Author Topic: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.  (Read 8094 times)

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camlan

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #15 on: December 24, 2013, 11:58:32 AM »
When Pam asked him to stay for her party, the polite thing for Dave to do would have been to tell her that he needed to check with her mother.

As for entering the house--Dave does not live there. He had no business wandering through the house. Even if Pam wanted to show him her room, he should have told/asked Linda. As for going anywhere else except the bathroom--very rude. Making himself at home (I'm guessing he turned on the TV or something), absolutely not.

Linda would have been within her rights to nicely give him the choice to come out and join the rest of the party or go home, making it clear that staying in her house unescorted was not going to continue.
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bah12

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #16 on: December 24, 2013, 12:27:31 PM »

Was Dave rude for accepting his daughter's invitation, since she was the GoH? - No.

Would it have been better if he phoned the mum to see if it was okay first? - Yes.  And the mom should have been gracious about her daughter's wishes.  Divorce or not, they should show some maturity when it comes to interacting for the sake of their kids.

Was it rude for Dave to come inside without an invitation? - Yes.  If party guests weren't invited inside, then Dave had no right to go in either.

Could Linda have handled this better/differently? - Yes. Though if you were the only one she "vented" to and didn't show her frustration to her daughter and other guests, I think she was fine.

I understand that in situations of divorce things can get hard...especially when it comes to sharing time with children.  I do think though that a little girl inviting her dad to her birthday says something about their relationship.  Even if she can understand the relationship dynamic of her parents at 11 years old, I think it's better for the parents to show some maturity, and deal with each other jointly on birthdays if that's the child's wish.

m2kbug

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #17 on: December 24, 2013, 12:48:28 PM »
It would depend entirely on the reasons for the divorce and the rel@tionship.  There is absolutely no reason for either ex-spouse to host the other one if they are not comfortable with it.  I agree, they should be as civil as possible during times they need to be together and should work together as best as possible in their co-parenting, but just because the little girl wanted her daddy there does not mean the mother was obligated to allow it, especially in her home.  I am not pleased at the implication that one parent is not mature because they will not allow their ex-spouse in their home or to participate in an event they planned independently of their ex.  Outside of certain events (school/clubs/sports) and parenting communication, I will maintain separation. 

I think it's great if Linda can have her ex there, so long as he respects her boundaries.  I would be willing to bet Dave was deliberate in creating discomfort and pushing her buttons.  It sounds like she managed it as best she could, but she needs to be more firm in boundaries in the future, which will include talking to her kids about her expectations and reasons.  It's not fun for the kids.  I've been there as a child of divorce and now a divorced parent. 

perpetua

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #18 on: December 24, 2013, 12:55:56 PM »
I think it's great if Linda can have her ex there, so long as he respects her boundaries.  I would be willing to bet Dave was deliberate in creating discomfort and pushing her buttons.

I think that's a bit of a stretch and I'm not getting that from the OP at all - to me it sounds like Dave deliberately tried to stay out of the way a bit so he wouldn't push any buttons. Linda was the one who was displeased at the situation; perhaps it showed more than she intended it to and it was obvious that he wasn't welcome, but he didn't want to leave because his daughter had specifically said she wanted him there, so he did the next best thing he could think of.

Barring a situation like domestic violence - in which case would Dave have access to the little girl anyway? - I do think two divorced grown-ups should be mature enough to be able to deal with each others' presence in the event of a child's birthday if that's what the child wants.

SamiHami

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #19 on: December 24, 2013, 01:00:18 PM »
An 11 year old, even on their birthday, doesn't have the authority to issue invitations to anyone with getting the resident parents' prior approval. Even if the person she's inviting is the other parent (or maybe that should be especially if it is the other parent). Since the father is either a social clod that doesn't know enough to leave or a intrusive nosy jerk (for making himself completely at home in a house that was not his), the mother should have taken him aside after a few minutes and advised him to make an excuse and leave.

To those who say he was okay to stay because he was invited by the child; remember, he was not spending time with her. He was ignoring her to nose around inside, making himself quite at home in a house that he never lived in and had no business just hanging out in. If he wanted to stay he should have been outside the entire time with the kids. I think he was being nosy and possibly trying to send some sort of signals to his ex that he was the alpha parent.

He had his birthday celebration time with his daughter earlier in the day. He had no reason to stick around unless it was to make his ex uncomfortable.

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bah12

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #20 on: December 24, 2013, 01:03:00 PM »
I always find it interesting how one would automatically assume that an action that one person doesn't like was always done so deliberately to hurt them.  I get that there are people out there that are this way, but I hear it so often.  Sometimes people do rude and unlikeable things and aren't actually trying to purposely upset anyone.  Most of the time, people aren't thinking about others that much.  They do what makes them comfortable/happy and not to purposely slight anyone else.

