Author Topic: How to keep my sanity - virtual strangers sharing our hotel room **LONG**  (Read 7845 times)

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RebeccainGA

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DP is an ordained minister with denomination X. The denomination has an every-three-year massive convocation/convention event for a week at swanky hotels (every other one is outside the US). Last time we went (six years ago), we were truly poor as church mice, and ended up staying off a way from the hotel the event was at, only registering DP (so I sat in the hotel every day by myself) and eating soup and sandwiches to make money stretch. It wasn't a pleasant experience for me - for a lot of reasons, most of them because I felt really excluded.

Fast forward six years, and DP and I are doing better, financially. We prepay for both of us to go to events. We prepay for our parking (saving us $$$). We save up so that DP can have new clothes she needed, and even splash out a little on a custom clergy shirt (tailored to fit her new shape, post-cancer). We save up so we can stay in the conference hotel - a really swanky one, in midtown Chicago - and have a nice room to ourselves. I'm SUPER excited about it - even with the expense, it's going to be a little second honeymoon sort of thing for us, and I'm really happy about it.

Then we went to church a week ago Sunday, and ran into DP's former clergy buddy. She's nice, and so is her partner - and DP and Clergy Buddy were thick as thieves back in pastoral training and when they first got out of seminary, and so are very glad that we're all in the same city. They started talking about what's going on in their lives, and catching up. CB's partner is also going through ministry training, so they will BOTH be ministers - how exciting for them! And they are looking  for a permanent post for them both - how wonderful! And they're going to conference, too - how much of a blessing! And they're looking for a place to stay while they are there as they can't afford to pay for a room.... and while my brain is silently screaming NOOOOOOOO DP says "well, we have a handicapped suite, so there should be room for you to bring in a rollaway..." and my heart goes to the floor and cries a bit.

It's not just the sharing a room thing. I lived in dorms, I went to sleepaway camp, I've done that. It's the fact that a) DP has a lot of, um, medical stuff that I have to do for her (ostomy, mostly) and we need privacy for that b) I was hoping to have some private time away from the crowds downstairs (I've found that I can't handle crowds without some space, and this conference will be CROWDED) and c) I've been pinching pennies until they hurt for months so we would have money for this, and even though they will be sleeping on an air mattress, we are spending $1100 for a week in a hotel and they are going to be (maybe) able to give us $100. If DP will take it and d) I'm sharing a room with two people I don't know at all, and I'm NOT OK with it.

It's too late to do anything about it. DP is thrilled - she's seeing this as a sleepover event. CB and CB's partner are thrilled - they get to stay in the conference hotel (so convenient!) and spend time with DP. I'm the only one that's not excited about it.

Advice for how to set boundaries while we're there? I'll be calling on all my acting training to keep my face neutral.

ETA: was actually two Sundays ago - so eight days past.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2013, 11:16:19 AM by RebeccainGA »

TurtleDove

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Did you explain to your DP that this is not okay with you?  I would not be asking how to handle sharing a room; I would be focusing on how to break it to the other couple that they cannot stay with you.

Shoo

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Did you explain to your DP that this is not okay with you?  I would not be asking how to handle sharing a room; I would be focusing on how to break it to the other couple that they cannot stay with you.

1000 times this.  What your DP did was wrong.  It put you in a really really really bad position.  Surely she knew how much you were looking forward to having this time away together?  Unless you speak up now and make her contact her friends and explain that she overstepped, I'm afraid you're going to be stuck with roommates (you don't even know) and it won't matter how many boundaries you plan to enforce.  Your weekend is shot.

Gyburc

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Oh, I feel for you! I've been in the same kind of situation before, and it's been hard, since I really like my privacy...

I think you should tell your DP (gently) all the reasons why you think that this is not a good idea, and ask her to help you come up with a solution together. Emphasise the fact that the two of you need some alone time, and that your DP's medical issues might make CB and her partner uncomfortable.

If it's not possible to withdraw the offer to CB and her partner, perhaps you could make some arrangements to make sure you get some privacy? If the conference is going to be so busy, maybe CB and partner won't want to be around the room except to sleep? Alternatively, is there likely to be anywhere quiet that you can find to sit and recharge your batteries?

I hope you can work this out!
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gramma dishes

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Did DP know how important this event was to you?  Was the 'second honeymoon' aspect of it talked about?  Did DP know how incredibly excited you were about this?

This is so sad.  It sounds like your DP got so caught up in the excitement of the moment that the invitation was extended in haste without discussing it with the other person in that hotel room -- YOU!  Is it too late to discuss how disappointed you are and maybe find an excuse to suggest the old friends need to make other accommodations for themselves.?

WillyNilly

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I think you need to sit down with your DP and have a talk about how her behavior was absolutely unacceptable and press her on how she is going to make this right. She had no right to give away space in a shared room without consulting you first (privately). It was not her space to give. It belongs to both of you.

