Miss Manners: I’m an introvert, and I don’t think I should have to Zoom

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My husband has long phone conversations with his kids, cousins and siblings — every day. They used to be regular phone calls, then he switched to speakerphone, now it’s virtual conferences during the coronavirus crisis.

Judith Martin

I was never a part of these calls previously, but now he feels I should be chiming in, at least for a little while. I’m an introvert, not very close to his family and uncomfortable with this new normal, even with my friends and family.

Am I being rude? Should I reach out and let them know how I feel about this?

GENTLE READER: Telling them that you don’t enjoy talking with them? Yes, that would be rude at any time. During a crisis, when families feel the need to be especially close, it would be cruel.

Could you imagine saying such a thing if they were visiting in person?

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Miss Manners is not condemning you to lengthy virtual gatherings. Just pop by the monitor, ask how everyone is, and assume a look of regret when you say, “I’m afraid I have to excuse myself” — no explanation necessary or advisable.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: We moved to a new house right before shelter-in-place became the new normal. A neighbor and his family stopped by to introduce themselves and very graciously gave us a lawnmower (they had bought a new one and had no need for it).

Typically, I would send a thank-you note and bring over baked goods, but I am unsure how to navigate this, given the pandemic. Is just a thank-you note sufficient? Perhaps I could include a gift card to a local restaurant, as many around us are still ordering takeout?

Help! My indecision now has me at two weeks out, and I don’t want to delay further and miss my “thank you” window.

GENTLE READER: First, allow Miss Manners to remind you that such a window is never closed. As you know, letters of thanks should be written immediately upon receipt of a present or favor, but the need to do so never goes away.

(Sorry. She does not mean to scold you, who realizes your obligation, but she is tired of hearing from delinquent …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Latest News


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