Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Is She Being Too Friendly?

Hello Terry,

I get your emails and find them informative. This may help other women experiencing the same thing I am experiencing:

I'm the new (been here 5 years now but nothing has changed no matter what I do...running out of ideas) single woman in the cul-de-sac.

Despite being friendly to everyone:

-bought and carried 200 tulip bulbs from Amsterdam for married neighbour no.1
-beautifully bagged 2 baby outfits with a card and large teddy bear for married neighbour no.2 right after their baby was born--handed it to the wife with congrats--and never saw anything on the child.
-baked welcome cookies and presented them to new married neighbour no.3
-presented cookie platter to married neighbour no.4 for Christmas with a card and thanking her son for removing snow from the front of my house.

You get the idea. It's not reciprocated at all.

Anyway, pretty much I am being friendly, but the women are a nightmare. They seem to think I want their husbands even though, since I have been here, I have had two very fit, handsome, and steady boyfriends.

I am writing this mail because a woman was walking a small dog in the cul-de-sac, whom I had never seen before so I politely asked her which house they belonged to. She pointed it out and I said, "Oh, the Christmas house" (they have nice decorations. I have nice decorations too).

And she asked where I live so I also pointed it out. Her response was: "Oh, you say hello to my husband." So, I replied "I say hello to whoever happens to be outside, and you are the first female I have seen outside this house."

End of conversation. She went inside.

Any thoughts?

-Good Neighbor

Hi, Neighbor-

This is a tough one. It's unfortunate your efforts at being friendly went unappreciated.

In the future, I'd wave and smile at your neighbors, but let it go at that. Since the beautiful gifts you brought went unacknowleged, I'd think twice about extending myself too much the next time a new family moves in. Again, wave and smile, but keep moving. When you come across a husband, definitely wave, smile, and keep moving.

From now on, let your neighbors seek you out. I wouldn't initiate conversations. If one of the women says to you, "You say hello to my husband," make a point of being casual and responding, "Yes, I do. I've always admired the way you decorate your house, and you seem like a very nice couple. Well, I'd better run now," and be off.

This bland response will ensure you don't come off sounding defensive. You'll have complimented her twice -- about her taste and seeming like a nice couple. She probably won't argue with you.

Nobody knows what goes on in these people's houses, so it's possible the women's lack of friendliness has nothing at all to do with you. Spend your time cultivating friendships with people who have better manners.


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