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AIBU to think about just not going to DH's work party?

(346 Posts)
rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 16:00:29

DH and I had a bit of a drama yesterday but thankfully that's all sorted. I've just received the invitation to one of the fancy company brunches they hold through the post. It's plus one but there's not much point in the plus ones being there.

As a general rule DH and I sit with his friendship circle inside work. I can see why he's friends with them; similar interests, lifestyles, upbringings, etc. especially as he spends lots of time with them at his job. But the truth is they're, as a general rule, awful. Condescending, narrow-minded, elitist ... not to mention they can be downright rude. DH will of course defend me if necessary but he can't do anything about the fact that I just genuinely think they're for the most part horrible people.

Generally DH will discuss work with his team so the spouses tend to socialise with each other. (One guy that DH works with in particular finds it hilarious if anyone not in the company tries to contribute or even follow the conversation. He takes some weird pleasure in asking their opinions if they seem to be listening and then laughing. It's weird if you ask me but we tend to not get involved in their discussion for that reason or even listen to it.)

As a general rule I don't get on with the spouses of the rest of his friends at all. The two husbands stick to each other very closely and generally don't talk to the wives. Most of the women are very different to me and often unkind. DH and I have a slightly different dynamic in our marriage as well which they love to pick at. They are mostly SAHM or SAHW like me but a couple have had modelling careers in the past I think. They don't really see the point in me having a job (I work from home) and are frequently rude about my career. The one woman I get on with has a real dislike for them and they dislike her back, which means I've become very isolated from the group and often on the receiving end of snipes/jabs. However her wife is on maternity leave and as such she won't be there.

DH knows I don't like his friends but doesn't really know the full situation when it comes to those I'm expected to hang out with. I'm not very involved with his job as it's quite difficult to really understand on the most part (or maybe I'm just thick when it comes to this stuff grin) so he really enjoys seeing me in the context of his work setting. I tend to suck it up when events like this roll around because it is so important to him and to me that I'm supportive. However, with my usual friend not there I think it will be much more obvious that I don't get on with the others. I could do my best to remain involved but if they start making comments or just don't talk to me at all how am I supposed to?

AIBU to consider just telling DH I don't want to go and avoiding the whole event? I feel it will be awkward at best and DH will feel like he has to intervene if it gets bad, which could potentially disrupt his friendships and spoil his evening. On the other hand, I feel like I should at least make an effort, and I know he's going to be super excited about me going. Not to mention I'd feel bad causing another issue so close to our previous disagreement.

WWYD?

Xmasbaby11 Thu 07-Jun-18 16:02:57

I'm not sure why you'd even consider going! Just don't go.

DeepFatFriar Thu 07-Jun-18 16:14:51

I hear you but at the same time....its just brunch

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 16:20:50

Just don't go.
I'd just feel really bad about letting DH down. And his friends and the wives usually have a lot of unneccessary and unwanted input about our relationship which will worsen if I don't show up.

its just brunch
That's what I've been telling myself but it really could have a strong impact if it goes wrong.
I'm not sure if I'm BU and over exaggerating it in my mind.

ReservoirDogs Thu 07-Jun-18 16:29:50

The higher up DH got the less of his work stuff I go to!

Handsfull13 Thu 07-Jun-18 16:30:33

You aren't letting him down. He doesn't need you there and your saving him intervening on your behalf.
If it would help his career or was to celebrate his work then I'd say to consider sucking it up for a small time but given it isn't that important you don't need to attend.
Your husband can simply say you had another commitment.

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 16:41:00

Your husband can simply say you had another commitment.

They'd absolutely love that grin
When they found out I was working it was one of these brunches but I think it was the Winter one. The guy he works with (the one who's an arse) said, "oh, so she wears the trousers, does she?"

They're all of the opinion that you can't support your spouse properly if you also have a job once you get into "their level of business" hmm If I ditched the dinner for a "commitment" they'd be like sharks in bloodied water!

You aren't letting him down. He doesn't need you there and your saving him intervening on your behalf.
It's more the fact that he loves it when I go so much. When he gets home I daresay he'll be talking about going out to get new clothes, arranging a sitter for the DC etc.

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 16:44:19

The higher up DH got the less of his work stuff I go to!

I thought I'd understand more over the years but I just understand less.

I wouldn't mind just sitting and chatting somewhere, but if they start on me I don't know what I'll do!

Generally I can respond quite well over the evening but there will inevitably be a point where it becomes tense enough that they'll notice around the end of the table. It might not just cause problems for DH but I think it might really break his heart.

He has some control issues we're trying to address and I think the realisation that he can't really "control" how well I get on with people and how that affects his work life would hit him hard.

FriendOrUser Thu 07-Jun-18 16:48:49

Pretend your going and then be 'sick' on the day 😁 As long as your DH knows the truth...

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 16:52:26

Pretend your going and then be 'sick' on the day

I'd feel dishonest lying to him though. And if he knew I was purposely trying to avoid it, he'd still be really upset about it.

I think I might just go and stick with some of the less openly disagreeable women. I'm sure I could make small talk for an evening and if I concentrate on keeping composed when a nastier one jumps in, I should be fine.

Loopytiles Thu 07-Jun-18 16:54:33

Are you in the US?

Why do these people know anything about your relationship?

Loopytiles Thu 07-Jun-18 16:56:22

Why can’t you just be honest with your H that you haven’t previously enjoyed the spouses’ company and don’t wish to attend?

“Control issues” hmm

It doesn’t matter what the people you dislike think.

