Etiquette Hell = Where the ill-mannered deserve to go


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Thank you Notes from Hell

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My husband and I got married a few months ago and just before my wedding, after all the RSVPs were in and all the seating cards had been calligraphied, my other called me and told me that she had invited a friend of hers whom I had never heard of, to our already overbooked wedding. I had my qualms about this but upon my mother's request I sent this women a last minute invite with my apologies. She arrived at the wedding, she lives two miles from the venue, without a card, a gift or even a hastily scrawled note of congratulations on a piece of scrap paper. Then she proceeded to not introduce herself to us in the receiving line, or to sign either the guest book or put a wish in the wish bowl. So my husband and I only knew she attended because of word of mouth. Now my grandmother and mother will not talk to either my husband or myself because we have refused to write this woman a thank you note for attending our wedding. I would just like to warn guests about coming to a wedding where they know the bride and groom through someone else and not introducing yourself or showing common courtesy. It is insulting and will cause problems in the end.



I don't know what people will think of this, but, FH an I were thinking of just having rolled up scrolls of TY notes on pretty paper and attached by one of those silver rings you buy at Michaels. We'll have them at the table for the reception so people can have each one of them. Its going to be our TY notes to everyone for coming. We just don't want to spend an entire week trying to write TY cards to everyone because we did that after our shower, and it took us 4 hours doing all of them. My mom thinks its a great idea. However, I can't help think that it seems a little lazy, but at the same time, very practical.


May your guests rise up in rebellion at having to labor 2 to 6 hours of work earning the money for a wedding gift, having to spend at least an hour to shop for the gift, spend yet another 30 minutes wrapping it, and at least 20 minutes transporting it to the shower or wedding.  Four to eight hours invested in gifting a lazy, ungrateful bride is simply too expensive in terms of time and money.  


I sent out a graduation gift to my nephews and of coarse never received a thank you note.  My sisters kids have a long history of receiving gifts with no acknowledgement.  Or even worse criticizing the gift if I gave it in person.  I find they only have use for me if they want something or are selling something.  I know their mother was raised with better manners.     Last fall I gave my nephew a cd changer (value about $150.00). No thank you or any acknowledgement was ever sent.  After this last gift, I decided I would send my sister a friendly reminder about what is the proper thing to do.     I asked her if my gift was received and she said yes, thank you notes were sent out.  I told her I had not received one and either has my other sister.  She may want to talk to my nephews and make sure that they were sent out.    She replied by telling me, I had terrible manners.      

My new policy is that if I send a gift and do not get a thank you not or some acknowledgement, then next year or the next event no gift will be sent.  Kids need to be taught about manners.  If I am asked why there was not gift, I will reply "last year I sent one and did not receive any thank you note, so I assumed that my gifts were unacceptable.         



Dear Ms. Jeanne,   This is not really a submission or a story of a thank you note faux pas. It is more of a question.   Do brides and grooms still send thank you notes?   My husband and I are of an age that we have begun attending the nuptials for the children of our friends. We are not well off, but remember how important the gifts we received were to us in setting up our first nest, so we go the extra mile to send the highest quality, most useful gifts that we can.   However, we have never, ever received a thank you. Not a hand-written, personal one like the kind I sent. Not a pre-printed something with just a hand-written signature. Not even an email. Nothing at all.   What's worse, to me, is that the parents, our contemporaries, do not seem to think it is in the least important.   Have I slipped through a time-warp? Am I wrong to expect a nice note? Or have these people really slipped up in teaching their children the basics?



I have just found some thank you notes that we bought for our joke Bridezilla hen weekend. So fortunately they will never be sent out! They come on thin cheap paper so one cannot write on the back (this is important), and the envelopes are so cheap that the notes don't fit in them either. And on the front, surrounded by flowers, are the words:

Thank you for the lovely wedding gift It was so kind of you.

Don't strain yourself!!!



This story still makes me cringe in humiliation, but maybe I'll feel better submitting it!

After a very rough pregnancy, my husband and I were blessed with a wonderful baby. I was new to his area, and didn't know anyone, but a friend of his family wanted to throw a baby shower, now that the baby was here, safe and healthy. I finally agreed, provided he came with me; I didn't feel comfortable in a room full of women I didn't know, getting gifts.

The shower went wonderfully; we received many delightful presents, all of which my husband recorded on the back of the card that was included with the present (so we could thank the giver with a personal note later). I went to work on the thank you notes a couple of weeks later, and was about to address them when he came home with a bag of prestamped, sealed thank you notes that his mother had written out herself. I was not very thrilled, since I felt I should do that personally, but he said his mother had worked hard to try and save me the trouble of writing them all out, and we should just mail them. I gave in, uneasily.

A week or so after they had been mailed, I came across one that was never sent, an extra one in case we needed more. Curiosity got the better of me, and I opened it. Now, most people know that a proper thank you note goes along the lines of "Thank you so much for coming to our baby shower. The *description of gift* was so thoughtful/sweet/generous! etc. etc.

Well, when I opened the note, I was horrified. It was a tacky dollar store card, and inside, in sloppy ballpoint pen was written "Thanks for coming to the shower and the gift." Further investigation revealed that they all said the same thing. They were signed in our names, and it horrifies me to think people might think I'm that thoughtless and tacky! I'm never letting anyone write thank you notes for me again, even if both of my arms are broken!


Page Last Updated May 15, 2007