Author Topic: Learning to set rules Update #17  (Read 4366 times)

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Danismom

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Learning to set rules Update #17
« on: November 26, 2011, 08:17:36 PM »
BG:  Eric is an old friend of DH, is married and has a 6yo son.  Eric lost his job over a year ago but his wife, Tammy still has hers.  Unfortunately her income is about 1/3 of what Eric's was.  Since Eric lost his job, they lost their home and had to move in with Tammy's mother.  Tammy's mother takes care of everything and Eric, Tammy, and their son, Dane, don't have to lift a finger in her home.  They moved in with Tammy's mother over 9 months ago. 

Tammy's mother lives about 8 hours away from us.  Eric finally found a job, but it is on OurTown.  We agreed to let Eric move in with us and pay a minimal amount to help his family get back on their feet.  DH has fond memories of when DH and Eric were in the military together and they hung out all the time.  Tammy and Dane still live in TheirTown and will stay there through the end of the school year (May-June).  Then they will move to OurTown. /BG

By now you see the writing on the wall...

Eric doesn't do anything around our house and it is a little annoying.  Sure, he pays some rent but not much.  There is no contract.  He has to be asked to take out the trash rather than just stacking more trash beside the can.  He doesn't do dishes.  He washes his own clothes and that is it...doesn't clean his bathroom, doesn't help with anything else in the house at all.

We were having DS's baptism last Sunday.  On Thursday, Eric told us that he had just learned that his work was only going to give him Thanksgiving day off.  He wouldn't get to go visit Tammy and Dane in TheirTown.  He wanted to us to let Tammy and Dane stay at our house for the holiday.  We were planning to go to my MIL's house for the big meal and didn't know what to do.  We quickly reworked our plans and MIL graciously agreed to extend an invitation to Eric and family as well. 

We were doing deep cleaning as we got ready for the party at our house following son's baptism.  Eric volunteered that Tammy would gladly help us get ready for the party and help with the cleaning.  Tammy was going to be such a great help as we got ready for everything...

But that's not how it happened.  Tammy and Eric didn't lift a finger.  We ended up with day after day of them taking over our living room and sending Dane in to play with DD and DS while DH or I supervised all the kids.  Dane expected me to fix his breakfast every morning even though our deal with Eric is that Eric is responsible for all his own meals unless I was cooking anyway.  MIL requested I make a few sides to go with Thanksgiving dinner and Tammy didn't offer to so much as chop a vegetable.  Tammy has literally sat on our couch virtually the entire time they've been here.  We expected them to go home today but they informed us that they were going to stay until Sunday.  No asking if they could stay in our home an extra day; just informing.  We usually go through a roll of toilet paper in each bathroom every 1-2 weeks.  Since they've been here we've gone through 4 rolls in less than 1 week! 

I'm just really frustrated at this point.  Dane was up all day and night coughing but I had to go get his parents to take care of him.  He coughs himself until he throws up just to stay awake.  He kept myself and my children up almost all night one night but thankfully his parents went to get him cough medicine the next day -- over 36 hours after his coughing began.  It might be fine in their home but they subjected all of us to it as well.  Dane also keeps extra lights on constantly which means our electric bill for the month is going to be significantly higher.

I've learned that in the future, maybe we need to spell things out a little better.  If I invite someone into my home then I don't expect them to do chores.  I do like it when people offer to help out but I don't expect them to empty the dishwasher.  The problem is that these aren't guests of DH's or mine.  They are Eric's guests.  Guests that Eric promised would be a help but have turned into a real pain. 

I'm expecting a high electric bill from the lights and tv on all the time.  I'm expecting a high water bill from the long showers.  They are using our stash of disposable cups and a 6 yo kid always forgets where his cup is.  Then he gets a new one.  He went so far as to tell DD to punch herself in her privates and thought it was funny.  I don't trust this kid alone with mine now.  I intervened and took Dane to his parents to have them deal with him (which they did).  I also got onto Dane finally for treating our home with incredible disrespect.  He never apologized but I sent him to his parents again.  They didn't say anything to me about it or apologize.  I think they've gotten the idea I'm not happy.  They've gone to get fast food and never offered to get us anything.  I would only expect an offer since we seem to be expected to feed their child whenever we feed ours.  It comes down to a complete lack of reciprocity.  I feel like I'm their maid and they spend all day on the couch watching tv.

Is there a way to tell Eric he owes us extra money for their visit because of our extra expenses?  Is there a polite way to tell him that in the future, his family is not welcome to stay in our home?  Our deal was with Eric and Eric only.  We don't want this kind of week to happen again.  They've already hinted that they want to stay with us while they find a place to live after the school year.  Not happening.  I don't know if they will ask to be here for Christmas.  I'm sorry, but they can stay at a hotel.  Any suggestions on how to handle these moochers if they ask to stay here again?  Thank goodness they plan to leave tomorrow last I heard.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2011, 08:13:35 PM by Danismom »

gramma dishes

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2011, 08:33:44 PM »
Have  you tried asking either Eric or Tammy to help you with specific requests?  Like "Tammy, could you please help with the dishes?  Eric, the cleaning supplies for your bathroom are on the top shelf of the linen closet."

