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To refuse to put up a friend again.

(38 Posts)
felice Wed 13-Nov-13 15:08:01

Hi everyone, here is the gist, a friend of many years who retired back to the UK has stayed with me on occasion during visits here, she is a difficult self-opinionated person but i am used to her. This time she has been travelling alone around Canada and the USA for nearly 3 months, including 2 weeks on a container ship across the Atlantic. I had a severe allergic reaction a few days before her arrival and was very unwell. She has treated me like a servant, been bullying and rude including to an elderly guest at a large formal dinner I provided for her chosen guests last wednesday evening. She demanded a cooked breakfast every morning, and constant cups of tea etc during the day and evening. She even tried to take control of the remote control at one point, she has no Children but proceeded to lecture DD and I on potty training etc. I tried to give her the benefit of the doubt as when she was travelling she discovered her twin has terminal cancer, but as she didn't go straight home i don't think it really affected her. She has been divorced since her mid-twenties and always lived alone.
I have a far better education than she has yet she treated me like the village idiot, DD and SO and other friends have laid down the law as to her staying with me again, as DD says if she could not see how ill I was then she does not deserve my friendship. As some of you know from previous posting I do like to help people but this has gone too far.
Too much time on her own and too many Hotels with room service I think.
So do I put her off next time and just meet her for coffee or lunch or do I give her a second chance, sorry this is so long but only way to explain .

Elegran Wed 13-Nov-13 15:20:23

I would be too busy to have her to stay again. Tell her she will be far more comfortable in a hotel with lots of staff to look after her, or in a self-catering apartment where she can do just as she likes. If she is perceptive enough to take that as a criticism of her attitude when she was under your roof, well, if the cap fits she can wear it.

If you enjoy her company, there is no need to fall out, just make sure you are not used as a free servant. Meet her for coffee or a meal, but don't take the trouble to provide them yourself, or to entertain her friends. If she wants to entertain, she can either do the work herself or pay for it.

There are givers and there are takers. This woman is a taker. No wonder she likes to visit you, a giver.

Tegan Wed 13-Nov-13 15:24:55

She sounds awful, felice, and doesn't deserve you as a friend.

felice Wed 13-Nov-13 15:26:04

Well this is the strange thing, she has always under the hard shell had one of the kindest hearts ever, she bought me a 5 day trip to Prague when she retired just for being a friend, no strings attached nothing, the whole thing is upsetting me as I feel I have lost a beloved friend.

Smileless2012 Wed 13-Nov-13 15:28:17

Hello Felice good friends are to be treasured and it's a shame someone you've known for such a long time doesn't realise this. I think it is extremely generous of you to be prepared to meet up with her for lunch or coffee and attempt diplomacy by putting her off next time, and not telling her how she made you feel.

Perhaps living alone for so long has made her selfish and unable to think of others. I certainly wouldn't have her to stay again. If you want to remain friends maybe the stress of having her to stay would do more harm than good to your relationship. flowers to you for being such a good friend.

gracesmum Wed 13-Nov-13 15:30:49

I think Elegran's suggestion is excellent. She may think she is a friend but such selfish behaviour is inexcusable. Living alone has made her self centred and perhaps there has been nobody to point out her selfishness. If you do enjoy her company by all means meet up but you are NOT a hotel!
(But if you'd like to email me your B&B rates I rather like the sound of the accommodation and facilities!! grin)

Elegran Wed 13-Nov-13 15:32:16

It sounds as though she makes a great friend but not a good houseguest. Keep the friendship on that basis and you will stay friends.

Is it possible that she is getting older and has a touch of personality change? Sometimes people can change with age.

Spending all that time sending for room service and paying everyone to put her wants first could have had its effects, too.

shysal Wed 13-Nov-13 15:36:10

Enough is enough I say! In your shoes I wouldn't even meet for coffee. Let her stew for a while. She sounds like the sort who doesn't take a hint. You might need to be blunt! She doesn't deserve your hospitality.

Charleygirl Wed 13-Nov-13 15:36:20

Felice I agree with Elegran she can self cater or be waited on in a hotel. I do not think that you should have the trauma of her staying with you again, expecting you to cater to every whim.

That was a kind act paying for the trip to Prague but this is the real world and you are nobody's skivvy, least of all hers.

felice Wed 13-Nov-13 15:37:14

Gracesmum, if you want to visit the Christmas Market here in Brussels you would be made very welcome.

Aka Wed 13-Nov-13 15:41:20

I had a similar situation with a relative who lives in the USA when she came to stay for a fortnight. She sounds just like your 'friend' Felice. Yet when my son was working over there he asked her if he could come and visit one weekend and she made it quite clear she was 'too busy' to have a guest staying for two nights.
She rang up only last week and said she'd be back in England in the Spring and was quite put out when I told her I wasn't able to put her up again as I was 'too busy' hmm but I'd find her a nice hostelry instead. I suggest you do the same.

felice Wed 13-Nov-13 15:41:32

Thanks everyone, I have let DD read your posts and she feels vindicated in telling me to back off on providing accomodation. I do love entertaining especially cooking, my career was cut short at 52 just when my own little catering company was really taking off, and friends seem to love getting an invite to eat here. The last time my 'friend' was here I did a buffet for 40.

