Author Topic: Are thank you notes necessary?  (Read 4725 times)

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TZ

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #60 on: January 07, 2013, 06:58:57 PM »
I was raised to send a thank you note for every present regardless of whether or not the giver is there when I open the gift. That seems to be the norm among my friends and coworkers, as well. In fact, the only people I know who don't send thank you notes for every gift given also don't write them for wedding and shower gifts - an inexcusable faux pas, in my opinion. It seems to be all or nothing in my experience.

I also agree with Toots on printed labels and the ease of purchasing stamps and stationery. I have terrible handwriting. It takes a lot of time and effort to write legible notes, but the giver went to a lot of trouble too. Stamps can be purchased at the ATM or grocery store around here.

That's not my experience. I wrote thank you notes for my showers and wedding and I write them for gifts that come by mail. I just don't consider them necessary for a non-formal occasional when I've thanked the giver in person at the time I received the gift. I also only receive thank you notes for shower and wedding gifts, and gifts that were not opened in my presence.

Yes, I realize other people's experiences are different from mine, as evidenced by the responses on this thread. I'm just saying that many of the views expressed here are way outside the norm for my circle and would be considered rude. YMMV.

Perhaps it's regional. I don't know.

Katana_Geldar

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #61 on: January 07, 2013, 07:29:25 PM »
It looks like it is, but the general consensus is that thanks should be expressed.

Lynn2000

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #62 on: January 07, 2013, 07:46:16 PM »
It looks like it is, but the general consensus is that thanks should be expressed.

Oh yeah, definitely.
~Lynn2000

TootsNYC

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #63 on: January 08, 2013, 10:46:46 AM »
If I get a *real* thank-you, I don't care what format it comes in. Email, text, phone, handwritten, typed into the printer and printed out.

But if it's very formatted, or there's any evidence of mail merge, I'm not going to be as happy with it. I'm going to feel that you treated the concept of thanking me as a chore, and I'm just not going to be as generous next time.

Don't treat me and my gifts like a chore whose work needs to be minimized.

So if you want to go to the extra work of formatting and printing an envelope (frankly, writing it is way faster, in my experience), do us both a favor, and put your return address, with your *name* on the front, so I can see it's from someone I know.

(The basic advice for dealing w/ junk mail is to not even open it. Toss it unopened.)

Cat-Fu

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #64 on: January 08, 2013, 01:48:25 PM »
I always got the advice to open my junk mail just in case, then rip/shred the CC offers to prevent identity theft.

I do think that when you're writing something like 50+ thank-you notes, it is kind of a chore. I'm not going to begrudge someone the time it takes to hand-write each envelope when doing it with the printer is loads faster. (If you're doing just one envelope it does seem a bit silly to print it, but when you have a boatload to do it makes a huge time difference.) I suppose the feeling varies by person.
“Poetry is a sword of lightning, ever unsheathed, which consumes the scabbard that would contain it.” PBS

gen xer

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #65 on: January 08, 2013, 06:49:10 PM »

About the chore aspect of thank you notes.... when you are crankily churning out 50  + notes and trying desperately to think of something personal to say all the while just trying to get it over with you kind of lose the spirit of the thank you.

This is why I am not hung up on them that much.  Now don't get me wrong - a sincere thank you is very much in order....but for the ones who think that if it is too easy it lessens the sincerity - well why do you want people to jump through hoops to prove themselves?   

Yes....everyone wants to be appreciated.....but I don't get those who hang on tenterhooks waiting for their thank-you note to arrive and getting all bent out of shape if the thank you isn't what they hoped for.

I think I said this earlier but when I give a gift at a wedding or shower I can guarantee I have forgotten about it by next week!

TootsNYC

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #66 on: January 08, 2013, 08:11:29 PM »
Actually, gen xer, I have usually forgotten too--when I get the thank-you note later, I'm always going, "Hmmm, what shower did I go to recently? Oh, yeah, right!"

I don't actually sit around waiting for people to jump through hoops. But if you're going to send me a thank-you note, you'll get a better effect if you don't use stick-on labels for the addresses, and don't print  out a very generic-looking note from the computer.

And I personally make sure to send them. Because I know that people *do* notice. My MIL has complained about having sent a present for the baptism of Niece's Baby No. 2 (she couldn't attend the event because one of my kids was having a first communion), and never having heard boo about it. It bothered her. She went to the trouble to be generous, and it wasn't even acknowledged. She wouldn't have gotten bent out of shape about a label, or typing, or a text, or a phone call.

But she remembered!

