Post # 1
This was a big enough problem in my single days, but now that I live with FI it’s somehow even worse. We live in NYC which is very expensive to visit, so we frequently have people staying with us. Even if they aren’t there to visit us specifically. We don’t mind, as long as we have advance notice and it’s no longer than a night or two. Keep in mind, we live in a small 1 bedroom apartment with no actual bedroom door, just an opening to a spiral staircase that goes down to the bedroom so esentially there is no privacy you can hear everything that goes on.
After hosting a NYE party (which was fabulous) we were both sick and exhausted, our place was a mess. FI had plans to meet up with his cousin who was visiting from out of town at a bar on New Year’s Day. FI could barely make it out the door at 8:30pm. His cousin shows up to the bar with all his stuff in tow, but doesn’t mention anything about it. At midnight, when FI was getting ready to leave his cousin springs it on FI that he was asked by his friends to leave and needs a place to stay. Apparently they were overwhelmed or never agreed in the 1st place to let him stay all weekend. We still are a little confused.
Although annoyed that cousin did not ask us ahead of time (he clearly was planning on asking, I mean he showed up to the bar with all his stuff) we agreed to let him stay but only for the night. FI had already paid for his drinks at the bar (FI is very generous and sweet like this), we cleaned up as much as we could for him, let him spend the night then made him breakfast the next morning. Cousin showed no signs of leaving by around Noon so finally we had to awkwardly kick him out.
Cousin didn’t even say thank you and STILL didn’t make plans to cut his trip short. He lives in DC a quick and cheap bus ride from NYC, the busses leave about every hour. Of course, FI felt so guilty and kept texting him to make sure he was okay. I also feel guilty, but am annoyed by the way Cousin tood advantage of us and still made us feel guilty in the end.
Anyone else have to deal with this? How do you manage to set boundaries with guests like FI’s Cousin?
Post # 3
Oh that is so awkward. My parents overstay their welcome and DO NOT respect boundaries. Mom starts doing our laundry and when I tell her to stay out of our bedroom, she gets all offended about why she’s not allowed in there (even if DH and I are in bed, but even if we’re not in there!). She likes to rearrange furniture and makes herself so at home that it’s just like, “really? REALLY?!” She and my dad stayed at our house the days leading up to the wedding (just assumed they would, too…) and invited my aunt and her bf to stay there, too (which i said no to) and my bridesmaid and her mom. In the end, Dh and I had to get a hotel b/c we couldn’t deal. They didn’t offer to pay, either, even though they essentially booted us out and we had to buy all these extra groceries for everyone. I had a talk with my mom about boundaries in “our” house and she just didn’t get it. She kept saying there aren’t boundaries, that we’re family, and that she’s trying to help and I should be grateful she’s doing my laundry and stuff (um, which i told her NOT to do b/c she ended up ruining a pair of pants and Dh doesn’t like her touching his UNDIES!) because I don’t live clean enough to her standards essentially. She said not to worry, that it’d be a very long time before she came and visited again, but already, she and dad are planning a trip up in march.
I let them take over an extra bedroom downstairs and they brought a U-haul, complete with a california king bed, fake plants, two bedside tables, a chair, a table, dressers, accessories, and the whole nine yards. They themed my downstairs room “african safari” and have weird knick-knacks and zebra printed stuff all over. They took my generosity of “sure you can put a bed down there” (so they didn’t stay upstairs) and took advantage of it. I can’t do ANYTHING with the room b/c they’ve loaded it up so much. At some point we’ll be needing it for storage though. THey even forbade me to let my friends stay in “their” bed because its’ “theirs” but I let everyone stay down there because it’s my house, in the end, and i’m not going to make my friends sleep on th couch when there’s a perfectly good bed downstairs.
Alas, I rant. But yeah, I really hate you give a mouse a crumb and he comes back demanding a cookie
Post # 4
Wow! I totally get where you’re coming from, overstaying is a huge pet peeve of mine.
As the first people out of our friends to own a home, we have friends stay over quite a bit. One of FI’s friends used to totally take advantage of us in that regard. He used to come over to hang out with FI and then just end up sleeping on our couch, without even asking!! Then, the next day, he’d stick around as long as possible, sometimes into the late afternoon. FI felt bad because he knew this kid didn’t like living at home with his parents and was bored. But honestly… it bothered me SO much! I finally told FI he had to tell this kid he couldn’t stay over anymore. It was just happening too much and he would stay for over 24 hours (he lives 10 mins away)!
I think people just don’t think sometimes. It’s best just to be kind, but firm when it comes to telling people they can’t stay over, or that they’ve overstayed their welcome.
Post # 5
@Ejs – You sound like a saint for dealing with parents who are practically moving in! The way I see it, even if parents are helping out financially, they still don’t have the right to treat your house as if they own it.
