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Thorny dilemma..... the relative who keeps coming and doesn't show any gratitude

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Tim_Toad_HLB

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Ok everybody,
How do folks handle the family or friends who come for regular "visits" while the B&B is open for business, lets you wait on them hand and foot like they are actually paying guests, but shows little gratitude, leaves nothing, and doesn't even offer to help pay for the groceries?
We have multiple friends and family visit every year and they all with one exception are incredibly generous, grateful, appreciative, etc.
While I love this one brother dearly and enjoy seeing him twice a year here, he pays nothing for his airfare or rental car by redeeming air miles his employment earns him. He always brings whichever spoiled, good for nothing, niece or nephew who is between jobs at the moment or his wife. We love seeing folks, but hate the idea that we're being taken advantage of to provide a cheap vacation for someone who is far better off than we are. His most recent five night visit, coincidentally was during my sign up "bad day" on this forum.
He takes us out for one dinner and pays the full bill, but we feed him and whichever child or his wife he brings with breakfast, lunch, and several dinners we prepare, etc. If any other meals are eaten out, he'll sit there in utter silence after the bill is presented until we either pull out our share of money or offer to pay. If we have paying guests, he comes to breakfast just like they do, isn't that polite or gracious in front of others and expects the full B&B treatment.
So, what to do?
 

Don Draper

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Yikes. I think you need to tell him you are booked next time he tries to schedule a visit.
We just had this happen with a beloved cousin...she came to stay overnight during the off-season, and basically made dinner for us while she was here. She wants to come back this summer with her new boyfriend, and asked if they could stay or if a day trip would be better...I'm glad she gave us that "out". I told her a day trip would be better as we are so busy. She wasn't offended.
That stinks to be taken advantage of that way...I don't think you would miss this person's visits if they got offended.
 

swirt

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Fish and family both go bad after 3 days. ;) Unfortunately the fish is easier to get rid of after the 3 days.
 

gillumhouse

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I may be totally wrong here but this is what I picked up from the post"
You do not like the nieces, nephews, nor your sister-in-law
You like your brother but are not close
You resent that he "appears" to be more affluent, gets free air miles to make the trip
I have a brother I dearly love who to call him prickly is an insult to a porcupine. He is close to obnoxious. He has now visited me twice and I am sooo grateful for the visits - the second one he drove 5 houses to give me a backrub for my birthday - and left before breakfast. I wish he would stay a bit longer but to face facts it is probably best his visits are so short. And since she stays in Missouri and I stay in WV, even my sister and I are getting closer in our old age. Just proof that fractious families can repair. That of course has nothing to do with your problem.
On the surface your brother may look well-off BUT he may in fact be so close to the vest financially that this is all he can afford and if he did not have the air miles would not be able to come. Maybe he does not have as much as you think he does. (I thought my Daddy was OK financially because he has mill pension and SS and when he died I found out his mill pension was a whole $350 per month and his SS was about $800! Not much for even one person!) He may be dragging the nieces and nephews with to give them the opportunity to get to know you. Do you go to visit him? Even for a day or 2? Let him wait on you!
Many people think we are well-off because we are in business, live in this big beautiful house, and put on the "front" of success. In reality, we are squeeking by. If my daughter was not so handy and able to "DO" my bathroom, I could not afford to have it done.
Nest time, suggest to your brother that he come for 3 days not 5 (and block the rooms if you have to for the end of the 3 days) because you just took a reservation for that time period and really, really need the revenue.
I hope it works out that you can work through it. Family can be precious although some family we are beter off without. Only you can make that call.
 

egoodell

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Ooh there is no way out of this. You have to tell him you're booked, but then if he comes to visit and stays somewhere else will he see if you are not?
I think the only way out at a restaurant would be to ask for separate bills when ordering.
But he is of the mind that your business makes "so much money" that you can afford to pay. No way to explain the cost of bills and maintenance.
I have a sister who is just like that and there is no changing them. And I bet if you tell him to come visit but you are booked, he will unfortunately not come.
Riki
 

Tim_Toad_HLB

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input.
 

