Author Topic: How to solve this...  (Read 4206 times)

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kiero

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How to solve this...
« on: February 15, 2007, 05:59:23 PM »
Hi, 

Me and my mommy friends (best way to describe them) like to get together for a potluck once a month or so.  Everyone brings something and the person whose house we are at basically only has to clean and things.  It means that the work and money is managable.  So last Friday at playgroup we were planning the next one.  I say we because there isn't really a clear host/organizer it's a joint effort.  We have a new mommy friend.  This woman and her 2 kids have been coming to playgroup for a couple months and I for one wanted to take the relationship to the next level.  So in the midst of talking about what we all want to bring (one of the best parts of this is talking about all the coll dishes we never normally have time to make) I asked her if she and her kids (no SO inthe picture) wanted to join us.  She said that was cool and I got her number and things.  She left shortly after, but before we could ask her what she wanted to bring.

So I called her on Monday and it has really taken until today to get the full story.  On Monday I filler her in of the 'theme' we'd chosen which is 'colorful' and asked her if she wanted to bring something.  I said that she didn't have to since it was her first time and we'd just love a chance to get to know her better.  But I didn't want to not mention the potluck aspect because I personally would feel bad if I showed up somewhere and everyone else had brought something.  Over the next few days the conversations have revealed that:

1) She feels tricked because she didn't realise that it was a potuck.
2) Now that she knows she feels trapped into coming because she'd already agreed to come.
3) I'd mentioned that since I only have a 12 week old - I have very few toys for older kids and so the other moms normalyl bring a couple small toys for their older children to play with.  She says that's just unreasonable.  If I am hosting and I invite someone with a 3yo I should have something for that kid to do.
4) She didn't know I had cats.  She doesn't like cats and if she knew I had them she never would have agreed to come.

CRUD MONKEYS!.  I am sorry I invited her.  But really!!!!  She heard us planning this - and the other moms were saying things like "I realy want to try to make a salad with X Y and Z" and "Well is Suzi is going to bake that dish, and I don't think the oven temps will be cmpatable - so I'll choose a different way to do the potatoes.  So I have no clue as to how she didn't realise it was a potluck.  And anyway - isn't it easier to cook one dish instead of the meal she has to cook anyway for her kids.

I don't know how to solve this and have her still feel invited and welcome to come to playgroup.  Right now it feels like she is probably going to vanish and we wont cross paths again.  And that makes me sad because she needs support and freinds.  Any advice?

Evil Duckie

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2007, 06:18:13 PM »
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« Last Edit: October 30, 2011, 05:12:47 PM by Evil Duckie »

kiero

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2007, 06:30:25 PM »
Just to clarify she didn't offer to bring anything while we were talking.  But she did participate in the conversation.  We were all talking about different ideas.  But the time we'd kind of settled on an idea and were committing to bring specific things she had to go pick up her older child (he's 3 and in preschool).  That's why I had to call her later.

I should also add that we were talking about all this infront of people who weren't invited.  The only people who'd come to playgroup on Friday are in our little group.  Wait...  That doesn't sound much better - we didn't come to the playgroup with our little group - it formed out of the moms who are regulars. 

About the cats.  I would lock them if if an allergic person thought it would help.  Although my MIL swears that it doesn't doesn't - except that then she doesn't have the tempation to pet them.  And I've learned not to vacumn the day of - because that just stirs up the allergins.  And I would lock them up if someone was scared.  But I am not going to lock them up just because someone doesn't like them.  Frankly - it's unlikeley that with a house full of people and small children that we'd even see them.  But we all know the saying about cats and closed doors...

Twik

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2007, 03:04:03 PM »
I don't know how to solve this and have her still feel invited and welcome to come to playgroup.  Right now it feels like she is probably going to vanish and we wont cross paths again.  And that makes me sad because she needs support and freinds.  Any advice?
Well, yes, because her attitude makes it unlikely she'll have very many of them.

The potluck thing could be an honest mistake, but people can pick up a sandwich tray or some veggies and dip pretty easily, if she didn't feel comfortable with showing up without anything.

The toys - she should not be expecting the rest of the world to turn itself into a playground for her little wunderling. If she wants toys, she can bring them. It is perfectly reasonable to invite a parent and child to your get-together without having half of Toys 'R Us in the room.

The cats - it is not a faux pas to have them. If she's allergic, she can turn down the invitation with an explanation, or take antihistamines, whichever most appeals to her.

