“I don’t recall ever feeling they were rude. But I definitely thought they didn’t like small talk. I assumed it was because I was English – or if I was speaking to a man, it was that I was a woman.”
That got quite a good discussion going at the time. So I decided it might make a good video as well. That just went up (see bottom of post). I also wanted to share some of the many interesting responses.
Like on the original post, the video has been getting some great comments. People’s opinions seem to be mixed, but with many leaning to the more neutral or positive ideas that Amish are “polite”, “quiet”, “blunt”, “nice”, “distant”, and “direct”.
Are the Amish Rude? Your Experiences
Here’s a sampling of viewer comments suggesting a wide variety of experiences:
@dellabryan4768 • 17 hours ago
Any Amish I’ve talked with have been nice. They are direct, but pleasant.
@sharonholmes2470 • 10 hours ago
Short and to the point. Our experience in Lancaster, PA.
@kagnewmp12 • 16 hours ago
As I am approaching my fourth year of being an Amish driver I can relate to what you are saying. I have noticed some of my riders can spend most of the drive without a single word till they ask me what my charge is.
I’ve had riders that started out as very quiet but as they come to know me better they are much better at talking with me about a wide variety of subjects.
@joycel242 • 4 hours ago
They are not rude; they get to the point without a lot of unnecessary conversation. People don’t understand that the Amish have a living to make and every minute counts.
@nathanyoder2379 • 16 hours ago
Interesting! I’m no longer Amish but when I was a part of the culture I used to speak at several local colleges about once a year. One of the topics was titled “Are the Amish Rude?”
Funny story – my Amish ministers and friends were curious about what I had to say about Amish being rude. In a discussion one Sunday after lunch I mentioned that Amish often abruptly end a conversation simply by walking away.
My friends all laughed and within the next 5 minutes two of the people in the conversation demonstrated that very thing. For those still in the conversation it suddenly became real to them.
@mo-rfd • 14 hours ago
My husband rides his bicycle frequently through the Amish community near our home. The Amish always wave as a greeting but never call out “hello.” My husband feels they are more comfortable with the “silence” of nonverbal communication.
@fransak2723 • 5 hours ago
We live amongst the Amish in southern Lancaster county. They always wave when they go by or when you pass them but seldom stop to visit. We have come to the conclusion that we will never be true “friends” just neighbors.
Amish businessmen do not seem to want to deal with me but would rather deal with my husband. We were parked next to an Amish transport van yesterday and the young Amish woman opened the door and hit our mirror, she never said a word of apology, just proceeded to the store.
@RockinRavenVA • 16 hours ago
Can confirm the one-word requests at the dinner table! It was disconcerting at first, but now I mumble “buttah” or “kaes” (cheese) just like everyone else.
@michaelnoble8098 • 15 hours ago
Our local Amish community is Swiss (their term) and leans more toward Schwartzentruber culture. I have two different ways of interacting with the families.
Those folks I’ve known and worked with my whole life are family to me. We are very open and “chatty” across generations. Those folks I don’t know as well are more reserved and so I follow their lead. Their level of comfort with English varies and I think that is a factor in the ease of communication.
I also have learned not to address the lady of the house directly unless she addresses me. I try to be conscious of social norms they prefer to hold so I’m not rude or unwittingly creating discomfort for my Amish neighbors.
@angieb7733 • 9 hours ago
I sometimes work with Amish families in their homes to provide services for their children who have disabilities. They have always been friendly and hospitable and have not been curt or “impolite”. I enjoy spending time with them. They are no-nonsense, though, and want to get things done. I can appreciate that.
@Douglas4936 • 16 hours ago
The more modern ones seem to be friendlier. The Swartzentrubers less so.
@zelphx • 14 hours ago
“Blunt”, but not “rude”. Even then, most Amish I have interacted with were not that way. MANY are quite amiable… In their way.
There are many more, but that gives you an idea. Check out the video below, or if you prefer, read the original article here.