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AIBU wish people would not visit unannounced?

(60 Posts)
Magsie Sat 28-May-11 09:28:51

I know I'm a grumpy old woman but I hate it when people just turn up at the door and expect you to entertain them! The other Sunday, some relatives of my husband called unexpectedly and stayed for hours. The house was mess, we were in our Sunday scruffy clothes, we'd hardly any milk left- I was mortified! We kept expecting them to go but they stayed & stayed and I started to wonder if I was supposed to rustle up a full meal from somewhere. Another time, people came when we had my grandson for the day. My husband had promised to make a model aeroplane with him but that had to be abandoned to entertain them. We explained that our grandson had come over specially but it was as if a child didn't count.
Is it too much to expect people to check if it's convenient to call? Should we just hide till they've given up & gone?

mollie Sat 28-May-11 11:02:43

I hate it too, Magsie...doesn't happen these days thankfully but it's a bit rude to launch yourself on someone without a bit of warning...I wouldn't do it and can't understand people who do!

toothfairy Sat 28-May-11 12:03:55

I agree Magsie,you do sound like a grumpy old woman.I am a widow and been on my own for ten years,sometimes dont see anyone for days.When visitors do pop in i enjoy hearing all their news and make them welcome.As for the state of the house,what i'm wearing or any plans i had,i just say "take me as you find me"
Can imagine the atmosphere you create during the visit,wonder they ever come back again.Family and friends should be held close,never know when you may need them.sad

nanafrancis Sat 28-May-11 12:26:03

I must admit I'm a 'take me as you find me' sort and love unexpected visitors as do most of my friends - fortunately wink!

Magsie Sat 28-May-11 12:27:35

Well I did specify "unannounced" you know...
My close friends and family would rarely drop in without ringing first, in case we were out or had other visitors. If they did I wouldn't mind so much because they can "take me as they find me". These particular relatives had never visited in 20 years and only came to us because the people they wanted to see were out! So I don't feel bad about it at all. In fact if we'd made them unwelcome, I don't think they would have stayed so long. I do like to make people feel welcome but it is hard to do so if you've nothing in to give them. I did put a smile on my face but I was privately wishing they'd warned us.

Valkyrie Sat 28-May-11 12:33:39

I would like to agree with toothfairy but I can appreciate what magsie and mollie are saying. When the house is looking neat and tidy, which is fairly rarely I'm afraid, nobody visits so odds are that if somebody calls, the house is a mess. I'm vain though, so I'm usually dressed with thought.

I remember when the children were small, 'adult friends plus offspring'' would come, uninvited, and stay for the day and eat me out of house and home. There was one family who even brought their dog as well!

I don't go and see people, not even my Mum, without either being invited or 'phoning to see if it's convenient.

jangly Sat 28-May-11 12:50:31

Its just rude to visit unannounced. Magsie your husband should have just carried on with making the model aeroplane regardless. Or you could both have reached for your coats and said "we were just about to take grandson to the park. Do you want to come?"

I'm a grumpy old woman too. grin

supernana Sat 28-May-11 13:16:57

jangly clever of you to suggest "reaching for your coats..." I have made a mental note wink

jangly Sat 28-May-11 13:23:53

supernana - he he! grin

Magsie Sat 28-May-11 15:36:49

Maybe I've given the wrong impression- I'm not talking about the sort of family or friends who can just clear a pile of junk off a chair & sit down. Even then, a quick phone call allows you to get out of the bath (or bed) or to nip out for milk and biscuits.
I guess I was cross because my (invited) grandson ended up skulking in a bedroom because he's shy with strangers and they didn't make much effort with him.
These particular relatives left us at 7pm and went on to visit the person they had originally come to see. She told us later that they left her at 11pm so they did get a good day out!

Poppygran Sat 28-May-11 15:40:55

Magsie I'm with you on this subject. Apart from close family I don't like people dropping in unnanounced on me because I like to be prepared, with the house tidy and something tasty to eat for any visitors I am expecting.

Magsie Sat 28-May-11 17:10:11

Jangly your post makes me think of an old saying- always answer the door in your coat. If it's someone you want to see, you are just coming in. If not, you are just going out!
We are on a diet and don't keep any cakes or biscuits in the house so that we're not tempted! We also have to rush out regularly to pick up grandchildren from school or nursery. It's because we want to be welcoming that we like a bit of notice. If we do get caught out by unexpected visitors, I'm frantically searching through the kitchen, wondering whether to offer a bowl of cornflakes or a carrot... I don't think the visitors know that though.

bikergran Sat 28-May-11 18:13:39

lol @ "jangly" lol it brought back memories of when husbands son started to visit quite regulary with different girlfriend each time....they stayed ours n hours..I had to either delay tea or invite them (which wasnt always convenient) (by the way I did invite them for tea , but at my convenience).....anway the way the front door was situated it gave us chance to reach for coats and car keys in hand...we did it twice but we really did feel guilty but!!!! we had to actualy go out!! in case they were sat round the corner lol..
also one of my cousins used to drop her son off at football or where ever on a sSaturday whilst he was there they decided to come and visit us and of course we felt like we had to sit down and entertain .endless cups of tea etc. and converstaion....they came about 3 times...before we took drastic action lol,..ohhh arnt we awful!! but we used to lock door and take key out of door so it looked like we had maybe gone a walk!! we did it 2 weeks on the run then think they must have got the I still feel guilty wink

Magsie Sat 28-May-11 18:28:13

grin @bikergran Feel better now!!

helshea Sat 28-May-11 18:55:17

I have a foot in both camps on this one.. so don't really want to comment too much.