As for being obligated to host a parent because of a child wishes...I agree in most cases.  But this is a birthday.  It's the one day in a year that is (or at least should be) 100% about the child.  Holidays...that's for the entire family, but birthdays are for the child.  It's obvious that this dad didn't abuse or mistreat his kids.  If he was irresponsible and constantly put them in danger, then he wouldn't have had the ability to take his daughter out earlier that morning.  So, I really think if this child wanted her father to come to her birthday party, even if her mother wasn't obligated to host him, it would have shown kindness and maturity to do it.  By allowing him to come to the party and not assuming that he was purposely there to upset her, the mother would show her kids that she realizes that everything isn't about her.  I'm glad the mother in this case sucked it up.  He should have called her first, but she did the right thing in allowing him there.

And this isn't the same as inviting a homeless person or a total stranger.  It's not even the same as inviting a few extra kids from school.  The fact that he's her dad makes a huge difference.

SamiHami

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #21 on: December 24, 2013, 01:11:43 PM »
You might have a point if he actually spent time with the child while he was there. He didn't, so obviously spending more time with her was not his reason for staying.

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m2kbug

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #22 on: December 24, 2013, 01:12:13 PM »
I think it's great if Linda can have her ex there, so long as he respects her boundaries.  I would be willing to bet Dave was deliberate in creating discomfort and pushing her buttons.

I think that's a bit of a stretch and I'm not getting that from the OP at all - to me it sounds like Dave deliberately tried to stay out of the way a bit so he wouldn't push any buttons. Linda was the one who was displeased at the situation; perhaps it showed more than she intended it to and it was obvious that he wasn't welcome, but he didn't want to leave because his daughter had specifically said she wanted him there, so he did the next best thing he could think of.

Barring a situation like domestic violence - in which case would Dave have access to the little girl anyway? - I do think two divorced grown-ups should be mature enough to be able to deal with each others' presence in the event of a child's birthday if that's what the child wants.

It doesn't have to be just domestic violence, though.  There could be more subtle forms of abuse.  It could be any number of rel@tionship dynamics, and if one parent does not want their ex there, I'm going to lean in the direction there is a valid reason why, and not just being petty and vindictive and immature.  For parents who can continue to co-exist in this way, I'm a little jealous.  It won't happen for me.  However, for school events and other activities, we sit together and share air space and perhaps get ice cream afterwards, but I will not have him in my home until the day comes we're dealing with graduations and weddings and grandbabies and holidays with adult children.  I can manage that, I'm sure, but not now.

Interesting your completely opposite point of view of Dave's intentions. :)  It makes sense, but he pushed the envelope quite a bit.  If the plan was to spend time with his daughter, hanging out in the living room would not accomplish that.  Dave will have to work on his boundaries as well, if this invitation made him that uncomfortable. 

perpetua

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #23 on: December 24, 2013, 01:16:14 PM »
Interesting your completely opposite point of view of Dave's intentions. :)  It makes sense, but he pushed the envelope quite a bit.  If the plan was to spend time with his daughter, hanging out in the living room would not accomplish that.  Dave will have to work on his boundaries as well, if this invitation made him that uncomfortable.

See, I'm wondering if Linda's peeved-ness is what made him uncomfortable. In my head, Dave's thinking "Well, this is embarrassing; she's obviously not comfortable with me being here, and I don't want to cause a scene at my daughter's party, but I don't want to leave because she wants me here, so I'll just nip in here and stay out of the way while still being 'around' for my daughter..."

It's one of those situations that can be interpreted different ways depending on the POV, I think.

bah12

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #24 on: December 24, 2013, 01:22:28 PM »
I think it's great if Linda can have her ex there, so long as he respects her boundaries.  I would be willing to bet Dave was deliberate in creating discomfort and pushing her buttons.

I think that's a bit of a stretch and I'm not getting that from the OP at all - to me it sounds like Dave deliberately tried to stay out of the way a bit so he wouldn't push any buttons. Linda was the one who was displeased at the situation; perhaps it showed more than she intended it to and it was obvious that he wasn't welcome, but he didn't want to leave because his daughter had specifically said she wanted him there, so he did the next best thing he could think of.

Barring a situation like domestic violence - in which case would Dave have access to the little girl anyway? - I do think two divorced grown-ups should be mature enough to be able to deal with each others' presence in the event of a child's birthday if that's what the child wants.

It doesn't have to be just domestic violence, though.  There could be more subtle forms of abuse.  It could be any number of rel@tionship dynamics, and if one parent does not want their ex there, I'm going to lean in the direction there is a valid reason why, and not just being petty and vindictive and immature.  For parents who can continue to co-exist in this way, I'm a little jealous.  It won't happen for me.  However, for school events and other activities, we sit together and share air space and perhaps get ice cream afterwards, but I will not have him in my home until the day comes we're dealing with graduations and weddings and grandbabies and holidays with adult children.  I can manage that, I'm sure, but not now.

