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Author Topic: Is there a polite way to say this?  (Read 6229 times)

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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #15 on: June 17, 2013, 04:20:22 PM »
Then I would phrase it in terms of "Friend, I'm so sorry, but I just came off of working 70 hour work weeks for {insert} and even that was just after there was a death in my family.  I just can't handle a houseguest right now."  and then if there is something you'd like to do for her, you could add it on the end.


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2013, 04:27:18 PM »
Another possibility, since you don't seem entirely certain that you want to say no, might be to allow her to stay for only one of the nights, say the third one. That would buy you a couple more un-busy days to begin to decompress and allow you to help her out, but wouldn't be quite as stressful. The amount of cleaning would be the same, but the emotional commitment (either for fun or support) would be lower.
"The trouble with quotes on the Internet is that you never know if they are genuine" - Abraham Lincoln 


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #17 on: June 17, 2013, 07:20:55 PM »
"I've seen a couple of ways to nicely say 'I can't handle having you here right now.'"

I still don't understand why you think you need to say something like that at all.  Putting it that way can easily make her feel that the problem isn't timing, but that she herself is a nuisance.

Why isn't it enough for you to tell her you're sorry, but it's just not a good time for you then?  What am I missing here?


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #18 on: June 17, 2013, 07:28:44 PM »
If I knew for a fact she was a "oh don't worry about me, you won't even know I here" sort I'd have zero problem with her staying. But if it turns out she wants "nerd girl time" (like we do at the conventions which is always super fun) or if she's a wreck because of the divorce I don't know if I have it in me to be supportive.

I agree that just saying you can't handle a houseguest right now is fine. But if, based on the comment above, you really feel this way, why not say this to her: "Friend, I am just coming off 70-hour work weeks and have had a recent death in the family. I desperately need alone time and some time with my DH. If you don't mind doing your own thing  without me I would be happy to supply a bedroom and bathroom and access to the kitchen. But though I wish I could I cannot offer more than that. Would that work for you?"


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #19 on: June 18, 2013, 02:01:32 AM »
In your shoes, I'd do the following, but it depends on your budget, of course.

I'd start by saying

I'm looking forward to having you in the area and spending more time with you and our group of friends.

Unfortunately, we've had a recent death in the family and things have been very unsettled and stressed for me because of that. I'm still trying to work through details and handle everything on my end. Therefore, it's unfortunately a bad time for us to have houseguests and I cannot offer you a room at my house for the near future.

I don't know how close you were to the relative who died (my condolences, btw) or if you were involved with any funeral arrangements. Nevertheless, it takes a toll and it sounds like you've been exhausted and need to wind down. I'd focus on the death part and not the "I need relaxing time" because it's something more people are likely to be understanding about and it won't ruffle as many feathers.

And then I'd add

However, I would like to offer to put you up in a hotel for three days <maybe mention the type so it's clear it's not expensive like the Ritz> and meet up with you for coffee or dinner sometime.

Please, let me know if that works for you and I can make a reservation for you at X hotel.

If the hotel is out of your budget, then offer to take her out for a nice meal after she's been settled for a while and you've had a chance to destress and relax for a week or two. Obviously, you want to keep things on good terms with her and the rest of your group of friends.


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #20 on: June 18, 2013, 10:19:39 AM »
I agree with the majority.

1.  An open-ended, broad invite like yours always carries the unspoken assumption that it will need to be feasible at your end.  If it's not, it doesn't matter whether your house is flooded, you're out of town, or personal stresses make it impossible.

2.  It's not a good idea to issue these, unless it's someone you'd never turn down for any reason.  Hopefully, this is a very short list.


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #21 on: June 18, 2013, 01:08:05 PM »
I spoke with DH and decided that we would go ahead and let her stay a bit. He's going to work from home and help with the cleaning (which he normally does anyway, its just that he's going to pick up a few things that are normally "my" cleaning job)

I'm thinking of sending the following:

"Hi Jane, we'd be happy to have you from x1 day to x2 day. Just know that we have a really busy weekend planned with DH going out of town so we won't be able to have you stay past x2 day. Just want you to know that for your planning. Think you'll really love Hometown, can't wait to see you and show you some of the sites!"

X2 day is a day shorter than she was asking, but it will allow me to have an evening alone with DH before he leaves town.


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Re: Is there a polite way to say this?
« Reply #22 on: June 18, 2013, 01:22:08 PM »
Thanks for updating. I think that's a good solution.