It sounds like she's desperately searching for reasons NOT to attend. Perhaps she's entitlement-crazy; maybe she's just social-phobic, but in any case, her actions are her responsibility. You have done nothing wrong in inviting her.
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veryfluffy

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2007, 03:45:44 PM »
It sounds either as if she doesn't want to come, or if she does she won't fit into your group terribly well. (Actually she sounds horrible, but that is just my opinion.)

How about: "I'm sorry our little get-togethers don't sound like they're you're cup of tea. That's just the way our group likes to socialise, and it's always worked well for us. I understand completely if you don't want to come along after all, and really it's not bother at all if you've changed your mind. That's what's so great about potluck!"
   

sparksals

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2007, 05:01:10 PM »

I should also add that we were talking about all this infront of people who weren't invited.  The only people who'd come to playgroup on Friday are in our little group.  Wait...  That doesn't sound much better - we didn't come to the playgroup with our little group - it formed out of the moms who are regulars. 



Ouch!  I think you and your mommy friends need to discuss your potluck activities when it's only your group participating in the potluck.  It really is very impolite to talk about a party in front of people whom are not invited.  I can only imagine how the other people feel hearing this conversation and thinking how rude it is.

As for the new mom in the gruop - she's rude and sounds like she's very high maintenance.  It's up to her to come, but I have a feeling you will be sorry if she continues to participate in the group.

The one that really got me was the fact she said it was rude for you not to have toys for her children.  I guess I'm the rudest person on the face of the planet.  I don't have kids and if someone with kids comes to my home, I do not provide toys.  It is the responsibility of the parents. 

DottyG

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2007, 05:56:07 PM »
Ouch!  I think you and your mommy friends need to discuss your potluck activities when it's only your group participating in the potluck.  It really is very impolite to talk about a party in front of people whom are not invited.  I can only imagine how the other people feel hearing this conversation and thinking how rude it is.

That's what I was thinking.  I'd thought the OP made a typo in writing that, but maybe not?  OP, stop this practice NOW! :)


Chocolate Cake

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2007, 08:53:20 PM »
What really slays me is when people still want to make friends with someone like this (high maintenance, easily offended, etc.).     As I hope you've already decided, save your efforts for someone who is more realistic and flexible.

kiero

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2007, 09:30:57 PM »

I should also add that we were talking about all this infront of people who weren't invited.  The only people who'd come to playgroup on Friday are in our little group.  Wait...  That doesn't sound much better - we didn't come to the playgroup with our little group - it formed out of the moms who are regulars. 



Ouch!  I think you and your mommy friends need to discuss your potluck activities when it's only your group participating in the potluck.  It really is very impolite to talk about a party in front of people whom are not invited.  I can only imagine how the other people feel hearing this conversation and thinking how rude it is.

As for the new mom in the gruop - she's rude and sounds like she's very high maintenance.  It's up to her to come, but I have a feeling you will be sorry if she continues to participate in the group.

The one that really got me was the fact she said it was rude for you not to have toys for her children.  I guess I'm the rudest person on the face of the planet.  I don't have kids and if someone with kids comes to my home, I do not provide toys.  It is the responsibility of the parents. 

I had brought it up - it was my turn to coordinate.  But I only brought it up because me and another mom had talked about inviting this woman to the next one.  So really quickly after the topic came up she was invited.  So the only people at playgroup were the people invited.  We've become close because we are normally the only ones to come on a regular predictable basis.  We would never have talked about it if there were other moms around who weren't invited. 

sparksals

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2007, 02:12:55 PM »

I should also add that we were talking about all this infront of people who weren't invited.  The only people who'd come to playgroup on Friday are in our little group.  Wait...  That doesn't sound much better - we didn't come to the playgroup with our little group - it formed out of the moms who are regulars. 



Ouch!  I think you and your mommy friends need to discuss your potluck activities when it's only your group participating in the potluck.  It really is very impolite to talk about a party in front of people whom are not invited.  I can only imagine how the other people feel hearing this conversation and thinking how rude it is.

As for the new mom in the gruop - she's rude and sounds like she's very high maintenance.  It's up to her to come, but I have a feeling you will be sorry if she continues to participate in the group.

The one that really got me was the fact she said it was rude for you not to have toys for her children.  I guess I'm the rudest person on the face of the planet.  I don't have kids and if someone with kids comes to my home, I do not provide toys.  It is the responsibility of the parents. 

