Is He Wrong Or Am I Right?

This morning I was putting pop in our refrigerator.  For you East coast dwellers you may refer to is as ‘soda’.   But it’s actually pop.

I had set a can on the floor to put in my lunch box.  And in the process of doing that I kicked it over.  No big deal.  However.  Kind Husband that I have, he picked it up and put it in my lunch box for me.

Very nice, tiny little gesture.

That I appreciated.

So I said “thank you”.

And in return…..I got crickets.   As in – the sound of crickets could be heard in the silence that I heard in return.

The silence in place of “you’re welcome”.

I had come full circle.  My children would not say “you’re welcome” either.

It is like fingers on a chalkboard to me.  That silence left hanging after a thank you.

So, as I often do in conversations with my Husband.  Or, in the absence of conversations with my husband.  I said out loud “you’re welcome honey, it was nothing”.    And I followed that up with “well it was just nice.  I appreciate the little things you do.”   Because he is, after all, pretty darn perfect as a husband.  But a few times a week I play out a conversation, speaking both my part and what I imagine my husband would say if he wasn’t so busy not responding.

Husband just stares blankly at me.  For a very long pause.  Another of his traits.  He calls this “thinking”.   But apparently he wasn’t this time because he said  “I don’t think that a thank you was necessary.  It was not an action deserving of a thank you.”

What I heard  him say was “you’re an idiot for saying thank you in the first place and it didn’t deserve a ‘you’re welcome’.”

So I told him that ‘s what I heard him say.

Silence again.  I knew what he was up to.   He wanted to prove that I was wrong and he was right.

A full scale discussion followed with him saying a thank you that was not necessary does not require a “you’re welcome” and me sticking by my guns that a “thank you” expressed for a kindness appreciated does deserve a “you’re welcome”.

The fact remains he never says “you’re welcome”.   I sometimes get a “hmmm”.  Or the kids greatest response was always “yeah”.

I suppose the question is….if someone is grateful enough to say ‘thank you’, whether you the receiver of the ‘thank you’ believe your action deserved a ‘thank you’ or not…. do you or do you not respond with ‘you’re welcome’?

Or do you leave the thanker hanging….in that ever so silent world of believing the thanker to be an idiot for thanking you to begin with?

Thank you for reading.  (Saw that coming didn’t you?)

110 thoughts on “Is He Wrong Or Am I Right?

  1. 😀 You’re welcome.

    And yep, you were totally in the right. 🙂 I do the “fake conversations” thing with my hubby, too… he’s another one of those silent thinkers. 🙂

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    • I hope everyone saw the humor in this. 🙂 It’s interesting because I still can’t figure out his ‘thinking’ method. The fake conversation usually gets a chuckle from at least one of us. 😉

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      • Yep, sometimes I can’t tell if Dave’s thinking about the topic or moved onto something else entirely, which is why I go forth into fake conversation mode. 🙂 Like you guys, it makes someone laugh, though it’s anyone’s guess which one of us will laugh first. 😀

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  2. Silence is so much louder than words and holds a great deal of power. Living with a silent spouse can be very frustrating. I’m going to side with you on this one. A simple “you’re welcome” is not too much to ask. It should be a natural response to “thank you”. Being thankful for anything, whether it be large or small is never idiotic. I’ve done the two sided conversations too. It’s my way of expressing my frustration without specifically voicing it.

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    • Your understanding comes across so loudly! 😉 The silence is huge. When something is said and nothing is said in response. He used to tell me “but you didn’t ask a question”. Sometimes he hears my “conversation” and will repeat what I say in his ‘place’. I tell him it’s too late! 🙂 We’ll see what he thinks after reading the responses. Or we’ll see what he thinks when I carry on this conversation for him!!

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    • Ah Duncan, at least a response!!!! It used to make my blood boil a bit when the kids would say “yeah”. Not sure why. Maybe it’s the old habit of manners taught by my parents and grandparents. From what I’m reading it does appear to be an American trait…. though I’m loving the differences.

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  3. I would have acknowledged it somehow, even if it was just “sure” or “no prob”.

    I am also guilty of the “filling in the conversation” depending on the person and situation.

    You’re welcome (for reading this) 🙂

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    • 🙂 I almost said “thank you” again which could have started a never ending loop.

      Acknowledging it just seems kinder. I am getting a bit of an emotional boost knowing I am not the only one who does the ‘filling in the conversation’ thing.

      🙂

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  4. On this side of the world people don’t say ‘You’re welcome’, they don’t say ‘thank you’ either, mostly people just say ‘cheers’ and the ‘you’re welcome’ is just implied, especially if you know the person, but this could be a uniquely Irish thing.

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  5. Sometimes….I even say “you’re welcome” to people I am certain must have had a mouth full of food or are mute…because I KNOW they REALLY wanted to say it 🙂 A appreciation is always welcome 🙂 …..and I know that silent stare/thinking 🙂

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    • Ha! I have done that often enough! Uttering “you’re welcome”s to those not appreciating a kindness shown them!!!!!

