Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >
Jan 26, 2009 06:32 AM

Rude dinner guests: how to handle them

I just wanted to share this because I sometimes cannot believe people. I also would like to know what others would say to someone in this situation.

I invited a friend(I hesitate to use that word) over for dinner the other night, I was cooking. She texted me the night before wanting to know if she could bring anything and to remind me that she is a picky eater and to not "get too creative". I am aware that she is picky so I decided to make baked brie and a mixed green salad, because I have seen her eat cheese before and salad is...salad. So I told her what I was making and that she could bring dessert if she wanted. I then get a text back from her telling me that she is "not really a brie kind of girl...or really any cheese, but just make whatever you're making and I'll bring stuff too :)" (the smiley was part of her text, I did not add it)

I texted her back and told her that I was sorry the menu didn't please her and to just consider dinner canceled.

What would you have said to someone like this? I do not really enjoy spending time with this person in the first place, so I was not about to turn into a diner for her. If she were a closer friend I might have been more willing to change what I was making, but I've never been in that situation before.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. If you do not enjoy spending time with her, why did you invite her over? (not being snarky) I would not serve Brie to a known picky eater (my SIL comes to mind quickly) and would not invite someone over if I didn't want to spend time with them.

    I would have left the Brie off her salad....I definitely would not have cancelled dinner. I think this is about more than Brie though.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Janet from Richmond

      I invited her over because she wanted to get together and I did not want to go out. I do understand about the brie, but I have actually seen her eat brie before, so I wasn't expecting complaints. She also eats cheese all the time. I guess it does look a bit drastic, and is not about dinner itself, she's just one of those types of friends who I don't see often, and sort of forget how much she annoys me, until she does something else and then I wish I had the guts to tell her I don't want to be her friend.

      I also just can't imagine ever complaining about the food to someone when they have invited you for dinner...(vegetarian/religious reasons/allergies aside).

      1. re: Fromageball

        Oh I agree with you on the the person who hosts gathering the vast majority of the time, I am thrilled when I get to be a guest.

    2. I agree with Janet that this seems to be about more than brie. My initial reaction would have been to text back, "Oops! Didn't know you don't care for brie but pls tell me what you DO feel like and I'll be happy to make it. Remember, I invited YOU, so no cooking on your part! Unless, of course, there's a dessert you're particularly proud of."

      Seems to me that would be a friendly, non-confrontational response. I also think that, if there was some reason you "had" to have her over, despite your personal dislike for this person, you really need to try to make the best of an uncomfortable situation and get back to her with an apology for being so terse.

      Just my opinion...

      1 Reply
      1. re: Deenso

        I agree. It seems to me that the "friend" was making the best out of what was becoming an awkward situation by offering to bring something she would eat instead of asking you to change your menu. She may have also thought that the brie/salad was too inadequate to be considered a meal, but obviously you can't just blurt out "that's all?" to a host and expect a good response. If I were in her place right now, I would probably be really taken aback by an abrupt cancellation. If you think you'll have to come in contact with her again, I'd send an apology and suggest going out for coffee or something that won't take up a lot of time or money.

      2. I think you handled it just right. Nipped that right in the bud! Follow your instincts and don't invite people that you don't want to "in the first place."

        1. Is this someone you have to deal with on a regular basis, such as a colleague? If not, no worries, and try not to get yourself in that situation again. If you do have to deal with this person and they have some influence over your life (job--related to/dating boss, relationship--they're your SO's sibling, whatever), you may have to put up with it, though as little as possible.

          1. Don't get why you invited her . But when you told her what you were having it seemed to invite a response if it was something she didn't like. Would you have been happier if she said nothing and she didn't eat it? I love cheese including brie but baked brie- uh, no- and baked cheese is not my idea of a meal even if served with salad. I think this is so not about the food- and if you don;t like her then don't invite her again.