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AIBU to feel insulted for having to pay for Christmas dinner at my SIL?

360 replies

Headwir3 · 06/01/2019 21:05

My SIL said she would host Christmas this year as she has a big new house and plenty of room for us all. I asked if I should bring something and she said she would just do a shop and split the cost. She did suggest we bring our own alcohol. I thought it was a little odd, as did my hubby but he reminded me that she was cheap and the food wouldn’t cost that much anyway! Best to just agree with it instead of making a fuss.

Anyway we had Christmas, I took up 5 bottles of wine (only drank one and my hubby didn’t drink any). Left them there when we left. We were given cereal for breakfast and tinned soup for lunch and a basic Christmas dinner. No puddings and just a little cheese for desert.

We just got the bill... it came to £40 each! AIBU to feel angry and insulted by this all? It doesn’t seem right to hand over money. Especially to family. Also I feel really ripped off! I don’t want to upset my husband, but his family are a new level of cheap. If I did that to my brother, he probably wouldn’t speak to me again!

OP posts:
Slipperboots · 06/01/2019 21:18

I can do better. SIL charged us £100 for xmas dinner. We also had to provide starters and pudding. She gave out tiny portions too.
I won’t go there/eat there ever again.

RuggerHug · 06/01/2019 21:19

Did she add on the cost of your Christmas presents and all?
But yeah.... I'd ask for itemized breakdown and if she didn't get the wine you left? Because that should be knocked off the bill and OH LOOK that means you owe me a tenner SIL.

VinoEsmeralda · 06/01/2019 21:20

What was the dinner?

LittleOwl153 · 06/01/2019 21:20

Wow! It cost me about £60 in shopping plus a Turkey and gammon to feed 10 of us! From xmas eve teatime though to 27th!
What does your DH think the answer is? Definitely a good reason to to go there again - or indeed host at your expense!

elessar · 06/01/2019 21:21

If she's not included alcohol in the cost then there's no way it can have cost anything like that pp - if it was pretty basic fare then probably not more than £10-15pp if it was just Christmas dinner, breakfast and a lunch the following day.

Unless you're leaving out something else she spent a lot on, like really nice nibbles, crackers etc? But even then it sounds extortionate.

If I was you I would politely ask for an itemised bill, perhaps along with a PA query about how it can have cost so much.

mushlett · 06/01/2019 21:22

We had friends over for Christmas, also included my parents and theirs. We went out together the Sunday before Christmas, did a big shop and split the bill. Everyone got everything they wanted and expected but the cost was shared 50/50. We had starters, puddings, enough meat, cheese and smoked salmon to last a week and a full roast with all the trimmings. Also so much alcohol and it cost £240 for 12 of us, so £40 each does sound a lot.

Walnutwhipster · 06/01/2019 21:22

I would often host 15 family members but only because I'm a chef and had the largest house. I accepted £10 per head per adult and provided all food and drink. At the most it cost me £100 top up, which I absolutely didn't mind. There's no way she spent £40 a head without alcohol, CF.

BHStowel · 06/01/2019 21:23

I’d pay twice that for someone else to host. Paying for the mental load of organising the clean sheets and towels, all the minutiae of having other people stay in your home.

I think billing is a bit odd. We offer an amount and are usually told it’s too much.

BunsOfAnarchy · 06/01/2019 21:24

I hosted xmas dinner this year for my parents, DBs, SILs and kids.

I didnt dare ask for a penny off them! They still bought expensive alcohol as gifts as they did offer to pay a week earlier and i flat out refused. Im also on unpaid MAT leave and only DH gets a wage.

Theres nothing wrong with paying (id always want to pay if someone else was hosting me) but even with full roast with plenty of trimmings, cheese plates, charcuterie, starters, desserts, and a few bottles of booze...mine still didnt work out to 40 quid a head! Prob worked out to 20 max.

Your SIL is having u on.

ZanyMobster · 06/01/2019 21:25

There is no way it would cost that much, we always split xmas dinner as it is hosted by the same person every year but never anymore that £25 each including champagne, all alcohol, tea, chocs, biscuits etc.

SadOtter · 06/01/2019 21:26

£40 each and that didn't include alcohol?! I'd give her £40 between you to keep the peace, if she questions it just tell her that much each was just such a ridiculous amount you assumed she had to have meant all together. Then next year if she invites you again you can tell her you are saving money by hosting yourself!

