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One way street for hospitality meal in ites

(55 Posts)
RetiredTravel Sat 02-Nov-19 23:50:00

I have a female friend who has been to my home on possibly double figures now for a meal and I've been on one occasion which coincided with me doing her a favour.

I've tried so hard to understand we are all different but my husband thinks she's 'tight' and I'm a mug his thoughts being she could buy in M&S and the food content is immaterial. She's 100% not short of money.
I actually ridiculously feel quite tearful when I boil this down. I probably want the friendship to keep going if I'm honest but I'm almost embarrassed to admit that 😬

notanan2 Sun 03-Nov-19 00:06:34

Do you do other things together.

Some people HATE hosting. Others enjoy it. Its okay for visits to be uneven in favour of the person who enjoys visits/hosting so long as the friendship balances out in other ways.

Is she good at phoning or good company on outings etc? If so I wouldnt overthing the lack of hosting.

Gemini1789 Sun 03-Nov-19 00:14:25

I can understand where you are coming from. I think ‘paying your way ‘ or at least offering is the right thing to do. It really bugs me. Some people just don’t think.
And like you say , it’s not about the money. It’s about respecting the other person .
You know how to get round this I’m sure. Arrange to meet for coffee or go to the cinema. Or suggest , “ Can I come to you this time . Bill’s watching rugby/ playing the trumpet / not too well “
If you can’t get out ask her to bring a takeaway in.

janeainsworth Sun 03-Nov-19 02:25:38

Instead of inviting her for meals at your house, you could perhaps suggest eating out instead.

Lyndiloo Sun 03-Nov-19 02:49:18

I know it's sad, but sometimes you really do have to consider whether friends are as generous as you are. (And your particular friend obviously isn't!)

You get to a point where you have to 'weigh the scales'. What is this friend giving you, compared to what you are giving her?

If you're content with still having her as a friend, that's fine. But if it bugs you, back off for a bit, and see if she comes forward.

BradfordLass72 Sun 03-Nov-19 04:18:57

I had a very dear friend who often invited me to her home for a meal but would never once accept my invitation.

I learned, over time, that she was intensely fastidious, finicky (OCD), over-anxious about germs and finally, an observant Jew who kept a kosher kitchen.

I don't suppose she felt like explaining to me exactly why she could only ever eat at home, it was easier to just decline but I did think, for quite a while, that I was doing something wrong.

We used to go walking at dusk every night. She died last year and I miss her such a lot.

annep1 Sun 03-Nov-19 05:12:07

I hate entertaining and my friend loves it so we usually go to hers. If we are out for a meal we usually insist on paying and say we are happy to, because you always treat us at yours.
I wouldn't want to serve them a bought meal as my friend always goes to a lot of trouble preparing her delicious recipes. I would feel such a failure.
If neither of you is short of money and you are good friends does it really matter whose house you are in. If you don't want to always be doing it can you not just say I don't really feel like cooking so can we eat out. Or, if I do the main can you bring the sweet. I assume they bring wine.

DoraMarr Sun 03-Nov-19 06:45:27

I have a good friend who comes to me for lunch and I cook. She finds entertaining- even me, who she has known for over 40 years- stressful. She is such a good friend I really don’t mind. She always brings flowers and a cake. We eat out sometimes too. I wouldn’t let it worry you. If you like her and enjoy her company, don’t let your husband’s opinion blight your friendship.

Davidhs Sun 03-Nov-19 07:53:24

From your husbands point of view, you have a friend who he thinks is a “sponger” and he is obliged to be pleasant to her, no problem occasionally although I wouldn’t like it on a regular basis.
A solution might be to invite her when hubby is doing other things, or go dutch at a restaurant or cafe.

Pantglas2 Sun 03-Nov-19 08:03:37

I think friendship is different from hospitality and the two things don’t always overlap.

I have one friend with whom I reciprocate with meals and others just a coffee occasionally. Another comes over for a glass of wine but I’m never invited to hers. I’m lucky to have a place in Spain and friends have joined us and I don’t expect anything in return.

Perhaps thinking about the friendship holistically rather than materially might help?

sodapop Sun 03-Nov-19 08:30:55

I think its not so much the financial aspect as returning hospitality Pantglas2 . There may be very good reasons for your friend not inviting you RetiredTravel I know I hate cooking and tell my friends this. I would invite friends back for a take away or treat them to a restaurant meal if my husband wasn't able to cook. I wouldn't let this affect your friendship though, just accept the status quo maybe suggest going out for a meal sometimes instead of you cooking.

wildswan16 Sun 03-Nov-19 08:51:17

I am someone who hates having to host any kind of visit. I do not like cooking and and as I live on my own this is not a problem. In other ways I am confident and capable.

I get terribly anxious and worried if I have to cook a meal for anyone, even a simple one. Silly of me I know, but that's the way it is. Yes, I could go to M&S and buy a quiche, a bag of salad etc, but the whole idea just stresses me out.

However, I do return hospitality I receive by going out for an occasional snack or meal with friends, and they now know my limitations and hopefully understand.