I would be tempted to say I didn't want to go anymore and as such the family budget for the trip was just halved. I probably wouldn't actually make that big a stink, although I would verbalize that was where my head was. Your DP needs to understand how she hurt you and figurative slapped you across the face and told you via her actions how absolutely unimportant your happiness and comfort is. I mean, I'm sure in general she doesn't think that way, but in this case, that's what she did. This is a BIG DEAL and I'd be making sure she understood that. She stole from you.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2013, 11:08:07 AM by WillyNilly »

RebeccainGA

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DP did apologize on the way home, saying that she was sorry that she'd said yes without asking me - something we are both usually really good about. She was hanging her hat on the idea that the friends were only conditionally staying with us - that they had friends in the city that might be putting them up, and that another friend of their was a minister and may have parishioners that could put them up. It hit home today that we are stuck with them the whole week after CB called me to make sure I'd informed the hotel we were having someone else stay with us the whole week (per an e-mail that went out to everyone from the denomination).

DP's been contrite, and will be again I'm sure when I talk to her about this tonight. I just can't see any way of rescinding the offer at this late a date (trip is in two weeks).

Shoo

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This happened yesterday, right?  So they have only ONE day less to figure things out than they had yesterday.  Your DP needs to get on the phone with them today and tell them she overstepped. 

NyaChan

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I don't know if this is ok to do, but I think I would call IMMEDIATELY and say "CB, I am so sorry, but DP and I discussed it and we realized that with her health, we could not actually manage with having 4 people in our hotel room.  I am so sorry for the inconvenience, we should have thought of this before making the offer.  I hope you can forgive us."

Zizi-K

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I think you might even show DP this post. I actually don't think it's too late for her to gently withdraw the offer. It would not be that hard to say: "I'm so sorry, but I made the offer for you to share our rooms in haste and I didn't consult my partner. After we discussed it, I realize now that it would actually be better for us to have the room to ourselves. It's not that we don't want to spend time with you, but we were looking forward to this as a kind of second honeymoon and in my excitement I kind of forgot that, and I forgot to think of my partner's needs as well. If I can be of any help in finding alternate arrangements, I'll do it."

Black Delphinium

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I thin you need to sit down with your DP and have a talk about how her behavior was absolutely unacceptable and press her on how she is going to make this right. She had no right to give away space in a shared room without consulting you first (privately). It was not her space to give. It belongs to both of you.

I would be tempted to say I didn't want to go anymore and as such the family budget for the trip was just halved. I probably wouldn't actually make that big a stink, although I would verbalize that was where my head was. Your DP needs to understand how she hurt you and figurative slapped you across the face and told you via her actions how absolutely unimportant your happiness and comfort is. I mean, I'm sure in general she doesn't think that way, but in this case, that's what she did. This is a BIG DEAL and I'd be making sure she understood that. She stole from you.
I feel like that's a bit of a harsh reaction.

Yes, it was thoughtless, but, DP has had a rough last few years. Cancer, a medically induced coma, major surgery, moving hours away from her daughter...I am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt and say that it was a spur of the moment grasp at what life was like before everything that has happened. A little bit of normalcy.

I would approach it more neutrally at first, asking what her reasoning was, and reminding her that she has certain less than public friendly needs that I(meaning RebeccainGA) have to attend to.

As far as needing down time, maybe having these friends with could be a blessing, of sorts. If there are things that DP is interested in seeing, sitting in on, could you maybe ask them to accompany her while you took a quick "nap"?


Also, I know you have a service poodle, is he coming with, or being watched at home? ,That's something else that needs to be addressed with the addition of two new p[people to the mix.
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RebeccainGA

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This happened yesterday, right?  So they have only ONE day less to figure things out than they had yesterday.  Your DP needs to get on the phone with them today and tell them she overstepped. 
I misspoke - it was last Sunday. It's been a week since they got the offer (my days are blurring, thanks to my own medical stuff going on this week). Conference is in two weeks.

Slartibartfast

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Zizi-K has it right.  If you don't feel that you can withdraw the offer outright, I would suggest having your DP apologetically call and saying "Actually, the room is close to $1100!  I hadn't realized how much my wife had been scrimping and saving so we could stay in the real hotel instead of somewhere else.  You're welcome to stay with us, but there is an extra charge from the hotel for having more people [usually true] and we'd need you to kick in closer to half the cost.  I totally understand if that's not what you expected.  Either way, we look forward to seeing you at the convention!"

Then they'll have a graceful way to back out (which any sane person ought to realize is what you'd prefer) and if they don't, at least you'll not have spent that much money in vain.

Outdoor Girl

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Could you compromise, such that no one is really happy but no one is really unhappy?

Let them stay 2 or 3 nights, especially if there are later night activities and/or early morning activities and ask them to find other arrangements for the rest of the nights.

Have DP explain that this was going to be your main vacation for the summer and you were both really looking forward to some time alone.
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MindsEye

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may have parishioners that could put them up. It hit home today that we are stuck with them the whole week after CB called me to make sure I'd informed the hotel we were having someone else stay with us the whole week (per an e-mail that went out to everyone from the denomination).

Here is your out then.  Blame the hotel.  You can't have extra people staying with you because of mumble-mumble regulations.