Author Topic: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...  (Read 11062 times)

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delabela

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #30 on: January 05, 2014, 03:49:08 PM »
It seems from the OP's posts that indeed the friend is expecting OP to make a different meal than she has planned - either for just friend, or everyone.  That's not ok.

I cook for people who have different dietary restrictions - due to religion, allergies/sensitivities, and ethics.  I usually consider it a chance to expand my abilities.  It is my obligation as a host to attempt to meet my guests needs, and I enjoy it.  However, I have been on Weight Watchers, and it is simply not a program that requires specific meals.  You can literally eat whatever you want, just not unlimited amounts.  This sounds more like friend trying to make sure there is a meal she prefers, rather than just one she can eat.  It may very well be that she does not realize that she is being difficult, since you are close friends and she's obviously comfortable with you.  Perhaps you can just say that the menu is set, and you're sure it'll be great!

Hmmmmm

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #31 on: January 05, 2014, 03:56:12 PM »
Op here. Let me first say that we are all so proud of her, it is an unbelievable achievement to have lost that much weight! That being said, I say come to dinner, she says what are you serving, I tell her. And then she says, well I can't have that. And I know she's waiting for me to say, OH! I'll make you something special. and if she were a vegetarian, I would serve fish. And it would just be a case of changing the main dish (I probably wouldn't have a vegan dinner party, simply because I would have no idea what to serve!) but I don't want to change the main dish to a low fat low sodium meal that everybody has to eat. This is a fancy dinner party!

Then let her wait. Instead say "Oh, I understand. We'll get together another day." You offered her hospitality. She is choosing to state what you are offering doesn't meet her needs. No harm on either side. Just don't let her always force the issue.


TootsNYC

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #32 on: January 05, 2014, 04:17:16 PM »

Friend wants to change the menu. Which at best tends to upset other people  that wanted the orginal menu and were looking forward to it.


You know, my response to those people would be, "suck it up! Your host chooses the menu. Your host is not a restaurant."

This is getting to be at theme--people (like the OP's Weight-Losing Friend; and the friends that made another EHellion stop having dinner parties) who expect to "order" the food as if they are customers!

For the OP, I thought at first the Weight-Losing Friend was simply checking to be able to plan.

But from additioanl info in the OP, and in the update, it's definitely time for this (variations suggested by several people--most recent example snipped):

Quote
Then let her wait. Instead say "Oh, I understand. We'll get together another day."


Or, just say, "Well, that's the menu--I know that XYZ is stuff that fits your diet plan. Let me know if you'll be coming--if I don't hear from you by Thursday, I'll assume it's a no."
Like this  (except--there's no "compromising"--you are the *host*, and you don't compromise; you of course make menu choices that will be appealing to your guests, so of course you *already* plan some foods she ought to be able to eat, but you don't ask for her to agree with your decisions, especially not when she is already being over the line in terms of unreasonableness and making you feel manipulated and pressured. Ultimately, hosting is take-it-or-leave-it; it's a gift, and the gift giver has all the power over what the gift will be, even if they do try to please the recipient.):
 
She is one of your closest friends, I would think you can let her in on the situation a bit and still include her if you want. You can sort of ask her to meet you halfway on the compromising.

"I thought of you. I am serving a large leafy salad and will provide low-cal dressing. The entree is x with y and z for sides. Save your points and let me know if you want a smaller helping of x, y or z. And there will be fruit as an option instead of dessert. I do hope you can save your points and come, and I am trying to arrange it so that it meets your needs without having to cook two complete meals, as that wears me out!"



and then *stop caring* whether she's happy with the menu. Detach yourself. "Oh, well."


And you know what? If you really feel backed into a corner, there is nothing wrong with gently reminding her: "Weight-Losing Friend, I'm not a restaurant. If my company is not important enough to you, for you to make do with the foods that will fit your diet plan, then please don't come to my home."

peaches

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #33 on: January 05, 2014, 05:34:31 PM »
I say come to dinner, she says what are you serving, I tell her. And then she says, well I can't have that.

This is your cue to say, in a friendly way: "Why don't you bring a dish that you can eat?" 

If she demurs, or says that would be too much trouble, then reply "The menu for the party is set. We'd love to see you. Let me know if you'll be coming."

