Author Topic: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls  (Read 6146 times)

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MrTango

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2012, 09:59:26 AM »
It's my phone.  I pay for it.  I get to decide whether or not to answer a call.  I get to decide when to listen to my voicemails and when to read texts/emails.

This is especially the case when it comes to work-related calls.  If my employer wants me to be available for business purposes when I'm out of the office, they can issue me a company-owned (and company-paid) device.

ETA: My wife knows that if she sends me a text with "999" as the first 3 characters (or an email with a subject line of "999") it's an emergency.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2012, 10:03:39 AM by MrTango »

WillyNilly

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #16 on: November 27, 2012, 10:14:30 AM »
I do not answer the phone if I'm busy or if I just don't feel like talking.  No one gets to set my schedule other than me, my DH, kids, and my boss to a certain point.  If I've missed your call more than 2 times, I most likely will stop what I'm doing to answer, but if it is just a "hey, what are you doing", I'm not going to be walking up and down the grocery aisles with a phone to my ear to keep you entertained.

I'm irritated by one of my sisters who does answer just to say "I'm in a meeting or I'm driving, can I call you back."  If your in a meeting or driving DON'T answer the stupid phone.
 


I pod this. And I want to add my 2 cents because the subject says "and returning phone calls".

My DIL is usually very sweet but she doesn't a) listen to her voicemails or b) read her emails. It's just as iffy with text messages. So my 2 cents is if someone is awaiting an answer do them the basic courtesy of returning the call whether it's by phone, email or text. At least listen to the voicemail.

She tells me she let's her voicemails pile up and she doesn't read her emails. So I am not assuming anything. She admits to it.

Quite frankly if someone tells you they don't listen to voicemail, you are the rude one to leave one.  And quite foolish as well.

Yes its great, and sometimes important to be able to get messages to people, but if they don't want to receive them they are under no obligation to do what they don't want to do just because you want them to.  So she doesn't get messages and she looses out.  That's her choice to make.

HermioneGranger

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #17 on: November 27, 2012, 10:19:17 AM »
My phone is there for my convenience.  The mother needs to get a grip.  If the daughter is married with children, I'm sure someone will be around in the case of an emergency.  Plus, if the mother is as overbearing as she sounds in the letter, I'm sure watching a tv show or walking the dog is far less stressful than talking to her.  It sounds like the mother needs a wake up call that it's not all about her. 

bah12

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #18 on: November 28, 2012, 12:59:01 PM »
I'm with the daughter.  I don't answer the phone unless I'm in a position to have a conversation.  If I'm busy with something else, I let it go to voicemail.  And  I call back when I can.  I don't expect people to drop everything for me everytime I call them either. 

I think the mother needs to realize that her daughter has her own life.  I get that she may worry if she doesn't get a call back right away and while I'm not sure how often she calls, she must realize that if something was wrong, someone (like her Son IL) would likely tell her.  To me, nine hours isn't that long.  That's about the average time it usually takes to return a call, considering that if I'm busy at night, it might be too late to call back when I'm done or if I'm called while I'm working during the day, it may be nine hours before I'm home, settled, and able to return a call.

Auntie Mame

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #19 on: November 28, 2012, 01:16:56 PM »
I answer my phone when it's convenient and when I darn well feel like answering my phone.

No, I don't have to call back right away (the world is not going to end because I didn't answer my phone, I wish I had that kind of power).

Frankly, I often take a few days to call back my mom, especially if she's on one of her exhausting martyr tears.  I have to emotionally brace myself to be around her, even talking to her is emotionally taxing. 

That mother is going to drive her daughter away if she keeps making unreasonable demands like that.
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Redneck Gravy

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #20 on: November 28, 2012, 01:25:54 PM »
I am the mother of two daughters who think they should talk to me EVERY day.  I don't think this is necessary quite frankly.  If you leave me a voicemail I will call you when it is convenient for me, if it's that darn important SAY SO in the voicemail.

