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Author Topic: Valentines awkwardness  (Read 5128 times)

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Another Sarah

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Valentines awkwardness
« on: February 11, 2015, 10:04:15 AM »
So this year I will be spending valentine's day playing gooseberry in my friend and her boyfriend's flat - to be fair, she invited me to stay (I'm doing a directing job for her the next day and it's not in my hometown). I tried to get a hotel so I didn't have to stay there but all the cheap rooms are gone - she lives in London which is popular for weekend breaks with couples esp around Vday - and I really can't afford 100+ per night.

She mentioned when offering to put me up that she'd told her boyfriend they'd have to put Vday off this year, but I feel very awkward about making them miss it. They work odd shift hours and don't get a lot of time together at the best of times, and it is something they celebrate.

So how would you handle it? Part of me wants to leave the flat and go for dinner by myself so they can have some space or to retreat to the spare room with my laptop and leave them to themselves for a bit, but I don't want them to think I'm being rude or ignoring them.


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2015, 10:14:23 AM »
Is that the only night you'll be there? It sounds like they're worried about you feeling alone and left out, since it's kind of a special thing that you're there.

I'd tell her "I don't want you two to miss out on Valentine's on my account. I appreciate you letting me stay, you're doing me a huge favor, and I don't feel like a guest who needs to be entertained. Whatever you would normally do to celebrate - please go ahead! I'd be happy to hang out alone and entertain myself, or, if you usually cook a nice dinner and snuggle up with movies, I'll hang out in the guest room with some take-out and my laptop!"

She'll either say "Are you sure? Okay, thanks!" or she'll say "No way, you're only here for a night and we want to hang out with you!" Whichever way they decide, go with that.


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2015, 10:35:50 AM »
She offered to put you up so I would try to accept her offer at face value and not fret about it. She should not have mentioned the thing about "putting off" Valentine's Day with her boyfriend--if she had just kept silent about that, you would never have started to worry you were intruding.

I would just do whatever you would normally do, if you were staying a night with a friend and it was March or June or something. And that might include saying something like, "So, were you thinking that we would all have dinner together that night, or should I go out for my own meal, or what? What's the plan?"

I guess when I think about a couple have Valentine's Day plans, the first thing that comes to mind is romance/Scrabble. I feel like that would probably be inhibited by a guest no matter what--if they're in the next room, if they're out but we have to be alert for when she comes home, etc.. It might seem nice to tell them to just go ahead and follow their plans, and you'll stay out of their way, but logistically that might actually not be possible, and they'll end up with a watered down celebration when they could just wait until the next night when you're no longer there. Your friend offered to let you stay on that date and said it was fine, so I wouldn't bring up what they might be putting off as it seems likely to cause awkwardness.


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2015, 01:11:01 PM »
She invited you to stay, and you're doing some work for her the following day.  You probably wouldn't be worrying if she hadn't mentioned 'putting off' Valentines day this year.


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2015, 01:17:08 PM »
You could give them a gift card to a restaurant and tell them to go enjoy it, you've got something you need to do for a few hours that night...
Then remove yourself to a show, or wander around Harrods/whatever shops are open for a while.

Another Sarah

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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2015, 08:58:41 AM »
You're all right - I probably am overthinking it - I think I'll offer to leave them for dinner and then stop worrying about it.
Thanks ehellions - you guys help me keep things in perspective!


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2015, 08:17:51 PM »
O/T, but can I just say I love the expression "playing gooseberry" and I'm pleased to see it's still used in the UK.  8)


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2015, 01:56:16 PM »
Also many people want to celebrate Valentine's Day but would rather go out on a less crowded night.

You could tell her that you appreciate very much that she is hosting you but you can make yourself scarce (see a movie, go out for dinner, retreat to your room) for a couple of hours. ..that you love to spend time with her but understand that this is more of a "place to sleep" than a "let's hang out" type of evening so if she wants to spend some time with just him you are cool with that.


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Re: Valentines awkwardness
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2015, 05:23:37 PM »
OP is doing a job FOR the friend the next day. Some clarification should probably be made as to whether this is a favour or fully paid work or a combination of both... ie, I'll do it cheap because we're friends because that would influence the outcome. And I'm pretty well against OP buying the couple a gift card but again it might depend more on the specifics of this job.