Author Topic: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.  (Read 7126 times)

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Hmmmmm

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2013, 11:55:03 AM »
My MIL was chronically late.  She had absolutely terrible time management skills. Everything took longer than expected.
-Invite you over for dinner at 6, she'll be walking in the door around 6:15 with the groceries to begin cooking dinner.
-Have reservations for 7pm for dinner, she's leaving her house at 7.
-Invite her to Easter lunch at noon, she'll wake up late, miss early morning service, go to the 11am service, not get out till 12:30, remember that she left the Easter baskets she wanted to the kids bring home so goes back home to get it and arrives at your house at 2 and is upset that we've already done Easter Egg hunt and I'm immediately starting to serve because I have 20 other people waiting for lunch and and several needing to get on the road to make a 6 hour trip home, which was why we were having lunch at noon and everyone had agreed to go to early Easter service. (Why no, 10 years later, I'm not still a little annoyed by this one.)

So after 15 years of trying to plan around her chronic lateness, I have finally figured out a method.  I annoy the dickens out of her. She has a cell phone that she now has with her most of the time.  So if she is expected at my house for lunch at noon, I text her at 10 with "Hi,just confirming lunch is at noon."  At 11, I'll have DD text "Grandma, mom was about to put the X in the oven but wanted confirm your not running late." At 11:30, DH calls "Hi Mom, have you left the house yet? No, but your leaving in 5 min? OK then we'll see you at noon" At 12:10, SIL will have arrived and will start texting her "Mom, your late, where are you?"

After about a year of us micromanaging her schedule she has now gotten pretty good at being on time, she even showed up early to dinner a few weeks ago because she didn't "want to be getting all those annoying texts".

**SIL used to be chronically late, but I treated that like I would one of my own sisters.  Sorry, we're not waiting more than 15 min unless its a real emergency.

oceanus

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #31 on: February 13, 2013, 12:25:59 PM »
Hmmmmm, I can't imagine dealing with your MIL.  Just reading that .....wow. >:(

My father was the flip side of the coin, kinda.  I remember once when he picked me up from a doctor’s appt.  I’d said I’d be waiting in the front of the building at 4:00.  Well, this was a doctor’s office……….how can you pin it down exactly??  I came out of the building at 4:10.  He was terse – “You SAID you would be ready at 4:00.  I’m trying to beat the rush hour traffic.”  Goodness.  I was a grown woman and in physical pain, for crying out loud.  I only called him as a very last resort.


heartmug

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2013, 01:28:02 PM »
You could ask my brother and sister-in-law who this past Christmas ate dinner off the plates that were perched on their laps while they watched us open our gifts.  They were 2 hours late and didn't call me but called my other brother#2 after an hour.  After 45 minutes I said that we were now going to eat lunch because brother#2 had to leave in 2 hours so he left his phone in the living room and we ate in the dining room so we never heard the call placed to his cell phone, that they were going to be late.

They are late 75% of the time and I don't know if this will cure it.   I guess we will see next month (Easter).
The trouble is not that the world is full of fools, it's just that lightening isn't distributed right.  - Mark Twain

oceanus

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2013, 01:50:29 PM »
Quote
After 45 minutes I said that we were now going to eat

I think 45 minutes was too generous (when food is ready, others are on time and waiting to eat).

Figgie

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2013, 02:26:49 PM »
I'm fortunate in that most of our family members are usually pretty good about arriving on time.  However, a former friend basically was late to everything where there wasn't any significant consequences.

She could be on time to work and doctor appointments, but for everything else she was a minimum of 20 minutes up to an hour late.  I just made sure I seldom rode with her and that nothing we planned together was time sensitive. 

She was complaining about someone who was angry with her for being late and I asked her why she chose not to arrive on time, especially since she knew it was important to this other person.

She said:  "People are in too much of a rush.  They need to slow down and by being late, I force them to take a break.  It's good for their mental health."

I said nothing at the time because I was so shocked by how self-centered she was.  I wish I would have asked her why she thought it was her job to decide for other people that they were in a rush.

But hearing her express that point of view opened my eyes to a lot of her behaviors.  Such as always going to the 10 item or less grocery store register with a full cart.  Never starting to unload the cart until the order in front of her had been checked out, bagged and paid for.  Refusing to take even open her purse and start to dig for her checkbook or credit card until the order was checked out and bagged.  Sitting in her car messing with absolutely everything she could think of because someone else was waiting for the parking space.

