Author Topic: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club  (Read 17307 times)

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TurtleDove

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #75 on: February 07, 2014, 04:37:44 PM »
And for the record, I don't consider having a cleaning lady to be particularly unusual, or brag-worthy. Cleaning ladies are sort of basic in my community. If anything, it's proof that I'm such a crappy housecleaner that I have to hire someone else to do it.

Exactly.  This reminds me of the "hot lunch" situation when I was in elementary school.  I always wanted to have hot lunch because I thought it was what the rich kids did.  Meanwhile, my friends eating hot lunch were envious that first my mom, and later I, packed my own lunch from home - their parents didn't cook and didn't stock the pantry so they didn't have that option.  Different perspectives on the same facts.

TootsNYC

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #76 on: February 07, 2014, 04:43:32 PM »
It's just funny to be accused of bragging about it, bcs I *am* ashamed of the fact that I have one.

To me, "cleaning lady" simply means "house gets cleaned more often than once every three months" (and I mean that literally).

TootsNYC

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #77 on: February 07, 2014, 04:53:42 PM »
Isn't it, though. Kind of a variation on "excuse the mess, the cleaning lady comes tomorrow." Why mention it at all, let alone twice, if it's not to highlight that you have a cleaner?

It seems this has hit a nerve with some people.  The way I see it, it is simply part of the context.  When I mention that I drove my car somewhere, I am not bragging about owning a car, even though I know not everyone has a car.  If I am upset because I lost a diamond earring, I am not bragging that I own diamond earrings, I am providing context for why I would be more upset than if I had lost an earring that cost $3.

For me it was kinda a disconnect that what is true for poster A doesn't mean it is true for every other poster. Her confusion about why others need to clean when she has a cleaning lady and doesn't  need to seems weird.

I do try to keep the house clean but I have pets so I always make it a point to vacuum before guests come over - especially the couch and chairs. And I also like to make sure the dishwasher is empty so I can just fill it when people leave. I consider that "cleaning before guests come".

And here I am assuming that non-deficient people keep their houses somewhat clean all the time. That they clean their houses somewhat regularly.


However, even when I didn't, I didn't consider "having the house clean" to be some *extra* thing imposed upon me by the gathering. If my house had been reasonably clean, I wouldn't need to do so horrible much extra. (I don't consider picking up the mail and emptying the dishwasher to be much in the way of "cleaning." If you get out the vacuum cleaner, yeah, but I either had to to *everything* or "just some picking up.")

wolfie

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #78 on: February 07, 2014, 04:59:52 PM »
Isn't it, though. Kind of a variation on "excuse the mess, the cleaning lady comes tomorrow." Why mention it at all, let alone twice, if it's not to highlight that you have a cleaner?

It seems this has hit a nerve with some people.  The way I see it, it is simply part of the context.  When I mention that I drove my car somewhere, I am not bragging about owning a car, even though I know not everyone has a car.  If I am upset because I lost a diamond earring, I am not bragging that I own diamond earrings, I am providing context for why I would be more upset than if I had lost an earring that cost $3.

For me it was kinda a disconnect that what is true for poster A doesn't mean it is true for every other poster. Her confusion about why others need to clean when she has a cleaning lady and doesn't  need to seems weird.

I do try to keep the house clean but I have pets so I always make it a point to vacuum before guests come over - especially the couch and chairs. And I also like to make sure the dishwasher is empty so I can just fill it when people leave. I consider that "cleaning before guests come".

And here I am assuming that non-deficient people keep their houses somewhat clean all the time. That they clean their houses somewhat regularly.


However, even when I didn't, I didn't consider "having the house clean" to be some *extra* thing imposed upon me by the gathering. If my house had been reasonably clean, I wouldn't need to do so horrible much extra. (I don't consider picking up the mail and emptying the dishwasher to be much in the way of "cleaning." If you get out the vacuum cleaner, yeah, but I either had to to *everything* or "just some picking up.")

And not everyone is you. I have cardboard scratchers for the cats. Within hours I have little pieces of cardboard on the carpet. I don't mind it myself - keeps them happy and I can happily ignore it. But I am not going to allow others into my house without dragging out the vaccuum and getting rid of them for a few hours. I don't consider it an imposition - I do it because I want my friends to come over and I want a reasonably presentable house. But i wouldn't be doing it at that time if I didn't have people coming over so it is an extra thing I have to do if I have a gathering.

Not everyone who needs to clean is a slob. Not everyone who is a slob has a housekeeper. Not everyone who has a housekeeper is a slob.

