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RSVP's or the lack thereof....

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How would you handle a couple, bro in law & wife, who never give you a straight answer, when you invite them? They will wait til 2 or 3 days before they are due to arrive, or not, to let us know
whether they are coming. We are 67 & 70 years old and don't move as fast as we used to, and there are some things we need a weeks lead time to get accomplished. We are talking a weekend visit, overnight, 2 nights.
I was done last time it happened, but DH wanted to invite his brother again.

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  1. I would invite them and if they hem and haw just say "I assume that's a no. Oh well, maybe another time." If they call back later to want to come, just say "Sorry, we've made other plans."
    It's your life and your house.

    5 Replies
    1. re: escondido123

      I have an uncle and aunt that did this all the time - what? were they waiting for something better? We don't invite them anymore but escondido, your response is much nicer than mine!

        1. re: escondido123

          escondido123, that is close to what we had decided to do. If/when they called 2 - 3 days before the date, DH said he would tell them we assumed they hadn't wanted to come since we hadn't heard anything, so we made other plans.
          However when I posted on FB that it was frustrating when people didn't respond to invitations in a timely manner, she posted something about how she wished they had time in their busy lives to come see us, and how much she missed us.
          So I did get an answer.

          Pitagirl, yes it does play out that you can't help but wonder.

          1. re: Nanzi

            They have the same amount of time in their lives as everyone else. If they choose to not come to vistit you, I would view it as their loss. (I assume you were attempting to work with them on the date for them to visit).

        2. You can't be abused without your own permission. You say, If we don't hear from you by X time, we will assume you are unable to come.

          And *mean* it.

          1. I love escondido's response. It's gracious, but it also makes it clear that you want a clear answer. The only reason I can think for their being reluctant to commit is that maybe they have health issues and aren't sure whether they will feel well.

            Whatever the reason, you do need to set some limits. Everyone, regardless of age, needs time to prepare for weekend guests!

            1 Reply
            1. re: Isolda

              Aren't you kind to consider the best reason. I go with the "we'll see if we feel like it" idea. Also, there are many people who for some reason are unable to say the word "NO."

            2. l do have a few friends like your BIL and sis, so to keep my sanity l rarely invite them to things where an immediate answer is necessary. Use them for movies or brunch on Bunday where if they do or if they don't no major shakeup. Do like E123's method though.

              1. Not exactly the same but similar; regarding trips or events my sister and I have planned together. I'm try to make my arrangements in advance so I don't have to concern my self with details at the last minute. I can never get her to commit to any action or plans ahead of time, as she prefers to keep her options open, but if we arrive somehwere and I have booked the best available, she will stay with me, and behave as though my accommodations are hers by right without saying a word. If there's a unforseen better alternative, she'll walk away without a backward glance and there is no question of sharing; I'm not invited.

                I don't travel with her anymore, as it is just too hurtful to be used for what you can do for another, and quickly dumped when something better pops up. I don't think there's a cure for behavior like this. It is symptomatic of a completely selfish world view, and I prefer to avoid it entirely.

                If I were in your shoes I think I would ask my husband to do whatever he likes as far as issueing invitations, but that I myself will be visiting elsewhere, or on a mini-trip (with a friend or alone). Or I might suggest he and his brother go alone together on a getaway. Is there anything they would enjoy doing together on a 'guys' weekend? (Fishing, golfing, aviation museum, professional sports venue, casino trip, road trip back to a hometown or alma mater, mini-cruise, or whatever)

                Do they never invite you to their place?

                1. Do you enjoy spending time with these people? If not, maybe that idea of your husband getting together with his brother elsewhere is a good idea. Though, in my experience, there are not that men brothers that want to spend that much time with each other... unless they are fishermen the ones that I know don't know what to do without their wives around keeping the conversation going and the activities planned. Just my experience.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: escondido123

                    WeeWah, they haven't invited us in the 7 years, except in the winter when snow was predicted. We politely declined(BIL wil decline if Rain is possibility, and he is a tour bus driver, go figure).

                    We enjoy the SIL tremedously, but the BIL is always contrary about something. When we took them to Myrtle beach with us, no matter what the decision, we had 3 in agreement, guess who the lone disenter was? And he refused to wear a watch and was asking DH constantly what time it was, now you know he has to wear one for work. DH finally blew his stack and we had a couple of days of anxiety and everyone treading carefully, and that didn't have to be.

                    We did get an answer, left handed, when I posted on Facebook how annoying it was to have invited guests not RSVP and never any reciprocation. She posted that she wished they had time to come down.

                    The guys could have a blast watching football together, or going in the pool, but neither has any other hobbies.

                    Thanks for all the suggestions and comiseration!!