Reading the query, below I love the columnist’s advice and share it with you in its entirety. I am a firm believeryou don’t have to impress your true friends. I always find it best to be honest, as being opening about your finances will perhaps allow others to feel comfortable enough to do the same. I personally always like to invite friends for walks. The activity is free, and most people just want to catch up. Plus, many individuals are more open to sharing if they don’t have to make direct eye contact with you. Albeit those times that I must meet for meals I try to be considered and pick a place with a happy hour, an inexpensive late night dining option, or a wonderful dessert menu.
Q: I was invited to a friend’s birthday dinner. We’re not close, but we see each other in group settings. The restaurant she chose is a notoriously expensive sushi place. But we’re all in our early 20s. I think it’s unreasonable for her to expect us to shell out so much for her birthday. (Plus, we don’t let honorees pay for their meals, so we’d incur even more expense.) Is it O.K. to bail on this party? I don’t want to make up an excuse, but I don’t want to tell her I’m not coming because of money either. Help! –ANONYMOUS
A: Let me get this straight: You don’t want to tell the truth, and you don’t want to lie. (Are you under the impression that I have magical powers?) It is never wrong to say: “Thanks for inviting me! But I’m on a budget and can’t afford to come.”
Here, your reluctance to speak honestly allows the birthday girl to persist in her mistaken belief that her friends can (or want to) spend upward of $100 on sushi in her honor. How will she learn the truth if you don’t say something?