White Lotus

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #79 on: February 07, 2014, 05:06:09 PM »
If the Prof tried to pull this one on me, he'd get "You know where the vacuum and duster are, and if you don't want to cook, you know where the delivery menus are.  I will be in my studio.  I expect the house clean when I emerge, because I am not cleaning up after your friends."  This group and its leader have no power over ME.
Yes, we have a housekeeper; yes, we are reasonably clean people who pick up after ourselves; and yes, we fluff before company comes.  I wouldn't expect him to clean, cook, leave and return to clean up after my friends.  Sauce for the goose definitely suits the gander.

TootsNYC

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #80 on: February 07, 2014, 05:08:10 PM »

And not everyone is you. I have cardboard scratchers for the cats. Within hours I have little pieces of cardboard on the carpet. I don't mind it myself - keeps them happy and I can happily ignore it. But I am not going to allow others into my house without dragging out the vaccuum and getting rid of them for a few hours. I don't consider it an imposition - I do it because I want my friends to come over and I want a reasonably presentable house. But i wouldn't be doing it at that time if I didn't have people coming over so it is an extra thing I have to do if I have a gathering.


And that is what my question was: how much extra housecleaning do people have to do? And do they consider it an imposition, or just "normal household maintenance"?

gellchom

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #81 on: February 07, 2014, 05:27:45 PM »
Our house is kept reasonably clean, and like Toots, I have to admit that that is in large part thanks to the cleaning lady! 

Whether or not I clean more or even "fluff" (I like that, White Lotus -- reminds me of the Fab Five's "zhuzh") as in, pick up papers lying around, vacuum up pet hair, etc., before company comes depends.  A party?  Sure.  Almost as much for a meeting.  But just my pal coming over for a coffee?  Nah.

But I know people who would feel embarrassed if the dishwasher repairman came in and the rugs weren't freshly vacuumed.  I have a friend who was putting up a teenager for a night and felt she had to wash and iron the curtains.  Everyone has different feelings about how much we care about how others see our homes.  Toots, that's my answer to your question: someone who feels that everything has to be shipshape before any guests come might well see it as an imposition. 

My feeling about this LW was -- well, actually, it was that probably this had nothing to do with this, just that she didn't want her husband in this club, period, and all these other issues are red herrings.  But assuming it wasn't, and she really was reacting to how unfair it feels that she "has to" fix snacks and maybe clean before a meeting she isn't invited to, my guess is that she is (a) a person who always wants her house to look its best and have nice refreshments when guests of any kind are there and (b) married to a guy who either won't bother to clean or fix food or won't do it up to her standards.  He may well have told her, "Don't bother -- these guys won't care or even notice."  And she might have responded, or thought, "Maybe not, but I'm not having them go home and tell their wives there were newspapers all over the place."

I mean, if I were in her place, I might help my husband if he needed me to and asked me, but basically I'd feel "Your party, your preparation."

But then, I don't really care if his friends see my house looking less than optimal and I don't care if he gives them cheap packaged cookies or something.

And more to the point: I wouldn't care if he were in an all-men club, even if it meant I clear out once in a while when it's his turn to host.  I can certainly see how other spouses might not feel the same way, and that's fine -- but all this stuff about a "hostess" being "banished from her own home" just doesn't fit the facts.

I still think this all boils down to her trying to win a dispute with her husband about his being in this club at all by reframing it as an etiquette and misogyny issue about the club-members-only-in-the-house rule.

Amanita

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #82 on: February 07, 2014, 05:56:12 PM »


-A good friend belongs to a women's bible study group. Rule is that no kids or non-group members are in the home during the meetings as they discuss very personal issues that they want to remain within the group.



If somebody in the home I'm living in now joined a group with those rules, that would be a real burden to me- I am a non driver and live in an area very poorly served by public transit. (It only serves office workers and others who work 9-5 hours, no evening or night service) And my neighborhood has nowhere to walk to, nothing to do. None of my friends live nearby either. So if I found myself ordered out of the house, I'd be in a real bind. There's nowhere around here for me to go to, and for a good chunk of the year it's too cold to just "go for a long walk". So unless somebody was willing to drive me somewhere, there would be a real problem. (We live too far outside of town for a taxi- the fare would be easily $50 or 60.)
Now, if the group members understood my situation and were cool with me staying in my room with the headphones on and playing World of Warcraft, good luck hearing "personal stuff" over the clamor of a 25 person raid!), that would be cool. If not, me being ordered out of my own home would be a real imposition- I would need to find transportation, and would probably end up having to spend money- here in my town, there's not a lot to do downtown during the evenings unless you're spending money, and I can't always just go to a friend's house, as some of them work hours as odd as mine.

