Last minute dinner cancellation

by Sharon
(Milwaukee, Wisconsin)

My husband and I have four children under age 15. This year we were delighted when our extended family accepted our invitation to come to our home for the christmas celebration. We shopped, purchased and prepared a wide variety food, cleaned and decorated the house in anticipation of overnight guests.

The evening before our celebration our relatives called and said they weren't going to come because it looked like the weather would be bad. My relatives included 10 people of which only two were children ages 14 and older. There were plenty of people to drive grandma and grandpa. While we were expecting snow, it was typical Wisconsin weather. Our relatives then asked if we would drive the 1.5 hour distance to their home and we could bring the food. They told us they would pick up some food to add with our meal.

I did not want to go...if it wasn't safe for eight adults to drive with two grown children why was it safe for us to drive with our four little ones? But, because family is important, we packed the coolers with our food and headed north. When we arrived one brother-in-law assisted with preparing our dinner; my husband's three adult sisters stayed and socialized elsewhere. Nothing else had been purchased to add to the meal we brought.

I received one thank you from my brother in law for "making the trip up" and another thanks from grandma for bringing the food. This was disappointing and I confess that I felt very used. I do not want my own children growing up role modeling this behavior. I felt it was rude and the lack of manners should be addressed.

Should i bring it up to my relatives and if so, how? I want to be appropriate because i value family relationships and want my children to do the same. However, there is a lesson to be learned here as well.

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Apr 03, 2015
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Oct 06, 2011
by: Anonymous

Yes, it was rude for your relatives to ask you to make the trip. In fact, it was rude of them to cancel unless the weather was truly treacherous. I would have said "sorry, but that won't work out for us". I also would have second thoughts about any future dinners for these ungrateful people. If you let yourself be a doormat, you will continue to be one and saying "it's family" doesn't give them a pass.

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