Etiquette School is in session! > "Have you tried the bean dip?"

Polite bean-dip for polite inquiries?

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Mental Magpie:

--- Quote from: RooRoo on May 26, 2013, 10:03:15 PM ---I have a standard, neutral answer for several different inquiries I'd rather not discuss: "...getting along."

It works for everything from "How are you?" to "What's up with them?" "Oh, they're getting along." It's neutral, and doesn't reveal anything.  They're getting along well... or they're getting along towards the divorce, the court case, the lawsuit, the PhD, renewed health, that promotion...

One can make it less neutral with tone of voice, of course.  ;D

--- End quote ---

Unfortunately, "getting along" can also mean "being friendly" which may not be the case.  I like the idea, just not the particular phase. 

JeseC:

--- Quote from: Luci45 on May 26, 2013, 06:36:40 PM ---Yes. In our case, everyone knew there was a problem, so the worked.

I didn't understand that no one knew there could be drama coming up, so, no, "I'd reather not discuss it," would not work well.

Then, I suppose JesseC has no  choice but to keep serving the bean dip comments until the questioners finally give up.

Best wishes. Stay strong.

--- End quote ---

Right.  Typically the issues are from people trying to make small talk.  Like the stuff with my mother - the inquirer probably doesn't know anything other than that I'm a student who lives far away from my family.  And unfortunately even slight hints of problems I've learned tend to expose me to a barrage of "interesting assumptions."  (Seriously, what's with the mothers-are-always-wonderful thing our society has going???  And the fact that I'm young does not mean I'm in need of your advice.  Or your opinions on kids these days.  And especially not your opinion on how if I were just nicer the problems would all go away.)

Margo:
In that case I'd go with something vauge.
Polite person: " Aren't you looking forward to spending time with your mother?  You two should go out for dinner or something!"
You: "I', sure I'll see her" (if you will. You don't have to say whether you are looking forward to it, or will enjoy it)
OR
Polite person: " Aren't you looking forward to spending time with your mother?  You two should go out for dinner or something!"
You: "I'm really looking forward to the trip home" (after all, 'home' can mean your home town, home state, not just your Mom's home."
or " I'm really looking forward to the break" (they may assume that you mean you're looking forward to spending the break at your Mom's, or seeing her. You haven't actually said so.

Also, if you follow up with a question of your own you can move the conversation on, to talk about what the other person is doing, or planning.

Mental Magpie:

--- Quote from: Margo on May 27, 2013, 03:13:04 PM ---In that case I'd go with something vauge.
Polite person: " Aren't you looking forward to spending time with your mother?  You two should go out for dinner or something!"
You: "I', sure I'll see her" (if you will. You don't have to say whether you are looking forward to it, or will enjoy it)
OR
Polite person: " Aren't you looking forward to spending time with your mother?  You two should go out for dinner or something!"
You: "I'm really looking forward to the trip home" (after all, 'home' can mean your home town, home state, not just your Mom's home."
or " I'm really looking forward to the break" (they may assume that you mean you're looking forward to spending the break at your Mom's, or seeing her. You haven't actually said so.

Also, if you follow up with a question of your own you can move the conversation on, to talk about what the other person is doing, or planning.

--- End quote ---

This is along the lines of what I suggested, so I definitely agree with it.  You can answer their questions without actually telling them anything negative or positive.  Let them make the assumptions they want to make.

greencat:
There's also "Oh, doesn't look like I'll see Mom this time.  Maybe another visit!  I've got plans with Aunt and Uncle and Cousin and Great-Aunt who I haven't seen in forever and..." gloss over the sticky part and then bury them in happy details.

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