I suspect you have.

You're in it this time and I don't think there's much you can do about that realistically.  But you certainly can prevent this situation from ever being repeated.  You know the ehell motto:  "No is a complete sentence." 

If they ask, the answer is no.  If they inform  (that they will be staying at Christmastime or at the end of the school year), the answer is "No, that won't be possible." 

Whatever they ask or suggest, just say no.  And please be sure your husband is on the same page before the subject comes up again.

shhh its me

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2011, 08:35:03 PM »
   I think it's time for your DH to take his friend aside and have a chat.   Figure out what you need  and be very clear" Buddy , you need to clean your bathroom once a week and help with the dishes at least twice a week.  You need to pitch in cooking and with food, how about you cook and provide dinner on Mondays and Fridays".  When he asks " can Tammy and Dane come for Christmas? ","No it was far too much work for me last time."  " this time ...." "No, it will not be possible"  . 

  About 90 days before the end of the school year " Buddy , Tammy and Dane will be moving back soon have you started looking for a place for all of you ?" , " I thought we could all stay here "  "That wont be possible"


I don't think you can charge them for extra utilities , you did say yes " they can stay." it wouldn;t be polite to alter the deal after the fact.  I do think you can mention " the utilities went up by $30 " I would not expect him to offer to pay  based on behavior , but you can put it on the  " WE HAVE DONE ENOUGH : things we have already done for you" list when he says " why can't my wife and child stay while we find a place to live?"

buvezdevin

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2011, 08:54:54 PM »
I would not suggest asking for additional funds due to expenses of your recent visitors, as it wasn't discussed in advance, but more importantly because that could well set up Eric to expect that his wife and child can stay with you again for a few dollars consideration - and it sounds as though the extra expenses accrued during the past week are incidental to the scope of the inconvenience and thoughtlessness these visitors have shown.

I would think it a good idea for you and your husband to agree between yourselves on what rules to set and agree to stick with, then jointly discuss those with Eric.  First, what is the outside limit on his stay with you, firm date.  Next, defined commitment from Eric on rent or other financial contribution from him on a weekly or monthly basis.  Then, discussion of non-financial contributions by Eric to shared and sole household chores, he should be doing his linen laundry and cleaning the bathroom, and whatever else you collectively agree to as house rules.  If it were me, I would also add that visits from his family are not possible in your home while he is staying with you - it sounds as though the impositions on your family just wouldn't be worth repeating, and rather than list them and negotiate "better behavior" I would just say you won't be able to repeat the visit, due to the disruption to your family.
Never refuse to do a kindness unless the act would work great injury to yourself, and never refuse to take a drink -- under any circumstances.
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Danismom

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2011, 09:03:38 PM »
Thanks for the quick replies.  You guys are certainly right that there won't be another time.  We just felt so bad that they were going to have to be separated for the holiday.  But they could have gotten a hotel room.  We should remember that staying with us isn't the only solution just because it was the solution Eric requested.  The whole thing was kind of sprung on us and we didn't think it through very well.  I guess a complicating factor is that in the middle of all this DH is grieving that Eric isn't the friend he remembers and neither is Eric's family.  DH is ready to kick Eric out over all of it but I think we need to talk about it first and set some better rules for continued occupancy.

FoxPaws

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2011, 09:03:48 PM »
Is your DH as annoyed/frustrated as you are? I think he needs to be the one to bring this up with Eric - soon. Christmas is less than a month away and Dane will have at least a couple of weeks off from school. I can just picture his parents thinking he could come and visit Daddy - aka spend a fun filled, all expenses paid holiday at Camp Danismom - and taking over your house again.

Look, Buddy, I don't mind helping you out while you're in a tight spot, but you're taking advantage of us. The arrangement was that you'd pay nominal rent, pitch in with the chores, and provide your own meals. That hasn't happened. You're welcome to stay here until [insert firm deadline here], but you're going to need to step up and [list specific chores here]. Also, next time Tammy and Dane come down, you're all going to have to move to a hotel during their visit. We aren't prepared to host your entire family again.[/list]
I am so a lady. And if you say I'm not, I'll slug you. - Cindy Brady

Ginya

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2011, 10:52:42 PM »
Is your DH as annoyed/frustrated as you are? I think he needs to be the one to bring this up with Eric - soon. Christmas is less than a month away and Dane will have at least a couple of weeks off from school. I can just picture his parents thinking he could come and visit Daddy - aka spend a fun filled, all expenses paid holiday at Camp Danismom - and taking over your house again.