gillumhouse

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
 

Tim_Toad_HLB

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
.
Ummm... I suppose he could at least offer to go to the grocery store with us and help pay for the food that we'll be cooking and serving to him that is unrelated to what we would be serving any paying guests here at the same time. Or help replace any of the booze we end up supplying.
Maybe a nice gesture would be his not sitting on his butt while my wife (who actually works a full-time job outside of the B&B also) and I cook, serve and clean up three meals a day for him except for that coveted one dinner out.
Just one example out dozens in the five yers we've been here... My oldest and best friend has been here twice with his wife and two kids. Each time, they asked months before if it would be a good time for us. They've always assured us that on any days we had paying guests, they would entertain themselves during the day, cook us dinner, etc. and have managed to get off a plane that they paid full fares on, gotten in the rental car they paid full price for and stopped at both a grocery store and the local liquor mart to stock up to ease our burden.
Without asking or any hints from us whatsoever. And with full knowledge that it costs us to heat or cool the place depending on when they come, sacrifice potential income even if we stay open while they are here because of the size room they need as a group of four.
Each time they've come has been for three or four nights and when they leave and despite our vehement protestations, one time was a $200 gift card to Lowe's (my second home practically) and the last time was a $200 gift card from Trader Joe's if anyone is familiar. These are not well off people, but hard working blue collar stiffs like us who were brought up right.
These type gestures and gifts have been always the same with all of other firends and family, except in this case, so maybe he just sticks out like a sore thumb too much.
That's what I'm looking for... a little recognition of those facts and perhaps a tiny bit of proactivity on my brother's part instead of the lowbag treatment at our expense.
Well, this has been rather cathartic, but its starting to feel very much like a lot of whining on my part, so I've said about all there is to say on the subject.
 

greyswan

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"Hey, bubba, how about giving me a hand in here with the dishes, meal prep, (whatever) - we can visit while we work"
 

Morticia

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Ouch. If this has been going on for awhile you're in a tough spot to bring it up, but because it bothers you so much you have to.
So, it sounds like everyone else who comes to stay realizes this is your business and even if they don't pay, they 'do the right thing' and either give gifts or help out in some way.
My family knows better than to try to come here in season. If they do arrange to come and then we start getting 'real' guests the family does not eat in the dining room. Heck, we don't feed them breakfast at all...they're on their own with cereal or bagels.
Different family members respond in different ways.
So, how can you approach this brother before the next visit? Not when he's there, but before. What would you like to say to him? If it comes across that he now feels unwelcome, it sounds like that's his problem not yours. Sorry to say that not all family are the people we'd all like to be friends with all the time!
 

Samster

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My bet is that your brother is clueless about how your business operates. (I know that my brothers are and have never been here.) And he's probably not aware of your heartburn over how his visits with you play out. I would be upfront with him if/when the subject of another visit comes up. Whatever the truth is for that particular timeframe..."We can't afford to give up the revenue by having family in a guest room", "We're going to be so busy with guests that we really won't have time to visit", etc. "I love you to death, man but it costs me a lot of change when you're here for a visit!" Whatever tactic will make him realize how it affects you.
I don't have to tell you that we can't be resentful of the lifestyle of others or try to make them behave as we think they should. We'll always end up disappointed....
I would love for my brothers and other family members to visit! I just recently got one nephew to stop by on his way back home from a visit to another relative. It was too short. He bought me dinner which was unexpected but appreciated. Since they have a young child, they didn't expect to eat breakfast with our guests and I also gave them the heads up on that. So, they came over when the other guests has skedaddled.
I wish my family would come to visit! Bring 'em on!!
 

