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Top 3 Unmannerly Listener Emails of the Summer

For those of you who begged for your personal stories of rude behavior to be aired on Modern Manners Guy ... your wish is my command.

By
Richie Frieman,
September 14, 2015
Episode #356

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I leave every Modern Manners Guy episode with, “I love hearing from you, so drop me a line …” and I can’t stress how much I appreciate those of you who have reached out over the years.  I take every single email, Facebook post, DM, or tweet very seriously, and do my best to offer mannerly advice on how to rectify any improper conundrums that may be going on in your life.

However, despite every interaction being a locked vault of secrecy (I never talk about our conversations), several of you write saying, “MMG, you have to share my story!” Apparently some people want a public validation that they are not nuts, and I’m more than happy to oblige. So, with that, I’ve decided to appease those that would like their stories aired (yes, I asked for their permission) with my Top 3 Most Unmannerly Emails of the Summer.

NOTE: Names and places have been changed, but the stories are real … Oh, yes, indeed, they are real.

Tip #1: The Forever Dog Walker

Jeannie had been dating Steve for seven months, and already talked about moving in together, marriage, and even kids. So, Steve thought it would be a good idea to get a dog—as kind of “training” for a family—and purchased Bernie the Pug as his new roommate. However, since Steve’s work schedule was a bit erratic, he asked Jeannie if she could walk Bernie on Monday through Thursday, in the afternoon. She was of course happy to do so. This routine went on for a month, until Jeannie got a call from Steve (while on a business trip) and surprisingly dumped Jeannie via a short phone call between meetings. Classy, right? Amidst the tears and sobbing from Jeannie, Steve had the gall to follow up with a favor: “You can still walk Bernie during the week though, right?” Despite being heartbroken, she of agreed … and that’s when things got weird.

After her first week of walking Bernie, the newly single Jeannie avoided Steve in person, she saw on his Facebook page that he was on a beach with a new girl. After only a week? Why? Whyyyyyy? What made it worse was on the second week of still walking Bernie, she ran into the “new girl” at Steve’s house, who said, “Oh, you must be the dog walker?” Yup … let that one sink in for a bit. Needless to say, Jeannie was embarrassed and humiliated. She had been taken advantage of, and lied to by someone that now is essentially not a key figure in her life. Bernie maybe, but surely not Steve. So, what should she do?

When it comes to break ups involving pets, the rightful owner makes the final call. It may be harder at times to say goodbye to the pet but if it’s not yours then it is what it is. Or, if he agrees, Steve can give Bernie to Jeannie, but again, that’s his call. However, Bernie wasn’t the real issue here. The problem was Jeannie was “working” for Steve. Steve didn’t care if it inconvenienced her, if she had to cancel her plans to take Bernie out, or if it made her sad to see Steve’s place a few times a week. Steve, was just a selfish jerk. In this case, you have to step back, speak up, be direct, and take yourself away from the setting. Something like, “Steve, I love Bernie very much, but I only walked him for you, because we were together. That’s over now and so is the free dog walking.” It’s not rude to stand up for yourself, nor is it rude to tell someone who it taking advantage of you that you dislike them for it. Trust me, Steve knew exactly what he was doing, but he simply didn’t care. Moving on is never easy but when you’re being manipulated, it makes walking away much easier to stomach.

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