A mum has sparked a huge debate after asking her family to contribute towards the cost of Christmas dinner.
The woman appealed to the Mumsnet community to explain her situation, and ask whether they thought she was being unreasonable to ask her guests to chip in for the meal.
‘OH and I have recently moved to the same town as the rest of his and my family, which has put us in the position of being able to host Christmas dinner this year,’ she wrote, under the username TheDogPeedOnMyBed.
‘This would be for my 3 DS and their DP/DC and my mum. Problem being it has been a difficult year financially for us and whilst we don’t mind (obviously!) doing the bulk of everything, at the suggestion of one of my DSis we asked if everyone would mind contributing just a few quid (£5!) towards buying the huge joint of beef that everyone wants.
‘DM has thrown a huge paddy at this, saying she is a VIP and after all she has done for us she shouldn’t have to do tribute towards her own dinner. Mum has just had a sizeable inheritance and is in a better position than any of us to contribute.
‘I would let it go, I know it seems petty, but as a matter of principle it has pissed me right off that she has this sense of entitlement above any of the rest of us- and believe you me she is no more entitled!! AIBU to insist she chips in or just f*cks off and has Christmas dinner elsewhere?’
Commenters were split on the debate, with some suggesting that she shouldn’t have offered to cook if she wasn’t willing to foot the bill.
‘It’s nice for people to offer to contribute either some money or dessert or wine but you’re effectively charging them to come for dinner,’ one wrote, whilst another added: ‘You can’t host and ask people to pay. If you can’t afford beef, do something that you can afford.’
‘Oh gawd, no, I’d never ask anyone to chip in. You graciously host, sucking up the cost, or you don’t,’ another agreed.
Others said their answer would depend on whether the poster had contributed towards other Christmas dinners that she and her family had attended previously.
‘Did you contribute financially when you went to other family members’ for Christmas in previous years?’ one asked. ‘If the answer is yes then fine. If you’ve enjoyed their hospitality in the past then it’s simply your turn and you shouldn’t host if you can’t afford to.’
However, some recognised that everyone’s financial situation is different, and said they didn’t see anything wrong with the request.
‘We are not well off and have done this regularly. People chip in for dinner. Everyone mucks in and its fun,’ they wrote. ‘If I were your Mum and had come into a sizeable inheritance, I’d pay for the whole dinner; but then I’m not your Mum.’
As a result of the heated conversation, TheDogPeedOnMyBed clarified her back story, saying: ‘Just to clarify – mum hasn’t hosted a big dinner of any sort within living memory virtually, it has been at least ten years since we had a “family” christmas together’.
‘We have thrown umpteen dinner parties at old house, always done the works, rarely is it reciprocated, never by mother. Never ever asked for so much as a bag of peanuts to be brought along although people usually bring a bottle.’