I have a lot of respect for people who have lost weight and are committed to keeping it off. But that's their responsibility, their choices (which will sometimes be hard), their life. The responsibility shouldn't be pushed off onto others.



lakey

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #34 on: January 05, 2014, 07:21:01 PM »
This program sounds like Weight Watchers. I was on Weight Watchers for years, and it works. They have weekly meetings where they discuss how to deal with issues, such as how to get through a restaurant meal or a dinner party. I have never heard it suggested that the host should be asked to prepare something special for you. You simply look at the meal and eat the items that you are able to, or eat small portions of the items, such as a small amount of the steak. You can eat salad without the dressing. You can eat the dinner roll without butter.You can eat a snack before you leave so that you aren't very hungry. You can eat half of the brownie instead of the whole thing. There are any number of ways to stick to the program without inconveniencing the hostess.

I also feel very strongly that a number of people in our society seem to think that the world revolves around them, and that they are entitled to expect people to pander to their issues. By caving in and preparing a special meal for her you would be encouraging her to think that she should expect people to do this for her.

Also, when I was younger Catholics were not allowed to eat meat on Friday. This was a serious religious matter. My mother taught me that when you ate at someone's house, you did not have them get you anything special. You ate the potatoes, bread, and salad.

TootsNYC

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #35 on: January 05, 2014, 07:48:50 PM »
I say come to dinner, she says what are you serving, I tell her. And then she says, well I can't have that.

This is your cue to say, in a friendly way: "Why don't you bring a dish that you can eat?" 

If she demurs, or says that would be too much trouble, then reply "The menu for the party is set. We'd love to see you. Let me know if you'll be coming."

I have a lot of respect for people who have lost weight and are committed to keeping it off. But that's their responsibility, their choices (which will sometimes be hard), their life. The responsibility shouldn't be pushed off onto others.

Beautiful!

siamesecat2965

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #36 on: January 05, 2014, 08:04:16 PM »
This program sounds like Weight Watchers. I was on Weight Watchers for years, and it works. They have weekly meetings where they discuss how to deal with issues, such as how to get through a restaurant meal or a dinner party. I have never heard it suggested that the host should be asked to prepare something special for you. You simply look at the meal and eat the items that you are able to, or eat small portions of the items, such as a small amount of the steak. You can eat salad without the dressing. You can eat the dinner roll without butter.You can eat a snack before you leave so that you aren't very hungry. You can eat half of the brownie instead of the whole thing. There are any number of ways to stick to the program without inconveniencing the hostess.

I also feel very strongly that a number of people in our society seem to think that the world revolves around them, and that they are entitled to expect people to pander to their issues. By caving in and preparing a special meal for her you would be encouraging her to think that she should expect people to do this for her.

Also, when I was younger Catholics were not allowed to eat meat on Friday. This was a serious religious matter. My mother taught me that when you ate at someone's house, you did not have them get you anything special. You ate the potatoes, bread, and salad.

It does and I'm currently doing WW. But I'd never think to interrogate my host and try and get them to make me something special. I might, if it were a close friend, ask what was planned so I could then plan. To have a snack before I came, or perhaps "bank" some points. But it's all on me to CHOOSE what I do and don't eat. That's all part if how WW works

Psychopoesie

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #37 on: January 05, 2014, 08:25:46 PM »
Also doing WW. Would not expect a special meal. It's incredibly generous and supportive of any host to do this, even once.

Would ask a friend about the menu so I could plan around it. If I didn't think I could manage somehow (maybe having a rough patch and the food was all really rich/tempting), I'd decline that invitation and hope I was in a better place next time.

That said, it helps as other posters have said if there's a bit of flexibility about what's served - dressings on the side, for example, has been mentioned a bit. Things like that which aren't likely to affect other's experience of the meal or put extra pressure on the hostess are greatly appreciated.

If the point counting friend wants a dinner that suits her perfectly, best she offers to host her own dinner and show what delicious healthy alternatives are available.

LifeOnPluto

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #38 on: January 05, 2014, 09:17:01 PM »
I think there's a difference between "a completely separate meal" and a "healthy variation of the main meal". The first is a bit unreasonable, IMO, since it inconveniences the host. But the second one seems ok to me, if those variations don't take too much time and effort. (For example, setting aside a portion of salad for your friend, before tossing dressing over it. Or doing a grilled steak, rather than a fried steak, etc.)

If those healthy variations don't suit your friend, I think you can either tell her to bring her own food, or only get together for a non-food related activity.

