Social Question

nikipedia's avatar

Am I overreacting, or am I owed an apology?

Asked by nikipedia (28071points) August 23rd, 2012

My boyfriend started hosting a weekly game night at our house about 8 months ago. I usually make dinner for everyone (5–8 people), have dinner with them, and then hang out in my room while they play. I only play if they are short a person and need another to make the game work.

I enjoy hosting them, but it is a fair amount of work to plan a menu that everyone can eat (1 vegetarian, 1 pescatarian, 1 gluten-free), shop for it, cook dinner before everyone arrives, and then clean up after. No one has ever offered to help with any of this, and I admit to being a bit resentful, but overall I enjoy it.

Last week, the game ran late. It usually ends by 9:30, and I make it a point to be asleep by 10:30 each night (I am a bad sleeper and wake up early whether I want to or not).

So this past week the game ran late, and I went to bed at 10:30 and shut my bedroom door. I was awoken three separate times by the game players when they yelled/cheered during the game. The final time, at the end of the game, they yelled so loudly that I got up, and very irritatedly said, “Can you stop screaming?” One of them replied sarcastically, “Well we’re done now, so we won’t be screaming anymore.”

I slammed my door and went to bed. My boyfriend apologized, but no one else has bothered. I’m so irritated I wish they wouldn’t come back next week.

Am I overreacting?

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56 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

Just stop making food for them.

bkcunningham's avatar

The comment you said the person made was very immature. I would have dealt with that person immediately, on the spot. What did your boyfriend say happened, @nikipedia? Did he warn them to be quiet because you were trying to sleep?

gailcalled's avatar

Talk to boyfriend. Stop being the ur-chet. Set out nachos, hummus and pita and salsa and chips and spend the night at a hotel or with a friend. Or have pizza delivered.

Don’t continue to be the martyr.

Since your boyfriend is also hosting, let him be in charge of food and drink.

tedd's avatar

Your bf needs to sack up and tell his friends to stfu.

I wouldn’t be making dinner for them too… I mean snacks is one thing, maybe occasionally breaking out a dinner if you’re feeling adventurous. But by no means should you be doing it every week.

I would tell your b/f how you feel about it, and go from there. If he promises changes then another game night would probably be ok… If he doesn’t or changes don’t happen, I would tell him the game nights need to stop.

Trillian's avatar

Their lack of offers to help and loud outbursts tell me that you shouldn’t bother looking for common courtesy.
“We’re done now so we won’t be screaming anymore.” Really? Get your own fucking gluten free, meatless whatever the fuck. Your boyfriend apparently isn’t much for loyalty either if he allows them to be so discourteous to you.
The fact that all along you’ve borne the expense and labor of catering to some very individual tastes makes you an accommodator. They take you for granted because you allow them to. You just go out of your way to make everyone happy without making an issue of it.
Quit it.

nikipedia's avatar

If it’s relevant, the other people attending are primarily my friends, not his.

bookish1's avatar

Why are you making dinner for your boyfriend’s friends? You set a precedent by doing that and by never asking them for help or remuneration. Moreover, why is ‘game night’ at your place every week? Wouldn’t it be fairer to change locations each week?

It certainly sounds like they were rude and discourteous to you, but since you have set the precedent of catering to their tastes and then disappearing while they have their weekly fun, don’t hold your breath waiting for an apology.

josie's avatar

Not to change the subject, but if they are your friends, why aren’t you joining the game?

nikipedia's avatar

@josie, I don’t really enjoy the games they choose. On the rare occasion they play one I like, I’ll play.

gailcalled's avatar

edit; Damn spell-check. “chef”

bkcunningham's avatar

You have every right to be upset. You should have dealt with it then, but since you didn’t, deal with it during the meal at the next game night. Explain the rules of game night in a calm, polite and adult manner.

nikipedia's avatar

@bookish1, 3 of the players are my housemates, so even if we rotated between houses, we wouldn’t really rotate between houses.

@bkcunningham, I felt like I did deal with it by telling them to be quiet. What else do you think I should have said at the time?

