How do you deal with unwanted guests?
August 26, 2007 9:04am CST
I have often faced this problem. Many a time, friends just decide to drop in unconcerned of our schedules. For instance, just this afternoon, this very close friend of ours decided to visit us with her 17-year-old son. My son's having his exams and since I'm working I couldn't teach him earlier. I was in the middle of his studies, when she called to say she coming over as she was in the vicinity. Now that was the time when my son had just about built up his concentration. she's a very good friend and is always very welcoming of her own guests. She knew my son's having his exams despite that she sat around for two hours! She just left a little while ago and now my son's refusing to get back to his studies. Moreover, its late and its nearly his bedtime. I didn't have the heart or the bluntness to tell her not to come hoping that she herself wouldn't. This situation has often occured so what does one do without being impolite on such occasions?
26 Aug 07
If this kind thing were to happen next time, you could say to your friend that you would be happy to meet her somewhere else in a bar or a quiet place where you can chat with each other without being disturbed. I think that it is acceptable to her once you make a demand like this. I hope that you are ok now. Anyway she is your close friend.
26 Aug 07
Thanks William. Actually, I was just irritated. Time's precious and there are a million things that I'd want to do at that moment. Mostly, I'm good with my guests and love to have people over but there are times when I'd like to be left alone. Now, that much choice I should have, isn't it? Anyway, i'll try your suggestion next time. Thanks, anyway.
• United States
6 Apr 08
It is a very difficult issue. I think in your case however, by calling ahead your friend was giving you a chance to opt out. You could have told her "this isn't a good time". Since we have moved out into a rural area we don't get as many unannounced guests as when we lived in the city. People don't want to drive this far and take a chance that we're not home. This past Christmas however, we had a friend from out of state call on Christmas day and say she was coming up for a visit (with her 3 kids) for a few days starting the day after Christmas. My spouse had just gotten out of the hospital on Christmas Day after having a major surgery. I told the friend that it wasn't a good time, and explained why of course, and she showed up anyway - Saying that "we'll stay out of your way". Of course, they didn't, the kids were noisy and quarreling, they all expected me to have food in the house and cook for them. No one offered to help clean up.... I was not a happy camper. Finally after 2 days I had to tell them to leave so my spouse could get his rest. They were quite offended that I told them to leave! Next time they say they're coming, we have decided that we are going to leave town, even if we just go 50 miles up the road and hang out in a hotel until they're gone! I guess I really need to learn to be more assertive.
• New Zealand
27 Aug 07
Hi there. When friends turn up, unexpected depending on how far they've traveled I will tell them straight up, we were just leaving, or we are busy, usually they understand and leave... Its annoying though, having to to tell them whats going on, when they should have used there heads and called ahead, before just turning up... But it happens, and its what we say or do, that can keep the situation under control...
27 Aug 07
Hi rinkub! I do experience those kind of situations and it is somehow embarrassing to both if it will be said honestly even with being gentle and being polite about it. Sometimes, it can be hurtful to the guests because they might feel taken for granted. However, I just say it as honestly and as gentle as I can without being too patronizing and if they can assist me with what I am supposed to be doing then that somehow will be better. I just hope they will understand. I guess, I just have to stick with my priorities. Take care and have a ncie day!