In a generous attempt to cover family dinner costs, the Original Poster (OP), an Asian-American man, faces his nephew’s expensive and wasteful ordering habits. As tensions rise during opulent feasts, OP contemplates confronting the issue. But would speaking up maintain family harmony or spark a bitter divide?
OP always insists on paying during family dinners, especially when dining with his in-laws. This has become a cherished tradition for them. The gesture is meant to show appreciation and love for the family.
The Exploitative Nephew
OP’s sister-in-law’s son, an 11-year-old, has noticed OP’s generous habit. Instead of appreciating the gesture, he sees it as an opportunity to act fancy and order what his parents would never allow him to have if they were paying for it.
Every time the family went to dinner, the nephew consistently ordered the most expensive items on the menu, unchecked by either of his parents, who didn’t see the harm when OP was being so generous.
A Lavish Lunch
At a recent lunch, while everyone else settled for chicken or steak entrees, the boy ordered the fanciest appetizer and claimed an entire lobster. It was a flashy choice, one he seemed excited about.
The Lobster Letdown
Upon receiving his lobster, he took just one bite. Immediately, he declared that he didn’t want it anymore. He simply claimed he was full. OP, trying to be helpful, suggested that the boy take the lobster home.
The Leftover Rejection
OP’s nephew dismissively responded that he doesn’t eat leftovers. It was a wasteful gesture, and it did not go unnoticed. OP tried to mask their irritation. However, this wasn’t an isolated incident.
Every family gathering brought a similar scenario, with the boy’s expensive orders left largely uneaten. OP’s frustration grew as they reflected on the disparity in the meal costs. While OP often spent a modest $20, the boy’s orders routinely cost six times that.
The Steak and Seafood Saga
It wasn’t just lobster. The boy had a habit of ordering the priciest items, like filet mignon steak or extravagant seafood, and leaving most of it on his plate at the end. Tired of the wastefulness, OP considered asking his wife to intervene.
OP hoped his wife might speak to her nephew about his excessive and wasteful ordering habits. However, he hesitated to ask his wife to intervene. He was worried he would be seen as an intruder, imposing his views on what others should order.
Fear of Judgement
OP is worried about potential backlash and family drama. They feared being labeled controlling for dictating food choices. There was a real concern that the family might misunderstand his intentions.
Another concern that weighed on OP was the family’s possible reaction. They might argue that OP’s insistence on paying shouldn’t come with conditions. That generosity shouldn’t have constraints.
Struggling with Silence
Every dinner became a test of OP’s patience. The boy’s wasteful habits repeated, and the internal conflict grew with each meal. OP grappled with whether to break his silence. Was he wrong for wanting to address the boy’s behavior?
The Balancing Act
OP’s intentions were pure, aiming for family harmony and preventing waste. Yet, he didn’t want to come across as controlling. Striking a balance was proving to be a challenging task. OP found themselves navigating a maze of emotions and expectations.
The Pending Conversation
OP knew that a conversation was inevitable. Something had to give, whether with his wife, nephew, or the larger family. The question remained: How would OP broach the topic without causing a rift?
Was The Man’s Behavior Appropriate?
OP posts his story online, seeking validation and advice from the internet community. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter.
One reader said, “His parents are the ones who should be teaching their child that you don’t waste food or order things vastly more expensive than everyone else when someone is paying.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote, “OP has stated in a comment that they are Asian, and paying for those meals might be a lot more of an obligation than people here think.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person stated, “You mentioned you’re Asian, and so am I. My parents would have stopped me from pulling something like that and made sure I ordered something sensible.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another reader commented, “It’s not simply that he orders the most expensive thing. He orders multiple expensive items, then doesn’t eat even close to all of what he ordered, and refuses to enjoy it later.”