Open Thread

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This open thread is your space to use as you like. We invite you to discuss current and traditional etiquette. Feel free to ask questions of each other and the community moderators here.


  1. Marie

    Our daughter had a destination wedding(Europe) the fall of 2013….the videos and albums have finally arrived and we would like to host an open house for aquaintences, friends and family to view. How should I word the invitation? It would be a Saturday afternoon affair. Of couse, beverages (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) and finger foods will be provided. We expect between 40 to 60 guests. How do I share the albums and videos with our guests? Do I just leave the video run throughout the afternoon or do I specify a time for viewing? Do I leave the albums scattered throughout the family and living rooms? Would like this to carry some of the elegance and old world atmosphere that was emitted at the wedding.

  2. Benjamin

    Hi there, I started a new position in an office of a hospital and was unsure of the thing to do regarding e-mails and professional titles. In our office, all the staff (physicians and nurses) are addressed using their first names, unless we are conversing with patients. When I e-mail a physician I have not met, I always address them as “Dr. …”. Yet, what should I do when the physician replies and signs using a first name (e.g., “Best, John”). In my reply, should I use “John” or “Dr.”? Thank you!

    • Winifred Rosenburg

      Both ways are actually correct. The physician has indicated by signing with just his first name that you can call him by his first name so you are free to do so. However, if you do not feel comfortable calling him by his first name, you can continue to call him “Dr. Last Name” until he explicitly says “Please call me John.”

  3. Christopher

    I went on a date 2 weeks ago and while it did not end poorly, I did not show promise of advancing to anything more significant. At the end of our date, he asked when he could see me again. I told him to text me as I was not completely comfortable communicating my disinterest. Since then, we have been texting and he has made suggestions for the 2nd date. I do not want to appear rude, but I do not see us being involved in any other way than friendship. What is the proper way to communicate this with him? Should I accept another date or should I tell him via text? I would be perhaps interested in staying friends, but I have heard that does not often bode well. Thank you!

    • Alicia

      You stop leading the guy on. You should not be dating if you can not say at the conclusion of date where you are not interested ” Thanks for a nice time but I don’t see us as a match I hope you find someone wonderful.”
      Since you led him on by asking him to text to schedule a new date and do not want to go on a new date you say this via text. Text him now ” You are so nice for trying to set up another time but I do not see us dating. Thank you” But stop leading people on it is not nice. If not interested say not interested but say it in a polite way.
      Basically the formula is:
      1. do not blame them blame the chemistry between you to be lacking.
      2. Say thanks for the date/time
      3. Say clearly that you do not want to do it again.

  4. Pam

    My MIL calls to remind us about upcoming birthdays as well as to send thank you’s. (Sometimes for reciprocal gifts!)
    How do we tell her politely to back off since we have not missed any and usually follow up a card with a phone call?
    Also, what is the protocol for thank you’s when a couple has exchanged a similar value present during the holidays?
    Thank you!

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