gillumhouse

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
.
Ummm... I suppose he could at least offer to go to the grocery store with us and help pay for the food that we'll be cooking and serving to him that is unrelated to what we would be serving any paying guests here at the same time. Or help replace any of the booze we end up supplying.
Maybe a nice gesture would be his not sitting on his butt while my wife (who actually works a full-time job outside of the B&B also) and I cook, serve and clean up three meals a day for him except for that coveted one dinner out.
Just one example out dozens in the five yers we've been here... My oldest and best friend has been here twice with his wife and two kids. Each time, they asked months before if it would be a good time for us. They've always assured us that on any days we had paying guests, they would entertain themselves during the day, cook us dinner, etc. and have managed to get off a plane that they paid full fares on, gotten in the rental car they paid full price for and stopped at both a grocery store and the local liquor mart to stock up to ease our burden.
Without asking or any hints from us whatsoever. And with full knowledge that it costs us to heat or cool the place depending on when they come, sacrifice potential income even if we stay open while they are here because of the size room they need as a group of four.
Each time they've come has been for three or four nights and when they leave and despite our vehement protestations, one time was a $200 gift card to Lowe's (my second home practically) and the last time was a $200 gift card from Trader Joe's if anyone is familiar. These are not well off people, but hard working blue collar stiffs like us who were brought up right.
These type gestures and gifts have been always the same with all of other firends and family, except in this case, so maybe he just sticks out like a sore thumb too much.
That's what I'm looking for... a little recognition of those facts and perhaps a tiny bit of proactivity on my brother's part instead of the lowbag treatment at our expense.
Well, this has been rather cathartic, but its starting to feel very much like a lot of whining on my part, so I've said about all there is to say on the subject.
.
No, you are just venting and all of us do that. We are offering answers only knowing small pieces of the what is. So do not hold our answers against us. Views change with more info.
OK, this has been going on for quite a while - and loke a boil, festering. If in the past, he has expected you to pick him up at the airport, it is totally reasonable to let him know when arranging the next visit - hey, could you just rent a car or catch a limo down from the airport? We are up to our ears with getting ready for and taking care of guests this year. Oh could you stop on the way in and get a couple bottles of ________ we are almost out.
Do not stock up BEFORE they arrive - take him grocery shopping with you (just for their visit with nothing for the B & B) so he sees how much it costs you for their visit. Perhaps he thinks it goes on the company tab - like a business lunch - so it is not out of your pocket.
Dishes time - hey Bro, lets you and I do the dishes tonight. DW had a rough day at the office. Remember how we used to do things to help Mom?
Try getting him to help do by doing together.
Not that anything other than a 2x4 across the head to get attention or just plain sitting down and telling him flat out how you feel might work, these are suggestions. Like the college textbooks that tell you how to raise a child - the frigging kid did not read the book to know how he is supposed to react and what he is supposed to say according to the book.
 

happykeeper

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
.
Ummm... I suppose he could at least offer to go to the grocery store with us and help pay for the food that we'll be cooking and serving to him that is unrelated to what we would be serving any paying guests here at the same time. Or help replace any of the booze we end up supplying.
Maybe a nice gesture would be his not sitting on his butt while my wife (who actually works a full-time job outside of the B&B also) and I cook, serve and clean up three meals a day for him except for that coveted one dinner out.
Just one example out dozens in the five yers we've been here... My oldest and best friend has been here twice with his wife and two kids. Each time, they asked months before if it would be a good time for us. They've always assured us that on any days we had paying guests, they would entertain themselves during the day, cook us dinner, etc. and have managed to get off a plane that they paid full fares on, gotten in the rental car they paid full price for and stopped at both a grocery store and the local liquor mart to stock up to ease our burden.
Without asking or any hints from us whatsoever. And with full knowledge that it costs us to heat or cool the place depending on when they come, sacrifice potential income even if we stay open while they are here because of the size room they need as a group of four.
Each time they've come has been for three or four nights and when they leave and despite our vehement protestations, one time was a $200 gift card to Lowe's (my second home practically) and the last time was a $200 gift card from Trader Joe's if anyone is familiar. These are not well off people, but hard working blue collar stiffs like us who were brought up right.
These type gestures and gifts have been always the same with all of other firends and family, except in this case, so maybe he just sticks out like a sore thumb too much.
That's what I'm looking for... a little recognition of those facts and perhaps a tiny bit of proactivity on my brother's part instead of the lowbag treatment at our expense.
Well, this has been rather cathartic, but its starting to feel very much like a lot of whining on my part, so I've said about all there is to say on the subject.
.
I don't suppose another story would help, but here is mine. It's doesn't have any point other than to show how this stuff comes up for everyone in some way.
We grew up poor- my brother I am closest too was the first to succeed. The scale tipped in his favor for many years. He did things for me that were hard to repay. He rescued me from a financial disaster at one point. No doubt, it must have pushed him to the limit. I used it to motivate me to do better some day. This year, we went to MV and invited them up as our guests. Then his family came to visit and we hosted them as our B&B guests, we gifted them two other stays at partner inns, and we did everything we could to make their stay special. It ended up not being about balancing the books and a lot more about me learning to be a giver. It was a very good thing and hope to do more as time goes on.
 

