Some people have no house manners. These folks recall the worst behavior they’ve seen a houseguest do in their own homes. Content has been edited for clarity purposes.
“You Did That On Purpose”
“I invited my friend and his partner to my new home. Upon entering the partner refused to remove her shoes as brand new carpets had been laid. She refused and was denied entry. Eventually, she stormed off leaving my friend, who did remove his shoes, alone.
So later that night, we had a few drinks and my friend ordered a red hot vindaloo. When it arrived, I offered him a tray to eat off. He also refused to use one saying he would be careful whilst eating. Halfway through eating he ‘accidentally’ dropped it into the floor, splattering it all over the new carpet.
‘YOU DID THAT ON PURPOSE!’ screamed my girlfriend.
He was immediately ejected from the premises as quick as he entered along with the remainder of his food.
I guessed he was ticked off because I refused entry to his partner and he didn’t like that. So he decided to exact his revenge on my carpet.
Needless to say, we’re no longer friends all because they couldn’t respect my home.”
She Whined More Than The Three-Month-Old Baby
“My mother-in-law flew across the country to meet her first and only grandchild. She was a bit reluctant because she felt the baby wasn’t old enough to be responsive to her and plus wanted more time to ‘diet’ before meeting the baby.
She arrived after midnight and insisted on us waking the three-month-old baby. Knowing it was a special moment for her, I obliged. The next morning she asked us if we had any Jose Cuervo.
I explained, ‘I don’t drink but we might have Moscato.’
Once she found it, she immediately started drinking a glass.
She napped on the couch for most of the afternoon but woke up in time for dinner, which was planned far in advance to welcome her. It was all her favorite foods— Steak from a ‘real butcher’, twice-baked potatoes, and a green bean casserole with an apple pie for dessert. All made from scratch. Well, apparently it was beyond offensive for us to plan the dinner instead of asking her what she wanted to eat. Such an offense that she screamed at us about how we were ‘treating her like a child’, slammed doors, and stomped around the house as I finished cooking. She eventually ended up crying on our only bathroom floor screaming about how she was about to just leave since she was not welcomed.
My husband insisted on ignoring her but at that point, I felt terrible.
What miscommunication could have led to her feeling so unwelcomed and uncomfortable?! I calmly walked into the bathroom and apologized. I literally begged her to tell me what we could do to make her feel welcomed and what we did to make her so upset.
Not only did she tell and cuss me out, she accused me of gaslighting her because I knew exactly what I did. Then she refused to help me understand or fix anything and claimed I was staying calm on purpose to patronize her because ‘I think I’m so much better and on a high horse.’
At that point, I calmly left the bathroom and took my daughter into the nursery because MIL was becoming increasingly loud. After two more hours (around one am), she was still ‘about to leave’.
So I suggested to my husband, ‘We can just help her leave and get a hotel so we can end this episode and have peace.’
We got her a car and a hotel room.
She left saying, ‘Maybe we can meet up in a public place like a park so I can visit more with the baby. But I refuse to come back to this house.’
We did not attempt to convince her to visit again.”
A Party Or An Intervention?
“We had a holiday party at our house that my husband and I took much delight in planning and decorating for, as well as providing themed foods and drinks for about 30 to 40 adults. However, a group of about 10 people decided it would be a good time to gather around my husband and tactlessly tell him every single thing they considered to be wrong with him.
Many were embarrassed and left. But these people stayed well past 11:00 pm to make sure they were thorough in their complaints, though the invitation clearly stated the party ended at nine since it was a work night.
My husband, like all of us, is not perfect. But, this wasn’t any kind of planned ‘intervention’ for any kind of destructive behavior on his part. It was a difference of opinion on a work-related situation. It was horrible. We don’t even discuss it to this day.
To really plan such a fun, original party to celebrate with friends, and then to have our party become an attack in our own home, just broke our hearts.
A few weeks later, my husband received a few half-hearted apologies and, as he always did, was very gracious about it. Sadly, no one apologized to me, though I was the hostess. And, the uninvolved people who witnessed the verbal attack, of course, never heard the apologies either. To this day, I’m still baffled at the people who acted that way.”
“You’re Better Off Keeping Your Distance From People You Don’t Know Very Well, Even If They’re Family”
“I’d never known my father’s side of the family that well but had been in contact with my second cousin for a short time. Around the time, I’d had my second child and she was expecting her third, so we fell out of touch.
Several years later, I moved to a new state and she contacted me wanting to stay at my house over the summer with her kids.
I said ‘sure’ and was genuinely looking forward to seeing her again.
I was very busy over the summer and exhausted with the added stress of moving from an apartment to our new home. Meanwhile, I didn’t hear from my cousin at all and she didn’t answer my calls, so I assumed she’d had a change of plans and wouldn’t be coming my way, after all.
