MyLot: Saying NO to family. How do you do it?

@SonjaRae (5797)
United States
July 16, 2017 3:09pm CST
My daughter lives in California, with her boyfriend, and their 2 year old daughter, in a 1 bedroom apartment. Last year, my youngest sister who has a 21 year old, and an 8 year old, reached out to my daughter, saying "we are coming to Cali, can we stay with you?" 10 days no less. My daughter, feeling obligated, uncomfortable saying no to her Aunt, said yes, and quickly felt the uncomfortable panic of "what did I just agree to?" Today, my daughter tells me that her cousin, my youngest sister's 21 year old daughter, currently pregnant, due in August, who already has an 18 month old contacted her saying, "We are coming to Cali, can we stay with you?" Again the obligation and guilt sets in, and of course again she says "Sure". My daughter called me to vent. And then says, "How do I get out of this?" And as I begin to speak, she says, "Don't even say anything Mom, because I am not going to be able to call her back and say I changed my mind." While I understand my daughter's position, I am annoyed at my relatives. No one considers what her living conditions are? You don't think in advance, that although you want to see her, staying with her, asking to stay with her, is just inconsiderate? You don't care that you are technically pushing yourself on someone who, doesn't have the space? So I get off the phone with my daughter, annoyed at her for not being able to say, "I'd love to see you, and wish things were different, but I just don't have space enough here. Any suggestions?
17 people like this
16 responses
@MALUSE (29897)
• Denmark
16 Jul
What suggestions do you want to hear? You've answered your question yourself. Your daughter should learn the last sentence you've written by heart. THAT is the answer!
6 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
Not sure I really needed suggestions, just a venting place, hence myLot discussion! Haha
3 people like this
• United States
16 Jul
@SonjaRae I've been in this situation. Many years ago I decided to say yes with a condition that they understand that they have to bring their own bed as I didn't have anywhere for them to sleep. I further suggested they have a camper or tent as they would be in much more cramped space without it. It isn't that I was unwilling but that they had to find a way to make it work without being too crowded. Now I hear from family saying we will be in the area can we come visit. It has become my choice to invite them to stay with me.
4 people like this
• United States
16 Jul
@SonjaRae Another thought is to have the landlord excuse. Often Landlords have rules against too many people in an apartment. Maybe next time she can say I was warned by the landlord that I could't have more people in the apartment over night like that again. Referencing the past visits as a key to the landlord getting complaints or seeing it and explaining the liability issue. That way she can say I'd like to BUT....
3 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
@Berniezeitler oooh that's perfect! I will suggest it, seeing how she will need an excuse for sure! LOL
1 person likes this
• United States
16 Jul
@SonjaRae It has worked for people I know (including myself)! Some landlords are willing to 'Play the part" while family is there! HEHE!
3 people like this
@JohnRoberts (35750)
• Los Angeles, California
16 Jul
She has to take a stance and get "tough." A one bedroom apartment isn't a hotel or boarding house even for family. They should have consideration for her and know better than to impose. I realize they have their issues and limits but they enjoy sleeping on the floor and tripping over bodies and waiting in line for the bathroom. And the strain of cleaning up probably falls on your daughter. If people are coming to California for a visit or vacation or whatever, then they should be prepared to stay at Motel 6.
4 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
Amen John. My daughter is grown, I realize that, but this crap makes me want to call and say "WTF IS WRONG WITH YOU RUDE A$$ PEOPLE?"
2 people like this
@MALUSE (29897)
• Denmark
16 Jul
Exactly! Well said.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
To me, this is just another form of pan handling and beggars!!!!!!!!
2 people like this
• Lakewood, Colorado
16 Jul
Well this to me is a case of having to call back and say indeed that you have changed your mind..so if your daughter won't do this, then there is nothing else to do. It is very easy for me to say no as I have been crapped on long enough. I have no other idea of how to get around this. If they cannot understand that it is a hardship on your daughter then to heck with it.
4 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
I am not sure with who, whom, whose, I am more annoyed with right now!!!!!!
3 people like this
• Lakewood, Colorado
16 Jul
@SonjaRae See the problems they have caused? I understand really I do Sonja. Maybe YOU should call them.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
@TiarasOceanView I would but my daughter said DONT SAY ANYTHING. This crap last year put a wedge between my sister and I because she didn't even tell me she was going to Cali, or that she reached out to my daughter. Grrrr
3 people like this
@gilggg (2634)
• Israel
16 Jul
I think that if a person does not think of others and his well-being, but only of his own needs, one does not have to consider him and answer him "NO" Even if he is a relative...It looks they didn't think of your daughter needs...
3 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
Nope. They sure didn't!!!! And she doesn't stand up for herself and set boundaries either!
1 person likes this
@gilggg (2634)
• Israel
16 Jul
@SonjaRae She must learn how to say "no" sometimes for the benefit of her family and her welfare.
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
@gilggg So true. She will learn her own lessons in due time, at her own pace!