BlueBelle Sun 03-Nov-19 09:02:40

I eat out with all my friends I m like wildswan don’t like cooking or hosting (I used to do both when I was younger ) but now it all seems to difficult beyond a cup of coffee and biscuit
I also don’t have any friends that hosts most of us don’t have cars and live a couple of bus rides away so it’s always easier to hitch up in town at a local restaurant or cafe and that suits me

RosesAreRed21 Sun 03-Nov-19 09:51:35

I have a friend that abosolutely hates cooking and entertaining as she feel she is no good at it. I can understand how you feel though. But I do feel perhaps your friend could find other ways of returning the favour in other ways.

Noname Sun 03-Nov-19 09:52:45

I have a friend who I used to socialise with a lot a few years ago when we were both single. We’d enjoy a Saturday night out with drinks at my house prior to going out. I’d always host as I lived nearer to the town, but she never contributed to the drinks and went as far as to say that she couldn’t drink cheap vodka as it made her ill, so I resorted to refilling a Smirnoff bottle with a supermarket brand, and guess what? She was fine! 😂

Tangerine Sun 03-Nov-19 09:56:44

If she's a good friend in other ways, I wouldn't worry.

Why not eat out?

Rosina Sun 03-Nov-19 09:57:53

wildswan I am absolutely with you on this. I used to have people come to dinner; I am no great shakes in the kitchen although I can produce a fresh, reasonably cooked few courses, but over the past few years I am getting into such a state about cooking for people that now I am just not doing it. A few years of a troublesome oven that was repaired many times but still produced bad results made me twitchy when people came, and even though it has been replaced I still prefer to meet friends for lunch or dinner. I do the occasional afternoon tea with my best china, which is so much easier and doesn't involve any pressure.
I would certainly be the one reluctant to invite and cook, but I would then treat my friend to a lunch out regularly to feel I was doing my share.

lovebeigecardigans1955 Sun 03-Nov-19 10:01:31

I think some of us are natural hosts and others feel more comfortable as guests.
Have you ever asked, "Why don't we go to yours? I haven't seen your house for a while," and see what she says. She may feel uncomfortable as a host or feel that her house is too small or humble etc or have a problem with hoarding, doing the housework or whatever.

Tigertooth Sun 03-Nov-19 10:27:45

Maybe she can’t cook?
Maybe she is ashamed of her home?
Maybe she gets too anxious to host?
Maybe she has a bastard partner or husband at home?
Do you enjoy hosting her and enjoy her company when she comes? If so, I would just carry on and enjoy.

polnan Sun 03-Nov-19 10:46:50

we are all different!

remember that

I would hesitate, nay, have to be pressured to cook a dinner for anyone.... but I would explain, and offer other stuff

ReadyMeals Sun 03-Nov-19 10:54:53

My best friend gets cabin fever if there is ever a day she doesn't go out, while I prefer being in my home and go out only about once a week for shopping. We meet up once a week and it's always in my home - just how we both like it.

trisher Sun 03-Nov-19 11:00:23

Just realised I have a friend I have a similar relationship with but I'm the one doing the visiting. She will cook sometimes and invite me, sometimes we just have coffee usually at hers, sometimes we meet in a cafe somewhere. I'm not the hosting sort. But the other thing is she has a partner and I don't. If we eat at hers he will eat with us and then disappear off to do something else after chatting a bit. If I invited them to come to me what would he do? Maybe your friend is stuck with the dilemma of inviting you both and worrying about your DH being bored or just inviting you and maybe offending your DH. It's one of the complications of single women and their married friends. Just enjoy the friendship and forget the problems.

Stansgran Sun 03-Nov-19 11:07:26

I used to love entertaining and using the silver and fine china. Then DH retired and on one occasion for some reasonhe wanted me to cook a filet de boeuf en croûte which I did but he refused to carve in front of people. So I carried in this heap of flaky pastry and bloody meat. It had come out of the oven looking beautiful and I carried in a real dogs dinner. Just put me off dinner parties for life though he's invited people around this week. I now stick to stews and nursery food.

sazz1 Sun 03-Nov-19 11:21:13

I had an old school friend for years who never had any money and I always paid for her everywhere we went, drove her around, had her stay for weeks contributed nothing. Lent her money 3 times not much less than 100£ each time never got a penny back. We argued and she droppped me didn't speak for 15years. She's just got back in touch and I think it's because we're moving to the seaside so she's after a free holiday. Has hinted how lovely it would be to come and stay chat about old times etc. I'm not interested anymore. Some people are users Drop this friend OP she sounds the same as mine

GoldenAge Sun 03-Nov-19 11:24:38

Friendships come in all shapes and sizes and the reciprocity thing doesn't have to be on a like for like basis. As others have said, there may be a number of reasons why you're not invited around to her house, but if you're not 'gaining' in some other way from this friend, then I think perhaps you should mention to her that it would be nice to eat out. That would be her cue for paying and if she didn't offer, then it may be time to try another tactic, like for example mentioning that you need to tighten your belts with food prices rising. If dropping hints of this kind don't get over the message that some way she must reciprocate then you only have two choices - you call time on the friendship, or you tell her directly that you are beginning to think it's a one-way street.