I have Facebook, cell phone, office phone, home phone, texting and email - it's not like they can't reach me somehow.  I have also always told them if you are that worried call the police, apartment manager, my boss, my best friend, whomever you feel would be the easiest to check on me. 

Really, if you try to reach me and can't within a four hour period - please feel free to call another source something may genuinely be wrong.

I have a SIL and her mother had so alienated everyone in her family that her body was not discovered for five days and she lived next door to her own son.  I certainly don't want that to happen to me.   

bah12

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #21 on: November 28, 2012, 02:45:47 PM »
I do not answer the phone if I'm busy or if I just don't feel like talking.  No one gets to set my schedule other than me, my DH, kids, and my boss to a certain point.  If I've missed your call more than 2 times, I most likely will stop what I'm doing to answer, but if it is just a "hey, what are you doing", I'm not going to be walking up and down the grocery aisles with a phone to my ear to keep you entertained.

I'm irritated by one of my sisters who does answer just to say "I'm in a meeting or I'm driving, can I call you back."  If your in a meeting or driving DON'T answer the stupid phone.
 


I pod this. And I want to add my 2 cents because the subject says "and returning phone calls".

My DIL is usually very sweet but she doesn't a) listen to her voicemails or b) read her emails. It's just as iffy with text messages. So my 2 cents is if someone is awaiting an answer do them the basic courtesy of returning the call whether it's by phone, email or text. At least listen to the voicemail.

She tells me she let's her voicemails pile up and she doesn't read her emails. So I am not assuming anything. She admits to it.

Quite frankly if someone tells you they don't listen to voicemail, you are the rude one to leave one.   And quite foolish as well.

Yes its great, and sometimes important to be able to get messages to people, but if they don't want to receive them they are under no obligation to do what they don't want to do just because you want them to.  So she doesn't get messages and she looses out.  That's her choice to make.

I'm not sure I agree with the bolded.  If someone doesn't listen to voicemail, and I know it, I agree it would be foolish of me to rely on that as a means of communication.  But I don't think it's rude to leave a VM when the option is there.

If I call someone and get the option presented to leave a message, and I do, it is not rude. (No more is it rude for the reciever to choose not to listen or respond). If the receiver is annoyed by VM, then they can simply not have VM. I don't think the onus is on their callers to not use something that they offered.  Just as the onus is not on the receiver to answer the phone simply because it rings.

WillyNilly

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #22 on: November 28, 2012, 02:52:46 PM »
I do not answer the phone if I'm busy or if I just don't feel like talking.  No one gets to set my schedule other than me, my DH, kids, and my boss to a certain point.  If I've missed your call more than 2 times, I most likely will stop what I'm doing to answer, but if it is just a "hey, what are you doing", I'm not going to be walking up and down the grocery aisles with a phone to my ear to keep you entertained.

I'm irritated by one of my sisters who does answer just to say "I'm in a meeting or I'm driving, can I call you back."  If your in a meeting or driving DON'T answer the stupid phone.
 


I pod this. And I want to add my 2 cents because the subject says "and returning phone calls".

My DIL is usually very sweet but she doesn't a) listen to her voicemails or b) read her emails. It's just as iffy with text messages. So my 2 cents is if someone is awaiting an answer do them the basic courtesy of returning the call whether it's by phone, email or text. At least listen to the voicemail.

She tells me she let's her voicemails pile up and she doesn't read her emails. So I am not assuming anything. She admits to it.

Quite frankly if someone tells you they don't listen to voicemail, you are the rude one to leave one.   And quite foolish as well.

Yes its great, and sometimes important to be able to get messages to people, but if they don't want to receive them they are under no obligation to do what they don't want to do just because you want them to.  So she doesn't get messages and she looses out.  That's her choice to make.