@gailcalled, do you think I can just throw a can of Pringles on the table next week and tell them to enjoy? :)

gailcalled's avatar

I suggested a smorgasbord of complex and interesting snack…not Pringles. But you could. You could also ask them to bring food.

You are unhappy with what happened. You have only two choices.

1) Complain to us and live with it.

2) Make various changes, from the simplest to the Draconian.

Trillian's avatar

“do you think I can just throw a can of Pringles on the table next week and tell them to enjoy? :)”

It’s not your party, not your card game, obviously they’re not your friends. Why do you feel the need to provide anything at all? Why don’t they bring their own Pringles?

bkcunningham's avatar

@nikipedia, you said you slammed the door and went to bed when the person made the rude comment. I learned along time ago to not slam doors when there is something that needs to be said.

In all honesty, it sounds like you are feeling a little used and unappreciated and it is building up. Please, just be honest and tell them what you enjoy about them coming over and what you don’t enjoy. Let them know that they need to be considerate and keep the noise down.

muppetish's avatar

You aren’t overreacting. If I were in a similar situation, I would talk to my significant other about how I feel unappreciated about serving dinner at game night all the time without having my space respected. Even if you aren’t participating in the main event, they are still your guests too and should respect your boundaries. If the two of you can discuss this, it may be easier to bring it up around everyone else at the next meeting.

Sunny2's avatar

I think I understand how you feel. It was fun at first but a weekly thing like that becomes a chore, especially when it’s taken for granted. It’s time to discuss it with your boyfriend, who sounds reasonable. Offer to cook once a month and have them get take out or bring their own food. Or cut the games to once a month. Once a week? Too much.
Or you could take one menu and do it repeatedly. Not as much fun for you, but what you are doing isn’t as much fun for you any more either.

jca's avatar

I agree with the last few people that it seems like you were feeling unappreciated and maybe a tad annoyed, and then the last night with the revelry was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I think if it were me, I would talk to my boyfriend about having others chip in with some food and more effort on their part. I would ask him if he could approach them about maybe bringing some snacks, or a few roast chickens, or whatever to suit their various food needs. That plus some help from them or him might help you feel more appreciated. Also, if I were you (and I“m not you but this is how I would do it), I would next time, say to them that you realize you were cranky last time but you do wake up early and you’d appreciate if they could keep it down after 10.

I wouldn’t just cut off the food and the game night right off the bat. I would see if, with your requests, they could accomodate your needs in the future. If not, then next step would be telling your boyfriend that they’re going to have to search for a different venue for at least a few nights per month.

I think if they’re your friends, too, you don’t want to alienate them with cutting things off and cutting out food totally, and hopefully, since they are your friends, and they’re guests in your house they’ll take your needs into consideration. If not, you know where you stand.

Others may feel differently and I see they’ve written to cut out the food and cut out the game nights. You have to do what makes you comfortable, but I would give them a second chance, since they had no previous warning that this was annoying to you.

bkcunningham's avatar

Did the rude comment come from one of your housemates?

nikipedia's avatar

@bkcunningham, no, it’s a friend/coworker. He has been rude to me before and doesn’t seem to see anything wrong with his behavior—ever.

wundayatta's avatar

It seems like this is an unusual situation. Normally it’s over by 9:30. And the game went long and someone got excited. That seems pretty normal, and even if they knew before hand it was bothering you, it seems like they could have easily forgotten themselves in the excitement of the moment.

If I were you, I would mention something to them about trying to stay quiet if the game runs late. Please. But is it likely to happen again? If it does, then I think maybe you should tell them to have it at your place, so you can stay at your boyfriends.

I think the food has nothing to do with it. This is an issue of common courtesy, and if they can’t remember to be courteous, of finding a way to absent yourself from the moments of loudness.

josie's avatar

I would let it go until or unless it happens again, or happens frequently. Sounds like this could be a one time problem. Not worth the the aggrevation.

bkcunningham's avatar

Is he the person who took the food he brought to your house back with him when he left? I seem to remember a question that you asked about that once before. He sounds like a jerk.

nikipedia's avatar

@bkcunningham, OMG! Yes, same guy!!!

