DEAR MISS MANNERS: My husband has long phone conversations with his kids, cousins and siblings -- every day. They used to be regular phone calls, then he switched to speakerphone, now it’s virtual conferences during the coronavirus crisis.
I was never a part of these calls previously, but now he feels I should be chiming in, at least for a little while. I’m an introvert, not very close to his family and uncomfortable with this new normal, even with my friends and family.
Am I being rude? Should I reach out and let them know how I feel about this?
GENTLE READER: Telling them that you don’t enjoy talking with them? Yes, that would be rude at any time. During a crisis, when families feel the need to be especially close, it would be cruel.
Could you imagine saying such a thing if they were visiting in person?
Miss Manners is not condemning you to lengthy virtual gatherings. Just pop by the monitor, ask how everyone is, and assume a look of regret when you say, “I’m afraid I have to excuse myself” -- no explanation necessary or advisable.