General Etiquette > general

can a host restrict certain guests from food/drinks?

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I think that whether it's beer or chocolate cake, it would still be rude to offer it to some guests and not others (assuming said guests are of legal drinking age). Even if it makes the underage crowd want some too, the answer to that is "not until you turn (age at which it becomes legal)."

Yes, it would be rude for a host to deny certain guests food and drink that the rest of the guests are receiving. (Assuming that there are no issues with being underage, or addiction, etc).

I get the notion of "my house, my rules". And if a host ever told me I couldn't drink/eat something (because I was a young adult, or a female, or a left-hander, or whatever) while other guests were, I might comply to avoid making a fuss. But I would never, ever, accept another invitation from them again.

--- Quote from: AllTheThings on July 19, 2013, 12:14:09 AM ---
--- Quote from: lellah on July 19, 2013, 12:01:14 AM ---I feel like the title of this post doesn't quite capture what went on or what would go on if the aunt were the host.  I feel like she asked you for a kind of family favor instead of saying "don't do that! my hospitality doesn't extend to you!"  Maybe it was a weird favor.  But it's still a favor that you have the option of complying with as you chose.

--- End quote ---

The reason why I thought there might have been a problem if my aunt were the host is because her tone, word choice, and body language said to me that she had expected us to go along with it and wanted to argue about it. Had she acknowledged that it was a weird request and an imposition, but explained that there was a real problem and could I please help her out, I probably would have felt differently about the whole thing. She couldn't do anything in this case, but had she been the host, I feel like she would have pressed the issue, putting us in an awkward situation. This particular situation wasn't that bad since she backed off, but I wanted to know what all of you thought in case I'm in a situation like that in the future.

Since she backed off, I wasn't that offended, but I did think it was pretty sad that she apparently thought herself incapable of looking after her own grandchildren.

--- End quote ---

It sounds to me like your great-aunt thinks that young people need to "obey" their elders? Sadly, it sounds like she doesn't respect the fact that you are now a legal adult, with a mind of your own. She was wrong, and rude, to act all annoyed that you decided not to comply with her request.

I have two stories that are kind of like this.

Last night, I had some friends over, and I offered liquor/alcohol as well as non-alcoholic drinks. One of my friends is pregnant. I don't know her or her doctor's stance on drinking while pregnant. When I offered the others some beer or schnapps, I wasn't sure what to do about her. I offered them to her too. I probably should have stopped there, but I didn't want her to think that I'd forgotten that she was pregnant, so I added "if you want a sip, that's fine by me" but then I wasn't sure if that was coming across as judgmental or whatnot. She declined.

Years ago, when I was a child, all my cousins around my age were boys. I was an average weight at this time. I had a mean aunt and she was watching us all one day. She went and pulled out a bowl (as in, it wasn't just there on the table, she had to go get it) of chocolates and candy. She offered some to each of the boys. When she got to me and I reached my hand out to grab some, she maliciously pulled the bowl away and barked at me "None for you. You don't need any." So she was deliberately shaming me. But it was her house. It was extremely rude, but again, she lived there. I had no power to go grab the bowl and eat some. Years later, I was talking to a younger cousin. She, too, had been surrounded by boy cousins, but because we were far enough apart in age, we'd never been with this aunt at the same time in the same situation. This, thin female cousin of mine told me the same story. Mean aunt had also purposely told her she couldn't have any candy after she'd offered it to the others.

So, in summation,  ;) I think it's unbelievably rude of a host/hostess to offer one thing to some guests and not offer it to others. Especially in front of the others. I suppose, it is their right to do so because it is their house and a guest shouldn't take things which aren't offered to them. But it's extremely rude.

If a host was really worried that seeing "legal age" relatives drink would "make" underage relativesdrink then it would be better not to serve any alcohol at a ll. Telling one generation they are welcome to partake and the other generation of legal drinkers they can't - no.

Imagine telling the older generation they can't eat pizza because some older people have problems with certain foods and you don't want them getting ideas when they see other people from "their generation" eating pizza.

If you have alcohol available, it has to be availble for all guests of legal age. "They are of legal age but you aren't" is an easy answer for any younger members of your generation. I wonder if she was uncomfortable with your generation drinking? It seems like an odd way to handle it to me.


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