Etiquette Questions, Answered: Holidays and Gifts
Q. I often send gifts by mail to friends and relatives. Many of them never send a thank-you in return. I’m tired of calling and saying that I wanted to make sure my gift didn’t get lost in the mail. Any ideas?
Camp Hill, Pennsylvania
A. You are indeed in an awkward position. If you send a gift through the mail, rather than personally handing it to someone, you have no way of knowing if it arrived unless the recipient acknowledges receipt. It is rude for the recipient to force you to follow up.
These days people are less formal, and many have given up the handwritten note for other ways, like e-mails and text messages, to say “thank you.” But not sending so much as a “thx” text is a sign that the recipients don’t appreciate your gifts or your feelings. You may want to cut back on your giving until they start showing a little gratitude.