Thank You Notes – Are They Necessary?

Many months ago, I promised an acquaintance of mine that I would cover the topic of thank you notes. She was frustrated because she had given a gift to a friend or relative and didn’t ever receive a thank you note or an acknowledgement that the gift had been received. 

Emily Post addresses thank you notes here:

It’s time for me to confess. I have a stack of thank you notes sitting here. They are written out and ready to go, yet I haven’t sent them. They are notes, thanking others for the gifts they gave me at my baby shower. 11 months ago. According to Emily Post, the notes should still be sent, even if you had a chance to thank the gift giver at the party. UGH. The best gift I got at the shower was a card. It said, in part “Please don’t send me a thank you. Just enjoy your gift”.

I am very good about sending a thank you note or card when a friend or relative or anyone sends me a gift through the mail, or I receive something unexpected. I immediately sit down and write out a short note thanking them for their thoughtfulness and I mail it. I also send random notes through out the year to thank someone for their friendship or to let them know I am praying for them. I honestly have a hard time giving sincere thanks at a party and then feeling required to turn around and send a thank you note through the mail. 

Personally, when I give a gift, I give it with no strings attached. I don’t expect a thank you note and I don’t expect an acknowledgement, although I would be thrilled if I received either of those. Since my own baby shower, I have told gift recipients that I do not expect a thank you. I just want them to enjoy their gift. 

I do, however, think that you should acknowledge and thank a person for a gift received, if they were not there at the time of receipt. I choose to send cards through the snail mail, but in these days of social media, before the card is even received, I am likely to get a Facebook message asking if I have received said gift. So now, I feel like I have to jump on Facebook to acknowledge and thank for a gift AND send out a card. It’s a bit redundant, so I usually leave out the Facebook acknowledgement. 🙂 It drives my friends crazy. 

How about you? What is your opinion on this? Do you expect thank you cards or is a quick phone call, text, or social media thank you acceptable? Do you think gift recipients should send a thank you note even after a verbal thank you, in person has been given? 

3 thoughts on “Thank You Notes – Are They Necessary?

  1. I suck at sending thank you notes. I do much better by email or facebook. I just like to know that whoever I sent something to (which is rare, because I suck at mailing things as much as I suck at sending thank you notes) but I don’t expect a written thank you.

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