Author Topic: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation  (Read 6866 times)

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doodlemor

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #15 on: October 19, 2012, 10:16:46 PM »
I agree with O'Dell (and others) who said to wait this out. If it becomes necessary to say something next year, you could try:

I know you asked about coming this year, but we've decided to stick with our traditional dinner for close friends rather than expand it to include other couples. Hope we get to see you at [next event that you'll both be attending].




Ooo ...   I like this!  It really hits the nail on the head and while still being polite, makes it clear that they were never really invited.  They had effectively invited themselves.

I agree.  That is just super.  After nearly a year you can feign forgetfulness.  You don't have to remember accurately, as time goes by.

I like JenJay's ideas, too.  I would probably state it just a bit differently, like perhaps.....we haven't really seen that much of each other...... or..... we haven't spent much time together recently......and I only have room for a few people who are like family.

I can understand that you're upset with this person, and realize that you want to have some responses ready, after the way she put you on the spot.  Relax a bit, though.  A year is a long time, much can happen.

PastryGoddess

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #16 on: October 19, 2012, 10:22:19 PM »
It sounds like Monica is annoyed that "the new girl" has quickly been invited into your core group while she's been around much longer and hasn't been. Funny it hasn't occurred to her that she's never shown much interest in being BFFs with you, nor offered to reciprocate the level of friendship she seems to think she's entitled to enjoy.

I would go on as usual and then next year, if she makes noises about being invited, say "I'm confused. When you expressed a desire to be invited to our Thanksgiving meal I assumed you were indicating a desire to develop a closer friendship. As the year progressed you had a number of dinner parties that I wasn't invited to, which is absolutely fine, but that then indicated to me that you preferred we remain casual friends. It certainly wasn't my intent to hurt your feelings, but I'm afraid I just don't have the space to host Thanksgiving for more than a few couples DH and I are especially close with." Or, in other words "You wanna come to my beautiful dinner when I'm barely invited to your BBQs? As if!"  :P

I personally would go with the AS IF! option and skip all the rest.  Alternatively, you can do a *side eye* which gets the same message across :D

Danika

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #17 on: October 19, 2012, 11:46:05 PM »
<snip>

I was caught VERY off guard when Monica told me she was hurt she and Felix weren't invited.

<end snip>

As you know, she was way out of line to bring it up to you in the first place. She wasn't invited. You did not mention the event in front of her. It was not her place to come to you and say "Hey, I feel hurt."

Add to that how she has not invited you to her house, and yet still expects to be invited to things. She's a bully and she has double-standards. I wouldn't want a friend like that and you have also said you don't feel close to her.

I like a lot of the previous advice you've received.

Personally, I would say nothing to her. I wouldn't stress about inviting her and Felix next year. I'd be certain that I was not going to.

I definitely would not JADE because she's trying to bully you. It doesn't sound like she wants a fair, respectful give-and-take friendship with the airing of grievances and feelings. She just wants to be invited, wanted and included, and she doesn't want to reciprocate. I don't respect that.

Then, next year, when you invite your usual guest list, if you feel like it, you can say to each or some of the guests "These are the folks I'm inviting: A, B, C and D and no one else. Please, don't mention this event to anyone who is not A, B, C or D." You shouldn't have to do that, but it's still better than dealing with this.

If, next year, Monica has the audacity to say "Hey, when is your TG dinner?" You can just say "I'm not having it as I had originally thought" which is a vague way of saying "I'm not having a huge, informal shindig where you're invited" and leaving out the "I'm having a small, formal affair without you." Or you can find another way to deflect her question.


Ironically, I'm in a very similar situation. At a previous party, I had to tell one loud-mouthed guest who likes to brag to others about being invited to things conspicuous guest that I was not inviting the X family. We're no longer close to the X family, they are similar to Monica and Felix as you have described them. I'm having a party tomorrow and have not invited the X family. This time, I didn't say anything to Conspicuous Braggy Guest about them not being on the guest list. If she mentioned the party to them, I don't really care. I don't intend to hurt their feelings, but I'm sick of bending over backwards to invite them to things, or not, and to spare their feelings when they don't give a darn about mine.