Interesting your completely opposite point of view of Dave's intentions. :)  It makes sense, but he pushed the envelope quite a bit.  If the plan was to spend time with his daughter, hanging out in the living room would not accomplish that.  Dave will have to work on his boundaries as well, if this invitation made him that uncomfortable.

I'm sure you're speaking out of your own personal experience, but your two statments contradict each other.  If you want to give Linda the benefit of the doubt in why she didn't want Dave there, that's fine. But, I think in that case, your argument should be based around giving Dave that same benefit of the doubt that he wasn't purposely being petty, vindictive, and immature.

He was rude to go inside the house..this is true.  But that doesn't automatically make him petty and immature.

And spending some time in the house, while wrong, also doesn't automatically mean he wasn't spending anytime with his daughter.  That's an ungracious assumption. He may have been trying to get out of the way while his daughter was playing games and her mother was organizing them.  The OP did say that's what was happening while he was inside.  Granted he could have just moved to another part of the yard and observed the games from there, but not making the 'best' or even 'correct' choice in that time, doesn't mean that he was neglecting his child the whole party.

Dindrane

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #25 on: December 24, 2013, 01:27:59 PM »
I think it's fine for Pam to want her dad there, and I also think that Linda should give in to Pam's wishes on her birthday if humanly possible. Even if it makes Linda a little uncomfortable to have her ex-husband attend a party, I do agree that's one situation where Pam's desires ought to be more important than Linda's comfort (within reason).

However, it's never okay for anyone to invite an extra guest at the last minute without informing the hostess. Even if the person inviting the extra guest is the guest of honor. The hostess needs time to prepare for additional guests, and in this specific case, Linda probably needed time to prepare emotionally to have Dave attend the party.

Pam is only 11, so she may not have been thinking about giving her mother (the hostess) time to prepare for one extra body. But Dave is not 11, and should know better than to show up at a party when he knows the hostess isn't expecting him. I think that because he is Pam's dad and it's Pam's birthday party, they would have gotten a pass on the last-minute invite if they had checked in with Linda before actually showing up. It might still have been uncomfortable for Linda, but she would at least have had some warning and a chance to prepare herself.

This really should be a teachable moment for Pam. If she wanted her dad at the party, she should have talked to her mom about inviting him before the day of the party, not invited him herself on the spur of the moment without telling her mother about it. And honestly, even if Pam didn't know any better than to put both her parents in an awkward situation, Dave should have known better than to let her do it. It likely would have been disappointing for Pam to have Dave say he couldn't attend because Linda wasn't expecting him, but that really would have been the best lesson for him to teach her as a parent (that even on your birthday, you don't get to have everything you want, and that you can't just show up at parties to which you were not invited). By the time Linda knew Pam had invited Dave, she wasn't in a position to teach the same sort of lesson, since it was much more likely to turn into a public scene.


JoieGirl7

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #26 on: December 24, 2013, 03:34:27 PM »
There doesn't have to be domestic violence involved and/or a situation where Dave is trying to push Linda's buttons.

He should know better.

It has been suggested that maybe he was hanging out in the house because Linda being uncomfortable was making him uncomfortable.  Well, whose fault is that?  His!

He imposed on her in the name of their child, he should suck it up and stay in the presence of his child.

If there were a history of PA behavior on his part or domestic violence, then his presence would be a thousand times worse.  But, that doesn't have to be a part of this in any way for him to be in the wrong.

And Linda is not immature to not want him there--not in the least.  She would have good reason to be uncomfortable with any uninvited guest but as a previous poster pointed out, maybe especially because its him.

m2kbug

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #27 on: December 24, 2013, 03:50:03 PM »
I think it's great if Linda can have her ex there, so long as he respects her boundaries.  I would be willing to bet Dave was deliberate in creating discomfort and pushing her buttons.

I think that's a bit of a stretch and I'm not getting that from the OP at all - to me it sounds like Dave deliberately tried to stay out of the way a bit so he wouldn't push any buttons. Linda was the one who was displeased at the situation; perhaps it showed more than she intended it to and it was obvious that he wasn't welcome, but he didn't want to leave because his daughter had specifically said she wanted him there, so he did the next best thing he could think of.

Barring a situation like domestic violence - in which case would Dave have access to the little girl anyway? - I do think two divorced grown-ups should be mature enough to be able to deal with each others' presence in the event of a child's birthday if that's what the child wants.

It doesn't have to be just domestic violence, though.  There could be more subtle forms of abuse.  It could be any number of rel@tionship dynamics, and if one parent does not want their ex there, I'm going to lean in the direction there is a valid reason why, and not just being petty and vindictive and immature.  For parents who can continue to co-exist in this way, I'm a little jealous.  It won't happen for me.  However, for school events and other activities, we sit together and share air space and perhaps get ice cream afterwards, but I will not have him in my home until the day comes we're dealing with graduations and weddings and grandbabies and holidays with adult children.  I can manage that, I'm sure, but not now.