      That silent stare, “thinking” is oft times chuckled at. And oft times the prompt of a one sided conversation on my part. At least then I get a change in his eye brows or something. 😉

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  6. So in your scenario you’re an idiot for saying thank you and I’m an idiot for not saying you’re welcome. In my mind you gave an unrequired thank you which doesn’t require a you’re welcome and neither of us is an idiot. I win.

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    • Ok so now I might avoid the snog and smile and open the can and dump it into your shoe and smile and say oh you are so welcome honey, have a great day!!!

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        • Mr. BikeBrown….you cannot determine for “me” what I feel is a required thank you. If someone shows me the slightest kindness (and I only use measurement because you have expressed the possibility of a scale here) I have the option to be thankful. And I choose thankfulness. I suppose I should not expect a response, but common courtesy taught to me in my childhood says I “can” expect a response. It would be your choice to accept my thanks or not. From some of the responses (on FB as well) I have concluded that I should not expect from you in return. 😉

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  7. ahhh expectations and stubborntudes!!!

    to know that i love the little things the words and to sometimes say them anyways….which is a gift and which is a denial of the self? lol

    Hey I have an idea! If you grin and then wrap your arms round his head and put your forehead on his forehead and whisper how special you find the little things and then kiss him your appreciation…his mouth will be busy and you won’t feel slighted and he won’t have to say anything!!

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    • Thank you Jaded!!!!!! 🙂 He is truly the most wonderful husband ever. So this is a minor thing that doesn’t even cause a ripple. It’s a matter of differences. I truly was taught the please/thank you/you’re welcome “rules” and it’s just something I expect. And he does say it, when he hears me, and is paying attention (you know how we sometimes just don’t hear one another….. 😉

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  8. Not replying ‘You’re welcome’ is as bad as leaving somebody hanging on a high-five, low-five, or good, old-fashioned handshake. It’s not for the receiver to judge the worthiness of the words. That’s up to the giver. So there, Colleen’s husband and kids!

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  9. You’re welcome Colleen! I feel like it’s necessary to say “you’re welcome,” especially if the deed deserving of thanks was a momentous one. I suppose it’s okay to let it slip every now and then but not too often. I hope this error of communication resolves itself within your household!

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    • 🙂 Thank you Thomas. It is okay to let it slip. Heaven knows my errors are more momentous than this. And it is resolved. He enjoyed the run of this. I even ran it by him last night to make sure I had the wording right. Close enough we agreed! 🙂

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  10. He is wrong.

    I have a person I deal with on a daily basis whom I regularly thank for little things and his response is “for what”. Well excuuuse me for being polite. :/

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  11. You are so welcome, I like reading what you have to say. I use this analogy a lot, but the cricket sound in our relationship is when my husband is pondering over his response. It’s like the proverbial “does this make my butt look big”? I also have the one sided conversations–especially if the television is on. 🙂 As far as my kids…I’m pretty sure they say you’re welcome, but I haven’t paid attention. At least I know they say thank you, so I know half of the lesson was taught, and learned. 🙂

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    • 🙂 I love this home life picture of yours APril….it seems SO familiar.

      He has used the “you didn’t ask a question” excuse for not replying. To which I have to explain the dynamics of “conversation”. And the “I’m thinking”. I have “said” something to him before, to which he doesn’t respond, so I wander off in boredom while waiting a response. He has responded HOURS later to something I said and I have NO idea what he’s talking about. In his defense his answers often show he has put thought in to them. But instead of leaving me hanging couldn’t he say “let me think about that” or “okay, I heard you”. Or….. 😉

      I had to laugh when you wrote “but I haven’t paid attention” regarding if your kids say “you’re welcome”. We all do that tuning out thing.

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      • Men *eye roll* – they are odd creatures to figure out. 😀

        My kids came up with the name Momillo so that I would pay attention to them in a crowd. When there are a bunch of kids around, they all seem to say Mom in the same exact tone. Either that, or we are programmed to respond to Mom, no matter which kid is trying to get our attention.

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  12. My mom does the same thing! Doesn’t think she deserves the gratitude. I think they should say you’re welcome 🙂 It’s the receiver of the kindess’ job to decide whether it’s worthy of thanks!

    Here in the South-East we call soda/pop “Coke” 🙂

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  13. I agree with you Chatems. My Hubby though goes silent when he owes me an apology. He never says “I’m sorry” when he owes it but he’s constantly apologizing for things that aren’t necessary. I tell him I collect all the necessary ones for the times when they are necessary. This is funny between us accept when he owes me a “sorry.” lol

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  14. In a perfect world, we’d talk gratitude, listen with compassion, give thanks where it’s deemed and yup a “you’re welcome” would slip into it all. In the real world, that humans inhabit, I don’t like to “should” all over myself or someone else. We are who we are, habits and all, buttons pushing and all, both right and wrong or perhaps neither in this ever changing drama of life.

