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DearSugar Needs Your Help: How Can I Get Rid of Him After Thanksgiving Dinner?

DearSugar and Regretful Regina need your help. Her friend is homeless for Thanksgiving this year and he invited himself to her house for the holiday, but she wants to be able to spend some alone time with her family. What should she do now?

Dear Sugar,

My friend's family currently lives in Colombia, so he sort of invited himself over to my house for Thanksgiving. We don't mind having him, but I rarely have a day off and I would like to just relax and spend time with my family without having to worry about playing hostess and keeping him entertained. Usually, we all take naps after we eat and then do something together as a family. I'd like to keep that tradition alive this year, so my question is, how do I politely get rid of him after dinner? As you can tell, I'm regretting the commitment I made but I don't want to uninvite him — he has nowhere else to go! Do you have any suggestions on how I can be a good friend while still being able to have alone time with my family?


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TidalWave TidalWave 8 years
I think you're simply worrying about something before it happens. I don't see you have to play hostess as much as you think you will or needing to entertain him. He just wants to spend the day with some family and not be alone. I really don't think he'll mind.
skigurl skigurl 8 years
"i'd like to keep that tradition alive this year"???? the tradition of NAPPING?
pixelhaze pixelhaze 8 years
agree with lizrocks and quitecontrary. It is your house and family after all, he should understand. And yeah, since in Colombia thanksgiving isn't celebrated I'm sure he won't care. oh ilanac13 - remember it's colOmbia :)
missangelique999 missangelique999 8 years
If you're really, truly someone's friend you wouldn't want to kick them out right after the main event. He doesn't have anyone to spend Thanksgiving with, and is expecting to spend it with you. As far as I know, Thanksgiving lasts an entire day, not a few hours. Why would you want a good friend to be alone on a holiday? How could you be happy and enjoy your family's company when you deliberately hurt someone who considers you a friend? If your friend is coming to eat, they are probably expecting that they are invited to be your guest until the festivities are over. When people start to leave, you can have your friend leave as well. That would be the classiest, FRIENDLIEST way to do it!!
BeachBarbie BeachBarbie 8 years
I don't know if anyone has suggested this...but why don't you and your guest go for a walk, while your family takes a nap. :shrug: I think it'll make both of you feel better after a big meal. Then come home and play board games, or whatever you do after your family naps. :) (I would treat him how you would want to be treated...if you were in his shoes, you know?)
lilCROAT03 lilCROAT03 8 years
if your family means that much to you- you would be making more time to see them, NOT just when the holidays are an excuse. thanksgiving is about giving- and you are not.
gsteinhauser gsteinhauser 8 years
I disagree with all of you. Uninvite him. If this is such a big deal for you, then you're a selfish person and it would be better for all parties involved if your selfish attitude didn't effect someone else's holiday as well. There are plenty of things that someone can do on Thanksgiving if they don't have family like participate in a turkey trot, volunteer in a shelter, join a team thats delivering food donations to families...I'm sure that didn't occur to you since you're usually busy with your nap though. By not having him over after all, you're really doing him a favor. However, if you'd like to change and be a descent person, make him feel welcome in your home even though he's far away from his own family, show your children/family what a good samaritan is and start a new tradition of welcoming someone who needs it into your home. If you want to be selfish, do it in July when the kids are away at camp and it's not a holiday focused on giving thanks. You might feel like it's a stressful time and since you get the day off you deserve a nap, but the reality is you don't. No one deserves anything other then the ability to be able to put a smile on their face and find a way to deal with what they've been dealt. And further more, what is up with anyone thinking that eating to the point of exhaustion is a good idea?! Heck, you shouldn't invite him because that would mean you'd have to buy more food and more food means less money for you to buy elastic waistband pants that you'll be needing after the holidays. A good tradition is to take a walk after a meal.
GScott86 GScott86 8 years
First mistake was allowing him to invite himself. However, since you let it happen and became passive with the idea, there's no reason why it can't work out. Still spending time with your family. You don't have to play hostess and entertain people. Just include him in whatever. It's kinda of somewhat like inviting a significant other (depending on level of relationship). They're not part of that side of your family, so how do you get rid of that person? You just make do. You don't have to entertain, just include.
Seka21 Seka21 8 years
I think its your fault slightly for allowing this to happen at this time of year. Try include him in the activities... he is your guest!
Marci Marci 8 years
I grew up with a family that invited anyone we knew who would be alone on Thanksgiving, so that's what the day is all about, from my perspective. Be thankful for what you have - and be thankful that you can offer a person who would be alone a place to spend what could be a very lonely day for him. You might find yourself in the same position someday down the road and will be grateful if someone invites you to spend a holiday with them. Sure, he asked himself, but so what? Instead of focusing on the negative, why not look forward to sharing your family tradition with someone else?
PiNkY-PiNk PiNkY-PiNk 8 years
