General Etiquette > Family and Children

Rude to talk about expensive purchase? Full story p3

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Iris:
Trying to keep this vague. If you are talking to someone who is significantly less well off than you, is it rude to talk about an expensive purchase? For example, if you have spent close to a person's entire weekly income on what is entirely a discretionary purchase. Does that change if they have asked how much something cost?

nolechica:

--- Quote from: Iris on September 01, 2013, 02:34:57 AM ---Trying to keep this vague. If you are talking to someone who is significantly less well off than you, is it rude to talk about an expensive purchase? For example, if you have spent close to a person's entire weekly income on what is entirely a discretionary purchase. Does that change if they have asked how much something cost?

--- End quote ---

Not if they've asked, they might want to save/allocate towards that purchase.

EMuir:
If they bring it up and ask, then sure, why not.  UNLESS you think they're asking so they can complain about it, in which case bean dip.

menley:
I think it can be rude.


An example - I used to work for a partner in an LLP who was very wealthy. This was in 2008 during the recession and several people from our firm had just been laid off, and we had just been notified that raises and bonuses were out of the question. This partner then came into the room and said that he had just written the check for his children's private school and he was surprised at how affordable it was - only $48,500 per child (he has four of them). Of the six people in the room when he said this, that amount was higher than the annual salary of four of them. For him to be talking about this in these circumstances was incredibly rude, I think.


So I would say that it depends on your relationship with the person who is less well-off. A boss-employee relationship? Probably rude. Friends or family? Probably not rude, assuming you don't go on and on about how awesome you are for being able to afford the item ;) I do think it's rude for someone to ask how much the item cost, unless it's in the context of "I'm trying to get one too and want to know what's considered a good price."

poundcake:
As long as you're not deliberately throwing around big dollar amounts. I mean, I've heard people complain that it's "rude" for another family member to talk about "taking the kids to Disneyworld" this summer, because THEY couldn't afford to go. Sometimes, part of life is that you won't be able to afford something at the same time someone else is. But yeah, mentioning the great deal you got on a $50,000 stable for your two horses to people who are barely making ends meet is stupid.

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