HildaW Sat 28-May-11 20:56:24

Visiting unannounced......I'm sorry but thats just bad manners. I mean popping in just to say hello if you live a few doors away is one thing but decending on someone for hours in this day and age of mobile phones etc is very bad form. All I can say Magsie is pick a really awkward time and do it to them!! However, I think that by doing what they did they are probably not really the sort of people you want to spend time with anyway. As for you poor grandson....if it happens again.........have great fun with him hiding in the cupboard under the stairs untill they have gone....he will love you forever!

Eleanorre Sat 28-May-11 22:39:59

My husband has a cousin and wife who are the most boring people we know. They insist on just dropping in to visit than are not at all interested in anything we or our family do. We have resorted to hiding and one time I excused myself phoned our number from my mobile pretending to be my daughter who allegedly was waiting to give us a meal . Another time in a new house we watched as they went to the wrong door. Another neighbour spoke to them and they said they had come to visit Tom . Luckily the next door neighbour was also Tom and he was out so they left a jar of honey on his doorstep. He never discovered where it had come from. Real friends can visit anytime but these are the visitors from hell.Even worse they say as they go out the door please visit us but phone first.

GrannyTunnocks Sun 29-May-11 13:01:46

I always like when people come unannounced. We don't have relatives nearby (or didn't till son got married and had family) and sometimes it was nice if someone just popped in. I'm very much a take me as you get me kind of person, although if I know someone is coming I do make the effort to have the house tidy and some cakes or biscuits in.

trixie Sun 29-May-11 13:24:20

I'm new in my area so don't have many people dropping by but even so, would appreciate a quick call to check I'm in. It's great if neighbours pop in for a quick visit but inconsiderate if people come for longer visits expecting to be fed and watered!

Mariposa Mon 30-May-11 23:27:17

I believe it is good manners to check if it is convenient to visit, unless they are really old friends.

grannyactivist Tue 31-May-11 01:23:53

I run an 'open house' and am usually available to all visitors, but if I'm visiting anyone else I like to call beforehand to see if it's convenient as I know that not everyone enjoys unannounced guests. (It also saves a wasted journey if the person I want to visit is going out etc.) I also think that children and teenagers are as equally important visitors as adults and deserve the same respect.

BodhranBev Tue 31-May-11 10:37:17

It appears I can agree with you all!! It is nice to have an open house, and we do try, but I suppose it depends on who the visitors are... Not so good if you still have on that old t.shirt with egg down the front from breakfast, or the cabbage peelings havn`t made it to the compost yet...

My most embarrasing visitor turned out to be a chef, and all I had to serve up was a bought swiss roll and black coffee (no milk) we are still friends though! smile

baggythecrust! Tue 31-May-11 10:57:47

An interesting thread to read. Not sure where I stand, maybe a foot in both camps, as in it depends! My house is never what most people regard as tidy but it's not chaotic either. I can usually offer people the best home-made flapjack in the world wink, dried dates, or toast (also home-made bread). I guess disappointing unexpected visitors is not something I worry about; if they're disappointed because they think my house is messy or if I can't offer them what they want in terms of refreshments, whose fault is that? Not mine! And if they really are being/have been selfish I actually don't care what they think. So long as you do your best "in the circumstances" nobody has any right to mind and I don't think you should feel uncomfortable either. Easy to say, I know. I'm off the beaten track so drop-ins are exceedingly unlikely! This means anyone who does come really wants to see us. smile

frida Tue 31-May-11 11:08:45

hate it, hate it , hate it, people 'just passing by' and dropping in unannounced, once some visitors turned up at lunchtime and they had been food shopping and contributed cheese and crackers to my lovely meal of roast beef and all the trimmings followed by sticky toffee pudding, well every one was full after their lunch and no-one had any room for a cheese course so they took the cheese home with them ! I had planned to use the cold leftover meat for salad the next day so we ended up with omlette instead.

baggythecrust! Tue 31-May-11 12:02:18

Magsie and frida, you must have been very hospitable because your visitors stayed even though you didn't really want them (or at least, were initially annoyed that they'd turned up), so you can give yourselves full marks for that. Taking the cheese away again really takes the biscuit!