I'm not sure I agree with the bolded.  If someone doesn't listen to voicemail, and I know it, I agree it would be foolish of me to rely on that as a means of communication.  But I don't think it's rude to leave a VM when the option is there.

If I call someone and get the option presented to leave a message, and I do, it is not rude. (No more is it rude for the reciever to choose not to listen or respond). If the receiver is annoyed by VM, then they can simply not have VM. I don't think the onus is on their callers to not use something that they offered.  Just as the onus is not on the receiver to answer the phone simply because it rings.

How?  I know of no way of turning off the VM option on my cell phone.  Even just letting it fill up does nothing as it apparently deletes old messages on its own after a while thus clearing up space for new unwanted messages.

bah12

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #23 on: November 28, 2012, 03:03:45 PM »
I don't how because I use VM, but my father does not have VM on his phone so I know it's possible. 

That being said, that wasn't really my point.  If someone doesn't like listening to VM that is fine.  It's even fine for them to tell people "I don't listen to VM, so please don't leave me a message thinking I'm going to get it."

I just don't think it's rude to leave a message.  Pointless, yes.  Rude, no.

tiff019

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #24 on: November 28, 2012, 03:16:49 PM »
I finally 'trained' my mom when it comes to calling to chat vs. important calls and vm messages. For a long time she'd leave a vm saying 'i was just calling to chat, nothing important'. But it uses up my minutes to check vm, and is mildly annoying just to hear i called to chat about nothing. Once she realized that it was using up minutes (and i might have mentioned the annoyance factor - we have a close relationship like that and i could get away with it easily), she now will only leave a message when it's important or just a quick message she needs to get across if I don't answer. She also knows that since I only have a cell phone (that has caller ID) I can see if she called regardless of a message. The rule of thumb (both ways now) is if you were just calling to chat, don't leave a message but we'll see that the other called, and we only leave a message if it's something important or time sensitive. Works better for both of us and doesn't waste the time/minutes of checking vm to get a message literally about nothing.


bah12

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #25 on: November 28, 2012, 03:29:58 PM »
I think the bottom line is that everyone uses the phone and VM differently.  While it may work for two people to just return calls that they see on their 'missed call' list, I know plenty of people who don't feel the need to call back if someone doesn't leave them a message saying they'd like a return call.   For me, if I don't leave a message, it's because I really was calling  "just because" and don't need nor do I expect them to return my call.  And if I see a missed call with no message, I don't make it a priority to call back (as a matter of fact, I rarely call back in that case).

The thing is, there is no one rude or not rude way to go about it, IMO.  I think the only rudeness comes in when one person demands the other answer their call simply because they are calling...or demands they get a return call immediately.  Otherwise, it's all up to how people choose to use their phone/VM.  And it's great when two people can work out their own groundrules for when to answer and when to call back.

O'Dell

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #26 on: November 28, 2012, 03:55:03 PM »
I think the bottom line is that everyone uses the phone and VM differently.  While it may work for two people to just return calls that they see on their 'missed call' list, I know plenty of people who don't feel the need to call back if someone doesn't leave them a message saying they'd like a return call.   For me, if I don't leave a message, it's because I really was calling  "just because" and don't need nor do I expect them to return my call.  And if I see a missed call with no message, I don't make it a priority to call back (as a matter of fact, I rarely call back in that case).

The thing is, there is no one rude or not rude way to go about it, IMO.  I think the only rudeness comes in when one person demands the other answer their call simply because they are calling...or demands they get a return call immediately.  Otherwise, it's all up to how people choose to use their phone/VM.  And it's great when two people can work out their own groundrules for when to answer and when to call back.

The bolded is how I feel. I think both women are a bit petty and inflexible in their argument about how to handle a ringing phone when busy. Who cares really? Either way the caller knows that it's not possible to talk to the person and goes on with their day.

