Note: Please bear in mind that whilst this topic does canvass opinions, it is not a fight club. You may disagree with other posters but we do ask you please to stick to our Talk Guidelines and to be civil. We don't allow personal attacks or troll-hunting. Do please report any. Thanks, MNHQ.

How much notice should visitors give of visit?

(27 Posts)
Woolfey Fri 25-Jan-13 11:50:18

I'm annoyed as MIL called DH yesterday telling us she was coming to stay today for a long weekend. She lives the other end of the country and is retired and suddenly decided she was coming to visit. I've been ill all week and have two young DD's who I look after full time so housework has not been done this week. She is also a very faddy eater, which I don't normally have too much of a problem with, provided I can shop for her special stuff in time. Told DH to tell her no she can come next weekend instead. She's not happy.

Step DD (18yrs old) also lives in same area as MIL and does the same thing when coming to stay - ie: phoning us and telling us she's on the train with no warning she is even thinking about coming to visit. No thought to the fact we might not be able to accommodate her. We don't have a spare room so visitors have to sleep in Living Room and all family live a long way from us so she at least needs to phone and check there is somewhere for her to sleep! Just so annoyed with all this, it just seems so rude!

Makes me wonder how much notice other people get when family want to come and stay and if I'm expecting too much for them to arrange it in advance?

MrsHoarder Fri 25-Jan-13 13:41:00

For close friends and family, enough notice to hide the clutter under my bed tidy and clean would be nice, as long as they were asking. I know that this is what my DM usually gets too glosses over the night my friends let me down at 2am and I went there. DM was somewhat surprised when I came down for breakfast in the morning

OrangeLily Fri 25-Jan-13 13:31:46

My parents and parents in law could call the same day for a day visit. For overnight not a chuffing chance!!

They would also accept when I say no too. It's the height of rudeness just to turn up.

I'm quite a private person but have invited guests round a lot. My mum always seems to overstep lines. Like doing weird things like only using our ensuite when we have other bathrooms. MIL doesn't even go in to that part of the house without being taken there so she's not as bad!

DreamingofSummer Fri 25-Jan-13 13:17:56

A husband comes home late at night, and quietly opens the door to the bedroom.

From under the blanket he sees four legs instead of two.

He reaches for a cricket bat and starts hitting the blanket as hard as she can.

Leaving the covered bodies groaning, he goes to the kitchen to have a drink.

As he enters, he sees his wife there, reading a magazine.

She says, "Your parents have come on a surprise visit, so l let them stay in our bedroom. Did you say "hello"?

bigTillyMint Fri 25-Jan-13 13:14:25

Re: the MIL, there is a difference between asking and telling. If she knows that you have to reorgainise to accommodate her, then she should be asking for you to agree a date that suits.

RE: DSD, she should be able to rock up whenever really, though she needs to let you know she is coming in enough time for you to get sorted. You need to have a regular plan for her so that everyone knows that when she comes she sleeps in the sitting room/another child moves beds, etc.

firesidechat Fri 25-Jan-13 13:14:13

Daughters - can turn up any time they like.
Mum - a weeks notice at least would be good.
Hyperthetical MIL - same as mum.
Actual MIL - over my dead body (my husband would agree with this).
Son in law - a weeks notice again, because I'm still trying to maintain the fantasy that I'm a good housewife.

DontmindifIdo Fri 25-Jan-13 13:11:41

Seeker - to be fair, once I'd left to go to uni, I did always call to tell them I was coming home on say the Wednesday when coming back on the Friday, often they had stuff going on/where away for a weekend meaning I'd not get free food and free lifts to from the train station What would the OP's DSD done if she was already on the 5 hour train when she called and found out her Dad and SM had gone away for that weekend or already had guests so no space for her?

fubbsy Fri 25-Jan-13 13:10:21

TheFallenNinja has spotted the problem. It's not the amount of notice, it's the fact that your mil told you she was coming to say.

If she asked, you would be able to have a conversation about it. YANBU

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 25-Jan-13 13:09:33

YANBU about your MIL - she should give at least a weeks notice as she is retired and can presumably come most weekends.

DSD on the other hand should be able to come when she wants although I take on board what you say about not having room for her to sleep. It's kind of a shame for her and for you, and I'm sure financially based, that there isn't a bedroom that can be her room plus visitors room.

I don't think there is a hard and fast rule about how much notice visitors can give. It depends on their circumstances. For instance we knew that nephew was doing a course near by and we would have been delighted if he had rung up one evening and asked to stay - he didn't probably because we are such old fuddy duddys these days. But then we have a spare room and I always keep the bed made up just in case so its not a huge problem for us if we did get a surprise visitor.

DontmindifIdo Fri 25-Jan-13 13:08:08

they can ask on short notice, so long as they are happy for the answer to be 'no' - if (as it seems in the case of your MIL) they are really informing you not asking you, then a few weeks notice to get yourself organised.