MrsCrazyPete

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #18 on: October 20, 2012, 03:46:03 AM »
I would go on as usual and then next year, if she makes noises about being invited, say "I'm confused. When you expressed a desire to be invited to our Thanksgiving meal I assumed you were indicating a desire to develop a closer friendship. As the year progressed you had a number of dinner parties that I wasn't invited to, which is absolutely fine, but that then indicated to me that you preferred we remain casual friends. It certainly wasn't my intent to hurt your feelings, but I'm afraid I just don't have the space to host Thanksgiving for more than a few couples DH and I are especially close with." Or, in other words "You wanna come to my beautiful dinner when I'm barely invited to your BBQs? As if!"  :P

This. Yes.

Just out of curiosity, what does your DH think of all this? If it were any other couple, I'd say it would be pretty easy to let the friendship cool. Since he and Felix work together though, that might be harder to do, and maybe not something your DH wants to happen? I'm just speculating here. Maybe DH and Felix should start doing more "coworker socializing", lunches out, happy hour, etc, where the wives aren't along. If Felix feels that your DH is a good buddy, he could be telling Monica how great of friends they are, which could lead to her believing that you, as couples, are closer than you actually are. No excuse for her actions though--she sounds nightmarish. Ugh, fishing for invitations, the whole going behind your back thing.

I'd stop inviting her to things now, and see where that leads. It could be that without an invitation from you, it could be a while before you have to see her.
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sparksals

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #19 on: October 20, 2012, 03:43:23 PM »
It sounds like Monica is annoyed that "the new girl" has quickly been invited into your core group while she's been around much longer and hasn't been. Funny it hasn't occurred to her that she's never shown much interest in being BFFs with you, nor offered to reciprocate the level of friendship she seems to think she's entitled to enjoy.

I would go on as usual and then next year, if she makes noises about being invited, say "I'm confused. When you expressed a desire to be invited to our Thanksgiving meal I assumed you were indicating a desire to develop a closer friendship. As the year progressed you had a number of dinner parties that I wasn't invited to, which is absolutely fine, but that then indicated to me that you preferred we remain casual friends. It certainly wasn't my intent to hurt your feelings, but I'm afraid I just don't have the space to host Thanksgiving for more than a few couples DH and I are especially close with." Or, in other words "You wanna come to my beautiful dinner when I'm barely invited to your BBQs? As if!"  :P

I think you hit the nail on the head, JJ.  She seems to not GET there is a connection between her lack of reciprocity, secretiveness and friend mooching, if that is what it is called. 

I love your last line.  THAT is exactly how I feel! 

sparksals

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #20 on: October 20, 2012, 03:47:16 PM »
I would go on as usual and then next year, if she makes noises about being invited, say "I'm confused. When you expressed a desire to be invited to our Thanksgiving meal I assumed you were indicating a desire to develop a closer friendship. As the year progressed you had a number of dinner parties that I wasn't invited to, which is absolutely fine, but that then indicated to me that you preferred we remain casual friends. It certainly wasn't my intent to hurt your feelings, but I'm afraid I just don't have the space to host Thanksgiving for more than a few couples DH and I are especially close with." Or, in other words "You wanna come to my beautiful dinner when I'm barely invited to your BBQs? As if!"  :P

This. Yes.

Just out of curiosity, what does your DH think of all this? If it were any other couple, I'd say it would be pretty easy to let the friendship cool. Since he and Felix work together though, that might be harder to do, and maybe not something your DH wants to happen? I'm just speculating here. Maybe DH and Felix should start doing more "coworker socializing", lunches out, happy hour, etc, where the wives aren't along. If Felix feels that your DH is a good buddy, he could be telling Monica how great of friends they are, which could lead to her believing that you, as couples, are closer than you actually are. No excuse for her actions though--she sounds nightmarish. Ugh, fishing for invitations, the whole going behind your back thing.