YouTheCat · 06/01/2019 21:27

Give the cheeky cow £30 in total and never go there again.

Mummymummums · 06/01/2019 21:27

What normally happens? Does she pay when she attends others' houses in the family for Christmas? Have you hosted?
Whatever the answer she's a new level of tight but if you've hosted Xmas and she's not paid I'd suggest you point that out.

Hushnownobodycares · 06/01/2019 21:28

She's ripping you off.

Depends if you need to keep things sweet but going forward I wouldn't plan on getting suckered into subbing her Christmas or anything else ever again.

mcmooberry · 06/01/2019 21:28

Please don't pay, that amount absurd and she is basically making money out of you. Offer £15 each, she will still come out ahead at that!!

mummmy2017 · 06/01/2019 21:29

Tell her this...
Thanks for Xmas Dinner, but since we didn't eat Xmas eve, or boxing day and left you 3 bottles of wine, think £40 should cover our share of food, bet your fridge must be bulging with goodies and all you have to buy is bread for the next week...
Think it was a great idea too share the meal price and look forward to doing it again when we host....

Herja · 06/01/2019 21:30

Fuuuck that shit. I think I spent about £200 on Christmas day food and some wine. My grandma hid some money in my egg bowl because I wouldn't take it. If I couldn't afford to pay for it, I'd not offer to host... There is no way on earth I'd pay £40pp for that. Nor would I ever be inviting her for Christmas.

HollowTalk · 06/01/2019 21:30

Ask for a breakdown of costs.

What kind of meat was it?

I doubt she's including her own family in that breakdown. Who else was there?

Anothermothersusername · 06/01/2019 21:32

i think your DH need to be honest and tell her that you do not believe that the meal cost the amount that she is billing you. Offer what you think should cover the cost then let her take it or leave it. I think you day she just moved into a big new house. It sounds like the meal was an excuse for her to show it off. If she can’t afford to host a dinner then frankly she shouldn’t do it. Stand firm with her. This is not acceptable. Just because she’s a relative it doesn’t give her the right to walk all over you.

Guineapiglet345 · 06/01/2019 21:33

What the hell is wrong with people!? YOU DO NOT OFFER TO HOST THEN CHARGE YOUR GUESTS!!!

We had a whole turkey which was about £15, stuffing and pigs in blankets at £5 plus potatoes, parsnips, carrots and sprouts at about £1 per bag, gravy, cranberry sauce and bread sauce all from Waitrose so not cheap, so maybe £27 total between 3 of us but we didn’t use up everything during that one meal so the cost was probably closer to £20 which is £6.66 per person.

I just wouldn’t pay and then if she asks about it say you thought she was joking.

tillytrotter1 · 06/01/2019 21:34

A Christmas dinner is one of the cheapest meals possible, it's just turkey and root vegetables, I would bet she used as much frozen stuff too, she sounds to be the type!

OurChristmasMiracle · 06/01/2019 21:34

I bought x mas dinner of turkey crown, lamb shoulder, mint sauce, potatoes. Yorkshire puddings, pigs in blankets and veg Plus dessert and 6 beers for less than £35!

Ask for a breakdown. Soup and cereal at most is £5. Maybe she means £40 in total?

Cheeeeislifenow · 06/01/2019 21:35

This thing of billing for dinner? I have never heard of it. Is it a new trend. I would not dream of charging anyone to call to my home and I am pretty sure anyone I know would be incredibly offended if I offered cash.
Surely you bring booze/ dessert etc?
Anyway op she sounds like a nasty bint, I'd pay it and never go back, she would not be invited to mine either.

Butchyrestingface · 06/01/2019 21:36

Is she otherwise a nice person, OP?

It's hard to imagine a little ray-of-sunshine, pillar-of-the-community, helps little old ladies across the road type who just happens to morph into Ebenezer Scrooge when it comes to entertaining the rellies at Christmas. 🤔

elvis86 · 06/01/2019 21:39

Tight cow. I don't really understand people offering to host and then charging people - it's just horrible. We alternate and if it's our year we cater to our guests.

If nobody can afford to host outright, surely you'd just agree that X brings the starter, Y buys the turkey etc?

"I would bet she used as much frozen stuff too, she sounds to be the type!"

Don't know why, but this really made me laugh! 😂😂😂

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