Author Topic: Why didn't I congratulate you?  (Read 10288 times)

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SCMagnolia

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #30 on: September 05, 2013, 11:33:34 AM »
Quote
Imagine what her DH will endure if he ever forgets their anniversary.

Or her birthday, or any other day she deems as "special."

If she's 6 months past her wedding and still demanding congratulations, can you imagine how much of a bridezilla she was in the 6 months leading up to the blessed event?

Wow.   :o


Pen^2

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #31 on: September 05, 2013, 12:05:14 PM »
What a nutter!

And insisting that someone say "congratulations" is like telling them to say "thank you": it renders it meaningless if you have to ask. But 6 months after the fact? To a complete stranger who knows nothing about the marriage?

She's got a few screws loose.

TootsNYC

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #32 on: September 05, 2013, 03:41:11 PM »
My mother raised me to say "congratulations" to a groom but not to a bride.  One used "best wishes" or some other platitude to the bride.  Mom said that to say "congratulations" to a bride was an insult.

Therefore, based on my mother's criteria, the OP was actually being properly polite.

This is correct. Congratulations was said to imply that the bride had bagged a man.

That seems like a rather sexist notion.

It was a sexist notion--which is precisely why it was considered rude to say.

But when it came about, that was actually the truth--a woman getting married was exactly analogous to a guy landing his dream job. She now had someone who would provide money for her, etc.
   But to congratulate her would acknowledge that ugly truth. That's why it was rude.
    it also implied that she was *lucky* to be getting married, as if she had to do something special to get anybody to marry her. Rude to imply to a woman, especially since she really couldn't ask someone else.

But not so rude to imply to a man, since he was in the position of supplicant, and there's sort of a cultural bias that men are not necessarily automatically appealing. (For one thing, he can make up for being unappealing by being able to own property, etc.) So it's OK to imply that he's lucky anybody wanted to marry him. Because he didn't *need* to get married.


hobish

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #33 on: September 05, 2013, 03:49:59 PM »
This is so timely to me, because when I got married a couple of months ago and was changing my name everywhere, every place I called they would automatically say "Congratulations!"  And because I have kind of a twisted sense of humor I would think (but never say, don't worry!) "How do they know this is a good thing?  Maybe it's a shotgun wedding!  Maybe my boyfriend lost me in a bet!  Maybe my father traded me for meth money!"  Thankfully, it's none of those things.  But because every single credit card/bank card/document/what-have-you had a completely different method for changing my name, I would typically start these calls with "So I just got married, and I need to change the name on my card...?" at which point I would get the "Congratulations!"  But in a couple of instances, I just started with "I need to change my name" and I still got a congrats.  I found that super amusing - what if it was a divorce, or something else?  (Running from the law, maybe?)

Anyway, I certainly didn't care that someone congratulated me, but I wouldn't have taken offense if they hadn't.  In fact, I would have found that more normal.  In short: this client was a nutter.

 ;D I like your sense of humor, and admire your restraint.
...and agree the client was a nutter.

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CocoCamm

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #34 on: September 05, 2013, 05:20:26 PM »
I actually usually wish callers a happy birthday when I have to verify their DOB for a process and it's sometime within the last week or within the next week.  Likewise, I frequently congratulate them if they mention some major life event like a wedding or birth of a child.  I specifically do it because I feel like it helps remind people that they are talking to a real human being and not a robot and it makes them treat me a bit better.  It's more social engineering than honest sentiment, but it makes everyone involved happy.

I always do the same. It just seems friendlier. Not to mention it gives you something to chat about while the computer does it's thing.

OP, I don't think you were rude to not say anything but if you work in customer service you may want to consider adding more of a personal touch to your calls. Not because this woman was right but I find that being friendly can make all the difference when dealing with difficult people.

CrazyDaffodilLady

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #35 on: September 05, 2013, 06:08:40 PM »
The correct thing to do would be to ask for the husband and wish him the very best of luck.  He's going to need it.
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TeamBhakta

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #36 on: September 05, 2013, 06:49:06 PM »
The correct thing to do would be to ask for the husband and wish him the very best of luck.  He's going to need it.

I'm sure his next wife will quietly remind him "Honey, it's Nutty Ex's birthday next week. And I think you are due for an out of town fishing trip soon...."

Phoebe

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #37 on: September 05, 2013, 07:57:45 PM »
I had a client who called recently to update her name in our files.  Per company policy, we need to receive copies of certain legal documents, including a marriage license and a form emailed or faxed to a particular admin.  I said that I'd be happy to assist her with the name change, advised her of the process and its time frame, and inquired whether she had any questions. 

Yes, she said, why didn't you congratulate me?

I gaped like a fish at that.  I don't know her socially.  It's sort of weird--by traditional standards anyway--to congratulate a woman on her marriage.  She was calling about our business relationship.  She'd been married six months ago.  All good reasons not to bring it up, right?