It would probably do your MIL the world of good if for the next few times she does this if she's given you less than a week's notice you say no even if you could cope. Get her used to the idea you have better other things going on with your life.

Re your DSD, I would say she's part of your family so should be able to treat your house like her own under normal circumstances, but if you don't have a room for her and if say, your MIL had already rocked up you'd have no where to put her, then perhaps telling your DSD she's always welcome but to call you before not after getting on the train would be best, just incase you are away or have other guests already staying. Perhaps a good way to start planting the seed would be to get your DH to call her (or you do it if you're close enough) to warn her that her gran is staying next weekend now so if she was thinking of visiting, you've not got space or would have to put her round at other friends/family. It might help make her see that if she'd done the same thing of only calling when on the train that weekend you'd be stuck...

seeker Fri 25-Jan-13 13:05:30

You wouldn't have dreamed of turning up unannounced on your mum and dad when you were 18? wow!

elliejjtiny Fri 25-Jan-13 13:04:14

YANBU, I hate it when people do this. I wouldn't dream of going to stay with my mum and dad at short notice and I need to know at least a week in advance if people are coming to stay with us.

TheFallenNinja Fri 25-Jan-13 12:58:04

They could ask on the day as long as they ask

I have a key to my parents' place. I never arrive unannounced and check a few days in advance if they will be in on X and is it OK for me to pop over. I will let myself in but they know I am coming. But I visit, not stay over.

I would never ever invite myself to stay anywhere. I would say I would quite like to come and visit for a weekend, would that be possible and if so, when would suit YOU.

I think a DSD of 18 should probably be able to just turn up but a bit of a warning would be a nice courtesy. But in a few years' time, I'd expect the same sort of 'consultation' about staying over.

PaellaUmbrella Fri 25-Jan-13 12:49:38

A few days notice, regardless of who it is.

Unless it's an emergency, I don't think DCs should be turning up to stay unannounced anymore than a MIL giving a day's notice. I wouldn't dream of descending on my parents to stay without asking in advance - it's common courtesy - they still have to make up a bed, potentially get food in, etc. They might have plans themselves. And yes we do have a close relationship before that's questioned.

Bejeena Fri 25-Jan-13 12:32:07

I do also always ask my parents before going to stay there although I probably don't need to and they never say no. But I wouldn't just turn up nowadays (used to when I was a student though)

Bejeena Fri 25-Jan-13 12:30:31

My family are not welcome to just turn up, they have to be invited, otherwise it is just plain rude.

We live abroad so what usually happens is they ask if they can come such and such a date and when we have agreed they book their flights. If it is my inlaws my husband always checks with me first and I do the same if it is my family.

Woolfey Fri 25-Jan-13 12:19:18

hmm guess I need to rethink DSD situation then. Thanks for all your comments will try and take it on board.

CMOTDibbler Fri 25-Jan-13 12:10:05

Your DSD shouldn't have to give notice (though a phone call the day before might be nice just so you are able to include her in your weekend plans), but for the MIL to stay for a long weekend, at least a weeks notice of asking if she can come would be my ideal.

TooMuchRain Fri 25-Jan-13 12:09:38

If it's family they can pretty much just turn up - though obviously they then know that they have to make their own bed and possibly dinner too!

CloudsAndTrees Fri 25-Jan-13 12:08:53

But your step dd did call and let you know she was coming, so where's the problem? confused

Surely if one of your children wants to come and stay with you that night, you just let them?

Buy an air bed or something.

Convert Fri 25-Jan-13 12:08:27

Mil I can understand you need a few days notice but like other posters have said, DSD should just be able to turn up. I know that at any time I with or without DH and three DCs could just pitch us and be joyously welcomed. Sleeping arrangements would be worked out after we had all had a chat and a glass of wine!

Woolfey Fri 25-Jan-13 12:04:25

I do expect DSD to treat it as her own home but we need to at least make sure she has somewhere to sleep, it's a 5hr journey so it's not just like she's popping down the road and can pop back if someone else is staying. If my DD's were 18 and knew we didn't have a spare bed I would at least expect them to call and let me know they were coming so I could sort something out for them.

seeker Fri 25-Jan-13 12:02:18

Mil - a week minimum unless it's an emergency.

Dd - the sound of her key in the lock.

CloudsAndTrees Fri 25-Jan-13 11:59:35

Your dd should be welcome to turn up whenever she wants, I'd be pretty gutted if my own mum and stepdad made me book in. Presumably your step dd knows she will have to sleep on the sofa?

Mil should give more time though, otherwise it's just rude that she expects to be accommodated at the drop of a hat.

pinkbraces Fri 25-Jan-13 11:57:11

Surely your DSD is just part of your family and comes whenever she wants to. Would you expect your own DD's to arrange a visit once they reach 18?

As for your MIL well, she is your DH mum, I would say the same, just ask her to do the shopping.

Saying that I find the behaviour of many mumsnetters quite odd when it comes to family visits.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now