gillumhouse

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
.
Ummm... I suppose he could at least offer to go to the grocery store with us and help pay for the food that we'll be cooking and serving to him that is unrelated to what we would be serving any paying guests here at the same time. Or help replace any of the booze we end up supplying.
Maybe a nice gesture would be his not sitting on his butt while my wife (who actually works a full-time job outside of the B&B also) and I cook, serve and clean up three meals a day for him except for that coveted one dinner out.
Just one example out dozens in the five yers we've been here... My oldest and best friend has been here twice with his wife and two kids. Each time, they asked months before if it would be a good time for us. They've always assured us that on any days we had paying guests, they would entertain themselves during the day, cook us dinner, etc. and have managed to get off a plane that they paid full fares on, gotten in the rental car they paid full price for and stopped at both a grocery store and the local liquor mart to stock up to ease our burden.
Without asking or any hints from us whatsoever. And with full knowledge that it costs us to heat or cool the place depending on when they come, sacrifice potential income even if we stay open while they are here because of the size room they need as a group of four.
Each time they've come has been for three or four nights and when they leave and despite our vehement protestations, one time was a $200 gift card to Lowe's (my second home practically) and the last time was a $200 gift card from Trader Joe's if anyone is familiar. These are not well off people, but hard working blue collar stiffs like us who were brought up right.
These type gestures and gifts have been always the same with all of other firends and family, except in this case, so maybe he just sticks out like a sore thumb too much.
That's what I'm looking for... a little recognition of those facts and perhaps a tiny bit of proactivity on my brother's part instead of the lowbag treatment at our expense.
Well, this has been rather cathartic, but its starting to feel very much like a lot of whining on my part, so I've said about all there is to say on the subject.
.
I don't suppose another story would help, but here is mine. It's doesn't have any point other than to show how this stuff comes up for everyone in some way.
We grew up poor- my brother I am closest too was the first to succeed. The scale tipped in his favor for many years. He did things for me that were hard to repay. He rescued me from a financial disaster at one point. No doubt, it must have pushed him to the limit. I used it to motivate me to do better some day. This year, we went to MV and invited them up as our guests. Then his family came to visit and we hosted them as our B&B guests, we gifted them two other stays at partner inns, and we did everything we could to make their stay special. It ended up not being about balancing the books and a lot more about me learning to be a giver. It was a very good thing and hope to do more as time goes on.
.
Being the giver felt good didn't it?
A Canadian B & B owner that I met online - not here - came to visit me and I took her up to meet my grade school friend. We all hit it off and after several years of us trying to find time/money to go visit her, SHE suggested we meet in NYC via Amtrak. My friend had been battleing cancer and said if she got a couple weddings she could go, otherwise she could not afford it. I decided we were going. Got our tickets and told her a month before we were to go that her part was the hard part and I had the easy part. SHE had to ACCEPT the gift - I got the joy of giving it. We had a wonderful time, a year of remembering it together, and she died a year ago April. DAMN!!! It felt good giving that 3 days to the 3 of us. She insisted on paying our Canadian friend for the Broadway tickets so she told her $25 because they were half price tickets and she would not have believed anything less. I picked up the tab for the 2 of us from WV and I never felt better about anything.
 