She ended up calling while she was on the road the day before stopping by. She said she was actually going to stay with her sister but had some loads of laundry that she wanted to do at my house first.
To be polite, I said, ‘Sure.’
She stopped by my house and did many loads of laundry, eventually saying it was too late to go to her sister’s that night.
The next morning, she was on her way to take her son to the ice-skating rink. She said she hadn’t had time to go to the grocery store and would be at the ice rink all day and needed snacks. I told her she could take some food from my house, whereupon she immediately grabbed some grocery bags, opened my cupboards and started swiping food off the shelves. She proceeded to stay with me and not at her sister’s.
She swiped groceries off my shelves on a daily basis to take with her to the skating rink. She said she would cook us a meal, and then called one evening saying she had stopped over at her sister’s and would cook for her sister instead of us.
As I mentioned, my cousin came to stay with us with her three children and we gave them all rooms to sleep in. She slept in a room with a brand new bed and a brand new mattress, which was costly. She complained how the bed was too high off the floor and there was no fan in the window and it was overly hot. She never seemed to understand we had just moved in and were under stress.
Finally, I woke up one day and saw the bed sheets in the washing machine in the morning. I knew she would never wash my sheets out of the kindness of her heart, so I looked in the bedroom and it turned out her son had peed all over the brand new mattress. For the amount of pee there was, she clearly had not taken him to the toilet before she went to sleep at night.
That evening, when she returned from the skating rink with her kids, I said something that ticked her off. She started insulting my marriage in front of her children, saying I was an idiot to offer my husband coffee in the morning, among other very personal things that were absolutely none of her business. I told her to find somewhere else to sleep and have not seen her since. That was 20 years ago.
I talked the situation over with her mother, who said she blamed herself because she had always given her daughter money and had allowed her to take advantage. Years later, she said how her daughter told her she needed money, took her mother’s funds that were meant for tax returns, and got some new tattoos with the cash.
Overall, this experience helped me realize that if you’re not close with your relatives, it’s hard to walk a fine line and find a balance. Sometimes, you’re better off keeping your distance from people you don’t know very well, even if they’re family.”
A Friend Of A Friend
“I was giving a dinner party and one of my guests, who was a teacher, asked if she could bring a friend along with her. I thought it was only fair to say yes, because she had recently broken up with her boyfriend, and all the other guests brought a partner with them.
So I said, ‘Oh, the more the merrier!’
When I met the woman she brought along, instantly I didn’t like her. The personality traits that I found in this lady are ones I’ve only ever found in a school headmaster/headmistress. I’m not saying all headmasters are like this, I’m sure some are completely different. However, I’ve never seen these traits in anyone who wasn’t a headmaster.
She started off, not particularly well, but perfectly acceptably. She appeared to be keeping up a commentary on my food, my decor, and my dog. Apparently, it was immensely important for her to correct my many failings and offer me the benefit of her superior knowledge. She and I were around the same age, and after listening to her stream of consciousness for some considerable time, I came to the conclusion that she didn’t know anything more about the world than I did.
My friend’s attitude to her was a bit of a mystery to me. She seemed to hang on her buddy’s every word, and I couldn’t decide if it was because she was sucking up to her boss, or whether it was because the two women had both recently had messy break-ups with their men, and were very supportive of each other. Myself, I found the woman a boor.
However, things really took a turn for the worse towards the end of the main course. The conversation had split (as it often does) into several different groups. I, and some of my other guests, were talking about cultural differences between countries. I did a lot of business in Germany, as did the guy I was chatting with. He and I agreed we had found Germans refreshingly blunt and straightforward to deal with. Whilst remaining polite, for Germans, we thought (at least in commerce), it was accepted practice to ‘tell it like it is’, and not pussyfoot around like many southern English people (like me) do.
I can’t emphasize enough how this was exactly the burden of our conversation. It was as simple as that. Neither the man nor I would have objected to someone disagreeing with us, but this is what we had experienced. We were a fairly ‘right-on’ crowd, and none of us would have dreamed of saying anything offensive or judgemental. We were simply talking about cultural divergence.
‘That’s enough!’ Came the commanding voice beside me on the other side. I turned to witness the headmistress in full flow.
‘I shall not allow such nasty talk. This conversation ends immediately!’ She demanded.
I wasn’t sure what annoyed me most. The ‘announcement’ of our conversation, for which she would brook no argument, or her deciding what we could or couldn’t discuss at my dinner table. To have a complete stranger come into my house and tell me what I was or wasn’t allowed to chat about. I found that appalling.
There was a little to-and-fro between the good lady and myself, where I politely and quietly (you could hear a pin drop when I was talking) told her that we were enjoying our conversation, and intended to continue with it in whatsoever way we saw fit.