I wonder if any of the wives in this group are in a similar situation? Depending on their community, there may not be a lot of options for "just slipping out and going somewhere", that going double for non drivers. And there may not be a lot of things to "slip out" and go do, some places close down pretty early or just don't have a lot going on to begin with.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2014, 05:58:38 PM by Amanita »

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #83 on: February 07, 2014, 11:35:55 PM »
Honestly, I don't see the LW's trying to change the rule as being rude.

This is a rule that she didn't have a say in, yet affects her very much (having to vacate her own home whenever the Men's Club is over). I see this as one of the situations where it's ok to ask, provided you accept "no" for an answer.

In fact, perhaps by asking that the rule be adapted (eg the women can stay in the house, just not in the room, etc) is simply the LW's attempt to be a peace keeper, and find a solution that makes everyone happy?

MariaE

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #84 on: February 08, 2014, 03:05:57 AM »
If you are expected to clean and provide food, you are hosting.

Thats exactly the point , if the organizer actually said "SO your wife needs to cook and clean and if I find out you did the cooking you're out of the club." that would be crazy. If the husbands ask their wife's to cook and clean , heck even if they demand it it doesn't make the organizer rude. It's also possible the the wife's  don't take issue with it.

There is also the assumption the wives are being asked to leave. I know plenty of people in their 50-70s who are not home or with their spouses at least 6 evening a month.  They have hobbies , other interests , friends and family they like to visit solo. There is no reason to 100% conclude that most of these meeting aren't on the night the wives are  already planning to be out playing bunco ;p

We can only go by the letter, which says "He made a rule that women are not allowed in their own homes when their husbands host a meeting -- "no skirts allowed." Therefore, even though the wife prepares everything for her husband's meeting, she's told to slip out of the house before anyone arrives."

Interesting, I read this line as "Therefore even if the wife..." or "Therefore even in households where the wife..." So cause and effect rather than an actual extension of the rule.

Amanita, you'd be fine if a housemate of yours joined our bible study group, because that's exactly how we work  :)  Spouses in no way need to leave the house, they just need to not be in the same room where we are.
 
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zyrs

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #85 on: February 08, 2014, 04:28:50 AM »
If I joined a club like this, I'd have a hard time asking my wife to vacate the house for the club meetings just because it would be imposing on her.  But, I'd clean the house and prepare the snacks because expecting non-members to do that would just be silly.

Of course, I'd react to a "no skirts" rule by wearing a kilt. 

Ehelldame

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #86 on: February 08, 2014, 06:06:58 AM »
(Also, do most people actually have to clean before people come over? When I didn't have a cleaning lady, that was me, but now that my place is cleaned regularly, it's not like I have to do anything extra.)

Yes, most people have to clean their own homes. I don't think the majority of people have a cleaner.

But nice little brag there.  ;)  :)

Isn't it, though. Kind of a variation on "excuse the mess, the cleaning lady comes tomorrow." Why mention it at all, let alone twice, if it's not to highlight that you have a cleaner?

Why are you making it an issue that someone hires a cleaning lady?   

floridamom

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #87 on: February 08, 2014, 11:47:12 AM »
And for the record, I don't consider having a cleaning lady to be particularly unusual, or brag-worthy. Cleaning ladies are sort of basic in my community. If anything, it's proof that I'm such a crappy housecleaner that I have to hire someone else to do it.

Exactly.  This reminds me of the "hot lunch" situation when I was in elementary school.  I always wanted to have hot lunch because I thought it was what the rich kids did.  Meanwhile, my friends eating hot lunch were envious that first my mom, and later I, packed my own lunch from home - their parents didn't cook and didn't stock the pantry so they didn't have that option.  Different perspectives on the same facts.

Turtledove, you reminded me of a story my mom used to tell me about Oreo cookies and how much she loves them.  Mom grew up during the Depression and WWII, my grandmother would often pack homemade cookies in her lunch.  Mom had a classmate who's mom either worked at the local store or owned it (can't remember;) and would at times have Oreo cookies packed in his lunch. Mom was envious that he had store bought cookies and her classmate was envious that she had homemade cookies.  He loved the idea that my grandmother would make or take time to make cookies.  Mom and her classmate would often trade their snacks  ;D  To this day, mom still savors her Oreo cookies  ;D

Hmmmmm

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #88 on: February 08, 2014, 12:08:32 PM »


-A good friend belongs to a women's bible study group. Rule is that no kids or non-group members are in the home during the meetings as they discuss very personal issues that they want to remain within the group.