TootsNYC

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #39 on: January 05, 2014, 10:22:47 PM »
I just don't think it's right to push your menu preferences on your host.

A considerate host needs only to hear, "I've been trying to lose weight," and then I believe is honor-bound to provide low-calorie meal options for their guests.
  Even deep-fat-fried chicken can be modified once on the plate.

But for a guest to ask more than that is not appropriate. A guest does not "negotiate" meals with their host.

melicious

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #40 on: January 05, 2014, 10:25:05 PM »
Also, if you modify your meal to suit her needs, then your other guests could easily request the same (according to whatever restrictions they may have): "Well, you did it for her"

hannahmollysmom

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #41 on: January 06, 2014, 04:09:33 AM »
It seems from the OP's posts that indeed the friend is expecting OP to make a different meal than she has planned - either for just friend, or everyone.  That's not ok.

I cook for people who have different dietary restrictions - due to religion, allergies/sensitivities, and ethics.  I usually consider it a chance to expand my abilities.  It is my obligation as a host to attempt to meet my guests needs, and I enjoy it.  However, I have been on Weight Watchers, and it is simply not a program that requires specific meals.  You can literally eat whatever you want, just not unlimited amounts.  This sounds more like friend trying to make sure there is a meal she prefers, rather than just one she can eat.  It may very well be that she does not realize that she is being difficult, since you are close friends and she's obviously comfortable with you.  Perhaps you can just say that the menu is set, and you're sure it'll be great!

I agree. I've been on WW, I am now a Type II diabetic. I would never expect my host to make a special meal. I know what I'm allowed to eat, and in what portions, or not allowed to have. It is the person's responsibility for their health, not the host's. Most hosts, if they are good friends, know what your diet allows and will try to accommodate to a point, but other guests need to be thought of too.

Margo

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #42 on: January 06, 2014, 04:50:59 AM »
I agree with PPs that you are absolutely not under an obligation to provide a 2nd meal. I think it would be kind to make modifications where you can do so easily - eg serving sauce separately so guests can chose whether/how much to add, serving salad undressed, butter on he side rather than already on food etc.
Let people serve themselves with vegetables etc rather than plating these up, so they can take as much or little as they want.

Give your friend the option of a smaller portion of the main, and let her know that you won't be offended if she chooses not to eat the starter / dessert.

But I think it's absolutely reasonable to say to her "I'm happy to let you know what I'm serving so you can 'bank' points if you'd like, and also I won't be offended if you chose to skip a course. I will be providing [e.g. anything you are planning or can do without hassle, such as undressed salad, steamed veg as well as roasted, or whatever] but of course if you don't feel that will work for you, I will understand and will look forward to meeting up some other time"

depending how you are planning the evening, it might also be possible to vary that response b giving her the option to come or coffee and socialising after the meal, or to let her know that if she would like to attend and to bring a meal of er own she can (in which case, let her know what facilities will be available or re-heating/cooking it)

Another Sarah

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #43 on: January 06, 2014, 08:10:11 AM »
I agree with all the previous posters -
the only thing I can add is that when I was on it, I used to really struggle allocating points for meals I didn't cook and would avoid stuff I wasn't sure of (never asked anyone for a different choice, but I would only eat a bit of it or stick to the salad etc) - you shouldn't feel obliged at all to but, maybe if you tell her what's in it she can check the point total and plan a bit easier?

Dragonflymom

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Re: But I don't want to cook 2 meals...
« Reply #44 on: January 06, 2014, 10:00:21 AM »
I agree with all the previous posters -
the only thing I can add is that when I was on it, I used to really struggle allocating points for meals I didn't cook and would avoid stuff I wasn't sure of (never asked anyone for a different choice, but I would only eat a bit of it or stick to the salad etc) - you shouldn't feel obliged at all to but, maybe if you tell her what's in it she can check the point total and plan a bit easier?

I would be careful of going this route.  For one meal, or every so often, it might be ok.  But when I had to deal with my friend on the low carb diet asking me constantly "How much sugar is in this?"  "How much molasses is in this?"  "How much flour is in this?" "How much honey is in this?" for all the food I made, it got exhausting really fast to have to look that up and be asked about it, and made me feel like a restaurant not like a friend.
"By swallowing evil goats unsaid, no one has ever harmed his stomach"  Winston Churchill