I'm actually a pretty patient person, but I really hate to inconvenience other people and so I try to be efficient so as the help minimize other people's wait time.  Her attitude was so foreign to me, that I never even realized how bad it was until she said what she did about other people needing to slow down.

All I could do (and did) was back myself out of the friendship, not because of the lateness, but because the self-centered behaviors meant she just wasn't someone that I could be friends with anymore.

oceanus

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #35 on: February 13, 2013, 02:32:23 PM »
Quote
She said:  "People are in too much of a rush.  They need to slow down and by being late, I force them to take a break.  It's good for their mental health."

Seriously?  ::)
I don't blame you for backing out of that friendship.

Hmmmmm

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #36 on: February 13, 2013, 02:34:32 PM »
I'm fortunate in that most of our family members are usually pretty good about arriving on time.  However, a former friend basically was late to everything where there wasn't any significant consequences.

She could be on time to work and doctor appointments, but for everything else she was a minimum of 20 minutes up to an hour late.  I just made sure I seldom rode with her and that nothing we planned together was time sensitive. 

She was complaining about someone who was angry with her for being late and I asked her why she chose not to arrive on time, especially since she knew it was important to this other person.

She said:  "People are in too much of a rush.  They need to slow down and by being late, I force them to take a break.  It's good for their mental health."

I said nothing at the time because I was so shocked by how self-centered she was.  I wish I would have asked her why she thought it was her job to decide for other people that they were in a rush.

But hearing her express that point of view opened my eyes to a lot of her behaviors.  Such as always going to the 10 item or less grocery store register with a full cart.  Never starting to unload the cart until the order in front of her had been checked out, bagged and paid for.  Refusing to take even open her purse and start to dig for her checkbook or credit card until the order was checked out and bagged.  Sitting in her car messing with absolutely everything she could think of because someone else was waiting for the parking space.

I'm actually a pretty patient person, but I really hate to inconvenience other people and so I try to be efficient so as the help minimize other people's wait time.  Her attitude was so foreign to me, that I never even realized how bad it was until she said what she did about other people needing to slow down.

All I could do (and did) was back myself out of the friendship, not because of the lateness, but because the self-centered behaviors meant she just wasn't someone that I could be friends with anymore.

You are a better person than me because there is no way I'd have been able to hold my tongue. Reading this got my blood pressure up.

LeveeWoman

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #37 on: February 13, 2013, 02:35:16 PM »

She said:  "People are in too much of a rush.  They need to slow down and by being late, I force them to take a break.  It's good for their mental health."

I said nothing at the time because I was so shocked by how self-centered she was.  I wish I would have asked her why she thought it was her job to decide for other people that they were in a rush.

But hearing her express that point of view opened my eyes to a lot of her behaviors.  Such as always going to the 10 item or less grocery store register with a full cart.  Never starting to unload the cart until the order in front of her had been checked out, bagged and paid for.  Refusing to take even open her purse and start to dig for her checkbook or credit card until the order was checked out and bagged.  Sitting in her car messing with absolutely everything she could think of because someone else was waiting for the parking space.


I wish we had a contest for Special Snowflake of the Year because I'd nominate her.

Figgie

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #38 on: February 13, 2013, 02:36:02 PM »
Quote
She said:  "People are in too much of a rush.  They need to slow down and by being late, I force them to take a break.  It's good for their mental health."

Seriously?  ::)
I don't blame you for backing out of that friendship.

It does sound pretty unbelievable.  But it did give me some good insight into how at least one chronically late person excuses themselves for being late. :)

Venus193

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #39 on: February 13, 2013, 03:55:20 PM »
Figgie, I don't know that I have anything new to say about your Special Snowflake.  If one takes a break to be tardy it takes away from the person who is expecting them.

She's a world-class rhymes-with-witch and you are well rid of her.

Amara

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #40 on: February 13, 2013, 04:45:21 PM »
Quote
But hearing her express that point of view opened my eyes to a lot of her behaviors.  Such as always going to the 10 item or less grocery store register with a full cart.  Never starting to unload the cart until the order in front of her had been checked out, bagged and paid for.  Refusing to take even open her purse and start to dig for her checkbook or credit card until the order was checked out and bagged.  Sitting in her car messing with absolutely everything she could think of because someone else was waiting for the parking space.

