I have two small hills...
Hill #1 -- Was two Christmases ago, and my first Christmas with DF. Prior to Christmas, DF had told me about FBIL's money and procrastinating woes, often turning to DF for a money "loan" (often not paid back). Anyway, one of the things FBIL had done previously was called DF, often last-minute, and asked DF to add FBIL's name to the Christmas presents DF bought for their relatives and that FBIL would pay DF a portion to cover (also not always done). On CHRISTMAS EVE, DF is contacted by FBIL asking to add his name to our gifts (gift baskets that I'd thought about for a month and had already put together). DF looked stricken, and I was pretty irritated that DF would even consider it (FBIL was out finally doing his Christmas shopping when he contacted DF and wanted to get out of shopping for their relatives). I sternly looked DF in the eye and said, "No, FBIL could buy something that goes with the theme of each basket, but he doesn't get to add his name to the gifts. We [DF and I] are now a social unit and are giving these gifts as a social unit. I also put a lot of time, thought and energy into these gift baskets and am not FBIL's personal shopper. However, if you really want to add his name to the gifts, then you take my name off the gifts so you may give them with your brother instead." I know I was a bit harsh with DF, but DF doesn't know how to say no, which is why FBIL has had so many years of taking advantage of him where money is concerned (I adore FBIL, but this is one of his really weak areas). Unless DF had a clear consequence where I was concerned, he would've given in. Also, we'd already had a situation earlier in the year when FBIL was dating a woman and on Valentine's Day borrowed money from DF to give her a good Valentine's Day dinner out. I pointed out that FBIL's girlfriend didn't get to have HER boyfriend and mine and that money that DF can't actually spare that goes to FBIL is taken away from DF being able to spend on our own relationship (I know there are those who will disagree with me having any say in how DF spends money, but I needed him to see the path of how FBIL spending DF's money frivolously, too, affected our ability to afford to go anywhere or do anything). I've always thought FBIL a great guy, but until he got together with FSIL a couple of years ago, he was busy living the expensive single guy life he can't afford then supplementing with DF's money (and FBIL makes more money than DF and has less debt; DF has student loans he's paying off over the next 5-6 years). After that Christmas, I never heard another peep about FBIL wanting to add himself to anything DF was giving as a present.
Hill #2 -- Came about just last night. DF and his two best friends have an annual holiday gathering where DF (and now me), BF1 and wife and BF2, wife and kids get together for a holiday lunch. This year, another friend of theirs is invited to join us but is only available Fri, 12/30 so that's when it was scheduled, even though a few of the attendees (BF2 and DF) are working that day. I'm not, and the gathering is about 15-20 minutes away so getting together that night was okay with me (again, at the convenience of ONE person). Last night, DF told me that BF1's wife has to be up early the next morning to be two hours away (they live 1.5 hours from us so she has to be somewhere 30 minutes away from their house really early on the morning on Sat, 12/31). Anyway, BF1 offered to have the gathering at his house -- normally a 1.5 hour drive but keep in mind that this is the Friday before a holiday weekend. DF opened the dialogue with me by stating, "BF2 said he'd pack up himself and the kids and pick up you and me, drive us all out to BF1's house then bring us back" and then told me what was going on. I looked at DF and said, "Well, hope you guys have a good time." DF understood, and I proceeded with laying out what the evening would look like going with this change (which, again, is for ONE person and inconveniencing almost everyone else). DF works until 5pm so I figured we wouldn't actually be on the road until 6pm. Drive would likely take about two hours so arrival wouldn't be until 8pm. We've always done appetizers first so dinner would be at, what, 9pm??? So dinner's over at 11pm, we'd chat a little bit then have dessert at 11:30pm then drive back to be home MAYBE around 1-1:30am (and BF2 would be very tired by then so we'd probably have to stop for caffeine or a rest along the way). Oh and should I mention that they have an annual New Year's Eve afternoon tea so the travelers would need to be up early to prepare for that, especially DF who is hosting it this year and is a total slob and procrastinator so his place is a big mess right now that I'm sure wouldn't be clean on the morning of Sat, 12/31??? Also, I don't live with DF; I live 15-20 minutes away so I'd still have to drive myself home AFTER returning from a very late night. BF2's wife isn't going either if this change happens so, right now, it looks like the plan to change the location is not a done deal. (part of the reason that the schedule is back-to-back days for annual celebrations is because BF1, who suggested this latest change to accommodate his wife, has been procrastinating big time this year).
I'm ahead of the game for next year, though, due to our wedding taking place in January 2013. I told DF that (a little tongue-in-cheek) I'm "reserving the right to bring out the bridezilla in me" and, outside of Christmas Eve, Christmas and New Year's Eve, holding all of December for our wedding preparations (it's DIY and extremely low budget so, yeah, I need to have both of us available to take care of anything last-minute -- and I haven't been bridezilla at all this whole time; DF is more into the wedding planning than I am). I've given DF a series of dates in November that we will hold in place as options for their annual holiday celebration and the annual birthday celebration for BF2 (they do one for each of them).