Crunchymum Thu 07-Jun-18 16:58:57

I don't get how you can "see why your DH is friends with them" (even though they have similar interests, lifestyles, upbringings) when they are condescending, narrow minded and elitist?

Why do they have so much influence on your life and why are their opinions of any significance?

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 17:02:54

Are you in the US?
No, the UK - why? People generally comment that I'm ridiculously British grin

Why do these people know anything about your relationship?
They don't know much at all. I think I mentioned something about my job and they had plenty of questions.
As a general rule they assumed that me working = me controlling DH hmm so the women began asking who did more chores, who cooked etc. It was ridiculous.

DH intervened after one woman asked what exactly I did, I responded and she rolled her eyes and said "so you basically look after the kids then" shock (My job isn't a conventional office job.)

After that they've been convinced that our relationship dynamic is skewed and that I "control" him. I understand it's not the norm in the vast majority of their relationships but their rudeness/ignorance was outstanding! I think some women were genuinely interested if a little invasive. One woman in particular was just unkind.

“Control issues”
That's what our argument last night was about because he began behaving in a completely irrational way. He just finds it very difficult to cope when things don't go perfectly, which is why I don't really want to overload him with this when we've just decided to confront the problems.

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 17:07:10

when they are condescending, narrow minded and elitist?
My DH doesn't generally socialise with them in an actually social way I think. They do this job, or work in that department.
If they go and play sport or attend a lecture together things don't always come up that make them seem elitist. Sitting round a table when you're literally just talking brings that out far more readily.

It's also the norm, in a way, in my DH's mind. He led a very sheltered upbringing and mixed with people like this for the vast majority of his life. So he wouldn't behave that way, but he wouldn't think it particularly odd if people do.

He speaks up if they go directly for me but other than that he'd be inclined to leave it.

Why do they have so much influence on your life and why are their opinions of any significance?
They don't have much impact on me but they do DH. He does work with people and I don't want to make his workplace awkward, especially in his current position where he is involved with lots of people from many different departments and expected to get along well with and engineer them.

I wouldn't like to cost him friendships either if he does enjoy spending time with them, and I know he is quite close to a few.

Merryoldgoat Thu 07-Jun-18 17:07:36

I honestly don’t understand why you have to go. I cannot fathom how strangers have ‘input’ into your relationship and why your DH is friends with such awful people - doesn’t reflect that well.

They all sound like a bunch of cunts.

My DH said to me that he doesn’t like most of the husbands in my friends (I don’t especially either) so he stays home now. I just go alone. Easier for everyone.

Loopytiles Thu 07-Jun-18 17:07:58

Work brunches involving plus ones just seems a US thing.

Why would you declining to attend “overload” him?

Loopytiles Thu 07-Jun-18 17:09:05

Your H doesn’t come out of this at all well.

HollowTalk Thu 07-Jun-18 17:12:53

I wouldn't even dream of going. Your husband will be talking to the people he works with. They can't even grasp the fact that women work - there must be great equality of the sexes in that workplace.

The women are nasty to you, the men are complete idiots. Why on earth would you go?

OhWhatFuckeryIsThisNow Thu 07-Jun-18 17:13:56

God, I'd not go. And tell dh, "because life is too short to spend with arse holes"

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 17:14:28

Your H doesn’t come out of this at all well.
He didn't yesterday either. I think I explain him badly!

Work brunches involving plus ones just seems a US thing.
They are an international company and I think they have a lot going on in the US. It could be influencing the way they operate in England?

Why would you declining to attend “overload” him?
I think he'd just be very upset that I didn't get on with them, and he might take it badly that I haven't mentioned this to him before.
As I said yesterday we had a bit of a bust-up so I don't know how he'd react to me telling him this today. And I imagine he'll want to talk about it immediately, so I can hardly pretend until a later date!

asprinklingofsugar Thu 07-Jun-18 17:15:04

I was reading your other thread yesterday, and it honestly sounds like you've had such a stressful year, so I can totally understand you not wanting to have to cope with further stress. It seems like either option is going to cause some more stress and upset - either you go and suffer in silence at a brunch you'd rather not be at, or you upset your husband by telling him why you don't want to go. Depending on when it is, ie if it's soon, could you not simply say you'd rather stay home to help support your daughter during her exams? Or some other excuse along those lines, relating to one of your other children, as it seems like that is the sort of reasoning the colleagues and their spouses would accept.

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 17:17:00

They can't even grasp the fact that women work - there must be great equality of the sexes in that workplace.

There are three women in DH's "group" but I imagine life there must be Hell for them. As a company they say they promote and support gender equality etc. but so many men there are utter dicks.

It's a general spouse thing but the fact that I'm a woman definitely comes into play. The two husbands never really get picked on at these brunches. They just sit there.

Bluesmartiesarebest Thu 07-Jun-18 17:17:41

I would refuse to attend an event where I knew I would not be treated with respect and deliberately made to feel uncomfortable by the other people there.

Will DH’s career be affected if you refuse to go?

rosesandflowers Thu 07-Jun-18 17:19:15

Depending on when it is, ie if it's soon, could you not simply say you'd rather stay home to help support your daughter during her exams? Or some other excuse along those lines, relating to one of your other children, as it seems like that is the sort of reasoning the colleagues and their spouses would accept.

That might work out. I think it would also work as an excuse I could feed DH but I'd feel awful keeping the information from him.

I guess I could say it all in one. She'll have finished her exams but I'm pretty sure that's a busy week for her (her prom + an appointment with her consultant.)

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