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How do you avoid answering specific personal questions?

(40 Posts)
fuzzkin Mon 11-Jun-18 05:43:45

I'm quite an open person - I probably over-share - but I never know how to answer certain questions.
Eg I had a good friend ask how much my house was. Also an acquaintance ask how much we are selling for (in middle of a house move) and what the new house cost. Without wanting to stealth brag we have ended up with what I consider a very expensive house so i hate telling people as we are otherwise just normal and probably don't come across as particularly well-off (I always look a mess with crap old clothes, don't go on fancy holidays etc).

My friend was asking sincerely as she had a similar job to mine and wanted to get on the property ladder. The acquaintance is lovely but quite young and naive and wouldn't know not to ask (this was in an enclosed public place). Both times I answered honestly and sort of wished I hadn't.
That's not the only example, when I was pregnant it always seemed to come up that I was having a planned c- section so people would often ask why - I didn't want to go into my previous 3rd degree tear but I didn't really know what else to say. I guess 'due to complications from my first labour' would have done but I can never think of something to say for fear of sounding rude! Also with houses I know they can just go and look on Rightmove anyway if they are that bothered!

Anyone else have this issue?

IWillSurviv Mon 11-Jun-18 05:51:37

O yes OP, you are not alone.especially when they are asked so nicely AND like you said, you don’t want to sound rude. Questions like, ‘So how much does it pay? I.e your salary. What were your ds’ s results? Mid conversation about A’level choices,, in this case I said well enough to get the subjects he wanted, but same person persisted in asking again.

Hoping some very assertive miners come along soon.

LuMarie Mon 11-Jun-18 05:51:45

Respond «Personal reasons»

Or «we’ll see»

Or to the home cost «I don’t recall exactly «

Or in general «Oh that’s a personal question !»

I hate intrusive questions and yes I get them on all subjects every day. They are very rude so I’m fine shutting down a conversation with polite non-answers.

LuMarie Mon 11-Jun-18 05:54:38

What were your kids results?

Really good thanks, that’s their business though of course.

(Yes assertive I can do!)

“You really shouldn’t ask people that!” IIn a friendly way also works when the questions are really stupid and intrusive

IWillSurviv Mon 11-Jun-18 05:54:45

On the planned c-section, I would either not have told them about any of it in the first place OR just say, ‘oh it was recommended’.

L0UISA Mon 11-Jun-18 05:59:50

If you are going to go on over sharing then you need to learn to use more polite non answers, as LuMarie suggests.

Or just stop over sharing .

But if you go on explaining all the details of your finances, medical care, sex life and family problems, then don’t be suprised if people ask for more detail.

Remember than while you think you are “ an open person “, others might think you are bragging or being attention seeking.

teewee Mon 11-Jun-18 06:04:29

I understand most of these are very intrusive but chatting about exam results is normal isn't it? I wouldn't think that was a personal question.

LuMarie Mon 11-Jun-18 06:15:02

Exam results - asking how did they get on is not rude, it can be just caring how they are and that’s what’s going on in their life, can answer good thank, happy thank you.

Wanting the actual grades, too much. That is their business.

IWillSurviv Mon 11-Jun-18 06:15:04

Teewee -

Friend -“SP what subjects is iwillsurvivjnr doing?
Me - oh he’s doing XYZ
What did get for his GCSEs - Well, well enough to be accepted doing XYZ
Friend - But what did he get?

(Another nosy parent at ds2’s school).

nosy parent - We’re thinking of sending DD to iwillsurvivjnr’s school
Me - It’s a lovely school, she’ll love it.
Nosyparent - So what subjects is ds1 doing for his A’levels?
Me - he’s doing XYZ
Nosy - he must’ve done really well what did he get?
Me - he got very good results and is happy there.
Nosy - but what? what did he get?

SodTheGreenfly Mon 11-Jun-18 06:22:34

Why do people bother asking about house prices? It's all on right move.

TakeawayTakeMeAway Mon 11-Jun-18 06:24:29

“Why do you ask?” smile

teewee Mon 11-Jun-18 06:24:58

Of course, like anything I suppose it's the way it's asked and insistence you answer a direct question. Thanks for clarifying

Vitalogy Mon 11-Jun-18 06:25:46

I've had the house question, then thought, what the heck, they can look it up and find out anyway.
I use the deflection and throw back same question to them sometimes. Say I don't know. If I don't know them well I'd say that's private/personal. I know it's more awkward with people you know better though. People!

0lwen Mon 11-Jun-18 06:28:56

When I was living in England I used to say ''oooh is this the charming English reserve we hear about back home?!"

Now I opt for ''I think I misheard. I thought you asked me what age I was, ha ha"

soulrider Mon 11-Jun-18 06:29:15

Why do people bother asking about house prices? It's all on right move

Equally, why bother to be coy about it, when it's publicly available information anyway

0lwen Mon 11-Jun-18 06:30:15

My Dad was funny about me telling people how much I paid for my house but I'd rather they heard from me than were off to look it up on the property price register. That one doesn't bother me for some reason.

Vitalogy Mon 11-Jun-18 06:30:50

Why do you ask?” That's a good one. What ever they say the reason for asking is, just respond with silence, hopefully they'll get the message, if they push it after that it's rudeness, so back at um.

Ohyesiam Mon 11-Jun-18 06:33:29

I didn’t know exam results were a personal question. I’ve heard people share them loads. I suppose it reinforces the disappointment if they did badly, but it’s not gping to get worse for saying it.

Sleephead1 Mon 11-Jun-18 06:34:02

I think it's just personal I don't consider those really personal questions and have no problem answering but if you don't want to I think that's perfectly fine you could just come up with a stock phrase ready for next time you are asked. Some people will discuss sex, periods, conception ECT some people don't want to discuss anything they consider personal and both are fine it's just in my opinion personal and as long as they respect that other people may / may not want to discuss I think that's fine

onceisawabee Mon 11-Jun-18 06:34:10

I'm guilty of asking these sorts questions blush

InfiniteSheldon Mon 11-Jun-18 06:34:56

House values, selling prices are a staple topic of conversation here in the SE mainly in tones of shock and horror. I don't know a single one of my friends, colleagues acquaintances that wouldn't discuss both sale and purchase totally openly. I would have also discussed my dc's exam results without a qualm they worked bloody hard and deserve all the praise they can get.

lljkk Mon 11-Jun-18 06:36:08

Zoopla would say what you paid for the house.
right move will list the current price.
Humour can deflect things. "Vaginal birth was too much like hard work!!"
(house price) Bought for "Too much" & "Not as much as I'd like!" selling price now.

"DD has banned me from talking about her" would cover the exam results question, in my case. smile

SamSmithYawnsWhenHeSings Mon 11-Jun-18 06:37:11

'I would prefer not to say'

hildabaker Mon 11-Jun-18 06:43:00

I'm better at it than I used to be, but I too hate nosy, intrusive questions. It seems to me that often, the person asking is rude, insensitive and will share your private information around.

hildabaker Mon 11-Jun-18 06:43:33

I mean I'm better at deflecting than I used to be! grr

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