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Modern Etiquette: What Rules Still Exist? Tell us your thoughts to win a $75 Amazon gift card

SheSpeaksTeam By SheSpeaksTeam 07.10.19
Modern Etiquette: What Rules Still Exist? Tell us your thoughts to win a $75 Amazon gift card
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"Dear Abby" was one of the original syndicated advice columns, appearing in over 1,200 newspapers and read by over 95 million people. Times have certainly changed since "Dear Abby" launched in 1956, but we are curious: are there still rules for common etiquette? And if so, what are they?

In the past few weeks, 5 burning questions have come up within the SheSpeaks Team. After much discussion, here are our best answers. Do you agree? Tell us what you think and you'll be entered to win a $75 Amazon gift card!

Are there any questions you'd love the answers to? Submit them and we'll include some of our favorites as future polls on our website!

Q 1. If you bring a dish to a get-together, is it appropriate to bring home the leftovers?

Not usually. Leftovers should be left for the host to enjoy. However, if there are a ton of leftovers and the host is truly insisting you take it, then take it. It's certainly not worth fighting over.

2. Is it rude to leave your cell phone on the table when dining with friends?

Yes, it's rude, but sometimes it has to be done. For example, if you are out without your kids, then it's ok to keep the phone out in case there is any issue at home. But don't take any calls or texts unless they are truly important. It's not fun to be at dinner with someone who cares more about their device than you.

3. If a single person is going in on a present with a couple who is married or dating, does the single person pay 50% and the couple pay 50% or does each individual person pay one-third?

If everyone knows the recipient equally, than everyone pays equally. But if the partner in the couple doesn't know the recipient and is really just a guest, then 50-50 might be ok. Make sure to talk about it with each other before assuming the amount.

4. How do you get out of an annoying group text conversation without insulting everyone in it?

No one wants to hear constant phone beeping when they're not interested in the chat. If there's a chance that the discussion will end soon, then just silence your phone and ignore it. But if it looks like this chain might be permanent, then it's ok to beg out. Best to send a light-hearted text, something like, "Hey all, love this group but need to get away from the phone and actually pay attention to my children! Can you remove me from the chat? Thx!"

5. Are thank you notes necessary? Do they always have to be hand-written?

Everyone appreciates a thank-you but there are varying degrees of how it needs to be said. If your friend buys you a drink for your bithday, sending a thank-you text afterwards is perfect. But if you receive more meaningful gifts, like at your wedding, graduation party or baby shower, than, yes, we still believe that hand-written notes are ideal. Email is ok for informal events if it is truly personalized. If someone spent time picking out a thoughtful (or expensive) gift for your new baby, they deserve something more than a group email saying, "Thanks for coming to my shower! Loved your gift!" 

What do you think? What questions do you have? Enter for the chance to win a $75 Amazon gift card!

#SheSpeaksEtiquette Giveaway

*One lucky contestant will be chosen at random to receive a $75 Amazon gift card. Giveaway is open through July 28th, 2019 to U.S. residents at least 18 years of age. Entrants must be a member of SheSpeaks. If you are not a member, click here to join. Winner will be notified by email.

Update: Thanks to all who entered! Congrats to our winner, SheSpeaks member beaniebaby70.

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  • superbutt By superbutt


  • jcp542 By jcp542

    There is never an excuse for not sending a thank you note especially if the gift was sent through the mail and not given to the person directly. I have stopped sending gifts to my adult grandchildren because they are never acknowledged.

  • KColeman072104 By KColeman072104

    I honestly never thought about doing Thank You notes for likes someone attending one kids birthday parties and buying them a gift or something like that. I'm going to start doing that, thank you so much for the advice!

  • aminator By aminator

    Yes, I agree with all of these. Too bad written notes seem to have gone out of style.

  • maddog74 By maddog74

    I agree with them all and wish more people would put phones down!!

  • atlmom84 By atlmom84

    in response to question one, I strongly agree that leftovers should stay with the host unless there is a ton and she wants to divide it out some way! Like making to-go plates and etc.

  • cosejo By cosejo

    agreed with the above rules of etiquette - basic consideration of others is always key. I also believe that the last serving of something on the table should not be taken without asking around if anyone else would like it.

  • amarie622 By amarie622

    1.) When hosting, is it the hosts duty to ask about dietary restrictions ahead of time? Or do the guests take note of what is being served and go from there? 2.) If the host doesn't state ahead of time what is being served and I don't eat that specific thing, should I hold onto the food or reject it altogether? 3.) If you are going to a fancy establishment and have never been there before, do you research ahead of time or is it ok to ask when you get there? :)

  • hunniebunch By hunniebunch

    #2 Yes it is rude unless it is important. I have but only if my daughter is not with me.

  • lucyvanpelt76 By lucyvanpelt76

    Why do people think it's o.k. to walk around looking down at their phones and not watching where they are going? Although I guess that's not an etiquette question as much as a common sense question!

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