The rest of the table were clearly enthralled, as, although the headmistress saw herself as a ‘big beast,’ noisily dominating all around her. My friends all knew me and understood that, although always courteous, I’m actually hardly a pushover. In retrospect, I think watching the two of us wrestle for dominance must have been like seeing one of those wildlife programs where a big spider gets into a fight with a giant wasp; fascinating and intriguing to guess which one is going to prevail.
It seemed to me I was going to get my way. For one thing, the woman had no subtlety of combat. My quiet comments were answered by the woman loudly and repeatedly stating how she wouldn’t tolerate the conversation.
Eventually, she cranked up a gear and informed me how if we didn’t agree to change the subject ‘that minute’,’ she would have to leave. She looked across the table at my friend, clearly expecting her also to prepare to go.
The situation then suddenly turned hilarious. My friend used to share a house with me. We were both big girls who loved our food and were really good cooks. My friend particularly loved her sweets and she’d known all week what pudding I was making. I sat there, watching her, incredibly curious to know which way she was going to turn.
I can honestly say the threat of the headmistress’s departure didn’t hit me with visceral concern. Her behaviour thus far had succeeded in inuring me to that eventuality. It was my friend that would have to give a lift to the headmistress (she lived some distance away), meaning my friend was also going to have to go. I watched as her face fell with the horrible realization that she might miss that pudding.
Poor woman, she had been sitting there figuratively drooling with the desert spoon in her hand. I could see exactly what was happening. Friendship? Solidarity? Sucking up to the boss? Or my lemon pudding?
Then I saw her turn and energetically engage her neighbor in conversation as if she hadn’t witnessed anything. Basically, turning a deaf ear to the contretemps that was happening between her friend and me on our side of the table. My friend had chosen pudding. I stifled a snort of laughter.
The headmistress hesitated a while. She shut up and put up with the rest of the conversation as best she could. I was sweetness itself for the rest of the meal.
She wasn’t invited back.”
Mom’s Fine China
“One Thanksgiving holiday many moons ago, my mother had invited a good friend of the family to join us for dinner. I’ll call her, ‘Joan.’
Joan lived only a few minutes away so she arrived for the holiday dinner party about 30 minutes early. While this was just fine because she was a good friend of the family and she had certainly seen us at our worst, however usually one doesn’t arrive more than a moment before the invitation directs, and usually around 10–15 minutes ‘fashionably late’ as a kindness to your hostess. My mom took the opportunity to point this out to me in my then-youth.
Mom had set the table using of course her crystal and china silverware.
Joan was a robust woman and she promptly entered the dining room upon her arrival and began changing the seating arrangement. Apparently, she preferred the roomier captain’s chair at the head of the table but obviously couldn’t sit there because the host (my father) would be sitting there. So she switched his captain’s chair with her more narrow seat.
Dad’s captain’s chair was an antique which had been repaired. Dad was familiar with that repair and knew to be careful, however, Joan did not. Being the excellent hostess she was, mom explained to Joan that switching the seats up was just fine because she wanted her to be comfortable, but warned her that leaning back in that chair would cause it to break.
Dinner itself went well. At the end of the dinner, instead of leaving the fine china on the table, Joan began gathering dishes and dropping them into the sink. While I’m sure her intention was good and she was trying to be of help to Mom, you don’t clear your own dishes at a dinner party. You wait until the hostess begins to clear the table if she does at all and then you ask if you can help with the cleanup.
Mom just sat there saying nothing though. I was sure she wanted to, as her unwiped Wedgewood was haphazardly dropped into a sink of piping hot water. If you know anything about China, you’ll know this is a giant no-no, but Mom remained silent.
I jumped up and politely said, ‘Joan, it’s so kind of you to do that but please don’t. Please sit and enjoy dessert. Let me clear.’
After dessert was served and enjoyed by all, Joan lit up a smoke. This was just fine in our house as Mom was then a smoker, herself. I brought in an ashtray for her. But as she smoked, we all couldn’t help but notice she was flicking ashes onto Mom’s good china and tamping out each cig either right onto the antique china dessert plates or dropping them right into her Waterford crystal glasses.
Mom remained silent and edged that ashtray closer to Joan.
As Joan proceeded to puff away, she began kicking back and leaning the chair all the way back as far as she could.
Mom saw this and suggested we all go into the living room and relax on the couch.
But Joan persisted, ‘I’m perfectly comfy here. No need to move.’
Mom did everything to move Joan into the living room, even getting up herself to try to move the party into the other room.
When that didn’t work, Mom offered her another chair due to the potential breaking.
Joan responded, ‘I’m just fine, no need to bother.’
After about 30 minutes of Mom’s persistent multiple ‘polite suggestions,’ we all heard the wood snap as Joan plummeted to the floor.