Anyway, I mustered poise enough to say something about wishing her and Mr Whomever the very best. 

She freaked out at that and demanded to speak to my boss about how terribly rude I'd been, saying things like "would it kill that b-word to say 'congratulations' like a human being?"

Was I wrong not to acknowledge her marriage when I spoke to her about making the name change?  Or was she being sort of a SS?  Or were we both a bit off?

I can't stop laughing at the hypocrisy of that statement to your boss!  "That b* was impolite to me!  Make her be nice to me! (stomp stomp stomp)"   What a looney-tune! 

Winterlight

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #38 on: September 07, 2013, 02:41:27 PM »
Not to mention the obscenities and namecalling to get someone else to be "nice" to her.
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Jocelyn

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #39 on: September 07, 2013, 11:54:59 PM »
The explanation I heard about "congratulations" was that for a very long time, from at least the medieval ages on, when a woman got married, all her property and money became her husband's. So you congratulated him on marrying so well, if his bride brought substantial property to the marriage. On the other hand, all you could wish the bride was "best wishes" in the hopes that her husband wouldn't squander what had been her dowry.

This could be apocryphal.
I was told that 'congratulations' went to a person who had achieved some accomplishment, and it was offered to grooms because they had persuaded their intendeds to accept their proposal of matrimony. One wished the bride happiness, since it was assumed that she had done nothing to lure the groom into marriage. And yes, even back in the day, no one believed that brides did nothing to persuade their fiances to propose.  ::)

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #40 on: September 08, 2013, 01:16:12 AM »
The explanation I heard about "congratulations" was that for a very long time, from at least the medieval ages on, when a woman got married, all her property and money became her husband's. So you congratulated him on marrying so well, if his bride brought substantial property to the marriage. On the other hand, all you could wish the bride was "best wishes" in the hopes that her husband wouldn't squander what had been her dowry.

This could be apocryphal.
I was told that 'congratulations' went to a person who had achieved some accomplishment, and it was offered to grooms because they had persuaded their intendeds to accept their proposal of matrimony. One wished the bride happiness, since it was assumed that she had done nothing to lure the groom into marriage. And yes, even back in the day, no one believed that brides did nothing to persuade their fiances to propose.  ::)

Yep, this is what I've heard too.

On topic, what a weird woman! She berated you for not saying "Congratulations", but when you did say "best wishes", she still went over the edge! I suspect she was spoiling for a fight. If you HAD congratulated her at the outset, she probably would have berated you for being presumptuous or something.

I hope your boss backed you up.

Iris

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #41 on: September 08, 2013, 03:02:31 AM »
I had a client who called recently to update her name in our files.  Per company policy, we need to receive copies of certain legal documents, including a marriage license and a form emailed or faxed to a particular admin.  I said that I'd be happy to assist her with the name change, advised her of the process and its time frame, and inquired whether she had any questions. 

Yes, she said, why didn't you congratulate me?

I gaped like a fish at that.  I don't know her socially.  It's sort of weird--by traditional standards anyway--to congratulate a woman on her marriage.  She was calling about our business relationship.  She'd been married six months ago.  All good reasons not to bring it up, right?

Anyway, I mustered poise enough to say something about wishing her and Mr Whomever the very best. 

She freaked out at that and demanded to speak to my boss about how terribly rude I'd been, saying things like "would it kill that b-word to say 'congratulations' like a human being?"

Was I wrong not to acknowledge her marriage when I spoke to her about making the name change?  Or was she being sort of a SS?  Or were we both a bit off?

I can't stop laughing at the hypocrisy of that statement to your boss!  "That b* was impolite to me!  Make her be nice to me! (stomp stomp stomp)"   What a looney-tune!

That made me giggle, too.
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BarensMom

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #42 on: September 08, 2013, 11:15:36 AM »
OP, did Nutter go to your boss and what happened next?

lellah

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #43 on: September 09, 2013, 11:08:37 PM »
OP, did Nutter go to your boss and what happened next?

My boss said placidly "I'll speak to her about it."  Then she did, saying something like "hey, I hear some woman called you a (b-word) for not saying congratulations even though she got married in 1952.  And I told her I'd talk to you.  I like that shirt."

Mental Magpie

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Re: Why didn't I congratulate you?
« Reply #44 on: September 09, 2013, 11:13:47 PM »
OP, did Nutter go to your boss and what happened next?

My boss said placidly "I'll speak to her about it."  Then she did, saying something like "hey, I hear some woman called you a (b-word) for not saying congratulations even though she got married in 1952.  And I told her I'd talk to you.  I like that shirt."

I've used that approach!  "I said I would talk to you, I just didn't say about what.  Do you think the new uniform will work?"
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