Social quandary: An ungrateful dinner guest

Hosting dinner parties isn't cheap, and this regular guest rarely contributes — except maybe a couple of beers... for herself! How would you advise this reader?

white dinner plate on red tablecloth background


Have you found yourself in an awkward situation? Has someone irked you and you’re not sure how best to proceed? If so, you’re not alone! Every week, we feature a reader-submitted quandary so that you can weigh in with your best advice. What would you do in their situation? If you’d like to submit your own quandary, click here.


I like to host dinner parties, and my friends always bring really nice things, such as dessert or a bottle of wine. But I have one friend who rarely brings anything. If she does, it’s usually a couple beers for herself, or a really cheap bottle of wine — and it’s not like she can’t afford something better. Since she never hosts her own dinner parties, I can never return the ‘favour’. I can’t not include her at my parties because we’re in the same group of friends. But it’s getting to a point that I’m feeling resentful about it and unappreciated. Hosting dinner parties isn’t cheap, and I feel like she’s taking advantage of my generosity. How can I address the problem without sounding like a snob or making her feel uncomfortable?

Please comment below and help this reader with your feedback.

Read our previous social quandaries here.


Update! We checked in with this reader to get an update on the situation. Here was her reply:

“I feel like I’ve been hard on my friend. Maybe I shouldn’t have such high expectations. I accept her for whatever she brings or doesn’t bring. The next time we go to a party together, that’s not at my house, I might ask if she wants to make a dessert together or go in on a bottle of wine. When she sees how grateful the host is, and how much everyone enjoys the contribution I hope she’ll want to repeat the kindness.”