Morticia

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
.
Ummm... I suppose he could at least offer to go to the grocery store with us and help pay for the food that we'll be cooking and serving to him that is unrelated to what we would be serving any paying guests here at the same time. Or help replace any of the booze we end up supplying.
Maybe a nice gesture would be his not sitting on his butt while my wife (who actually works a full-time job outside of the B&B also) and I cook, serve and clean up three meals a day for him except for that coveted one dinner out.
Just one example out dozens in the five yers we've been here... My oldest and best friend has been here twice with his wife and two kids. Each time, they asked months before if it would be a good time for us. They've always assured us that on any days we had paying guests, they would entertain themselves during the day, cook us dinner, etc. and have managed to get off a plane that they paid full fares on, gotten in the rental car they paid full price for and stopped at both a grocery store and the local liquor mart to stock up to ease our burden.
Without asking or any hints from us whatsoever. And with full knowledge that it costs us to heat or cool the place depending on when they come, sacrifice potential income even if we stay open while they are here because of the size room they need as a group of four.
Each time they've come has been for three or four nights and when they leave and despite our vehement protestations, one time was a $200 gift card to Lowe's (my second home practically) and the last time was a $200 gift card from Trader Joe's if anyone is familiar. These are not well off people, but hard working blue collar stiffs like us who were brought up right.
These type gestures and gifts have been always the same with all of other firends and family, except in this case, so maybe he just sticks out like a sore thumb too much.
That's what I'm looking for... a little recognition of those facts and perhaps a tiny bit of proactivity on my brother's part instead of the lowbag treatment at our expense.
Well, this has been rather cathartic, but its starting to feel very much like a lot of whining on my part, so I've said about all there is to say on the subject.
.
I don't suppose another story would help, but here is mine. It's doesn't have any point other than to show how this stuff comes up for everyone in some way.
We grew up poor- my brother I am closest too was the first to succeed. The scale tipped in his favor for many years. He did things for me that were hard to repay. He rescued me from a financial disaster at one point. No doubt, it must have pushed him to the limit. I used it to motivate me to do better some day. This year, we went to MV and invited them up as our guests. Then his family came to visit and we hosted them as our B&B guests, we gifted them two other stays at partner inns, and we did everything we could to make their stay special. It ended up not being about balancing the books and a lot more about me learning to be a giver. It was a very good thing and hope to do more as time goes on.
.
OK, this sounds like our story as well...tons of siblings that were given a hand up (not a hand out) back in the day because we're the eldest of the 10 sibs. Where we diverge is that only one of them has ever acknowledged the help and the rest are now 'too busy, you know how it is with kids' to even bother to call. Yup, when we had 3 toddlers and were helping the then college-age sibs it was expected (by parents as well as sibs). Now that we're out of that age group the younger sibs aren't expected to even return a call and that's ok with the parents because 'they're busy with the kids, you probably don't remember.'
Which is why, when giving to someone, I have to separate myself from the gift. Once given it's gone.
 

Copperhead

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"Hey, bubba, how about giving me a hand in here with the dishes, meal prep, (whatever) - we can visit while we work".
greyswan said:
"Hey, bubba, how about giving me a hand in here with the dishes, meal prep, (whatever) - we can visit while we work"
Minimize his stay - 2-3 days at most. and use this line above....Another - lets go get some groceries for tonight, I'll by the fixins and you buy the steaks, and I'll grill them to perfection...
Family is important to you and I am sure that is the reason for your dismay. --- DH & I each have one sibling that has a personality that makes it hard to love! Sorry you are experiencing this.
 

