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AWeBU and ungrateful? Friend gift (long)

17 replies

euphrosyne · 17/04/2011 17:59

A friend of DH (not his closest, ex colleague but they meet up several times a year despite living in different cities) has a girlfriend who is just starting up her own business as portrait photographer. They have been on and off for over 10 years, and she recently moved in with him in the other side of the country after losing her job. I have never met her, but am in very good terms with DH's friend. DH has met her once or twice back in 2000.

When DS was born, friend mentioned that his girlfriend would love to take some pictures of him when we meet and it would be good for her practice/portfolio building up. While we don't mind her taking photos (i.e. practising), we are not comfortable with pictures of DS being used on a website or any demonstration purposes. We gave a vague OK as we were living abroad at the time.

It's not something we'd choose to pay for-We did not have a professional photographer at our wedding for example.

On Christmas, they sent us a card with a gift voucher for a portrait photo session for DS. When we saw DH's friend for a drink in January (she was not there) I said to him that they are most welcome to visit and stay over for a weekend, but I did not mention anything about photos.

DH is currently working long days and weeks, but had a weekend off a fortnight ago. He suggested that they visited to have a nice day out. We live a couple of hours drive away.They said they'd come for the Saturday only. DH sent out directions for driving to and parking in our area, and got reply with attached instructions for the photo shoot session (!) He sent an email saying that it was his only day off and that he thought he'd be relaxing with friends, not stressing over getting the light right. Plus DS is now a constantly running toddler, with zero chances of him staying still posing.

His friend called immediatelly to say that of course they'd come to see us and he'd ask her not bring her camera at all. DH said that she should bring it, just we were not intending to spend the whole day taking pictures.

On Saturday morning friend called us and said they were not coming after all, because she was not feeling very well (a cough or something).
We were left a bit Confused and Hmm

Could the MN jury please enlighten us with your thoughts?

OP posts:

HecateQueenOfTheNight · 17/04/2011 18:03

She's either not feeling very well or they were only coming so she could take pictures or they're not coming because she's got the tup on.

It's probably one of the last two.

Never mind. They'll get over it.


WriterofDreams · 17/04/2011 18:04

Clearly you have an absolutely gorgeous DS who they believe will advertise their business very well Grin They're being a bit weird and I suggest that if they want to use your very lovely child as a model then he has very reasonable fees. Smile


KatieMiddleton · 17/04/2011 18:05

Nope I don't get it. Friend offers free photo session for your ds. You agree to this but don't actually want to do it. Then you get a voucher for a photo shoot which you haven't cashed in. Then you assume they want to take pictures all day when meeting up then they cancel due to illness which you don't think is genuine.

Why don't you just have a conversation about it and tell the truth?


speffles · 17/04/2011 18:11

Oooh tough one. I want to be all reasonable and say that it's probably all just a misunderstanding but I would be annoyed. I can understand her being keen but it's annoying when people bring you into their business without your consent. Even if it is just a one off as a customer.


squeakytoy · 17/04/2011 18:16

Here we go again with the paranoia... what on earth do you think would happen to a photo of your child if it was used as an advert for a business venture?


racmac · 17/04/2011 18:18

Im thinking you ABU as maybe she only wants to practise taking some photos on toddlers - most people would love to have professional photos done of their children especially for free?

I dont really get your objections unless there is something else going on?


muminthemiddle · 17/04/2011 18:19

I think you should say we don't want the girlfriend to take any pictures of our child thanks. If we do later on then we will arrange the photo shoot.
Personally I think it is a great present, speaking as someone who loves photos.
I also think you are being ambiguos saying bring the camera. Either you do want to spend time having pictures done or yopu don't and ypou need to be very specifiuc on that.


catchmeifyoucan · 17/04/2011 18:36

That's a frightful amount of information in the OP - it made my eyes bleed. I can't see what the problem is to be honest and can't help wondering if you're not being just a tiny little bit precious?


LyingWitchInTheWardrobe2726 · 17/04/2011 18:41

When your DHs friend said that he'd tell his DP not to bring her camera, why didn't your DH keep quiet instead of saying 'bring camera but not all day'?

Be straight with them - get DH to as it's his friend - but I think the messages from you and DH have been very mixed and easily misunderstood.


euphrosyne · 17/04/2011 18:54

Thanks for the replies.

I suppose we should have been clearer with them to start with.

The thing is Katie, I'd love to have a straightforward conversation ( I like muminthemiddle's suggestion), but I do not even know the woman-never spoke to her.

Squeakytoy and racmac it's not paranoia or anything else going on. Just a preference.

I suppose it's the bringing into the business through 'friendship' thing that annoys me. Especially when a)I never met the person and b)I do not think there is a genuine interest in meeting our DS (this might be a PFB moment I admit Grin)

OP posts:

Browncoats · 18/04/2011 14:02

I don't really see what the problem is. I'd absolutely love a friend or a friend of a friend to take my DS photo. Who cares if you've never met her? She might be lovely. I think I'd be flattered if someone wanted to use my DS photo for their business.

With all due respect OP not everyone is going to be that bothered about your DS or have a 'genuine interest' in meeting him. That doesn't mean he isn't lovely and fantastic (as of course, is my DS).

She was probably trying to be nice and thought you'd like a professional shot done for free or even that you'd like to have your DS as the 'face' of her business. Smile


MrSpoc · 18/04/2011 14:32

Sorry Op but I do not get your problem.

Why would you not want to help your friend with their business (are you secretly jealous!!)

You have been offered a photo shoot free (would normally cost £600 minimum) in order to help them with their business. Are you scared of all them big bad pedos that are everywhere at the moment?


ContraryMartha · 18/04/2011 14:39

I get your problem OP.

I wouldn't want my kids all over the Internet either.
Its not paranoia.

Anyway, I think you are going to have to wait and see what their next move is.
Is there a chance she really is unwell? Or do you think they are annoyed for some reason?


VajazzHands · 18/04/2011 15:27

Browncoats I think the Op's point was that she doesnt want to meet the kid just use him- not that everyone should want to meet her dc


bubblecoral · 18/04/2011 15:30

Maybe they are slightly offended that you snubbed what they thought was going to be a nice gift for you?

You don't know for sure that she would actually want to use photos of your ds for her website, and you could have just asked her not to use them, or said no when/if she asked.


KatieWatie · 18/04/2011 15:47

I don't get why you didn't just state your conditions in the first place. She might have been relying on the practice and/or promotional material and now have to start from scratch.

Having said that I don't understand why they took your husbands desire not to spend all day having photos done as a sign that you didn't want them at all... To me this isn't a full snub, so is there something else that was said that they saw as a full snub?


Pancakeflipper · 18/04/2011 15:51

But surely the actual voucher means you can say no photos of DS on the Internet or for any marketing? It's a gift? Not you doing a favour...

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