She got up, tamped out yet another cig onto the fine china, and got up asking Mom why she’d set a table with such a rickety old chair. She could, after all, apparently according to Joan, buy ‘brand new ones’ at a nice furniture store instead of using ‘broken old antiques’ for guests.
Of course, my mother was polite, didn’t complain, and apologized for that rickety old chair. Didn’t bat an eye when Joan wiped her apparently very permanent bright lipstick all over her linen napkins. Or say a word when the finish on her antique Wedgewood china setting for 12 was ruined by various cigs in increments of three. Or when her crystal received the occasional cig dropped in.
Mom didn’t say one word.”
Irresponsible Dog Owner
“My houseguest brought their large over-excited dog into my small flat without asking first if that was ok. Then immediately threw the dog’s ball down the hallway for it to chase into my bedroom. It got the dog absolutely hyper. They played tug of war until it was growling and barking.
At this point, I was a bit scared of dogs due to being bitten when I was very young.
Afterward, the dog got so excited it jumped up on my sofa and peed on it. It wasn’t until after they’d left I noticed a floor lamp had been knocked over and smashed in the chaos. I was livid; not at the dog but at the irresponsible owner.”
“A few years ago, Mom was recovering from very serious surgery and needed a lot of help. I went down to Florida to help her and found a friend of the family’s son living on our den sofa. He needed a place to stay, and Mom needed some help around the house, especially with driving so this seemed like a perfect situation.
As far as the friend of the family, we love him very much. He’s like a brother to us and we hold him dearly in our hearts. This guy, as wonderful as he is, he’s got a son who did some things I just can’t agree with.
For example, instead of washing the plates and flatware, he’d use, he’d hide dirty dishes and silverware under the sofa on which he was kind of camping. Eventually, we’d get low on plates and stuff and we’d look under there and find it all.
So we had a talk with him.
‘Just put them in the sink. Don’t worry about washing them, just in the sink is just fine,’ I said.
But they’d always end up under there. Eventually, we got really irritated with it so we had another talk with him. He finally agreed to put the dishes in the sink where they belonged. I think he was embarrassed about sometimes eating up the food that was labeled ‘Just for mom.’ He was in his young 20s and was still growing, so he was hungry. But mom was on a special diet.
I didn’t mind his eating habits, but the food was disappearing from the fridge faster than it should. My family got kind of irritated about it so we increased the frequency of food shopping trips because the food was an aspect of his ‘rental agreement’ so I think people should be able to eat as much as they want to of whatever. But the disappearing silverware and dishes got kind of annoying.
When this guy went out one day, my sibling looked under the couch again and saw this guy’s backpack was filled with our flatware and empty containers of stuff he had eaten. We took back the flatware, washed it, and put it away. However, it happened several more times.
So we had another chat with him, ‘Please leave the silverware in the sink when you’re done.’
I’m not sure why he would hide empty containers and dirty dishes because I sure didn’t care what he used, ate, or how much, but the behavior was quite odd. Eventually, though, stuff started actually disappearing from the house, so we decided it was time he should find a new place to crash.”
Bob Had A Drinking Problem
“Back in the day, a friend of the family dropped by. I’ll call him, ‘Bob.’
Bob was a friend of the family. He had a drinking problem. Every time he’d go on a drinking binge, his wife would toss him out of the house and then he’d promptly, for whatever reason, come by ours. Of course, my family was nice to him as was I because we understood he was having trouble.
But each time we’d open our doors and home to him, he’d refuse any kind of a guest room such as using my old bedroom there, and wanted to just use the couch because he was trying to be polite so his intentions were actually good.
But each time he’d ‘visit’ he would continue drinking until which time he’d end up passing out on that couch, which was an antique that had belonged to my father’s mother and had been recovered with expensive upholstery. And once he’d pass out, he’d be ‘out’ for about three days. Sometimes longer.
And each time, he would pee on the sofa. He’d always wake up, shower, and apologize. Since the sofa was an antique, it was not as though we could just order new cushions, the pee was permanent. As was the smell.
He was a close friend of the family and we did love him, and still do. But he knew his tendencies and really in my mind should have at least put down a water protector or something, or at least used my old room which had a mattress protector on it.
My family and I never said a thing though because we understood his situation and we really wanted to help him.”
There’s A Reason Why He’s An Ex
“My mum had passed away and I wanted to scatter her ashes over the farm she grew up on. My ex-boyfriend worked for a skydiving outfit and had access to a small plane. I asked several times over a month or so about using their plane.
He finally got angry at me and said, ‘Why don’t you just dump her ashes over the hill where all her dead cats are buried! That’s probably where she’d rather be anyway!’
But wait, it got much worse. When my dear father passed a year and a half later, in an explosion in a house fire, I held a memorial service.
Afterward at home, while changing out of my dress clothes, the prick turned to me and said, ‘I’ll bet you’re glad to be rid of all of them now, huh?'”