Family Issues-Need Advice Quick!!

Lounge By KittyPTerror Updated 22 Nov 2010 , 3:12pm by TexasSugar

KittyPTerror Posted 19 Nov 2010 , 8:24pm
post #1 of 22

So my dad's brother is fairly estranged from my family, but I've always kind of been the black sheep, too, so he and I have developed a small on-line friendship the past few months. I have met him probably less than 10 times in my life, but I like him and want to be closer. I haven't seen him in over 5 years. He emailed me the other day saying that he was planning on taking a trip to visit my state (he lives about 8 hours away) and when was I free? I told him that my husband and I are going out of town for Thanksgiving and then when we come back, I have finals that start almost immediately (I am a law student), so if he was coming next week, it would probably not work out. Well, apparently he meant they were thinking of coming THIS weekend (Sunday), and he called me out of the blue and asked me if he, his teenage son, his 20-year-old daughter and her baby could stay with me. My husband has never met these people and we live in a 1-bedroom duplex. I told Uncle that I thought they would be uncomfortable because we only have two small couches and not much space. He said that they "don't mind" sleeping on the floor or that my apartment is dirty. I told him again I just didn't think they'd be comfortable, but he insisted that they would be. He had called me from his job and had to get off the phone quickly and said that he would call later.

I feel terrible, but I do not want them staying with me and my husband in our tiny house with no notice. I barely know them and my husband doesn't know them at all! One of the other problems is that it sounds like he might be setting me up to ask stay here while we are out of town!! I know they wouldn't steal anything or anything like that, but I just don't feel comfortable with it, and to make things worse...I told him that we were leaving town on Tuesday, which is actually not true. We're leaving town on Wednesday, but I *have* to study for my upcoming finals, and people don't understand how much that really means when you're in law school. We're not coming back from out of town until the day before my first final exam, and I have only Tuesday before we leave to study. I really have to study!

How do I get out of this mess? He just put me on the spot so badly, and I do wish I could help out, but this is not a good idea! I feel like anybody would've gotten the point when I said, "I just really don't think you'd be comfortable here." I don't want to hurt any feelings but I also don't want to be imposed on in such a major way, not to mention my poor husband. Please help me figure out what to say, he's supposed to be calling me back this afternoon!!!!

21 replies
-K8memphis Posted 19 Nov 2010 , 8:32pm
post #2 of 22

Oh my--just say--Uncle, this will not work out. You cannot stay here. And let him respond and just keep saying that. You can sound a little sad but be real careful about apologizing. You have nothing to be sorry about. It puts you on the defensive if you apologize. You dont' wanna go there with this individual. There might be a real reason for him to be estranged.

You could say, This is a misunderstanding. You cannot stay here.

Obviously if you give a reason he will over ride it. So don't give a reason. Just say no.

-K8memphis Posted 19 Nov 2010 , 8:48pm
post #3 of 22

I mean do you find it a teeny bit ironic that you a law student need a little oomph in this situation. I mean I've dealt with lawyers before that I can still hear their voices ringing in my ears. Often lawyers are not bashful about which way is up kwim? And just e.x.a.c.t.l.y. how we will proceed with the matter heheheheheh

Just be firm--pretend you are a lawyer & someone is trying to get one over on your client.

Four people? That you hardly know? That is absurd.

Do you live near the rest of the family? Is he trying to get you to find accomodations for him with them? Weird.

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Nov 2010 , 9:05pm
post #4 of 22

Do you live near Disneyland? or some other big tourist attraction?

It would be one thing to just have him come to visit, but four people on such short notice is too much. You'd have to feed them while they're there, plus find enough sheets and towels for everyone to use, and probably buy a couple air mattresses. I wouldn't be able to accomodate four people on short notice, and I have a three-bedroom house.

Just tell him that you're really sorry, but you just don't have room for four people. Or tell him the terms of your lease prohibit overnight guests without the landlord's permission (some leases do, yours even might). Look up a couple budget motels in your area, and when he calls back, give him their phone numbers and tell him you really hope you'll be able to get together with him while he's in town.

TexasSugar Posted 19 Nov 2010 , 10:21pm
post #5 of 22

Tell him it is not convienent for him to stay with you at this time. You can tell him you are available xyz night to go out to dinner or what ever, but that there is too much going on for you to accomidate over night guests, even if you had the room for it.

Some people don't get implied comments. Your statement was wishy washy, and he just ran right over it.

Be firm, be direct, and spell it out.

There is a difference between "well I don't think it is a good time" and "I'm sorry, but this is not a good time." With the first it gives the person the impression they have wiggle room and if they keep pressing you give in. With the second it simply tells them what is. And if they push, then you be even more firm, because if they can't respect your wish you really don't want them to be there.

cutthecake Posted 19 Nov 2010 , 11:03pm
post #6 of 22

"Uncle, I'm sorry that you won't be able to stay with us. I have to study for exams--and I need silence-- and then we are going away. But while you're in town, maybe we can get together for lunch/dinner/coffee."

dldbrou Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 3:33am
post #7 of 22

Just say that you are under too much stress with school to have a teenager, a 20 year old and a crying baby stay with you and have to entertain them, while trying to study. You will gladly meet them somewhere for a short visit, but you can not put them up for the night.

If he doesn't have money for a hotel, chances are he will try to get you to loan some to him. So be ready with an answer for that one.

