General Etiquette > general

"I'm good" again

(1/14) > >>

Does anyone else dislike the use of "I'm good" when declining an offer of something?  As in:

"Would you like some more coffee?"
"I'm good."

I don't understand why people think that "I'm good" is a polite substitute for "No, thank you" or "No, thanks."  Sometimes it even sounds less like a gracious decline than a curt rebuff.

(I resist the temptation to say, "I'm glad to hear it.  And would you like more coffee?")

I get that it communicates that they don't want the coffee.  But it does not communicate any acknowledgment that the person offered them something, just an announcement of their own satisfaction, coffee-wise.   :)  Okay, that's obviously not the problem!  What's actually wrong is that they aren't expressing any gratitude for the offer.  Which is what polite people do when either accepting or declining something.

It was so easy to teach our kids this.  We just treated it like that was the words you use from the time they were tiny.  "Thusnelda, would you like an apple?  Yesplease or nothankyou?"

In my opinion, "I'm good" is just as rude as plain "No." "I'm good, thanks" is okay.

I wonder how omitting the thanks got started, and why people who would never just say "no" without "thanks" think "I'm good" without "thanks" is okay?

(ETA bolding to clarify the point of the objection.)

I think the thanks is usually implied -- at least it is when I've said, it, and from the tone of voice that seems to be how other people intend it.  It's so common I've never thought of it as being rude, and I've never seen anyone react to it as if it were rude. 


Tabby Uprising:
I tend to prioritize the spirit in which something was said rather than the precise phrasing.  I also really enjoy having a variety of ways to express something ranging from casual to formal.  The way someone speaks gives me some insight into their personality, it can be an indicator of how comfortable they feel with me and it can also be a great way to pick up some new phrases.  I tend to have a high tolerance for language and how people express themselves.

Reading e-hell, I've seen a number of threads about how people interpret different phrases like "no problem", "ma'am", "you guys", "have a good one" etc. and I've seen that each one can be offensive to someone.  It makes for interesting reading, but it can give me the sense - sometimes - that even with the best of intentions and a seemingly innocuous phrase you can offend (or just irritate the tar out of) someone.  It's a bit too much like having my language micromanaged and I far prefer my language to be free range  ;D  Within reason, of course!

Well, for starters, I've often heard "No thanks; I'm good."  ;D

But anyway, this is generally used, in my experience, in really informal situations where you know the person really well. I think it could start to feel stilted if you only used the most formal phrasing of anything with, say, your husband or your BFF.

Generally I don't really see a difference between the long-hand and short-hand versions so it doesn't bother me. If it bothers you not to receive a specifically worded response, I would suggest stop offering. You can't demand gratitude. In some instances, I would not feel I owed a thank you. Some offers can also been seen as PA slights, "Do you want to borrow a comb? Would you like a breath mint? Shall I wash some dishes for you?..."


[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version