I'd stop inviting her to things now, and see where that leads. It could be that without an invitation from you, it could be a while before you have to see her.

DH and Felix really don't see much of each other at work.  Felix is in a management capacity on the admin side.  They don't hang out and it could be because Felix also doesn't ever make an effort to ask DH to join him and the others when they go out for HH or whatever.

If dh and Felix go out for lunch, it is a situation where someone is leaving or other special occasion.  They hang out b/c Monica and I did/do. 

Monica and I are definitely the more social ones and the dh's get dragged along for the ride.  lol

cheyne

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2012, 06:16:44 PM »
DH and Felix really don't see much of each other at work.  Felix is in a management capacity on the admin side.  They don't hang out and it could be because Felix also doesn't ever make an effort to ask DH to join him and the others when they go out for HH or whatever.

If dh and Felix go out for lunch, it is a situation where someone is leaving or other special occasion.  They hang out b/c Monica and I did/do. 

Monica and I are definitely the more social ones and the dh's get dragged along for the ride.  lol

So stop inviting Monica to anything at all.  No more monthly happy hours or lunches with other friends.  Monica is just not invited.  It sounds like even though Felix and DH are co-workers they don't really have any kind of friendship outside of being "dragged along" with you and Monica.  Cut ties with Monica now.  It doesn't sound like you like her much anyway. 

I am NOT saying to give Monica the "cut direct" or even icy politeness.  Just stop inviting her to anything.  It sounds like you have plenty of friends to spend time with, why give Monica head space you don't have?  It will really cut down on the drama in your life.

greencat

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2012, 07:05:31 PM »
Since I doubt the relationship will get anything besides cooler over the next year, how about "Oh, I'm sorry Monica, we've really not been very close this year, and DH and Felix aren't very close, and I had very limited space to host, so only those couples where DH and I were both close to got invites."

Betelnut

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2012, 07:50:06 PM »
Are Monica and Felix Canadian?  Because, honestly, as someone who grew up and lives in the United States, Canadian Thanksgiving is not even a blip on my radar screen.  I would bet a lot of U.S. people wouldn't know when exactly it is or even which month it is.

If Monica/Felix are typical, neither would they.  Therefore, your celebration may just come and go before they even realize that they weren't invited.

If, that is, they aren't Canadian or hang out with a lot of Canadians.
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Roe

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2012, 08:40:45 PM »
DH and Felix really don't see much of each other at work.  Felix is in a management capacity on the admin side.  They don't hang out and it could be because Felix also doesn't ever make an effort to ask DH to join him and the others when they go out for HH or whatever.

If dh and Felix go out for lunch, it is a situation where someone is leaving or other special occasion.  They hang out b/c Monica and I did/do. 

Monica and I are definitely the more social ones and the dh's get dragged along for the ride.  lol

So stop inviting Monica to anything at all.  No more monthly happy hours or lunches with other friends.  Monica is just not invited.  It sounds like even though Felix and DH are co-workers they don't really have any kind of friendship outside of being "dragged along" with you and Monica.  Cut ties with Monica now.  It doesn't sound like you like her much anyway. 

I am NOT saying to give Monica the "cut direct" or even icy politeness.  Just stop inviting her to anything.  It sounds like you have plenty of friends to spend time with, why give Monica head space you don't have?  It will really cut down on the drama in your life.

HUGE POD! 


sparksals

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #25 on: October 22, 2012, 01:38:32 AM »
DH and Felix really don't see much of each other at work.  Felix is in a management capacity on the admin side.  They don't hang out and it could be because Felix also doesn't ever make an effort to ask DH to join him and the others when they go out for HH or whatever.

If dh and Felix go out for lunch, it is a situation where someone is leaving or other special occasion.  They hang out b/c Monica and I did/do. 

Monica and I are definitely the more social ones and the dh's get dragged along for the ride.  lol

So stop inviting Monica to anything at all.  No more monthly happy hours or lunches with other friends.  Monica is just not invited.  It sounds like even though Felix and DH are co-workers they don't really have any kind of friendship outside of being "dragged along" with you and Monica.  Cut ties with Monica now.  It doesn't sound like you like her much anyway. 