@Blue – Ugh that sounds exactly like our problem! And you’re right, I think people just don’t think. Especially guys who aren’t in a relationship and don’t understand what it’s like to share space with someone else who isn’t just a ‘room mate’. We have had this happen several times, believe it or not. People come to visit and don’t want to leave! Even though I do enjoy having people over, it is so frustrating to rearrange my life for someone who refuses to divulge any info about a departure time.
Specifially, FI’s brother came to stay with us ‘for one night’ a few months ago. He lives in CA, so can’t go home so easily. He shows up and immediately announces he actually needs to stay the whole week, for work. I’m grinding my teeth thinking “Why doesn’t he just stay in a hotel??” since it’s for work but of course don’t say anything. It was such a nightmare, the whole week it was totally up in the air when he’d be leaving and we had to completely rearrange our lives to accomodate him.
Post # 6
omg you ladies are saints, SAINTS. I’m pretty laid back and like to be accommodating but these situations would make me CRAZY, haha. As for the cousin thing – that would happen one time. Once! Next time cousin calls, he gets a google search result link for local hotels. But EJS- the parental thing, I couldn’t deal. Good for you for not hurling them out the front door! Your hubby is a saint also 🙂
Our guests have been pretty good about everything – when the in-laws come, they fit in seamlessly. The only thing that I’d say is that they bring too much food from home or buy groceries that we already have and our fridge is stuffed and we may have to use a cooler for drinks, but that’s a good problem to have. Thankfully no one has offered to do our laundry!
Post # 7
… ejs, I’d move and not tell my parents where I moved to if they did that! That’s absolutely crazy.
I live in a 2 bedroom apartment, but the other room is just… mess and storage. I’m waiting for my mom to come up and take over!
Post # 8
we live in a 1-bedroom apt that’s not terribly small, but the pull out couch is in the main room of the apt, with an open kitchen and front door. we had a college friend of fi’s stay with us over inauguration weekend last year who i’d never met before who was awful and def overstayed his welcome! the timing was kind of off–i had just gotten back in town from a weeklong, exhausting work trip, and we got our puppy neutered since we had a 4-day weekend from work and could be home with him. the dog was way more out of it than we expected, and doesn’t deal that well with new people anyway. but this guy was just such a name-dropping, clueless, selfish bore who was not nice at all to our sick, confused pup! he had worked on the obama campaign and so had an “in” on tickets to one of the balls, and kept saying he’d give the tix to us if he could get in to a different ball. and he was trying to get in touch with some girl to take her as her date. in the end, he ended up wasting those tix and going to a different ball, and never offered them to us! even after fi drove his butt around town getting him a rental tux bc the dweeb got his locked in a dry cleaners… AND then he had the gall to stay an extra day to avoid traffic. grr….
Post # 9
@Melissa – you’re right, that’s a good problem to have! 🙂 Whenever we throw a party, we actually make sure to buy a lot of good beer, liquor and mixers b/c all guests are guaranteed to show up with a bottle of wine, drop it on the counter and head straight for the ‘good stuff’ we’ve provided. A great problem for us, since we love wine and will enjoy it afterwards, but need to make sure to have the right liquids for party guests.
@Finn – that is very annoying! I never expect guests to give us anything in return for staying, but to tease you like that and not deliver sounds kind of mean. And your poor Puppy! Sounds like that weekend was all about him since he’s so busy and important!
Post # 10
Smoke comes out of my ears. It’s a full 3 day bender of irrationality and not comprehending why people take advantage of your hospitality. I’m getting anxious (in a bad way) thinking about them coming to visit in March. I’d say that I missed having “just” an apartment, but the last time i was in an apartment, they complained about their bad backs so much they took my bed and made DH and I sleep on the futon pull out. They were paying my college back then so I obliged, unhappily
Post # 11
Oh wow. WOW! That’s just awkward all around.
@ejs: That is insane. If you have the money it may be worth your sanity to pay for your parents to stay at a nearby hotel. Or at least put a lock on the laundry and bedroom!
Post # 12
We also have a lot of guests due to living in NYC, but we’ve been really lucky so far. I think I would put up with our parents being bad guests, but anyone else would be getting kicked out if they didn’t play nice.
Post # 13
Lol i thought about that, but $60/night for multiple nights would be more than we can afford and knowing my parnets, a hotel wouldn’t be “as good” as them staying with us. THey just dont’ get why they’re an imposition. They’d be so insulted, I don’t even want to think about it!
We just pour wine every single night they are here and luckily they go to bed by 10pm or so.
Our plan for March is to have outings–things to see and do in St Louis so it’s not so overwhelming.
I’m glad i’m not the one being irrational though =]. Family-can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em!
Post # 14
girl you should totally go for long visits at their house once or twice and return each favor – maybe it’ll click? And be a little bit fun for a gag on your part! Bring the wine, too.