Author Topic: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion  (Read 7629 times)

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sparksals

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #60 on: November 01, 2012, 01:21:41 PM »
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Aeris wrote:

To be clear, it's the attitude I have a problem with, not the act of serving bacon. There's serving bacon thinking 'I've made sure Mom has plenty of yummy food to eat without pork, and I'm happy to do so, and this bacon is for me and Sis', and there's serving bacon thinking 'if Mom doesn't like this she can JUST GO SOMEWHERE ELSE MY HOUSE MY RULES!!!!!11'.

I don't believe SD is arguing in the vein that you portray it here.  She doesn't see the problem in serving bacon or other XYZ food that another person can't eat as long as the restricted person (for whatever reason) has enough to eat.   Having bacon on the table is not a slight or an offense against the person who does not eat it.   It is a strong belief on SD's part, perhaps having dealt with SS's in the past?  At any rate, I didn't think her post was hostile, instead, it exhibited a strong belief. 

gellchom

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #61 on: November 01, 2012, 01:39:13 PM »
I read it the same way Aeris and Sourwolf did.  In a response to my earlier post, snowdragon wrote,

"They can feel however they want- they don''t get to control others with their beliefs or feelings."

I can't see anything in the original post or any of the subsequent posts by the OP remotely suggesting that her mother is trying to control anyone or anything, or even that she is concerned that she might.  Indeed, her later posts confirm the opposite.

What I saw was the OP trying to be as considerate and gracious as possible to her mom.

It sounds to me, too, like Snowdragon's posts are all about dealing with unreasonable demands by SS guests.  And what may be appropriate behavior in that situation is not the same thing as what is appropriate when the issue is a polite (and in this case incredibly helpful) guest who isn't demanding a thing, and a polite host who wants to make sure her guest feels as comfortable and welcome as possible.

Sort of minimum and maximum guidelines.  Each has a time and place.

Given that there is less than zero reason to assume the former situation, I too find myself a little dismayed by the leap by a few posters to the situation NOT presented by the OP.  Perhaps people are, as someone else suggested, simply reacting based on their own past experiences with impossible guests (I've had a few, too!) and difficult relatives.  I hope it's something like that -- because it always worries me when I see people seeming eager to use etiquette as a weapon and an excuse to be hostile.  This string didn't go that far or anywhere near it -- but it feels like it's a step along the same continuum.

sparksals

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #62 on: November 01, 2012, 01:53:49 PM »
I think our personal experiences and feelings do shape our answers here.   That is why we all have such differing opinions.

I didn't read that specific quote as the OP's mother trying to control the meals b/c of her religious limitations.  I read it as a *general* they should not *expect* others in the home to also abstain from whatever food. 

I personally don't believe a host is being ungracious or rude by serving something, especially since it is part of the OP's spouse's cultural tradition.  That would be like asking those who do a Traditional turkey meal at TG to not serve turkey.

Perhaps this is where SD gets her strong feelings, that the spouse has an important cultural tradition that would have to be forgone for the OP's mother.  I certainly wouldn't be willing to do that either, after all, it is HIS new baby too and as the father, his family heritage should have more weight over the grandmother's religious restriction that conflicts with his.

I don't think anyone is saying the OP's mother is being ungracious.  I think she would be if she *expected* everyone else to abstain from pork, especially since it is part of the father's cultural traditions celebrating the birth.

Yvaine

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #63 on: November 01, 2012, 03:29:05 PM »
I don't think anyone is saying the OP's mother is being ungracious.  I think she would be if she *expected* everyone else to abstain from pork, especially since it is part of the father's cultural traditions celebrating the birth.

I didn't get the idea that the father wants to eat pork as a specific ritual to celebrate the birth, unless I've missed a post. It sounded more like he just really, really likes it because it's a major part of the usual diet in his area. The only post that seems to correlate to this is the one about how it would be considered rude in their locale to have a celebration without alcohol. Not that it's ruining a tradition to have a normal, non-party breakfast without bacon.

And at any rate, it sounds like the OP served the bacon, the mother was fine with it, and all is well. :)

sparksals

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #64 on: November 01, 2012, 06:22:09 PM »
http://www.etiquettehell.com/smf/index.php?topic=122333.msg2822991#msg2822991

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As for being pregnant, I was due yesterday, and there is no room for any food in my stomach anymore LOL, I am barely eating at this point. It is balancing my husband/his family's desire for traditional Quebecois pork cuisine/alcohol with my mother.
   

Yvaine

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #65 on: November 01, 2012, 06:39:56 PM »
http://www.etiquettehell.com/smf/index.php?topic=122333.msg2822991#msg2822991

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As for being pregnant, I was due yesterday, and there is no room for any food in my stomach anymore LOL, I am barely eating at this point. It is balancing my husband/his family's desire for traditional Quebecois pork cuisine/alcohol with my mother.


I read that post, thanks. I didn't take it to mean "this is a traditional food used by my husband to celebrate major occasions" but more like "this is a traditional food that is eaten a lot in our area." More like how a cheesesteak is a traditional food of Philadelphia, less like how people eat turkey on Thanksgiving. I'm not taking the pork as a ritual food, it's just something people like and eat often in that area. OP, please correct me if I'm reading it wrong.

White Lotus

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Re: Hosting with food restrictions due to religion
« Reply #66 on: November 01, 2012, 10:12:28 PM »
Why is this so tough?  As long as Visitor is provided with enough to eat that s/he can eat (no PA bacon in everything) and separate pans/utensils are used so there isn't cross contamination, what is so hard about this?  Why not just ask her what she needs and wants?  You won't get meat, fish or fowl in my house, but you will be well fed, and as long as I have food I can eat at your house, serve whatever else you like.  That is what etiquette IMO, requires. Mother obviously doesn't keep strict Halal, which in some respects is stricter than Kosher because of the alcohol exclusion, but if she were strict, she couldn't eat in OP's house at all without extensive preparations, and OP would know about it already.  Does she eat shellfish? I'd guess not. Those general classifications of exclusion persist after other rules fade or are never adopted. Except for the big parties, with the traditional pork, where the above would apply, it sounds like Mother will be cooking most of the time.  Let her shop and let her cook!  You might be surprised at the tasty and interesting things she comes up with. It is only a week or two.