Look, Buddy, I don't mind helping you out while you're in a tight spot, but you're taking advantage of us. The arrangement was that you'd pay nominal rent, pitch in with the chores, and provide your own meals. That hasn't happened. You're welcome to stay here until [insert firm deadline here], but you're going to need to step up and [list specific chores here]. Also, next time Tammy and Dane come down, you're all going to have to move to a hotel during their visit. We aren't prepared to host your entire family again.[/list]

THIS. 100% It is unbelievable you've endured this long. Be firm when you speak with him and tell him if he doesn't follow through/agree to the arrangement, he will be free to find a new place to live.

doodlemor

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2011, 11:35:18 PM »
DH is ready to kick Eric out over all of it


Danismom, I think that you should let him do this.  Guys have a different way of viewing things sometimes.  If DH is that fed up perhaps you should just let him deal with it.  It will be much less stress and work for you in the long term.


If things get even worse after you let Eric stay your husband may blame you for his continued presence.  If DH will actually get rid of him now - count your blessings.

hannahmollysmom

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2011, 12:22:32 AM »
DH is ready to kick Eric out over all of it


Danismom, I think that you should let him do this.  Guys have a different way of viewing things sometimes.  If DH is that fed up perhaps you should just let him deal with it.  It will be much less stress and work for you in the long term.


If things get even worse after you let Eric stay your husband may blame you for his continued presence.  If DH will actually get rid of him now - count your blessings.

I agree! In the meantime, ask Eric to pick up some toilet paper on his way home from work but don't reimburse him. Just say thanks when he brings it home.

Honesty is the best policy. I ran into this years ago when DD was 18 months. My sister moved back up here from the south and asked if she could stay while she looked for a job. Myself and DH worked full time, DD was is daycare. I would arrive home and start the hectic evening stuff. My sister did nothing. Finally I had it and asked her to start dinner. I would leave out the ingredients and instructions. She took the hint thank goodness,

O'Dell

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2011, 12:30:15 PM »
I feel for you Danismom. I was in a similar situation recently and got through it with the help of my husband and the great Ehellions who advised me.

Some of the things that worked for me were to ask for specific tasks to be done and/or check up on already assigned tasks. I like hannahmollysmom's suggestion about the TP. So "Hey can you pick up some TP/butter/bread on your way home? Did the bathroom get cleaned this week? How are your towels holding up?" I admit I got to the point where I began to nag a little...I hated doing it, but it got things done and put a little pressure on my guests/tenants to want to get out. That included special tasks around the house. I got my outside windows and screens washed and put away for the winter.

And I became very curious about housing options and how the search was going and "oh hey I found this great resource online". :P My situation didn't have a move-out timeline agreed to beforehand so I started a little pressure early on. Definitely do that in the spring if he's still there.

If your husband wants to kick Eric out, then maybe it's not a bad idea to let him. Just saying... If the 2 of you don't go that route, then bring it up with him that maybe he should move out or should move up the time line since it's not working out. Even if you end up letting him stay, it might help to have that threat made more explicit.

And good luck!!!
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.
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Steve

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2011, 02:28:16 PM »
POD to the people who support having DH kick Eric out. It's his friend, I would let him define the friendship as much as possible.



cheyne

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2011, 04:51:49 PM »
Wait a minute, is Eric planning on living with you until May?!?  It sounds like Tammy and Dane are living rent free with Tammy's mother.  Tammy works and Eric works, so what are they doing with their money?   I could see letting Eric stay for 3 weeks to a month to save the money for first month and security deposit on an apt, but for 6 months?  No way in ehell would I let anyone except one of my kids stay with me for that long.

It is time for DH to "kick Eric out".  The longer you enable this behavior the worse it will get.  If Eric leaves now (or within a week or two) he and DH may be able to salvage their friendship.  If Eric is still there at Christmas I can almost guarantee the friendship will be over.

For me there would be no consideration of having him do more chores or pay more money.  It's time for Eric to be out.  He needs to man up and take care of his own responsibilities.


Deetee

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2011, 05:00:58 PM »
If your husband is on board with kicking Eric out, there is no real downside to giving Eric a warning. Set out the expectations (cleaning, chores etc..) and if he doesn't meet them, kick him out.

Animala

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2011, 05:01:59 PM »
Let DH do it. 

JoyinVirginia

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Re: Learning to set rules
« Reply #14 on: November 27, 2011, 06:12:19 PM »
DH is ready to kick Eric out over all of it
Danismom, I think that you should let him do this.  Guys have a different way of viewing things sometimes.  If DH is that fed up perhaps you should just let him deal with it.  It will be much less stress and work for you in the long term.

If things get even worse after you let Eric stay your husband may blame you for his continued presence.  If DH will actually get rid of him now - count your blessings.
POD! NOW! ASAP.