Author Topic: How to enforce house rules with guests?  (Read 4563 times)

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miranova

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Re: How to enforce house rules with guests?
« Reply #30 on: January 06, 2013, 08:15:04 PM »
OP, I don't blame you for not having the guest bath supplies ready at your new house when they showed up unexpectedly, however, I do believe that you should as a general rule have basic bath supplies in your guest bath for guests.  I know that you don't necessarily want these particular guests there, but unless you are going to actually tell them "no we can't host you", then you should do some minimal hosting and that includes providing soap, shampoo etc.  It was rude of them not to bring the shampoo back but I actually don't think it's the very rudest thing in the world to use your shampoo if they had no alternative and you weren't around to ask (I do think they should ask of course and return it). 

Same with food...you do NOT need to make their favorite meals nor provide anything different than what you are eating but again...unless you are prepared to say "no we can't host you" then you need to have enough food in the house for everyone you are allowing to stay with you, even if that means making a trip to the store. 

Basically, I am encouraging you to learn to say no.  If you can't host them, don't host them!  You don't have to.  There is no rule that says you must host family at cetain intervals.  Say no.  But if you or your husband aren't going to ever say no to them, then I'm afraid you are only encouraging this behavior.

Having said that, they sound like boors.  I would not enjoy hosting them either!  All the more reason to learn to tell them no.  Your husband should take the lead on this, since this is his family.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2013, 08:17:24 PM by miranova »

bopper

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Re: How to enforce house rules with guests?
« Reply #31 on: January 07, 2013, 09:59:19 AM »
Good suggestions so far! That's what I was thinking about "dumbing it down" for them. Basically if they are going to act like children, I guess that I'll have to treat them that way.

To get into specifics, they'll do things like:

-rummage through our pantry/fridge, looking for and taking food without asking - when there is other food available to them, its just not what they want. MIL often takes it upon herself to prepare meals when she's there, which I feel is presumptuous, but of course I often don't have anything planned, because I never know when they are coming and if they will want to eat (see point 1) There are also some picky eaters in the bunch, so if they don't like the food that has been prepared for everyone, they will just make themselves something else

You could also look at this as a positive.  Given that you are allowing them to stay, they are making their own meals. They are not expecting you to take them out.

-turn on the TV really loud when we are visiting.. to programs that neither husband or I want to watch. If it was one show they really just don't want to miss, I understand, but they'll watch reruns for hours instead of spending time with DH. I can tell it upsets my husband that his family would rather watch TV than spend quality time together as a family, especially because they don't see each other very often. (I'll hide the remote this time - at least make it a little harder!!)

Probably they don't have anything planned to do. Because they haven't told you they were coming.

-interrupt me or my husband (or each other!) when speaking - they have a habit of just yelling over each other until it just gets louder and louder and I just give up on speaking all together because I don't want to participate in a screaming match
- criticize my decisions, life choices, home, preferences, etc - all under the guise of "being helpful". (I can let this one slide.. I think that just comes with the joys of in-laws!  ::))

"Wow, MIL, sometimes I wonder why you can even come here for a week when you dislike our home so much!"

- -"run out and pick up xyz because you are out".

"Oh, Gosh, I am defurring the cat.  You can go to Safeway to pick up some Hair Gel...we don't use the stuff, you can take it with you when you go...and while  you are out get that cereal you all like too."


The other thing you could do if they show up is "Oh, I wish you had to told us you are coming.  We are leaving on a trip tomorrow!  Since we have to leave early it doesn't make sense for you to stay here.  I heard the Holiday Inn is nice? I can get you the number."

Thipu1

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Re: How to enforce house rules with guests?
« Reply #32 on: January 07, 2013, 10:26:56 AM »
Some of it might be a relational thing.  For instance, when we visit my in-laws, we would get food/drink for ourselves out of their fridge or pantry, and they would do the same at our place.  Usually we invite each other to do so, but it's also the kind of relationship that we have.  So that one doesn't seem so very egregious, just because it's sometimes the way thing is done with family, and maybe if they are told that it isn't welcome, they'll stop.

This is pretty much how it is with the Inlaws.  The kitchen is pretty much open territory.  They show you what they have to eat and drink.  They show you where the glasses and dishes are.  if you want something between meals, you just go and get it.  If you use something up, there's a grocery right around the corner and you're expected to buy a replacement. 

Otherwise, their house is their house and we don't snoop around. 

This seems to work for everybody.