclist and triathlete- Just ask. Once or twice is not going to be a big deal, and unless your friend is sick or has some kind of germ fears, he is probably just ...
  • 4,209
58 votes

Requesting someone to give up their seat to me on public transport if I have an invisible disability?

In London, UK, we have "Please Offer Me A Seat" badges and cards: https://tfl.gov.uk/campaign/please-offer-me-a-seat Once you have one of these badges, the duty of a true English citizen is to stand ...
56 votes

How can I ask (or determine) if someone on the phone is human without offending them?

The best strategy I can think of is to ask "can you repeat that?" If the repeated statement is exactly the same (volume, word choice, inflection, etc.) as the first statement, you may have caught the ...
  • 1,462
52 votes
Accepted

Asking my friend out even though I have a girlfriend

I've been in polyamorous relationships for some time now, so I speak from a bit of experience here. The first question to ask yourself before you even decide if this is a path you can take: You ...
50 votes

Requesting someone to give up their seat to me on public transport if I have an invisible disability?

I think you can give exactly the information you gave in the question, to anyone who is seated: Excuse me, I have a disability/health issue/problem that makes it difficult/unsafe/unhealthy for me ...
  • 478
46 votes

How do I ask my friend for some of his water on a long bicycle ride without offending him?

I don't see how this is something one can be offended about. As such I think you are seriously overthinking this. Just ask him, "Hey, can I have some of your water", or "Hey, I only have room for one ...
  • 6,972
46 votes

How can I ask my parents to stop calling me when I'm out or ask me where I'm going?

Well, I'm a 26-year-old, and I'm also still living with my parents. These struggles are there, but they can be resolved. I moved back in after living on my own for 4 years, because after graduating ...
  • 33.7k
43 votes

How can I ask my parents to stop calling me when I'm out or ask me where I'm going?

I don't think your parents are treating you like a child, but as a resident in their house. My wife likes to know where I am going and if I am home for dinner as well, but she sure ain't my mom ;). ...
  • 1,617
41 votes
Accepted

How do I politely tell a stranger to stop making annoying noises I can't name?

I can empathize with this question, so please don't let the answer lead you to believe I'm insensitive to your plight. For some uninvestigated reason, I cannot tune people out (I have never been able ...
38 votes

Classmate is being deported - how could I politely offer to buy their furniture?

It seems OP does not have genuine concern for the wellbeing of the deported. That's alright, we don't have to be close friends of everyone. But let's not try to act like we are close friends just to ...
  • 505
37 votes

Requesting time off to attend a Pride event

I can't address coming out, but as a woman in what was a vastly male (and misogynist) dominated field, I can empathize. When I went into premature labor (by months, mind you) during a shift in the ...
35 votes
Accepted

How can I ask someone I've never met to type quieter?

I'm not really sure you can ask someone to type quieter without ruining their workflow or causing animosity between you two. As a developer, I'd be annoyed if someone asked me to type quieter in a ...
34 votes

How can I more clearly ask people to accommodate for my autism?

Please note that I am not autistic. My experience is tertiary from my brother who was diagnosed with Asperger's, now High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder, and how we handled sensory issues and ...
  • 1,293
29 votes
Accepted

How can I respond to "It's because I'm <historically oppressed quality>" as a rebuttal to a request?

It is perfectly reasonable to say no, and give them a legitimate reason for your actions. In the loud music example, think of the reasons why you might feel justified in asking them to turn it down. ...
  • 1,817
26 votes

How do I politely tell a stranger to stop making annoying noises I can't name?

I'm going to expand on a brief comment that was later removed, and say you should find a way to filter this out, because there is no good way to broach this, especially with strangers in public. ...
  • 1,334
25 votes

How to politely request we don't eat out for lunch on my first day at new job?

Be honest. Simply tell them that you can't afford to do so. If they are your friends then they will understand. They might offer to treat you or to postpone, or you might arrive at some other ...
  • 890
24 votes

A coworker mumbles to herself when working. How can I ask her to stop?

I had something of a similar situation - I had a coworker who cleared his throat every 30 seconds or so. I once made a joke about it to him ("Hey you keep it down over there!" in a joking way) and he ...
  • 407
22 votes

How can I ask a new date to not smoke around me?

In a word: Don't. Don't date them. No matter what anecdotes you may hear about people accommodating nonsmoking partners, the fact is that a smoker will always smell of smoke, and is unlikely to ...
21 votes
Accepted

How can I follow up if a polite request to follow the rules has been declined?

You don't engage with them any further than necessary. It's clear if they don't want to listen to the rules that you aren't going to be able to persuade them. If you're not a person in a position for ...
  • 6,948
21 votes

How do I politely tell a stranger to stop making annoying noises I can't name?

In my opinion, if you want to stay and don't leave like you did, you will always have to create a somewhat awkward situation. Now, this situation can be really discreet, just like the one I'm going ...

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