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'No is a complete sentence'.

(31 Posts)
RoseGoldRosie Tue 13-Mar-18 18:48:59

People are often stating that this is the best thing they've learnt from mumsnet. But AIBU to think that if somebody asks you for a favour, and you just say 'no' - then you sound like a bit of a weirdo? Has anybody actually just said 'no' and refused to elaborate? If so, how did it go? grin

SpongeBobJudgeyPants Tue 13-Mar-18 18:51:01

I think it is normally suggested that if necessary you add, that doesn't work for me, or similar, on the grounds that any reason would be argued against, to get you to change your mind.

SneakyGremlins Tue 13-Mar-18 18:52:12

I think the context is important!

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Tue 13-Mar-18 18:52:48

I take it to mean that it is OK to refuse a request, without necessarily adding an apology or explanation - particularly the latter.

Lethaldrizzle Tue 13-Mar-18 18:53:33

Yes I say no to cfs

SunshineAfterRain Tue 13-Mar-18 18:54:58

I usually give an excuse / reason the first time because I feel it can come across a little bit abrupt.
If they ask again but I am a firm no only. I don't like pushy people 😂

StrawberrySquash Tue 13-Mar-18 18:55:14

It's fine if you are dealing with manipulative shits or cheeky fuckers. If a decent person has made a reasonable request that you, also quite reasonably, want to say no to, then I think you are being a bit crap.

EduCated Tue 13-Mar-18 18:56:00

I’d rather look like a weirdo than tie myself into knots trying to get out of particularly cheeky requests grin

But I do think it is more the concept that you don’t have to explain yourself, rather than saying people literally just have to stand there barking ‘no’.

FaFoutis Tue 13-Mar-18 18:56:08

yes, my dad. I went all the way to visit him (200 miles) and asked him if he was coming out for dinner with me. He said 'No'. I don't think he had been reading MN but the way it made me feel I won't be saying just 'no' to anyone in a hurry.

AllertonRoad Tue 13-Mar-18 18:56:48

Without doubt I say no more than I used to. If I was asked to go somewhere I didn’t want to go I’d agonise over it. Now I just politely decline. Same with favours too.
Made me realise I was a people pleaser far too often!

Ohyesiam Tue 13-Mar-18 18:57:48

I’ve learned to say “ No, I won’t be able to I’m afraid” or similar. No excuses or explanation. It’s never been queried.

allinclusive Tue 13-Mar-18 19:01:14

I think it's meant in the vein that you can refuse something but without explaining yourself because you feel guilty about doing so.

I have learnt to refuse in that way without bluntly saying no eg 'that's not going to be likely I'm afraid', or
'That doesn't work for me'. It was quite liberating at first.

Phosphorus Tue 13-Mar-18 19:02:07

There was actually a thread on here ages ago about this.

The OP of a thread was approached in a supermarket by a shorter person, who asked her politely if she could reach something on a high shelf.

The OP had issues , and decided on the spot that this was the time to put the MN mantra into use.

She just said 'no' and stood there, while the short person was agog at this extraordinary rudeness.

The OP couldn't understand how she'd been in any way unreasonable. grin

It was very funny.

allinclusive Tue 13-Mar-18 19:02:10

Sorry x post

ForalltheSaints Tue 13-Mar-18 19:02:48

'No thank you' is a complete sentence to me. 'No' seems a bit blunt and not appropriate in most circumstances.

ladypippa Tue 13-Mar-18 19:06:06

Just saying NO is really rude IMO.

But to say 'no I'm sorry I cannot do that' is fine. (Like without giving an excuse IYSWIM.)

If you give an excuse, (like you can't make it Monday,) then it leaves the door open for them to say 'well what about Tuesday then?'

This one time, I had a CF asking me to take her to the hospital on Friday (2 hour round trip, and approx 2 hours there, so 4 hours with her, and she was super annoying.) I said, 'er no I am busy on Friday sorry...'

So she said nothing. Just stared straight ahead. Then an hour later, I got a call saying 'hey Pippa, I have just spoken to the specialist, and they said I can re-arrange my appointment for whenever you can take me.' I was like 'oh shhhiiittt!' confused

PuppyMonkey Tue 13-Mar-18 19:07:26


LeighaJ Tue 13-Mar-18 19:07:56

My Mom asked me in regards to my husband's paternity leave and how soon after I give birth can she visit.

Mom: Can he take his 2 weeks after I leave like if I come when the babies born?
Me: No.

SmashedMug Tue 13-Mar-18 19:07:59

I take a leaf out of Phoebes book. "I could but I don't want to."

rocketgirl22 Tue 13-Mar-18 19:08:29

I go for the assertive but kind approach, as I don't want to offend my friends or hurt people.

Insistent CF get a shorter version. I am not adverse to a no when needed.

I find not being a yes person hugely liberating. My default is always I will check and get back to you.....buys me time to think whether it is something I should commit to or not

SharronNeedles Tue 13-Mar-18 19:10:42

It means you can say no without giving reasons of make excuses.
For example if someone is badgering you to have sex, you can just say no and that should be enough!

Fairenuff Tue 13-Mar-18 19:13:00

Someone at work tried very hard to get me to take on an extra responsibility which I didn't want to. I told her that she was responsible for getting someone to do it, not me. She said that was why she was asking me and I replied, "Well my answer is No."

That worked brilliantly and she immediately left me alone and did what she should have done in the first place - employed someone to do the job.

DSHathawayGivesMeFannyGallops Tue 13-Mar-18 19:18:14

I use my big "no" when I don't want to be challenged/give a crap reason or don't actually have much confidence and need to sound firmer than I feel. It's technically correct though- you shouldn't feel obliged to explain yourself to anyone, so no is a complete sentence.

I've also occasionally used it if I've been grumpy and bitchy- it really does have a disconcerting effect on people!

LoisWilkersonsLastNerve Tue 13-Mar-18 19:19:07

It's quite abrupt giving a one word answer. I prefer just saying "No. Fuck that." To cheeky requests. well more like no I'm sorry
I find saying no really hard.

SherbrookeFosterer Tue 13-Mar-18 19:24:40

Ohyesiam is spot on.

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