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Does "I'm glad we had this conversation" carry patronizing undertones? Is there an alternative that expresses gratitude after a conversation that does not carry such undertones?

E.g.

Arnold: "Wow, that was an interesting conversation about trees. Thanks! I definitely learned a lot."

Fred: "No problem! I'm [glad we had this conversation]."

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  • Perhaps, but in your example (and most examples I can think of) it is simply unnecessary. Oct 4, 2016 at 15:29
  • I'm trying to express gratitude in response to an email in which someone thanked me for clarifying an issue. I feel like I could be interpreted as upset if I don't respond.
    – Tony
    Oct 4, 2016 at 15:33
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    How about "You're welcome. I am glad I could help." Oct 4, 2016 at 15:42
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    'Patronizing' is often conveyed by tone and context. The phrase can be used in a patronizing way or not. So there is no way we can answer this. Oct 4, 2016 at 16:06

2 Answers 2

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While "I'm glad we had this conversation" may be considered condescending in certain situations, it is not necessarily so. The tone in which it is delivered generally determines the intention to the recipient, but it is not generally assumed to be condescending unless there is a reason to believe it is meant that way. If you're concerned about the tone in which it's read, an alternative such as "I'm glad we talked" or "I'm glad we discussed this" is rarely read in a condescending tone.

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It's difficult (or impossible) to read tone in an email/written form, so if the tone is very important, say it in person or over the phone; otherwise, avoid using tone in an email altogether unless the other party is close, and still use it sparingly.

For example, based on this answer so far, what am I feeling while writing this? Impossible to know for certain.

So stick to concrete terms like, "Glad I could help," as @markhubbard suggested, or explicitly say, "I enjoyed the conversation." Sign "Sincerely -X" to emphasize without being repetitive.

I'm glad we had this conversation.

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