He has other relatives that will not connect with him and I think before you put yourself and your husband in a sticky situation, you might find out their reasons for keeping their distance.

cabecakes Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 1:05pm
post #8 of 22

People with manners don't just barge in unannounced, and know how to take no for an answer. This is fishy. No one should expect you to just drop your life to put them up for the weekend. With this one you will have to be blunt...I don't have the space or the time to accomodate you right now, I am dealing with a lot of stress right now and simply can't do it. But I have the numbers for some inexpensive hotels I looked up for you. Do you have a pen and pad there handy? I'm with the others that think you should do some research to find out why he has been estranged. You may find him to be a con and unsavory.

cutthecake Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 1:22pm
post #9 of 22

People can only take advantage of you if you let them. (I think Ann Landers said that.) Don't let them.
They would out-number you two-to-one in your own home.
Just say no! (And now I'm quoting Nancy Reagan.)

peg818 Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 3:56pm
post #10 of 22

I agree, just say no.

And if you wanted to be nice you could give them the name and number of a hotel thats affordable.

-K8memphis Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 5:03pm
post #11 of 22

So how did it go, KittyPT?

FlourPots Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 8:37pm
post #12 of 22

I would've said, "I'm really sorry, but my hubby said it's out of the question...he's just not going for it...and I can't really argue with him, because if it were four of his family members, I wouldn't allow it"

Texas_Rose Posted 20 Nov 2010 , 9:44pm
post #13 of 22

I used to blame things on my husband, but all my relatives ended up disliking him because he always said no to everything they asked us for. I've found that it's better for me to just say no...they can't hate me because I'm family icon_biggrin.gif

KittyPTerror Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 3:29am
post #14 of 22

Thanks for the speedy and helpful replies! You're not going to believe what happened!

I sent him an email saying that I had been trying to think of a way for things to work out, but unfortunately, I had already overextended myself before I knew he was coming into town, and I just wasn't going to be able to work out a way that they could stay with me. I said I was disappointed and hoped that we would be able to spend some time together while they are here and before I leave for T-giving. He was supposed to call, but I thought that email would be easier for me to stand my ground without having to make up excuses. So, I was vague but clear.

Later that night (last night), he sent me a text message saying to check my email and marked the text as "urgent." His reply to me was a long, rambling email about how he and his daughter are trying to "reconnect" and they needed this trip and he really just wanted to be able to stay in my house while I was gone- he didn't want me to have to go out of my way to see them! He said they had gone to Washington a few years ago and a friend-of-a-friend had let them stay at HER house while SHE was gone, and she's barely an acquaintance, while I am, after all, family. He said that they just needed to stay at my house for "Two or three nights"(!) but, "I guess that's what happens when you lose touch with everybody."

Needless to say, I was pretty upset that he had apparently planned a last-minute vacation assuming that he could use my house without even letting me know about it and then was trying to make ME feel guilty. I didn't know what to say, so I went to bed, thinking I would figure out something to say today. When I woke up, he had sent me another message during the night saying not to worry about it, he had gone ahead and booked a hotel. I found out later today that he talked to my parents and told them that he guessed they'd have to pay for a hotel and my dad told him he (my dad) would pay for it. Apparently, they will be coming in late the night before I told them I'm leaving and so they know that they won't be able to see me.

I've decided that, as sad as it is, I really resent being used like this and being put in such an awkward position and then being made to feel guilty. I don't think I'll be corresponding much with him in the future unless he apologizes!

Thanks again, CC'er's for the support and advice!

Ursula40 Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 3:55am
post #15 of 22

Guess you know now, why he is estranged from the family. I'd cut contact straight away

peg818 Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 1:25pm
post #16 of 22
Originally Posted by Ursula40

Guess you know now, why he is estranged from the family. I'd cut contact straight away

you took the words right out of my mouth!

Ursula40 Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 1:32pm
post #17 of 22

I wish I didn't, but it's a fact of life, sometimes blood isn't as thick as water and family members are bigger suckers than total strangers, just because noone can imagine, that family members would knowingly USE us as much. That hurts big time.
The time has come to put on big pants, cut him loose, if he really would have wanted to connect, he never would have put you in the spot as he did. He wanted to live in your house as a total stranger (to YOU) with other strangers with you gone, knowing that you would not be there

dldbrou Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 2:13pm
post #18 of 22

You might have missed out on connecting with them,but you also might have come home to a few missing items from your home. Why didn't he go back to his friend house for another free vacation. If you can not afford a vacation from in another city, then find something in your own hometown to do, like see the sites in your city.

costumeczar Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 2:22pm
post #19 of 22

So he couldn't mooch off of you, even while trying his best guilt trip, so he ended up mooching off of your father to get him to pay for a hotel room? Oh, this is one relative that you don't want to relate to. I agree with everyone who said to cut him loose. Just because someone is related to you by an accident of biology doesn't mean that you have to hang out with them. Ask everyone if they agree with this after Thanksgiving is over and you'll see that you're not alone! icon_rolleyes.gif

Shelle_75 Posted 21 Nov 2010 , 9:13pm
post #20 of 22

Honey, do not waste ONE SECOND of your time feeling guilty about this any longer! And I agree, keep your distance from that one!!

tracycakes Posted 22 Nov 2010 , 2:31pm
post #21 of 22
Originally Posted by peg818

Originally Posted by Ursula40

Guess you know now, why he is estranged from the family. I'd cut contact straight away

you took the words right out of my mouth!

Ditto. Ursula quoted my thoughts.

TexasSugar Posted 22 Nov 2010 , 3:12pm
post #22 of 22
Originally Posted by KittyPTerror

I've decided that, as sad as it is, I really resent being used like this and being put in such an awkward position and then being made to feel guilty. I don't think I'll be corresponding much with him in the future unless he apologizes!

Muniplators are good. They know exactly what to say to make you feel bad and in feeling bad, they usually get their way. I'm proud of you for standing up and saying no.

It sounds like he was just looking for a free place to stay, and let me say that takes balls to ask that of someone you barely know, not just for you but for a bunch of people. There are very few people I would let stay in my house while I am gone, and a muniplating family member is not one of them. I'd hate to think of what you would have come home too if you let them stay.

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