I have an acquaintance who is unable to say "no" directly. Any conversational transaction which would lead to them saying no is redirected toward the questioner.
Is there a single word or phrase to describe them?
It's not cultural. It's a (learned?) behaviour.
Indecisive is not the word I'm looking for. Neither are these.
The use case was that someone was giving out to a group of friends, treats from a recent trip to the USA, and this person was offered a packet of sweets (Jolly Ranchers) which they don't like.
The gift was non-personal and other members of the group were happy to receive them. No rudeness would have been perceived by directly refusing the gift or taking another offering. E.g. "Sorry, I'm not into those. Someone else can have them" would have been the quickest conversational route.
Instead of saying no directly, the receiver then entered a long negotiation to refuse the item without actually saying the word "no".
This inability to say "no" directly is a repeating pattern in their interactions in general, hence the curiosity about a description.