And I agree with Abby...the worrying and fretting is the mom's problem.
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jedikaiti

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #27 on: November 28, 2012, 04:03:56 PM »
I do not answer the phone if I'm busy or if I just don't feel like talking.  No one gets to set my schedule other than me, my DH, kids, and my boss to a certain point.  If I've missed your call more than 2 times, I most likely will stop what I'm doing to answer, but if it is just a "hey, what are you doing", I'm not going to be walking up and down the grocery aisles with a phone to my ear to keep you entertained.

I'm irritated by one of my sisters who does answer just to say "I'm in a meeting or I'm driving, can I call you back."  If your in a meeting or driving DON'T answer the stupid phone.
 


I pod this. And I want to add my 2 cents because the subject says "and returning phone calls".

My DIL is usually very sweet but she doesn't a) listen to her voicemails or b) read her emails. It's just as iffy with text messages. So my 2 cents is if someone is awaiting an answer do them the basic courtesy of returning the call whether it's by phone, email or text. At least listen to the voicemail.

She tells me she let's her voicemails pile up and she doesn't read her emails. So I am not assuming anything. She admits to it.

My Dad is AWFUL about checking his cell phone voicemail. Didn't know how, and hadn't bothered to learn. So once, a cousin was flying in for a visit, and we got to the airport to pick her up and found out her flight had been delayed. Found out later that she had tried to call us, but the only number she had was Dad's cell phone, which he rarely answers (it's often turned off, or he can't hear it), and his voice mailbox was full. I got on it, figured out the passcode, and started cleaning the VM box - he had unheard messages from 2-3 years previous. I hope none of them were important!
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WillyNilly

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #28 on: November 28, 2012, 04:30:44 PM »
I don't how because I use VM, but my father does not have VM on his phone so I know it's possible. 

That being said, that wasn't really my point.  If someone doesn't like listening to VM that is fine.  It's even fine for them to tell people "I don't listen to VM, so please don't leave me a message thinking I'm going to get it."

I just don't think it's rude to leave a message.  Pointless, yes.  Rude, no.

The reason I think its rude, in the case of someone who has specially point blank said "i don't listen to my voicemails" is because by leaving a message you (general you) are basically saying via your actions "you should listen to this" - other wise why leave one?  Why not just hang up?  You are leaving the message for one reason and one reason only, so the message will be listened to.  And I think making your own wants try to trump someone else's stated intent of actions is rude.

So in general I don't think its rude to leave a message, nor do I think its rude if its someone you merely suspect of listening to the messages, but once someone actually says "I never listen to messages, don't bother leaving one" to leave one I think is to be directly going against their requested way of handling something of theirs (their VM).

violinp

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Re: Dear Abby - answering and returning phone calls
« Reply #29 on: November 28, 2012, 04:45:39 PM »
I don't how because I use VM, but my father does not have VM on his phone so I know it's possible. 

That being said, that wasn't really my point.  If someone doesn't like listening to VM that is fine.  It's even fine for them to tell people "I don't listen to VM, so please don't leave me a message thinking I'm going to get it."

I just don't think it's rude to leave a message.  Pointless, yes.  Rude, no.

The reason I think its rude, in the case of someone who has specially point blank said "i don't listen to my voicemails" is because by leaving a message you (general you) are basically saying via your actions "you should listen to this" - other wise why leave one?  Why not just hang up?  You are leaving the message for one reason and one reason only, so the message will be listened to.  And I think making your own wants try to trump someone else's stated intent of actions is rude.

So in general I don't think its rude to leave a message, nor do I think its rude if its someone you merely suspect of listening to the messages, but once someone actually says "I never listen to messages, don't bother leaving one" to leave one I think is to be directly going against their requested way of handling something of theirs (their VM).

That's also my viewpoint, WillyNilly. It, in my opinion, is no different from calling someone at a time they have told you not to call, or emailing them at work when they have told you to refrain from doing so. Going against someone's polite requests is, at best, not very thoughtful of the other person or your relationship with him/her.
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