"Tell him about the tradition, if you play up how "boring" it is after dinner because everyone takes a nap maybe he'll find it as the perfect excuse to go do something else." i agree. and tell him it's okay with you/you won't feel bad if he decides to leave after dinner since it's so "boring". and make it sound really lame and mention how it's your parent's tradition and you don't really like it, etc.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
well i think that this is a tricky one - and if he did sort of invite himself over then you can be honest about your tradition with your family or mention that you'd like to spend some time with them alone after the meal is over, so that once dessert is served, then you would like him to leave. it's not going to be easy, but if you preface it with how happy you are to have him join the meal since he doesn't have a family that's here (mind you if his family is from columbia, then they don't really celebrate thanksgiving anyway), then you can let him down a bit easier when you tell him that you'd like to have some 'alone time' with your family. he should be able to understand and respect that.
quitecontrary quitecontrary 8 years
Be completely honest- "I'm happy to have you join us for Thanksgiving dinner, but afterwards I really want to spend some time alone with my family since I don't get to see them often. I'll drop you off at home after lunch while everyone is napping." It might not be the "kindest" thing, but I think he should understand. Yes, it's a time for generosity, but it's also a precious time for spending with family. Unless he's recently lost his family (ouch) or doesn't have any at all, he should understand how you feel. If not, he's leaning towards jerkness. (HE invited HIMSELF?)
eastcoastgirl eastcoastgirl 8 years
Wow,I think you should tough it out and include him in your fun!Thanksgiving is a great day to give of yourself this would be your chance.
ckeller825 ckeller825 8 years
I think geebers is right on the money.
lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
wow; thanks for coming. buh-bye. it's one day, you invited him. suck it up and be the hostess you said you would be. you don't get to feel all warm and cozy about opening your home and then tell the guest to leave. next year don't invite anyone else; problem solved.
geebers geebers 8 years
Sorry you are feeling so stressed but the truth is you should stop making this into such an issue. This friend needs a place to stay - it would be rather mean to kick him out. Why not just say "hey I expect you to be treated like family so here is what will happen" - and then he won't expect you to play hostess. I bet if you relax he will too - and have fun.
graylen graylen 8 years
I don't think it's fair to blast her as selfish. She didn't invite him, he invited himself. She says she rarely gets time off and really values this time specifically as family time. I would just let him know that you'll take him back home after lunch because you have post-lunch plans and you hope he enjoys the food and company.
refinedharmony refinedharmony 8 years
Be up front about it. Just like anyone else, I'm sure he'd like to know what to expect on this day. I'm often "homeless" on Thanksgiving and I'm always eager to turn people's invites down for dinner because I'm unsure of what's going to happen, what the traditions are, etc. Everyone thinks that their Thanksgiving is "normal", so it's hard when people tell me, "It's just like every other Thanksgiving!" I'm glad you recognize that your dinner has unique traditions. I would call him up the day before and say, "I just wanted to talk to you about what to expect for tomorrow so you aren't feeling awkward!" If you want him to leave, say so in the nicest way possible. I'm not sure how you would go about saying this than flat out saying "We start with watching the parade, play some football, then we do the meal in the early afternoon. After that it would probably be the best time for you to leave." If you give him a reason why, he will be likely to give you an excuse. For example, "You should leave so my family will feel more comfortable sleeping", he'll respond "It's okay! I'll be silent, promise!" or whatever. Just leave it at that.
GScott86 GScott86 8 years
Before slaughtering the Native Americans, everyone sat down and had a nice little feat together. They weren't all family per se, but they just enjoyed each other's company. Frankly, just nap later, I don't really see the point of napping right after eating (supposedly it's not healthy to do so anyway). Just have some fun. If you invited someone who has nowhere else to go, as much as it's family time, it's more polite to make this person feel like he actually has a family. Really, how would you feel if it were reversed. This fellow has noone on this one holiday of the year. I'm sure shoeing him away won't help your friendship any. There's still Christmas. And you don't HAVE to entertain or be a hostess or w/e, frankly I that that whole thing is just bullcrap. Just include him in whatever you guys do and actually let him feel like he's a part of your family. That or wait for karma to treat you like shit if you throw him out. It will come back.
lizrocks lizrocks 8 years
If you've *got* to get rid of him after the dinner just tell him, "Hey, after dinner the family usually takes a nap so you'll have to head out before then." Don't make it a big deal, make it an automatic assumption.
Jammi Jammi 8 years
He knows he's going to be at someone else's house where they have different traditions. Tell him about the nap so he knows that after he eats everyone else will be sleeping so he can follow suit or listen to music or something and if he's bored he can skip out himself, it's not that deep.
omilawd omilawd 8 years
I think you're just going to have to deal with it. But it's the season of love and charity, so start thinking about other people, i.e. your friend who would otherwise be alone on Thanksgiving.
RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 8 years
The op needs to seriously calm down. You're full of something other then turkey.
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
Unfortunately, if you invited him, I think you just have to deal with it :shrug:
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