Coloma's avatar

Men and their games. lol
Yes, I would let it go, this ONE time, but, if these guys continue to be rude, loud and disrespectful of your contributions and keep you awake I would then, very firmly and directly confront them yourself, not ask hubby to do it, with something along the lines of…. ” ya know, if you guys are going to be rude and sarcastic and inconsiderate of my need for sleep you can find another place to have your game nights. Have I made myself CLEAR?”
I would then set a very firm boundary and let them know that if it happens again they will not be welcomed back.
Quite frankly it shows what an immature and ungrateful little weenie that guy is IMO.
Taking advantage of your hostessing and then biting the hand that is feeding him. I say sic ‘em Niki! lol

Seek's avatar

I do much the same things as you: My hubby invites a bunch of people over, and I cook and clean. It’s fine, I love to be the host. But guess what? I have full barring privileges.

One time, a person filled a large glass with ice, poured about half a bottle of previously unopened Bailey’s into it, took three sips and left the house.

Everyone that comes to my parties knows I end the night with Bailey’s and Coffee. We couldn’t do it that time, because Baroness Von WasteMyBooze watered down the Bailey’s and didn’t even drink it.

They were Barred For Life. Never invited to my home again. Done.

CWOTUS's avatar

Well, okay, they’re your friends, which explains why you’ll go to the trouble of preparing the food for them.

So… prepare turkey-based food for the meat-eaters and something else with the same soporific effects for the others. With luck, and assuming your food is so good that everyone eats heartily, they’ll be tired at the same time that you are and either fall asleep in their seats (I’m thinking of all of the adults after nearly all of the Thanksgiving dinners I’ve ever attended), or wandering off for their own homes earlier to crash there.

You could also invite me over, since I always clear tables, put away leftovers and help to clean the kitchen afterward (including doing dishes and pots and pans, and don’t forget the stove top, too). And since I also don’t do many video games we could also go to your room after dinner, too. You know, to talk about other jellies ‘n stuff.

bkcunningham's avatar

@nikipedia, did the other roommates comment on the incident? I’d talk to the others who live there and share my feelings about the noise, the comment and the weekly game night in general. Be honest. Nobody can fault you for honestly and politely having a conversation. I’d ask my boyfriend and the other roommates to listen to my feelings and tell them you need a little support; emotional and physical, with hosting the weekly event.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Sorry…No matter if they are friends or housemates, at the very least, they should clean up after themselves. I always help with dishes wherever I go. Always! I figure it is common courtesy.
What would happen if you did not clean up. Would you be faced with a kitchen disaster in the morning?
BF needs to stand up for you. This situation will not get better without his help.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Invite me too. @CWOTUS and I promise to leave your kitchen spotless.

jca's avatar

My mommy taught me to put my dish in the sink, at the very least. These people shouldn’t expect you to be chef and waitress and bus boy.

Jeruba's avatar

I think you are owed some thanks and appreciation. And I also think you have a right to look for an apology for the rude remark, although I don’t think you’ll get one.

But it seems to me that you have a little reflecting to do as well. Is there an unspoken bargain here?—I’ll put myself out in exchange for a show of appreciation and quiet consideration at bedtime? I’ll get to enjoy playing hostess if you keep your socializing down to x% of normal volume? People do get excited about game playing. That’s part of the fun. You can’t cheer in whispers.

It seems to me that you have set yourself up for a conflict by inviting guests (especially guests that are your friends and not your boyfriend’s) on a schedule that allows no room for negotiation or error. It’s hard to predict exactly when a game will end. You didn’t take out any insurance by saying “I’m headed to bed now, so can you please wrap it up in half an hour?” Instead you allowed the irritation of this one noisy late night to pile on top of your built-up resentment about being taken for granted as hostess—a situation that seems to be of your own making and that also appears to me to be entirely separate from the time-and-noise issue.