happykeeper

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gillumhouse,
No, actually he is my closest relative and we are the tightest of friends. Probably not tight enough if this is hanging over my head though and I feel like I can't discuss it with him.
Its just that my wife and I would never lowbag on anybody like this. Our folks didn't raise us like that and where he went off the bridge is a mystery.
I love him, his kids and wife to death. What offends me about the kids is that they are being trained by his example to be this way for their adult lives at a relatives expense.
I'm not resentful of anything except that what should be a vacation for us too if we don't have any paying guests when he visits ends up being our normal routine with no revenue to boot. When we do have paying guests while he's here, its not like he's making any adjustments in his expectations or habits either so it feels like dead wieght at times.
He chose a corporate job with that benefit and we chose owning our own business and thats fine. No envy, no resentment, just wishing it was different. Especially when I get the air itinerary emailed to me with the $20 roundtrip pricetag for two people on it and then when asking how their flight was getting the "Oh, it was great they upgraded us to first class for nothing."
I've never flown first class in my life and probably could if twice a year I wasn't footing the grocery and lodging bill for an ungrateful relative. Hell, even for him to take a few minutes and go post a review about our place somewhere would be a nice gesture.
It does sting a little during our daytrips together when he's here seeing a person spending hundreds of dollars on gifts for whoever didn't come on the trip and in this trip particular me celebrating a birthday and not so much as receiving a card or maybe a bottle of my favorite bourbon.
He has no false illusions about our financial picture, he just doesn't seem to appreciate the fact that his trips here actually cost us more in rel out of pocket dollars than it costs him.
Thanks for all the input..
I am glad you are friends and close. Then tell him you want to spend his vacation WITH him, not tending TO him. He probably is totally unaware of what he is doing. It may just be his natural behavior now.
One question though - what do you expect him to do to show gratitude? He probably thinks he did by taking you out to dinner - even though it is only one night.
Sorry he did not remember your birthday. Now that he lives within 5 hours, my brother came specificly last year to give me a backrub because he knew I would like that best. He is mellowing in his old age (and he is younger than I am!)
.
Ummm... I suppose he could at least offer to go to the grocery store with us and help pay for the food that we'll be cooking and serving to him that is unrelated to what we would be serving any paying guests here at the same time. Or help replace any of the booze we end up supplying.
Maybe a nice gesture would be his not sitting on his butt while my wife (who actually works a full-time job outside of the B&B also) and I cook, serve and clean up three meals a day for him except for that coveted one dinner out.
Just one example out dozens in the five yers we've been here... My oldest and best friend has been here twice with his wife and two kids. Each time, they asked months before if it would be a good time for us. They've always assured us that on any days we had paying guests, they would entertain themselves during the day, cook us dinner, etc. and have managed to get off a plane that they paid full fares on, gotten in the rental car they paid full price for and stopped at both a grocery store and the local liquor mart to stock up to ease our burden.
Without asking or any hints from us whatsoever. And with full knowledge that it costs us to heat or cool the place depending on when they come, sacrifice potential income even if we stay open while they are here because of the size room they need as a group of four.
Each time they've come has been for three or four nights and when they leave and despite our vehement protestations, one time was a $200 gift card to Lowe's (my second home practically) and the last time was a $200 gift card from Trader Joe's if anyone is familiar. These are not well off people, but hard working blue collar stiffs like us who were brought up right.
These type gestures and gifts have been always the same with all of other firends and family, except in this case, so maybe he just sticks out like a sore thumb too much.
That's what I'm looking for... a little recognition of those facts and perhaps a tiny bit of proactivity on my brother's part instead of the lowbag treatment at our expense.
Well, this has been rather cathartic, but its starting to feel very much like a lot of whining on my part, so I've said about all there is to say on the subject.
.
I don't suppose another story would help, but here is mine. It's doesn't have any point other than to show how this stuff comes up for everyone in some way.
We grew up poor- my brother I am closest too was the first to succeed. The scale tipped in his favor for many years. He did things for me that were hard to repay. He rescued me from a financial disaster at one point. No doubt, it must have pushed him to the limit. I used it to motivate me to do better some day. This year, we went to MV and invited them up as our guests. Then his family came to visit and we hosted them as our B&B guests, we gifted them two other stays at partner inns, and we did everything we could to make their stay special. It ended up not being about balancing the books and a lot more about me learning to be a giver. It was a very good thing and hope to do more as time goes on.
.
OK, this sounds like our story as well...tons of siblings that were given a hand up (not a hand out) back in the day because we're the eldest of the 10 sibs. Where we diverge is that only one of them has ever acknowledged the help and the rest are now 'too busy, you know how it is with kids' to even bother to call. Yup, when we had 3 toddlers and were helping the then college-age sibs it was expected (by parents as well as sibs). Now that we're out of that age group the younger sibs aren't expected to even return a call and that's ok with the parents because 'they're busy with the kids, you probably don't remember.'
Which is why, when giving to someone, I have to separate myself from the gift. Once given it's gone.
.
That was so truly one of the things I had to learn. When you grow up in a struggling household, one gets to pour and the other gets to choose. Everything was a give and take balance sheet. Then poof, the fairy godfather bestowed upon me the epiphany of giving what you can give freely and then building up the next pile until it too could be given freely. It was a whole new way of understanding balance. I think it has made me a better innkeeper.
 

ginocat

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There is no question here. I am running a business! Period. End of story. My immediate family (including nieces and nephews) get one FREE stay during the busy season and after that they pay me. I have been in business now for 18 years and everyone used up their freebie in the first couple of years. If I have family here during the season and they are paying they get treated like a regular guest - breakfast only! They can cook dinner for me or they can go out or we can all go out. This applies to friends as well.
One thing I've done for my kids and grandkids (I don't take children in the BB) if they want to visit in the summer is to have them come but I fine them a family friendly place that's less expensive than what I charge and I pay for them to stay there. It's much less stress on all of us and I usually find them a place where they can cook if they want and relax with the kids. It's a win, win for me and them!
 

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