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Mom Called Out For Not Inviting Picky Eater DIL To Restaurant With Famous Chef And Fixed Menu

people eating in a fine dining restaurant
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I’m not a particularly picky eater, but I am extremely sensitive to chili peppers. So there are some cuisines where my options are very limited.

For instance, a celebration of Thai food wouldn’t have much I could eat. I’ve had Indian food I enjoyed, but a lot of the more popular dishes aren’t accessible to me.

When planning a meal, it’s a good idea to know everyone’s limitations.

A woman who decided not to invite her daughter-in-law to a specialty dining experience turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for feedback.

StoryCharacter2210 asked:

“AITA for not inviting my picky eater daughter-in-law (DIL) to my dinner event?”

The original poster (OP) explained:

“I will be as clear as possible. I like to try new food and there is a chef I have been following for years.”

“She opened a restaurant near me a few years ago and it is almost impossible to get a spot. I was extremely lucky and got one.”

“It is a fixed menu and you eat what you are served for the most part.”

“The menu changes or rotates about every week. They serve unique dishes.”

“Anyways, when I booked it, I booked for only five people.”

“I invited my sisters, my two daughters and me. I also decided to pay for it all since I have a good job and wanted to treat them.”

“This is where the issue started.”

I have a DIL (son’s wife) who is a picky eater. I didn’t include her in the invites because I know she wouldn’t eat it.”

“I can’t even be certain she would try the dishes. She is the type of person that eats like five foods.”

“Everyone runs in the same-ish circles and I got a call asking why she was not invited since she knows everyone that was invited. I tried to be polite by saying it was just a small gathering and move the conversation along.”

“She kept pushing and I told her it is because she is a picky eater. That I am not paying for someone to not like the food, or not even try it.”

“I am not paying an extra $200 when I know she probably won’t eat or even try it. I don’t want to risk that.”

“She thinks I am very cruel for excluding her.”

“Even if it was my daughter’s wife, I still wouldn’t invite her since none of the other half of couples were invited. I didn’t invite my sister’s husband or my daughter’s husband or even my own husband.”

“Personally I am annoyed at her for even calling. Not once in my life have I ever called someone up and been like ‘why aren’t I invited?’.”

“Sometimes you aren’t invited.”

“I tried to be polite about it because she is defensive about being a picky eater.”

“I am not paying for her to have a $200 per person restaurant experience to not like or try the food.”

“No. Just, no.”

The OP summed up their situation.

“AITA I didn’t invite my picky eater DIL to my dinner event? I could be a jerk since I excluded her since she is a picky eater.”

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Redditors decided the OP was not the a**hole (NTA).

“How has it become acceptable to call people and ask to be invited to an event that you have not been invited to? And then when you still don’t get invited, it’s the host who is cruel/selfish/mean/etc…?”

“NTA at all. Keep excluding her when it comes to food events. Why she would even want to come is beyond me.” ~ hadMcDofordinner

“Exactly… You don’t owe anyone an invite. That’s just completely rude. NTA.” ~ Ordinaryflyaway

“I have a good relationship with my MIL, and my husband has two sisters. MIL frequently does dinner with her daughters, and it never occurred to me to demand an invite.”

“If my husband is invited,  I usually am too, but sometimes for birthdays or whatnot they do just the kids and not their spouses, and I’m fine with that.” ~ Brilliant_Tip_2440

“No one has to like you and no one is entitled to an invite; that’s just the way it is.”

“IF (and it’s a big if) OP wanted to extend an invite to her to a food-related event, it should only be under the pretext that her DIL pays her own way since she will be refusing to eat whatever is served.”

“A better way to go about it would be DIL planning some activities that are non-food related and inviting the family to come along. Either way, NTA, OP.” ~ RogueSlytherin

“NTA. I don’t know why a picky eater would want to attend this sort of dinner in the first place. I understand that it can be hurtful to feel like you’re being excluded, but it’s not like you’re doing it because you dislike her or something.” ~ lihzee

“I’m a picky eater. I’ve worked hard over the years to be considerably less picky than I used to be, but I’m never going to be someone who can just sit down and eat anything I’m served.”

