1. mildred

    Q. when a family member or a friend comes from out of town to visit, who should contect who first? the one that lives in town or the one that comes from out of town?

    • How would the person in-town know about the visit, unless the person out-of-town told them about it? Personally, I’d wait for Out-of-Town person to initiate contact, as they know their schedule best. For instance, if Out-of-Town is in town on business, s/he may not have time to visit others.

  2. Lilli

    I hate to break it to you – but since you invited your parents and your new boyfriend to dinner you should expect to pay for them – all of them – boyfriend included. I know – they are older than you and make more money, but that doesn’t mean you can make them pay for events you arrange. If you can’t afford a dinner at a restaurant perhaps you can invite them over for a homecooked meal. As an added bonus, by taking the initiative to host a gathering within your budget you’ll show all of them your independence and maturity.

  3. Heather

    I agree with Lilli. Just because your parents CAN pay for dinner, doesn’t mean that they should. Your boyfriend’s age and status level at his work do not reflect one way or the other on your amazing abilities and social graces.

    You are a savvy college graduate making a name for yourself in the world. Parents or no parents. Boyfriend or no boyfriend. You are strong, smart and savvy! Live it!

    This is a great opportunity to relish in being an adult and showing your parents that you are in an adult relationship. Show your level of responsibility and maturity. You don’t need a fancy dinner to do that. . . have you parents and boyfriend over for dinner or just dessert. If your living space isn’t comfortable, you still have options. Meet for happy hour at a neighborhood bistro. Good out for coffee and dessert at a cafe. Pack a picnic and enjoy an outdoor summer concert.

  4. shawna

    I was invited to my nieces birthday party by my sister. My 15 year old niece choose the restaurant. We ordered appetizers, dinner and drinks. My sister brought a cake from a bakery. When the bill arrived the tab was passed around.

    This was not an inexpensive place and more of an adult restaurant.

    The original message was “We are celebrating XXXX’s birthday on XX at XX. Let me know if you can make it. No discussion about contributing host or no host. I am not sure I would have gone if I knew I had to pay for my dinner. As I am struggling to get back on track financially. My sister knows I am trying to get on track. From now on do I need to ask if this is a host or non-host event? And when I do I know she is going to ask why I asked this question. The whole thing is awkward. I would never host a celebration and expect anyone to pay with out fully discussing this in advance. I feel setup and that the money was stolen from my pocket.


    • Winifred Rosenburg

      The wording your sister used is ambiguous so yes she should have been more clear. I probably would have assumed that I would be paying for my own meal, but I could see why others might not take it that way. In the future a good way to check is to act as though you are assuming you are paying and say something like “could you please give me an idea of how much entrees cost there?” If they actually are hosting you, they’ll say “don’t worry about it! You’re our guest!”

  5. Norma Umphress

    I am reading your blog and a thought came to my mind. I am traveling to another state and taking my daughter and her fiance to meet the family. I haven’t seen my sibblings in 7 years. We agreed to meet in a central location for dinner and I was told to pick the place, but I am now not sure if I should be the one to pay for the 12 of us or if it is fair to expect us all to pitch in. Any thoughts?

    • Winifred Rosenburg

      It depends how the invitation (for lack of a better word) was worded, but it sounds like you were acting as coordinator, not host, in which case you would not have to pay for everyone.

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