I am NOT saying to give Monica the "cut direct" or even icy politeness.  Just stop inviting her to anything.  It sounds like you have plenty of friends to spend time with, why give Monica head space you don't have?  It will really cut down on the drama in your life.

I actually toned down inviting her to things I normally would have and that is what prompted her discussion with me.  She started by saying she felt we were drifting apart and she was hurt by not being invited to TG.   

You nailed it.   DH and Felix would not really hang out if Monica and I weren't friends.

sparksals

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #26 on: October 22, 2012, 01:47:16 AM »
Are Monica and Felix Canadian?  Because, honestly, as someone who grew up and lives in the United States, Canadian Thanksgiving is not even a blip on my radar screen.  I would bet a lot of U.S. people wouldn't know when exactly it is or even which month it is.

If Monica/Felix are typical, neither would they.  Therefore, your celebration may just come and go before they even realize that they weren't invited.

If, that is, they aren't Canadian or hang out with a lot of Canadians.

No, they are not Canadian.  I am the only Canadian they know, at least that I know of.  They know about TG because I do it every year. Over the years, we have chatted about our lives enough that we know some of the general traditions in each family.   DH and I had just returned from France and I had to immediately start preparing for TG and she knew that because it was alot of work to do while jet lagged.   Since I have known them for over 4 years, they know about the Canadian holidays that I celebrate.   She may not remember the date, but she will remember the time of year. 

YOu're right, very few US people know about Canadian TG and those that learn about it are quite curious what it is about.  For the record, it is the same Monday as Columbus Day. 

None of the people we invite to the dinner are Canadian.   The core group of friends are quite adventurous and I am able to experiment with new recipes.   If something doesn't turn out, it's no big deal but they also don't come expecting a traditional meal b/c they know it is not a US TG meal and there are some differences in the food, mostly the sides.   I do some of the same things like mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and stuffing, but the side veggies always change.

Bethalize

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #27 on: October 22, 2012, 03:35:02 AM »
Please don't change your dinner because of Monica. It's a long time to Thanksgiving 2013 so you can safely leave the issue. Monica's behaviour would get her excluded from my invitation list. Monica saying "You hurt my feelings" does not make you responsible for making her feel better. She's an adult. She'll get over it or die mad.

I changed my "Faux Xmas dinner" for similar reasons. Now I don't do it at all. I regret that.

lowspark

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2012, 09:01:11 AM »
Leaving aside the issue about the dinner for a minute, let's just look at this "friendship" between you and Monica. Why bother continuing it at all? There doesn't seem to be any reason for you to invite her to anything. It's essentially just a friendship that seemingly started out ok, but didn't pan out in the end. Even if this dinner had never entered into the equation, how long would you really want to continue fostering this alliance?

In your place, I'd just quit making any efforts with Monica & Felix. Don't invite her to anything else, don't accept invitations from her (if there ever are any). If you do run into her, just a quick polite hello is all I'd give her.

By the time you are planning your event for 2013, your affiliation with her will have long since lapsed and there will no longer be any obligation on your part to invite her to anything at all, much less this special dinner. In other words, the conversation where she wrangled a promise of an invitation from you should be all but forgotten.

sparksals

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Re: Thanksgiving Invite Guilt Trip & Manipulation
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2012, 11:29:33 AM »
Please don't change your dinner because of Monica. It's a long time to Thanksgiving 2013 so you can safely leave the issue. Monica's behaviour would get her excluded from my invitation list. Monica saying "You hurt my feelings" does not make you responsible for making her feel better. She's an adult. She'll get over it or die mad.

I changed my "Faux Xmas dinner" for similar reasons. Now I don't do it at all. I regret that.

Wow - thems some powerful words in bold!  That is exactly the position I felt I was in.  She told me she was hurt, but it was manipulation and I took responsibility to make her feel better when she didn't deserve it.  Dang.