Author Topic: Need a polite response: brother and birthday  (Read 3059 times)

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CakeBeret

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Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« on: February 14, 2013, 01:03:13 PM »
To make a long story short, my brother and I had plans to celebrate my birthday. He blew me off and then ignored my text messages about rescheduling. This is kinda par for the course with my brother, but my feelings are a little wounded.

So now, almost a week later, he made a comment to me on FB that we still need to get together for my birthday. I find myself unable to craft a response that's neither snarky nor accusatory. (I really want to say "That would be easier if you weren't ignoring my text messages.") I want him to know that I'm not okay with him blowing me off and then ignoring me, but I also don't want to be snarky or turn it into a big deal.

Help please?
"From a procrastination standpoint, today has been wildly successful."

Kaypeep

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2013, 01:12:52 PM »
Dear Brother,
 You blew me off on _(day/time/circumstances that he blew off)__ and ignored my text messages on __, ___ and ____.  I don't know why you'd do that to me, but you did.  It really hurt me that you did that and I'm afraid a belated suggestion to celebrate while ignoring what you already did just doesn't make up for it right now.  So I'm going to pass on your belated suggestion this year because i don't feel like risking being disappointed yet again.

Sharnita

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2013, 01:15:47 PM »
Dear Brother,
 You blew me off on _(day/time/circumstances that he blew off)__ and ignored my text messages on __, ___ and ____.  I don't know why you'd do that to me, but you did.  It really hurt me that you did that and I'm afraid a belated suggestion to celebrate while ignoring what you already did just doesn't make up for it right now.  So I'm going to pass on your belated suggestion this year because i don't feel like risking being disappointed yet again.

I like this - I might add "we can try again next year if you are really interested"

reddevil

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2013, 01:57:32 PM »
I would also add that I would send that message privately through Facebook, rather than commenting after his comment.  (Not that the other posters suggested that!) 

Then your feelings and the possible ensuing drama are all private.

Otherwise, I think the proposed message is perfect.

Zilla

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2013, 02:01:53 PM »
Honestly?  It isn't something that can be said in a letter/comment etc.  This is your brother, I would pick up the phone and tell him.  I was a little hurt that you blew me off last week and didn't answer my texts.  Maybe next year we will try and celebrate, but right now I am not feeling it.
 
Be honest and just tell him how you feel.

ladyknight1

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2013, 02:09:19 PM »
I think you might want to give yourself a little time before responding. I often find I can respond in a better way hours or a day later.

CakeBeret

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2013, 02:09:38 PM »
Honestly?  It isn't something that can be said in a letter/comment etc.  This is your brother, I would pick up the phone and tell him.  I was a little hurt that you blew me off last week and didn't answer my texts.  Maybe next year we will try and celebrate, but right now I am not feeling it.
 
Be honest and just tell him how you feel.

We both hate hate hate talking on the phone and communicate better in writing. So really a message or email will be much more productive for us.

Thanks for the wording suggestions. I will keep mulling it over.
"From a procrastination standpoint, today has been wildly successful."

oceanus

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2013, 02:11:17 PM »
Honestly?  It isn't something that can be said in a letter/comment etc.  This is your brother, I would pick up the phone and tell him.  I was a little hurt that you blew me off last week and didn't answer my texts.  Maybe next year we will try and celebrate, but right now I am not feeling it.
 
Be honest and just tell him how you feel.

I like this - it's simple, honest, and brief.  Nothing needs to be added.

Zilla

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2013, 02:12:16 PM »
Honestly?  It isn't something that can be said in a letter/comment etc.  This is your brother, I would pick up the phone and tell him.  I was a little hurt that you blew me off last week and didn't answer my texts.  Maybe next year we will try and celebrate, but right now I am not feeling it.
 
Be honest and just tell him how you feel.

We both hate hate hate talking on the phone and communicate better in writing. So really a message or email will be much more productive for us.

Thanks for the wording suggestions. I will keep mulling it over.
You and me both, I too hate talking on the phone.  I would then just be honest in what you write.

Deetee

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2013, 02:18:04 PM »
It really depends what you want.

You say you don't want it to be a big deal, but maybe it already is? It depends on your dynamic/history etc... For some people a rescheduled date after a few days of non-communication is a minor blip, some would not even notice. For others, it is a referendum on the entire relationship. Both of these can be correct interpretations depending on the people involved.

So decide if you want to meet up with him or not. Decide if you want to meet up with him only if he apologizes or not. Decide if you want to mention to him at dinner that it sucked to have your birthday blown off or not. Decide if you want to get any apologies over with before you go for dinner or not. All of these are only choices that you can make and once you know what it is that you want then you can decide how to respond to him.

 

TurtleDove

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2013, 02:40:57 PM »
I want him to know that I'm not okay with him blowing me off and then ignoring me, but I also don't want to be snarky or turn it into a big deal.

Help please?

I think DeeTee's post was good. Decide what end result you want and whether you can get there with whatever response you choose.  Unless you want to further damage your relationship with your brother, I would not go with the suggested wording up thread.  That is almost guaranteed to turn this into a big deal.  If I were you, and assuming you want a smoother relationship with your brother, I would cheerfully respond to him and set up a time to meet for your birthday.  Then, when you are face to face, cheerfully explain that it hurt your feelings when he blew you off.  Then let it go.  I see no reason to escalate this. 

m2kbug

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2013, 03:34:40 PM »
This is your brother.  Is your rel@tionship more formal that you have to dance around pleasantries and can't simply say you were hurt? 

"You know, Bro, you cancelled on my birthday dinner, and then ignored me when I texted you to reschedule, and I'm hurt.  What's going on?"

I wouldn't text, I wouldn't email, I would call and have a conversation.

Or I would just ignore the whole situation and plan to get together and let this one go. 

You say this is pretty typical for your brother.  Have you (or anyone) tried to redirect and correct this behavior, or does everyone just accept this as the standard norm?  I think it's worth pointing out his actions to him so that he can make some changes, maybe he doesn't know or understand how is actions affect people, but this could also very easily cause an argument and division, so you might have to let this one go.  This wouldn't be my hill to die on. 

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LadyJaneinMD

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2013, 01:05:25 PM »
Depends on what you want.  Me, I'd just send a short message: My birthday's over. Maybe next year.

ClaireC79

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2013, 02:35:49 PM »
I'd probably say 'Didn't you get my text? Text me to let me know what you want to do'

joraemi

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Re: Need a polite response: brother and birthday
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2013, 11:41:38 PM »
It may be weird, but this is one of those things that wouldn't even make a blip on my radar. Does he have a pattern of ignoring you? If not, I'd just be happily rescheduling that lunch and going to celebrate my birthday!




Courage is the price life  exacts for granting peace.  ~Amelia Earhart~