Why no thank-you note, grads?

  • Article by: MELISSA COHEN SILBERMAN
  • Updated: July 21, 2014 - 6:25 PM

Just one of the many graduates we gave gifts to has responded with handwritten gratitude.

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Graduation card

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This summer has been the busiest in our lives with graduation celebrations. We don’t have kids, but we’ve been honored to celebrate with others. I was born in 1953, and my parents taught me to write well-written, cursive thank-you notes almost immediately after receiving lovely gifts, for any occasion. This year, my husband and I have given numerous and generous monetary gifts as well as some custom items we knew our friends’ children would appreciate for their college years.

To date, we have received only one beautiful handwritten thank-you note. One! To us, an e-mail thank-you is worthless. Anyone can push a few keys and hit “send.” If you cared enough to send us a photo invite, you should know our home address. Is buying a stamp that difficult? And please don’t even try to explain that “there isn’t enough time.”

I am appalled. Graduations happened in June. It is now July 21. School supplies and college dorm furniture is being purchased. For many, school starts in one month.

I know parents are busy, but too busy to teach their children manners — manners that will carry them through life? I know the kids are busy. But through the summer, they still have time to talk with friends, “hang out,” and play video games and sports.

Expressions of gratitude and appreciation will be just as vital through college, work and beyond. I know they carried me a long distance during my very successful career.

Is spending 15 minutes on a personalized note asking too much?

My husband and I don’t “give” anything in return for huge amounts of gratitude. But recognition that we invested considerable time, effort and hard work for the monetary gifts and other items we gave would be nice.

Melissa Cohen Silberman lives in Golden Valley.

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