If somebody in the home I'm living in now joined a group with those rules, that would be a real burden to me- I am a non driver and live in an area very poorly served by public transit. (It only serves office workers and others who work 9-5 hours, no evening or night service) And my neighborhood has nowhere to walk to, nothing to do. None of my friends live nearby either. So if I found myself ordered out of the house, I'd be in a real bind. There's nowhere around here for me to go to, and for a good chunk of the year it's too cold to just "go for a long walk". So unless somebody was willing to drive me somewhere, there would be a real problem. (We live too far outside of town for a taxi- the fare would be easily $50 or 60.)
Now, if the group members understood my situation and were cool with me staying in my room with the headphones on and playing World of Warcraft, good luck hearing "personal stuff" over the clamor of a 25 person raid!), that would be cool. If not, me being ordered out of my own home would be a real imposition- I would need to find transportation, and would probably end up having to spend money- here in my town, there's not a lot to do downtown during the evenings unless you're spending money, and I can't always just go to a friend's house, as some of them work hours as odd as mine.

I wonder if any of the wives in this group are in a similar situation? Depending on their community, there may not be a lot of options for "just slipping out and going somewhere", that going double for non drivers. And there may not be a lot of things to "slip out" and go do, some places close down pretty early or just don't have a lot going on to begin with.

But if your house companions knew of this limitation about your leaving the home I assume they wouldn't choose to join this particular bible study. So if you had a roommate who knew the rules of this group, joined and then said "but can you make an exception for my housemate, I promise she'll always have headphones on and won't listen", I'd be pretty annoyed and suggest they find a different group.

Honestly, I don't see the LW's trying to change the rule as being rude.

This is a rule that she didn't have a say in, yet affects her very much (having to vacate her own home whenever the Men's Club is over). I see this as one of the situations where it's ok to ask, provided you accept "no" for an answer.

In fact, perhaps by asking that the rule be adapted (eg the women can stay in the house, just not in the room, etc) is simply the LW's attempt to be a peace keeper, and find a solution that makes everyone happy?
This to me is a false statement. The "rule" doesn't effect her. The rule could exist without ever effecting her. Her husband's decision to join a group with the rule is what is impacting her life.

It's the same with Aminita's scenario. The bible study group could exist for years and never effect Aminita. it would be her housemates decision to join the group that would impact the Aminita.
Amanita's housemate shouldn't say "I want to join this particular group, but I don't want to agree to the rules that all the other group members seem perfectly fine to abide by and accept".

I also find the LW's statement that "Therefore, the wives must clean and prepare" very old fashioned. To me she is assuming that the other other couple's households are managed just like her's is... wives cook and clean and husband's do "?"  I honestly don't know of very many households run this way anymore, no matter the age group. Even in my parent's generation (they'd be in their 80's) the men were more than capable to put a tray of cheese, cracker, and meet together and run a broom across the kitchen floor.

gollymolly2

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Re: Dear Abby 2/4/14 - Men's Only Club
« Reply #89 on: February 08, 2014, 04:40:09 PM »
(Also, do most people actually have to clean before people come over? When I didn't have a cleaning lady, that was me, but now that my place is cleaned regularly, it's not like I have to do anything extra.)

Yes, most people have to clean their own homes. I don't think the majority of people have a cleaner.

But nice little brag there.  ;)  :)

Isn't it, though. Kind of a variation on "excuse the mess, the cleaning lady comes tomorrow." Why mention it at all, let alone twice, if it's not to highlight that you have a cleaner?

Why are you making it an issue that someone hires a cleaning lady?

To be fair, while I don't think Toots intended it to come off badly, the way she worded her question was pretty bad.

"Do most people have to do X? I used to have to do X, but then I got someone to do X for me."

To me, the only way to interpret that as written is "don't most people have someone to do X for them?"

I too have a housecleaner, so I don't personally care that someone else does. But I too found her statement as written to be either a weird brag that she had a cleaning lady or a really tone deaf statement about whether others do.



To the original story - I agree with those who've said it's a relationship issue. If it would help my husband maintain friendships, and he didn't normally take advantage of me, I would be happy to do this. If my husband had a habit of demanding that I cater to him and then make myself scarce, we'd have more serious problems than his Heman Woman Haters Club.