I had brought it up - it was my turn to coordinate.  But I only brought it up because me and another mom had talked about inviting this woman to the next one.  So really quickly after the topic came up she was invited.  So the only people at playgroup were the people invited.  We've become close because we are normally the only ones to come on a regular predictable basis.  We would never have talked about it if there were other moms around who weren't invited. 

I'm confused.  You first said you discussed this in front of people who were not invited and then you say you didn't. 

kiero

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #10 on: February 17, 2007, 03:46:08 PM »
I meant weren't.  Sorry - that was a typo on my part.  I was trying to make it clear that we weren't talking about it in front of people who weren't invited. 

Now I'm a bit embarrased...

sammycat

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2007, 07:58:33 PM »
She's making too big a deal about everything.  She (presumably) heard you all discussing the fact that the get together was going to be pot luck, even if she didn't hear the part about who would actually bring what.  You gave her an out by saying as it was her first time she didn't need to bring anything, so how was that tricking her?  More than likely if you hadn't mentioned anything about potluck at all she'd have turned up and taken offence at the fact that you hadn't told her.  Either way you couldn't win.

She feels "trapped" into coming????  Good grief.  It's a simple pot luck meal - it's not a summons to eat with the Queen of England.  If she doesn't want to come she can simply say she has something else on.  The day/meal won't fall apart if she's not there despite what she seems to think, or would like to think.

Re the cats - if she has allergies then yes, make some concessions about that, but simply not liking them - no.  I like dogs okay (have been bitten 3 times) but am not a "dog person" so to speak, but I certainly don't expect people to put them away when I come to visit.  And you're right that when you have so many people over the cat will probably disappear anyway (mine does the same thing).

She's being extremely unreasonable to expect you (or anyone) to have toys for an age group older than your child.  When my older son was a few weeks old we formed a group like yours.  Most of the mums' had new babies' too but one lady had a 4 year old as well.  She never expected us to provide toys for the older child at our gatherings - she always brought her own.  Really, how much trouble is it to throw a Barbie or a few toy cars in a bag for the older child?  It's like assuming that because someone has a swimming pool they are obliged to have dozens of spare swumsuits on hand in a variety of shapes and sizes in case a guest wants to have a swim.

Personally, I wouldn't say anthing else to this woman about the potluck and if she turns up at the next playgroup or the potluck then she does, but if she doesn't then I wouldn't worry anymore about her.  How did you find out about all her complaints anyway and what do the other mums' in the group think of her?  This woman needs to get over herself.

There always seems to be one high maintenance person in a group like this, but it's been my experience that they eventually stop coming.  With any luck that will happen in this case too.

ETA:  And that makes me sad because she needs support and friends.  Any advice?  You sound like a very nice person to be concerned about her like this.  There was a mum that came along to some of our get togethers and she too needed support and friends due to her situation, but after a while it became obvious WHY she didn't really have many other friends.  Her demands and behaviour were unreasonable - she sounds just like the woman you've described.  If she needs friends and support she needs to act in a way that makes her needs/wants reasonable.  Sometimes you (general) have to just be added to the list of people that the unreasonable person has alienated.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2007, 05:42:52 AM by sammycat »

sparksals

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2007, 04:26:13 AM »
I meant weren't.  Sorry - that was a typo on my part.  I was trying to make it clear that we weren't talking about it in front of people who weren't invited. 

Now I'm a bit embarrased...

Don't be embarrassed! Typos happen.  At least I'm not confused anymore! LOL

anonymousmac

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #13 on: February 21, 2007, 02:33:07 PM »
1) She feels tricked because she didn't realise that it was a potluck.

Is it possible that she has money problems, and is embarrassed that she wouldn't be able to contribute to a potluck the way the rest of you do?  (You mentioned two kids, no SO, and possibly not having toys for the older child.)  She's certainly handling it badly, but it might be out of embarrassment at finding herself in a situation that she can't afford, and getting resentful and defensive.

(Did she tell you these things to your face, or are you getting it secondhand?  The first is really rude, but the latter would be more unfair to hold against her if she never meant for you to hear it.)

The reason I ask about money is that if money is the issue, rather than just rude entitlement, then maybe you can find a subtle way for her to participate without big expense, like putting her in charge of location.  Just a thought...

Pixie

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Re: How to solve this...
« Reply #14 on: February 24, 2007, 12:41:17 PM »
I USED to have toys for children who came to our house.  Too many things got broken or "disappeared".  We still have the toys, but they're all mine now, we don't bring them out for other people's children to play with.      My daughters were very disappointed when half of their Barbie stuff got ruined or went home with the visiting children.