I don’t mean to find fault with you, only to suggest that you have pretty much created this situation yourself. I’d recommend asking yourself what it is that you expect to get out of this arrangement and what expectations you might have of others that they are not aware of. Do you need to be clearer about your rules? Are you holding them to terms they haven’t agreed to? Is there a cost to your pleasure in hosting that you haven’t taken into account?

Is it possible (I say this in a whisper) that the self-sacrifice and resentment are the part you enjoy? That would be true for some people I know.

In other words, separate the parts that are unrelated (one-sided hosting service, bedtime quiet) and take an honest look at your own expectations and assumptions.

Then, I’d say, either let people know what the rules are if you continue to host, or change the terms so that you don’t feel taken advantage of and mistreated.

nikipedia's avatar

@Jeruba, I did announce that I was going to bed at 10:30, which to me implies “so please keep it down.”

Overall, I have really enjoyed hostessing and making sure everyone has a good time. But it has started to feel like no one appreciates my efforts—they just expect to turn up, be fed something wonderful, overstay their welcome, and leave a mess behind. So I guess there will be no more dinners provided by me.

gailcalled's avatar

Since three of the players are your housemates, why not take turns being the caterer?

Everyone is now ungrateful, lazy, unappreciative, cavalier and sloppy. OK. You now make a decision.

jca's avatar

@nikipedia: @gailcalled has a good point. Since they live there, can’t they chip in and help, and/or provide food?

nikipedia's avatar

@jca, that’s a whole ‘nother can of worms.

bkcunningham's avatar

I understand that you enjoy entertaining, preparing a meal and seeing that everyone is having a nice time. But being a hostess and being nice doesn’t mean allowing someone to treat you like a rug. Stand up for yourself and don’t slam a door when you’ve got a mind and a mouth and let them know to lower their voices because you are trying to rest. I’d tell the jerk with the big mouth – who you work with – that you are sorry you slammed the door. Tell him you wish now you had told him how offensive his comment was and you’d appreciate a little respect in the future and a nice dessert for game night.

jca's avatar

@nikipedia: They can’t contribute in any way, shape or form?

nikipedia's avatar

@jca, apparently not. The other day, the kitchen was trashed, sink overflowing with 1 housemate’s dishes. It’s summer, and we don’t have air conditioning, so there were flies buzzing all around it and food rotting. I text him—dude, you have to wash some dishes. He replies saying he’ll do them tomorrow. I tell him about the flies. He says ok, I’ll have my girlfriend do it. I have never seen the guy wash a single fucking dish the entire time I’ve lived with him.

2 of the housemates smoke in the house; they’re constantly late with the rent; everyone is a slob; no one contributes a fucking thing.

Jeruba's avatar

@nikipedia, those don’t sound like folks I’d go out of my way to entertain. And it’s plain that they’re pretty well immune to tactics intended to elicit appreciation, reciprocity, or guilt.

My mother used to induce me to do all sorts of things in the name of “setting a good example.” That was part of my lot as the eldest of four. You know what? I can’t remember a time when I’ve ever known it to work.

gailcalled's avatar

@nikipedia: It appears that there are far more serious issues between you and your housemates than your gustatory kindnesses on game night.

A hornet’s nest, from your last answer.

What’s going on?

LuckyGuy's avatar

Oh… @nikipedia…. Please start looking for a new place to live. Please! Do it for my sake! Don’t make me start worrying about you.

jca's avatar

@nikipedia: Perhaps the game night is just the tip of the iceberg.

nikipedia's avatar

@jca, it is, but all I want right now is a fucking apology, and I don’t think I’m going to get one. I kind of expect this from my shitty housemates, but my friends who were there seem to think it was funny. I don’t.

@LuckyGuy, can I please wait to move until after I finish my dissertation. I don’t think I can do both at once.

gailcalled's avatar

You are sounding angrier and angrier, which is not a good thing. I am sorry about the mess.