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  15. I’d say your right, he’s wrong. With one exception- It is absolutely Soda. But since I don’t like to fight, I’m willing to compromise, as I’ve done with many bi-coastal relations, and settle on Soda Pop.

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  16. You’re welcome. And you’re right. Except for the pop thing. It’s soda. 😉
    Years ago I read an article explaining manners to children so I had to go find the quote I saved from it. Here you go:

    “‘Please’ is a recognition that the world doesn’t owe you anything; that there is a loving mercy at work whenever someone shares their resources with you; and that you understand and honor your benefactor’s boundaries, as well as the fact of his or her gift. “Thank you” is the fundamental expression of gratitude — whether it’s to Mommy for giving you a plate of cookies, or Mother Earth for sustaining your every breath. “You’re welcome” is a gracious statement that you are willing to share whatever you have whenever your own needs and boundaries permit, and thus participate in the quid pro quo of community life.” ~Sara Reeder

    She called these basic manners a coded language of service, honor, and gratitude.

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    • I love this! Absolutely love this. Though I think I have come to a conclusion that my expectations should really be based on what “I” have control over. I love this quote and expect myself to heed this type of code. I do believe Husband has the same philosophy….he just applies it differently. 🙂 And I’m good with that. How can I be anything but, considering he lets me use him as fodder for my writing?

      Ah…you say soda, I say pop, someone else says “coke”. And I think other places may say things like “fizzies”. 🙂

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      • I have to agree with you, CM, about expectations. We can’t (and I wouldn’t want to) control someone else, or how they perceive and/or practice things. My husband’s idea of a “you’re welcome” is usually a nod. As for the soda debate…lol!… I’ve used both since I’ve lived on the East Coast and in the Midwest. I’m an East Coaster (that sounds like something I’d put my pop on…lol!) now so I’m back to soda. 😀

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  17. Colleen, thank you is very rare today … if you hold up the door for somebody and they just walk by …. with saying a word.
    I don’t know who is right or wrong here – I would probably would have said … no, big deal or my pleasure.
    After all is it the gesture that counts … and not if he gives a replay on your thank you.

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  18. Colleen, I was taught from day one some basis rules, when addressing a woman you say “yes or no Ma’am” age is not a factor. The same rule applies when responding to a male, “Yes or No Sir” depending on the answer, again age wasn’t an issue. Another base line rule the was drummed into me was in response to “Thank You” you always repeat always responded “Your Welcome,” Mom even took it a step further, it didn’t matter if the “Thank You” was sincere or not, she taught us that the “Your Welcome” we gave had always better be sincere, else she would know and she wouldn’t be happy/ So having said that I am on your side 1000 percent on this one, Take care, Bill — ps on this pop vs. soda issue, how far east and north do you have to be. I was raised in Kentucky, in Louisville, it was either pop or soda, and we could figure it out no matter which word you used. it really wasn’t that hard. But down at grandpa’s in south central KY, it was POP pure and simple. But I am smart enough to figure it out either way. Take care, Bill

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    • Oh my! I never considered the boundaries for pop vs. soda! I laughed, I did. I can figure out which it is no matter what it’s called.

      And poor Husband, he was gracious enough to not be upset about me writing this…. he does have manners. Unless he’s preoccupied thinking about something else. 😉

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  19. good read…..great question too….being wiling to do something for someone is only one part of our acknowledgment of each other…..saying “you’re welcome” is like a promise to that person that you would be willing to do it again…. 🙂

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  20. First of all, what he is doing touching the pop? MY husband knows better than to touch THE POP! (even is he was doing something nice)
    Second, Do you say thank you for EVERY nice gesture? I am not thinking appropriate thoughts here, but bring this up because that would kind of be weird if you said Thank you for EVERYTHING. And if you did not say thank you for nice gestures, than does that imply it was not a nice gesture? Then…
    Third, YOU ARE RIGHT! No matter what, you said it and it deserves a reply-

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  21. I can not imagine when being polite was unacceptable. I think it might be nit-picking to analyze every word someone says, the reason being politically correct has gotten so tough – no one knows what is correct to say any more.

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  22. I did not have time to read the comments but when my children were young I managed to get them to say “You’re welcome.” Later, due to popular demand, culture dictating, they would answer, “No problem.” I did not try to deter them from this, since like you I would not like hearing ‘crickets’ or no answer at all! I ‘picked my battles’ as a mother. Now, I recently have been doing a different thing, when someone thanks me, I sometimes say “Oh, it was nothing.” I suppose this is kind of rude? I am not sure. But I can tell you this, I have been married 3 times, discussions like these ensued on all kinds of stuff. I think being raised by a teacher, I had some ‘better’ manners than the ones who had different mothers. Or maybe it is just men!! Smiles!

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    • I loved all of the different feedback on this post. And I would bounce back and forth between being validated (yay me) and then humbled (because his actions were kind and even if his words aren’t always there his heart is). It’s so incredible how we each see the world in a different way, and learn from one another’s perspective. I don’t mind the “no problem” or “oh it was nothing”. 🙂 I like words!

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