Etiquette Questions, Answered: Tricky Conversations
Q. I have a friend who constantly sends me texts about things she finds interesting, such as beauty tips, recipes, factoids, and so on. While I’m sure she thinks of this as a nice gesture, I do not have the time to read these messages and I’m also hitting my monthly text limit. Worse, since she often sends group messages, every time someone else replies, I get those texts as well. How do I tell her that I want to be removed from her text list without hurting her feelings?
New York City
A. Want to get longer lashes overnight? Or learn my recipe for the best-ever Crock-Pot ribs? Guess not, huh? Well, I hear you. Many of us are getting increasingly blitzed by information via text, and we’re losing a lot (think: time, sanity) in the process.
You could suggest that your friend contact you via e-mail or Facebook instead. But that may only complicate a situation that is really quite simple: Your data plan notwithstanding, you just don’t want to receive the messages.
A more direct request would be better. And luckily for you, you have a straightforward, concrete explanation to offer: “I’m sorry to ask,” you could say (or write), “but would you mind sending me messages less frequently? It’s so nice of you, but my phone has a limited plan, and I want to be sure that I have space left for the occasions when we exchange personal texts.” (Here I would add a joke at my own expense about being too much of a tightwad to upgrade my data plan—but that’s just me.) Hopefully, your plea will be all that’s required to stop the texts for good.
- How Can I Get a Friend To Stop Talking Compulsively About Her Personal Life?
- How Do I Tell My Boss That His Texting While Driving Makes Me Uncomfortable?
- How Do I Tell My Aunt to Stop Sending Me Chain E-mails?
Want to Ask Your Own Etiquette Question?
Submit your social conundrums to Catherine at realsimple.com/modernmanners. Selected letters will be featured on the website each month.