I also look at thank-you notes as a major PR opportunity! This is my chance to look so good in front of all these people that the NEXT time they have any reason to give me or mine a present, they'll remember how nice they felt when they got the thank-you from me.
And they'll be generous and happy when they select a present.  ;)


(The PR is not actually about getting more gifts, though; it's about them liking me so they give me the benefit of the doubt in the future if I do something wrong, or forget to write the note, etc.)

CakeEater

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #67 on: January 08, 2013, 08:42:24 PM »

About the chore aspect of thank you notes.... when you are crankily churning out 50  + notes and trying desperately to think of something personal to say all the while just trying to get it over with you kind of lose the spirit of the thank you.

This is why I am not hung up on them that much.  Now don't get me wrong - a sincere thank you is very much in order....but for the ones who think that if it is too easy it lessens the sincerity - well why do you want people to jump through hoops to prove themselves?   

Yes....everyone wants to be appreciated.....but I don't get those who hang on tenterhooks waiting for their thank-you note to arrive and getting all bent out of shape if the thank you isn't what they hoped for.

I think I said this earlier but when I give a gift at a wedding or shower I can guarantee I have forgotten about it by next week!

But when I'm crankily fighting crowds at the shopping trying desperately to think of something personal you might like as a gift, or making a special trip to the post office to send it, I often don't have the spirit of giving.

I jump through hoops to buy you a gift, jumping a few hoops of your own in gratitude is appreciated.

The fact that you forget having given gifts, doesn't mean anyone else should, or does.

We've never received any kind of thank-you for gifts given to our BIL's family. They gift us, and they show they love us in other ways, so we still give them gifts, but I do notice that we're not thanked. I don't, however, wait around on tenterhooks. But if it's a pattern, you notice.

And I probably notice because most gifts we give are acknowledged in a variety of ways, but mostly for weddings, we have received written thank-you notes.

gen xer

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #68 on: January 08, 2013, 09:30:24 PM »

About the chore aspect of thank you notes.... when you are crankily churning out 50  + notes and trying desperately to think of something personal to say all the while just trying to get it over with you kind of lose the spirit of the thank you.

This is why I am not hung up on them that much.  Now don't get me wrong - a sincere thank you is very much in order....but for the ones who think that if it is too easy it lessens the sincerity - well why do you want people to jump through hoops to prove themselves?   

Yes....everyone wants to be appreciated.....but I don't get those who hang on tenterhooks waiting for their thank-you note to arrive and getting all bent out of shape if the thank you isn't what they hoped for.

I think I said this earlier but when I give a gift at a wedding or shower I can guarantee I have forgotten about it by next week!

But when I'm crankily fighting crowds at the shopping trying desperately to think of something personal you might like as a gift, or making a special trip to the post office to send it, I often don't have the spirit of giving.

I jump through hoops to buy you a gift, jumping a few hoops of your own in gratitude is appreciated.

The fact that you forget having given gifts, doesn't mean anyone else should, or does.

We've never received any kind of thank-you for gifts given to our BIL's family. They gift us, and they show they love us in other ways, so we still give them gifts, but I do notice that we're not thanked. I don't, however, wait around on tenterhooks. But if it's a pattern, you notice.

And I probably notice because most gifts we give are acknowledged in a variety of ways, but mostly for weddings, we have received written thank-you notes.

In case it sounds like I don't thank people or for that matter write thank you notes - I do. Never fail....and I force my kids to as well.   Just to reiterate it is very important to thank people for their generosity and the effort they have put in....but I still think that sometimes people can't see the forest for the trees.  It becomes all about the proper format, the delivery, following all the rules and the actual point gets left out.
I am happy if someone sends a note....( yes I have forgotten by then ) but I am equally happy if they call me or even thank me next time they see me.....but I don't sit around stewing about whether they put the proper effort into it.
Maybe it's just me....but sometimes I think the thank you gets bigger than the giving itself...sorry. 

Yvaine

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #69 on: January 08, 2013, 09:35:19 PM »
I guess we should throw out all of our pens and paper.

What? I think I missed an episode.  :o

Ladybugs

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Re: Are thank you notes necessary?
« Reply #70 on: January 08, 2013, 10:04:28 PM »
Op,

Hi, I read your question but don't have time now to read all the replies, but for me, I was raised to always write a handwritten thank you card for any type of actual gift given, that the person took time to select and give a gift and it merits more than just a verbal "thanks"  This applied for times like birthday parties where you still tell the person thank you at the time you open the gift, and definitely for times you get a gift in the mail. Every year I found myself (or being reminded to) write thank yous after my birthday in July, after the holidays etc it was just like an expected thing to take a little time to show appreciation