gracesmum Wed 13-Nov-13 15:50:01

39 other GNetters like to join me on a trip to the Brussels Christmas Market??? gringrin
Last time we were in Brussels it was a present to us from my sister-in law to both of us for our 60th birthdays. DH's family lived in Brussels for 4 years when he was about 7 or 8 till 12 (I think) and we had fun finding his old house and especially enjoyed the Tintin museum - you can tell how very culchered we are !!!

felice Wed 13-Nov-13 15:57:06

I just got a mail from a friend who was a guest last week, he agrees with everyone on here. He also told me that his wife had another appointment that evening but rearraged it so she could 'go and eat the great food' she doesn't like the lady in question, but loves my cooking, that has really cheered me up. Sorry I can't put up 40 of you, wish i could and show you round a beautiful friendly historic city. Not the 'Brussels' which you seem to hear about on the news where all the UK's woes seem to come from.

Aka Wed 13-Nov-13 16:05:20

I'm sure most of us can rustle up a sleeping bag felice so don't worry about not having enough beds, we'll kip down on the floor. And paper plates, cups etc will suffice.
OK Grace that's only another 38 to find wink

Tegan Wed 13-Nov-13 16:17:28

We're planning on doing as many Eurostar weekends as possible over the next couple of years; it would be lovely to meet up with someone who could show us the 'real' Brussels [must point out that we will be in a hotelsmile]. So thats down to 36.

tiggypiro Wed 13-Nov-13 16:35:37

Can I come ? I've never been on Eurostar or is it going to be another broomsticks jolly ?

BAnanas Wed 13-Nov-13 17:09:10

Sometimes I think friendships can ebb and flow a bit. I have a very close friend who I have known since junior school. We see each other a couple of times a year. I have noticed as she has got older she hasn't really mellowed, instead she has become very tetchy and she is actually quite selfish, insomuch as she always puts her own needs certainly before her husband, and on occasions her children. The last time she stayed with us she took offence to an innocuous throw a way line about one of her animals, not a relative. She blanked me for the whole day, I was determined to pretend I didn't notice because I was damned if I was going to say "what's the matter, have I offended you in some way?" because if I was in her house and she was waiting on me hand on foot, I wouldn't have behaved liked that. The next morning I just wanted them to go, but she had snapped out of it by then. I'm afraid from my side it has affected the way I feel about her.

Flowerofthewest Wed 13-Nov-13 17:29:38

felice - I had to severe a friendship a few years ago due to my so called friend being bullying, rude and offensive. If I were you I would not have her to stay. Like others have said meet her for a coffee. If she asks why you cannot have her to stay then be honest with her. She certainly doesn't deserve to have a friend like you

KatyK Wed 13-Nov-13 17:42:36

I have a friend who is lovely - but extremely fussy and faddy. She came to stay just once and knowing how fussy she was with food (she was only going to here for breakfast) I bought a whole array of stuff. I bought skimmed, semi-skimmed and whole milk, various fruit juices, assorted cerials, brown and white bread, different jams and marmalades, low fat and full fat spreads, filter coffee, instant coffee, decaffeinated coffee (she is a vegetarian so no need for bacon and stuff). She was happy with it all but a few months later when I went to stay at hers, I got up in the morning and she said would you like some porridge?'. I said 'no thank you I don't like it' She said 'don't you, sorry I haven't got anything else'. She didn't even offer me a piece of toast! confused

absent Wed 13-Nov-13 17:46:35

I can only agree with the other posts here – and offer my respect for your phenomenal hostess skills felice.

bikergran Wed 13-Nov-13 18:34:24

felice can I bring my inflatable friends with me grin

merlotgran Wed 13-Nov-13 19:22:27

I take my hat off to you for putting on a formal dinner for somebody else's guests, felice. My formal dinners mean I lay the table and don't just chuck a pile of knives and forks in the middle! grin

Well, Nigella gets away with it.

specki4eyes Wed 13-Nov-13 20:28:33

I did the same as flowerofthewest after having my hospitality so selfishly abused and never returned for many years. For several years I tried to swerve her when she rang proposing an indefinite stay, citing family visitors, illness, holidays etc..she didn't take the hint. One day she called me, having not heard a toot from her since she sent me the invitation and John Lewis gift list for her daughter's wedding a year before, proposing that not only would she and her dh like to visit but that said daughter, husband and new baby would be accompanying them. She didn't enquire after me, my life, my family at all. After putting the phone down I took up paper and pen and gave her the benefit of my wrath and we have not spoken since. Why do people abuse friendship like this? I have known this woman since we were 4 years old and the longevity of our friendship created a bond I was loath to sever. But the sheer audacity and insult of her call beggared belief. It still hurts me that I had to do it 5 years down the line, but I do not regret it.

jeanie99 Wed 13-Nov-13 21:33:51

A bully who treats you like a servant, I don't understand why you would want the company of this person.

Friendship is about kindness, unselfish behavour and caring about the individual and this is a two way thing.

I'm sure there are many people who would cherish you as a friend it's probably time to move on from this disruptive friendship. When she next contacts you I would say it's not convenient and continue to say that she'll get the message.