Having a chef in the family means some dinner parties are taken to the next level. But, it doesn’t mean you get a free caterer in a second’s notice.
Redditor ThrowAW19923 encountered this very issue with her family. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for not wanting to cook for SIL’s son Birthday party?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“Throwaway for obvious reasons. Not a native speaker, so excuse me.”
“I (24F) work as a chef at one of the famous restaurant chains in our city known for it’s delicious food. We used to work non stop all the day as our orders, you know, were really high (Pre pandemic).”
“Needless to say, but our restaurant closed down during this lockdown and I’m staying home.”
“I REALLY love cooking and I enjoy it so much. As I have lots of free time, I do try out many recipes and upload vlogs often.”
OP’s family knows she is really talented.
“My sister in law’s (25F) son’s 1st Birthday is coming up soon and she asked me if I was willing to do the cake. Obviously, I said yes.”
“The party is gonna take place in my in-laws house which is like 2-3 hours drive from where we are and it’s been a long time since we saw each other. Yesterday, she called me again to ask if I can cook for the party.”
“Overall, there will 10-13 people at the party. All vaxxed.”
“I wasn’t sure at first. She told me she’ll help me and gave me a list of what she wants. It was Around 4-5 main traditional dishes with 3 side dishes and along with some cupcakes as desserts. I said it was too much even for both of us and asked her if we can order from outside.”
“But she insisted she wanted my cooking as our family loves to eat my food. I told her I’ll call her back later.”
OP didn’t think it was a good idea.
“I gave it a thought but in end, I didn’t want to.”
“First of all, it’s for more than 10 people and the dishes she gave requires 3-4 hours for prep + actual cooking, which means I’ve to get there earlier than the others. Second, she told me she’ll help, but she will slack off in the middle and would always ask obvious questions even if I give clear instructions (happened before). Third, I’m already preparing the cake, so I feel like it’s more than enough.”
“I texted her back saying I didn’t want to.”
“She then vented out to my partner and told him that I’m not cooking for his family even though I’ve cooked before for my family (my Family is comparatively small than his). Seems like she expressed that the whole family is disappointed with my behavior.”
“It was frustrating when my partner confronted me and I told him that I’m already doing the cake and it feels like she’s just using me. I stated my above reasons but he still wants me to cook since my cooking is delicious and they all love it.”
“I straight away told him that I’m not his family’s personal chef and if they want to eat, they can gladly order out.”
“He is still mad I guess and has been passive-aggresive the whole day. So AITA?”
Redditors gave their opinions on the situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Most Redditors agreed OP was not the a**hole.
“NTA. That’s a huge favor to ask of anybody and you are totally within your rights to say no. Your SIL and partner are being completely unreasonable.” ~ yourlittlebirdie
“Exactly. OP, if your husband can’t stand the heat, he should stay in the kitchen to do the cooking himself. He shouldn’t dish it out unless he can literally dish it out himself. He’s making this into a ‘make or bake’ situation, but it’s not your responsibility. They can eat your cake and have it too, but they’re not entitled to hours of your labor.” ~ Anonymotron42
“Also needs to be noted that having said yes in the past, whether to her own or anyone else’s family, does not create an obligation to say yes now!” ~ WillfullyUnwoke
“In addition to the fact that OP agreed to SIL’s request to make a cake for the party, not act as her personal chef. NTA, OP.” ~ commandantskip
“THIS. OP, no one is allowed to tell you how to spend your time and money. No one. Your husband is a huge disappointment for not having your back. Please update us once you send your entitled SIL the invoice.”
“I personally would just say no or else this’ll always be expected of you. Make the cake and then stay home if they keep harassing you. It sounds like a family full of AH’s. NTA.” ~ Tapioca44
OP added some edits.
“EDIT: WOW, huge thanks for all your responses. I just went through your comments and suggestions. Few people asked if she offered to pay for my service, no. As much as I know, she won’t.”
“Also I hope she’ll buy the ingredients, if not, it’s obviously NO for me. I’m not sure but there’s a chance of her bringing up the topic, of splitting the bill. I won’t let her to do so.”
“Also some suggested to make a list of work to be done and send it to her along with the costs. It’s actually a great idea. So I’m thinking of sending her all the workloads to be split up between us(or else I have to get professional help), the cost of ingredients, pay of sous chefs/caterer, if hired and as well as mine( I’m not gonna charge them for real, but just for the context to scare her lol).”
“Overall, I’m gonna make sure that I need extra hands and pay in advance and if anything changes, I’m not doing it. I’m also sending the list to my Partner so that he knows how much work is needed and that he shouldn’t take me for granted.”
“As you all said, she wants me to work for FREE, which I can’t. So I guess me sending her a huge list along with the costs will be a surprise. So I pretty much expect her to back off and order out/hire people.”
You don’t owe anyone your free labor.