This is deliberately rude behavior. She intends to provoke with her choices like poking an open wound with a knifepoint. It is nothing more than mean.

OP, what I would do (and have done) is decide what is right for me. Your DH needs to be taken into consideration too, I think, but I would sit down and do some hard thinking about what I want to change, if anything, and what I need to do to make myself feel good about my choices. For me, that would mean driving alone, eating precisely on time, opening gifts or having an Easter egg hunt when we said it would start, and so on. But whatever you decide should be made based on what feels right and polite to you.

These lateness discussions are fascinating to me. It's not amazing that so much of this happens but that so many people feel they don't have a right not to be aggravated by it in the name of politeness. It seems to me that society is heading ever faster into the realm of rudeness with certain actions that are becoming more acceptable: swearing at commonplace things, anger-based humor, saying no with no response at all instead a a polite rejection, and deliberate lateness because "that's the way I am" justifications. There's very little I can do to change much of it, but I can refuse to accommodate it by kowtowing to it or participating in it. And that's my stand. You need to decide what yours is and be true to it. Who knows, maybe you will become a model for others.

Danika

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #41 on: February 13, 2013, 05:01:18 PM »
All I could do (and did) was back myself out of the friendship, not because of the lateness, but because the self-centered behaviors meant she just wasn't someone that I could be friends with anymore.

The behavior you described also reminds me of my chronically late mother who I mentioned in post 17.

We're in the U.S. My mother would drive on the highway on the farthest left lane (the one that's supposed to be for the fastest travelers) at the speed limit or just a little below. I would tell her that she should move to the right/slower lanes and let faster people pass her. She'd say "I'm slowing them down. I'm doing them a favor so they don't get a speeding ticket." I said "It's their business if they want to speed. You're only going to antagonize someone's road rage." She ignored me.


POD to all of this. Again, if you aren't really in control of your own transportation or the event because you're with a group, there's not much you can do if the group as a whole decides to put up with it. But I would try really hard to avoid those situations where I (or DH if he agrees with me) didn't have control, even if it meant awkwardness, like two cars from the same town driving to the same gathering, rather than everyone carpooling and being late because of MIL...

I've done this with my mother. We were driving from the same town about 50 miles to another location and I refused to drive in the same car with her. It wasn't about her lateness it was about other rude behavior though. I hated to waste the gasoline. I try to be respectful of the environment, but I just didn't want to deal with her drama.

OP, you can consider telling your DH that if he wants to wait with his mother, he's welcome to do so, or to join you in your car, but you will drive separately from her. It depends on how much of a stand you want to take.

Lynn2000

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #42 on: February 13, 2013, 05:49:36 PM »
OP, you can consider telling your DH that if he wants to wait with his mother, he's welcome to do so, or to join you in your car, but you will drive separately from her. It depends on how much of a stand you want to take.

I was about to suggest this as well. If DH agrees to pick his mom up and take her to the gathering, can the OP transport herself to the gathering on her own? Get a ride with someone else, drive her own car, even take a taxi or something? Again there is some hassle involved and possibly money and people thinking you're being silly; but I think I would be sitting on that bus or whatever feeling very peaceful that I had avoided the MIL Wait and was doing things on my own schedule. It might also show your DH that you're serious about this being a problem to you.
~Lynn2000

LadyClaire

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #43 on: February 13, 2013, 06:46:33 PM »
I really, really hate the whole "that's just how they are, what do you expect?" excuse that so many people use to justify someone else's bad behavior.

My MIL behaves horribly, and my husband would always so "That's just the way she is. She's always been like that. No point in letting it bother you." I finally told him "Yeah, she's that way because no one has ever called her on her behavior before and she gets away with it. I refuse to just accept that."

It's funny, but after a few years of telling him that, he is now starting to really open his eyes to how his mother is, and it bothers him a lot more. He can't stand to deal with her anymore and now when she starts badmouthing people or stirring up drama, he shuts her down instead of just going along with it.

Danika

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Re: Another lateness thread: The righteously late.
« Reply #44 on: February 13, 2013, 08:44:32 PM »
My grandmother had been bossy and pushing people around her whole life. When she was 85, I stopped letting her push me around. The more she badgered me, the less she heard from me and the longer time it took for me to return her phone calls. She eventually learned to stop being so bossy with me. At 85, she learned. She stopped doing it to me. But she continued to treat everyone else the way she always had because everyone else still put up with it.