I’m a chronic social committer.
If I make plans with someone, I stick to them, barring a natural disaster or me ending up in hospital (which has actually happened… often).
But while I always follow through on my plans whenever humanly possible, I’ve noticed other people… don’t.
And the disturbing part is, it’s becoming more and more common.
A quick scroll through Instagram usually turns up at least one meme which reads something like: “I can’t wait to make plans so I can cancel them.”
Um, rude much?
Since when did it become not only socially acceptable, but cool and supposedly funny to bail on people?
I get it, we’re all increasingly busy, and most days, we’re too exhausted to even commando crawl from the couch to the comfort of our bed, but if you make plans with someone, you should absolutely stick to them.
I’ve even pulled up friends who are notorious for cancelling our plans.
Just recently, I sent a friend a message saying, “I understand you’re tired, but this is actually the third time in a row that you’ve cancelled on me, and I actually find it really rude and disrespectful.”
It really helped her to see things from my perspective, because it honestly hadn’t crossed her mind that I was being affected by her persistent bailing.
It was especially annoying, because she’d often send me a text message half an hour before we were due to catch up on a Saturday night.
I know sometimes there’s nothing more you’d rather do than go home and watch Netflix under a blanket, especially when the weather is cold and wet. But if you’ve made plans with someone, at the very least you should put in an appearance.
Even if you need to downsize your plans – sometimes you just can’t afford or deal with a night out clubbing, so make plans to grab a coffee instead.
Just show up though.
And if you don't think you're going to want to go out on Tuesday night after a full day of work, then don't say yes to begin with.
This is a conversation I'm always having with my sister, who as much I love, will often seriously think about cancelling plans with people.
"You can't cancel! If you've made a commitment, you need to stick to it," I'll often tell her.
This usually elicits an eye roll from her, but I don't care. Cancelling is just rude.
It's especially rude if someone has paid for you to be somewhere and you just don't turn up.
In December, I attended a friend's graduation dinner in the city.
He very generously wanted to take his friends out for dinner at his expense to celebrate.
Twelve people didn't show up on the night, and because it was a set menu, the restaurant told him he'd have to pay for their meals anyway... at $69 a head. He would have been $828 out of pocket - not okay.
Despite this, he was reluctantly prepared to pay up, but I thought it was sh*tty of the restaurant and even sh*ttier of his friends - all of who had RSVPd 'yes', only to not show up on the night.
I went into full "I'd like to talk to a manager" mode and argued that while I understood the restaurant had expenses to cover, it was unfair that my friend should have to pay - quite literally - for his rude and inconsiderate friends, who he had zero control over.
The restaurant agreed to only charge him for six of the people who didn't show up instead of all 12, and the rest of us who were there all pooled some of our own money together so he wouldn't be stuck with a huge bill at the end of the night.
And it's not just a local phenomenon either.
I lived in Los Angeles for a year, and people are notoriously bad for keeping plans there, too.
I soon discovered that when someone says, "Let's grab dinner next Thursday," it usually translates to, "I may or may not text you in six months to let you know how busy I've been."
How did we get like this?
Nobody likes to be cancelled on, so before you cancel on someone, think about how it feels to be on the receiving end.
Not cool, people.