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by Abigail Van Buren

Neighbor Is Miffed When Gift Card Goes Unacknowledged

DEAR ABBY: A few months ago, new neighbors moved in next door. They have been very nice and helpful. I work a lot, so they have done things like grab packages or take care of little things like bringing in my trash can.

I have thanked them many times, but three weeks ago I decided to do something extra special. I bought a lovely thank-you card and put a $100 restaurant gift card inside. I knocked on their door and handed it to the husband.

Abby, I haven't received any type of thank-you from them. I don't want to seem petty, but part of me is hurt by their lack of acknowledgment. They have my number, and I'm obviously home at a certain hour of the day. Do you think that because they helped me out, they felt they deserved my gift and a thank-you wasn't necessary? I am at the point where I no longer want them to do anything for me. Am I being petty, or do I have a right to feel hurt? -- UNAPPRECIATED IN NEW YORK

DEAR UNAPPRECIATED: Yes, you are being petty. You are essentially bemoaning not getting a thank-you for a thank-you. Your neighbors may not have said anything because they were overwhelmed by your generosity. The next time you see the husband or the wife, ask if your display of gratitude may have made them uncomfortable. But in the interest of good relations, please stop judging them as harshly as you have.

Read more in: Friends & Neighbors | Etiquette & Ethics