2 people like this
@skydream (895)
• Agate, Colorado
16 Jul
That's ridiculous of your realtives to keep doing this to your daughter. Maybe they know she won't say no so they keep on doing it. I don't think they'll stop unless she finally says no. I used to be like her, I would drop everything to help family or friends and always say yes it kept feeling I was being taken advantage of so eventually i snapped and said no and slowly stopped getting asked. Maybe she'll be able to say no soon
3 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
I know all too well the "snapped" reference! Thanks!
1 person likes this
@CoralLevang (36931)
• United States
18 Jul
@skydream It wasn't me (the relative)! @sonjarae are the sisters who got away. LOL
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
18 Jul
@CoralLevang bahahaha
1 person likes this
• United States
16 Jul
Yep, I would call back and say I changed my mind. Or mention - after further speaking to my boyfriend, we only have a one bedroom apartment and that alone isn't enough for the three of us. You can check with Air B&B or local hotels on where you're staying. Not to mention rent here in CA is expensive!
3 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
" I can't Mom, I feel bad. But now I am overwhelmed!"
2 people like this
• United States
16 Jul
@SonjaRae She needs to overcome her being too nice, and stomp her feet down
2 people like this
@jaboUK (48782)
• United Kingdom
16 Jul
Well if I was you I would be calling these relatives myself, even if I was considered interfering. I'd tell them in no uncertain terms that my daughter just didn't have the room, and they should make alternative arrangements.
3 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
16 Jul
I figured I might need to "cool off" first!
2 people like this
@Courtlynn (41806)
• United States
17 Jul
I would feel the same way as you do. It's very inconsiderate, as they obviously don't have the space. Otherwise, I would've said yes like your daughter did. Unless we had some type of problems with them.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
17 Jul
*sigh*
1 person likes this
@Courtlynn (41806)
• United States
17 Jul
@SonjaRae i hope she learns after this time since she doesnt want to call back and say no.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
17 Jul
@Courtlynn me too honey! But again she is 28 years old so it's not like I asked her mother can run in and save the day.
2 people like this
@Srbageldog (3501)
• United States
17 Jul
Your poor daughter. It's hard being assertive, especially with relatives, but I would just encourage her to be more assertive in the future. I have had to tell people they could not stay with me (even though I did technically have the space, I had no desire to take in people for an indefinite amount of time.) Of course, I once got roped into allowing my boyfriend's half-sister (who he had just met as an adult) move in with us, and was unable to get rid of her sorry freeloading self for nearly 3 years...so now I am a bit more open about just flat out saying "No, sorry, I just don't have the room."
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
17 Jul
Oh gosh. Yeah that would be extremely difficult. Once you open the door. It's hard to close it.
2 people like this
• United States
17 Jul
@SonjaRae I had a hard time getting rid of her. Eventually my boyfriend kicked her out.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
17 Jul
@Srbageldog It gets to a point, you just have to put your foot down!
2 people like this
@Tracy04 (10660)
• Malaysia
17 Jul
Last time I was like that too. Classmates comes and eat only because I said yes. Mom said that I need to think before answering. Some occasions during my university days was hard to because keep saying yes and helping them when I need a break too. but one of my lecturer said "no need to care so much about last minute person" and mom saying "learn to say no" It was a very hard practice, but I manage to do it. Now, I can think and say no when necessary.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
18 Jul
And I'm glad you finally found the courage to set your boundaries!
@Tracy04 (10660)
• Malaysia
18 Jul
@SonjaRae I have to. You don't want to say yes to everything and end up ruin my own life. I might look bad or mean though.
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
18 Jul
@Tracy04 So true, but each of us must set our own boundaries.
1 person likes this
@Hatley (154558)
• Garden Grove, California
17 Jul
darn it family ior not the truth is always tghe best explain you rliving situation and suggest that they find a cheap motel
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
17 Jul
I agree Patsie!
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (112622)
• Switzerland
17 Jul
You already answered to your question, she calls and she explain that there is not enough space to fit all those people. If she feels guilty, she prepare a very uncomfortable inflatable mattress on the floor and explain that this is the only way she has to let them sleep at her place.
2 people like this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
17 Jul
True!
2 people like this
@RubyHawk (20488)
• Atlanta, Georgia
19 Jul
I'm sorry for your daughter. I can imagine how hard for her to say no. I don't know if I could.
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
19 Jul
It's not easy for sure!
1 person likes this
@RubyHawk (20488)
• Atlanta, Georgia
19 Jul
@SonjaRae I would likely say, come on and bring food and a sleeping bag.
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
20 Jul
@RubyHawk Haha! Good one!
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (112838)
• Boise, Idaho
18 Jul
How does she get out of it? She sets up healthy and lasting boundaries. She puts up a online announcement that she isn't having people come to stay anymore. Your last two sentences should be enough.
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
18 Jul
Yeah then the family will block her, report her as spam, and talk crap about her! Unfortunately I don't think she has evolved enough to not have it hurt her feelings
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (112838)
• Boise, Idaho
18 Jul
@SonjaRae ....Sounds like a lot of mean people in her family.
1 person likes this
@Susan2015 (17943)
• United States
22 Jul
She should call them back and tell them she just doesn't have the room for everyone. They are welcome to stay at a hotel somewhere nearby.
1 person likes this
@SonjaRae (5797)
• United States
23 Jul
Thank you. I hope she is able to!