The one thing you can control is your refusal to provide a free upscale caterng service any longer.

wundayatta's avatar

You can ask them to change their behavior before you move out. Just tell them precisely what you want (not that you want them to clean up, but what, precisely you want them to clean up, and what “clean” means). Keep on asking politely, like a broken record. Don’t put any emotional energy into it. Don’t expect immediate compliance. Just be a broken record. There are very few people in the world who can stand hearing the same thing over and over. If you ever become a parent, you will know what I mean.

jca's avatar

I disagree with @wundayatta about asking politely, over and over, and not expecting them immediate compliance, but just keep asking like a broken record. I think if you do that, they’ll just ignore you and figure why clean up, we’ve been ignoring her and all she does is bitch bitch bitch. Just ignore her and nobody cleans up. I think you should sit them down for a nice little meeting, quick, no accusations, just a meeting face to face about how we all have to pitch in so it’s neat and liveable. Nicey nicey but firm, it’s become unbearable, messy, flies, it would be nice for all involved to pitch in and help, and this includes game night, and in order for game night to continue, that has to be a team effort, too. Everyone can say their opinion, nobody can ignore you or the subject matter as they’ll all be there face to face, hearing it. Just my theory.

wundayatta's avatar

Hey! There’s many ways to go about it. The more strategies the better. I say whatever works!

Jeruba's avatar

I don’t predict much success for any plan that depends on a change of behavior in these people, who have already shown a high tolerance for slovenliness and a very low degree of sensitivity and consideration toward nikipedia. I think her only realistic response is to change her own behavior by declining to cater to them any longer, taking whatever steps are necessary to keep the place liveable for herself in the short term, and planning her escape as soon as possible in the longer term.

cookieman's avatar

I’m curious, whose name is on the lease, @nikipedia?

LuckyGuy's avatar

I’m just throwing ideas out. You can decide which ones stick:
If the dishes have been sitting more than 12 hours you clean up the kitchen by putting the dirty dishes, and the flies, on the perpetrators bed.
If the girl can make fun of waking you up how about you making a FB page with photos of the dishes they leave.
If you wash any dishes that were left by someone else you put them away – permanently. Hide them in a box in the basement or garage or in the trunk of your car. Take them out of circulation. Keep one set of real plates in your room for your use.

@cprevite brings up a good point. Is the lease in your name? If yes start looking for new roommates. You do not deserve this stress.

jca's avatar

The disadvantage of @LuckyGuy‘s methods are when you start playing hostile games, people may retaliate and then things could get ugly, quick.

Every method you utilize will have advantages and disadvantages.

@nikipedia: I am guessing the roomies are there because financially you cannot afford to go it alone? Also, based upon what you said previously, you probably don’t want to deal with drama if you’re finishing up school right now. I think whatever you choose to do may be best for you if it’s simple and relatively as drama-free as possible. I know this is all above and beyond the game night discussion.

tinyfaery's avatar

Girl, you need to talk to your friends and tell them how you feel unappreciated and taken advantage of. Tell them you will not be catering their next event; go somewhere else and leave them to themselves. When you get home, say, I’m going to bed now, keep it down, please. Be firm.

As far as rude guy goes, channel your inner tinyfaery and tell him exactly what you think. His smart ass comments are not welcome, let him know it.

One good conversation and some hungry people and you might be getting some appreciation.

OpryLeigh's avatar

I agree with @josie, it sounds like they all got a bit over excitable on this occassion which can happen quite easily at such gatherings. Also 10.30pm isn’t late to a lot of people so maybe they just forgot themselves. I agree that the comment was rude, was there alcohol involved? I know a few people who would only say such an immature thing when they had had to much to drink!!! If anything like this ever happens again then I think you should confront the issue but I would give them the benefit of the doubt this one time.

I definitely agree with those that say you should stop being their caterer every time, getting them to bring their own food that they can all share seems much more typical of these sort of gatherings anyway.

Shippy's avatar

Tell them all to bring their own dish, see what tasty treats they can come up with, then wash their dish and take it home. Simple game rules, ends at a certain time, if there is spill over consideration for those who are trying to sleep or find another place to hang.

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