Interesting your completely opposite point of view of Dave's intentions. :)  It makes sense, but he pushed the envelope quite a bit.  If the plan was to spend time with his daughter, hanging out in the living room would not accomplish that.  Dave will have to work on his boundaries as well, if this invitation made him that uncomfortable.

I'm sure you're speaking out of your own personal experience, but your two statments contradict each other.  If you want to give Linda the benefit of the doubt in why she didn't want Dave there, that's fine. But, I think in that case, your argument should be based around giving Dave that same benefit of the doubt that he wasn't purposely being petty, vindictive, and immature.

He was rude to go inside the house..this is true.  But that doesn't automatically make him petty and immature.

And spending some time in the house, while wrong, also doesn't automatically mean he wasn't spending anytime with his daughter.  That's an ungracious assumption. He may have been trying to get out of the way while his daughter was playing games and her mother was organizing them.  The OP did say that's what was happening while he was inside.  Granted he could have just moved to another part of the yard and observed the games from there, but not making the 'best' or even 'correct' choice in that time, doesn't mean that he was neglecting his child the whole party.

Yes, my own experiences color my thinking, and this includes my mother's behavior to my father growing up, which could be considered immature and vindictive, which is why I have done everything in my power to do things differently, but the buck stops at hosting him in my home, even if it's my child's birthday. 

It's not necessarily a contradiction if point A leads to point B, and this is why Linda does not want him around when she can help it.  So I'm going to expect that Linda has a reason beyond immaturity for not wanting Dave around, and Dave snooping about and making himself at home is part of that reason, so not a contradiction.  The reasons go together. 

Yes, I leaned in a more negative direction on Dave's intentions, but I don't know these people, so all this is, is my own thoughts, and not necessarily reality or passing judgement on Dave or Linda...it's generic.

What I take exception with, is this idea that a person is less mature for not allowing the ex-spouse to stay for a child's birthday.  I think that if the couple can manage this and continue to socialize around their child's special day in this way, that's great, but not allowing the ex is no different than excluding any family members from events that we see come up on this board frequently without considering that person immature.

Pam should not have asked her father without clearing it with her mother and this would apply to anybody.  Because it's her dad, it puts a different spin on the situation.  Because the day was split, she might have felt some guilt at excluding dad, which is perfectly understandable.  She probably doesn't realize that daddy understands and daddy really needed to pick up the slack here and let her off the hook.  He is, after all, the grownup.  I would not have allowed him to stay.  I have historically been left to be the bad guy. 

bah12

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #28 on: December 24, 2013, 04:22:33 PM »
No, Linda is not immature to wish he wasn't there.  That makes her human.  She behaved, in my opinion, very maturely in allowing him to stay and only venting her frustration to the OP. 

We agree that Dave should have called her first and he shouldn't have been in her house.  I disagree that those two things makes him vindictive.  I also disagree that the mere fact that Linda doesn't want him there automatically makes him wrong for being there.  They have a child together and the child asked her father to come to her party (I think if Linda asked him to leave, he would have obligated to do so, but I would have faulted her for asking him to leave if her only reason was that he's an ex and it was her 'turn' with Pam).  This isn't about Linda...it's about Pam.  I have spent plenty of time in the presence of people I don't like (and in my home) for the sake of someone else that I loved.  Unless I felt that my or my child's physical health was at stake, or my child's emotional health was at stake, I would definitely suck it up and spend three hours in the presence of an ex for the sake of my child on her birthday.  And who's to say that Dave didn't hate being around Linda just as much as she hated being around him? 

I suppose I'm lucky to have never been around truly vindictive people.  Mean spiritied and immature, sure...but I have not had the relationships that some of you cite here.  I expect that our own experiences color our perception of things and I have learned that most people do rude things for several different reasons.  Very few of which has truly been about me. 

So, while yes, I'm sure that Linda has reasons outside of immaturity and pettiness for not wanting to be around her ex-husband (he is, afterall, an ex), I am not convinced that this means that he was wrong for coming to the party after thier daughter invited him (despite the fact that he was wrong to not call first).   Like I said, there are things that exes with children need to deal with.  Their safety was not at stake...it may have been unpleasant for Linda...it may have also been upleasant for Dave....but sometimes those are the breaks when doing something for your child.

JoieGirl7

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Re: More uninvited guest (sort of) questions - bit long sorry.
« Reply #29 on: December 24, 2013, 04:37:17 PM »
Linda was never asked if she wanted Dave there or not.  That alone is a good reason to be uncomfortable with his presence there.