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to expect FIL not to put feet on sofa arm

(39 Posts)
hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 14:18:45

I know it's controversial on MN, but we prefer guests to take their shoes off when they come into our house. Live in an area where the pavements are plastered with dog poo (literally at times), lots of spitting on pavements going on etc. Started when house was new, continued when had crawling baby and still prefer it. DH's family think this is odd (they live outside London and spend most of their time driving rather than walking on pavements) and never fail to make a fuss, but seem to be getting message. FIL has just visited, took off shoes but then put foot in shoe up on sofa to get it on. WTF. So I don't want dirty shoes on floor, but now I want them on soft furnishings?! He is older, so not as mobile as others, but we suggest he sits down on the sofa to make it easier for him and he does this instead. He is difficult and I sometimes think he's doing this just to make a point.

Whatdoidohelp Mon 04-Jan-16 14:26:02

Tell him to get his bloody feet off the furniture ! It's rude and he is testing you to make a point.

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 14:29:33

We have this weird thing too where he refuses to use the bathroom towel (always clean). Wants to use the kitchen one. He claims not to be able to see it. I show him it every time, on the radiator. There's nowhere else to put it and everyone else can see it. I try hard not to get irritated by him, but damn it's hard.

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 14:30:48

My family are very straightforward and I find his behaviour weirdly controlling at times. He never comes at the time we agree, is always early or late.

Bubbletree4 Mon 04-Jan-16 14:34:49

He did it to make a point I reckon. Disgusting behaviour.

MrsCaecilius Mon 04-Jan-16 14:38:18

Mine kicked his muddy shoes off in the middle of the kitchen and then dropped his wet coat on the floor at walked off on Christmas Day.

He's 68, not 6, it drives me demented!!

redjoker Mon 04-Jan-16 14:43:46

Sounds like he's making a point; and sounds plain rude

Im happy for guests to leave shoes on (id much prefer they didnt and i would never do it in my mums house) but OH's family and friends all tend not to and walk all through each others houses with them on so ive learnt to live with it

even so MIL is very good- sees that I work hard to keep house clean and now makes a point of taking them off (in a kind way)

its your house, your rules, people should respect that regardless of their habits (damn right mucky ways)

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 14:43:52

Thanks for other people's take on it. It's alien behaviour to me. Christmas is another matter. There'll be pressure this year to have them over, but why would I want someone in my house for a special day when they do this?

Alicewasinwonderland Mon 04-Jan-16 14:52:05

I don't know anyone who keep their muddy shoes when visiting anywhere - that's what mud rooms are for! civilised people tend to have a spare pair with them for that reason. It seems more accepted by foreigners than English people to be fair.

I do hate when people take their (non muddy) shoes off otherwise, but then I would never have carpet in the house. I had visitors who insisted on taking shoes off, then walked bare feet everywhere. YUK. I don't want your stinky sweaty bare feet on my floors!

That said, it's disgusting to ignore your house rules. If people are not happy about them, then they can go to the nearest pub.

redjoker Mon 04-Jan-16 14:52:22

Not sure what the answer is- it's seems socially 'acceptable' to ask a few times but personally i feel to make a proper point of it and put my foot down just gets me labelled as 'clean freak' or 'OCD'

cant you see them out and about and skip actually having to invite them in :/

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 14:58:09

He doesn't like walking very much, so there is pressure for him to come here. I make a nice lunch, then he goes home. I have got a small stool which I'm going to offer him next time. I think I'm just going to have to be a bit more blunt with him. It goes against everything in me, but I can't have him putting shitty shoes on the sofa. That really is beyond it. We've got a bit family gathering come up soon. that'll be fun.

dreamingofsun Mon 04-Jan-16 15:02:48

i would go spare if someone put a shoe on my sofa. we paid a decent amount of money for them, and i wouldn't want to have to replace them years before they wear out because my FIL stained them or made holes in them putting his shoes on them. is he an animal? i wouldn't even expect a youngish child to do that

amarmai Mon 04-Jan-16 15:06:40

he 's showing you he's the boss. How has his son done growing up with that example?

FlatOnTheHill Mon 04-Jan-16 15:10:15

Shoes off before you enter my place. Shoes on furniture confused jesus how did you keep your cool. Bloody out of order.

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 15:11:12

I was a bit worried about posting this - I know MN gets heated on this subject! What's with the towel thing? Why won't he just use the bathroom towel like everyone else? It's cleaner than theirs!

vestandknickers Mon 04-Jan-16 15:14:43

Your neighbourhood sounds delightful OP - what with the spitting and the dog poo!

Your FIL does sound like a pain. I'd be inclined just to let him get on with it though, he's probably looking for a reaction.

RiverTam Mon 04-Jan-16 15:17:47

I'm not a shoes-off person but I still don't want shoes on the furniture! Yeuch.

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 15:18:23

I almost always think the best of people and just thought it was because he was struggling physically and didn't realise how ignorant he was being. :-/ It was my mum who pointed out that he might have been being deliberately awkward. She's a bit better at reading people on the whole than I am. My DH can see through his behaviour sometimes, not all the time. DH is very fair about it. His sister has been quite helpful in that she's mentioned that he's quite controlling at times.

We had a problem in that he used to say he would come up at the weekend all the time, then not come. Which was irritating. Now we have the random time-keeping, but we only agree to visits now if nothing else is going on/carry on with our plans.

whois Mon 04-Jan-16 15:19:27

that's what mud rooms are for!

Somehow the inclusion of a 'mud room' escaped the planners attention for our 1 bed flat...

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 15:19:40

ha ha, it's an amazing neighbourhood, dog poo and spitting aside! just a fairly average london street on that front! I can see it doesn't sound nice, though.

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 15:23:21

Perhaps I need a mud room!

BlackeyedShepherdsbringsheep Mon 04-Jan-16 15:24:14

ex did this at his dads house when we were first going out. everyone looked horrified but no-one said anything as I was in his parentshouse and his parents had the new girlfriend in the room...

ex was told afterwards that his dad was not impressed. mud room... that would be the three foot square of hall then.

BlackeyedShepherdsbringsheep Mon 04-Jan-16 15:24:47

it only takes one dog owner to not pick up regularly.

hedgehog01 Mon 04-Jan-16 15:26:36

We think we know who the dog owner is now, am planning to have a word with him when I next see him.

diddl Mon 04-Jan-16 15:32:56

We haven't got a mud room either-you just can't get the staff I findgrin

We have a bench in the hall to put your feet on for putting on shoes/doing them up.

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