“Going somewhere like that would be stressful for me because I’d know that not eating or at least trying everything would be rude and a waste of money, but forcing myself to choke down food I don’t like would make me miserable and, depending on the food, may not be possible for me to do.”

“I don’t understand why DIL would want to go to that dinner, especially when plenty of other people weren’t invited either, so it’s not like she was the only one excluded. NTA.” ~ justanaveragerunner

“I’d like to call myself a ‘recovering picky eater’. I’ve gotten significantly more adventurous and willing to try new foods over the years, however there’s definitely still some pickiness with me.”

“I also don’t think that event would be for me. And while I would feel a little sad about not getting an invite, I would definitely understand where OP is coming from here.”

“She just wants to enjoy her night with a couple of her close family members that she knows would also really enjoy this. NTA.”

“Also the worst part about it is DIL calling OP to specifically ask why she wasn’t invited. As if bitching someone out about an invite will get her one.” ~ ShakeSufficient2314

“Any sane picky eater would be relieved to not have to go.”

“Which means she only wants to attend so she can wrinkle her nose up all night long about the ‘gross’ food and will nag the server at every course for her special ‘chicken nuggies’ mods.”

“It’s a chance for her to be the main character at dinner.” ~ bk1insf

“NTA. Your DIL is though.”

“I’m a super picky eater myself. This dinner event sounds like a nightmare for someone like me.”

“There’s no way I would want to go somewhere to eat where I don’t know what will be served to me.” ~ JB500000

“NTA. Imagine if it were an exclusive wine-tasting without other beverage options. A sober friend would understand not being invited and avoiding an expensive, awkward evening.” ~ GloomyFlamingo2261

“Why go to a place where you aren’t going to enjoy anything? I enjoy whiskey. I would love to go to a whiskey tasting or do a tour of a distillery.”

“I would not invite my mother, who is a wine drinker, to join me. If I went to a wine tasting? I’d absolutely invite her!”

“If someone invited me to an IPA beer tasting? I’d refuse. I do not like IPAs and will drink any beer besides those.”

“Such an experience, food, and money would be wasted on her. NTA.” ~ Over-Analyzed

“NTA. People are not entitled to attend every event that people they know are going to, especially if it’s an activity they don’t particularly enjoy/appreciate.”

“I have friends who like to ski, I have the balance of a drunken toddler, so I don’t like to. I don’t throw fits when they plan ski trips without me.” ~ AgnarCrackenhammer

“DIL is an idiot! You are NTA.”

“The rule is: The person who pays for the food gets to decide who to invite to eat the food.”

“If DIL doesnt like it, she can invite people to that place and pay for it. She can even leave you out of the invitation if she so chooses, and I bet you wont care.” ~ MissSuzieSunshine

“Definitely NTA. She was excluded for being a picky eater. You also didn’t invite your son.”

“Also, it’s ONE meal. She’s making a mountain out of nothing, not even a molehill here.” ~ archetyping101

“NTA. You didn’t invite her because you didn’t feel she would enjoy the experience, and frankly, you aren’t required to invite her just because she knows the other people that you did invite.”

“You can suggest an outing for just the two of you to do at another time to be nice and make it up to her so that she doesn’t feel as left out, but honestly, I wouldn’t even do that as I find it off-putting when people act entitled to be invited to anything.” ~ Tourettescatlady

“Exactly—she’s not the right fit for the activity. NTA.”

“Imagine if instead of eating, the activity was mountain biking—and OP, her sisters and daughters are all expert mtn bikers, and she invites them on a very challenging, technical trip. DIL, who has never tried mtn biking nor even expressed any interest is upset not to be invited.”

“This trip/meal is not for her—OP, you could invite her to the food equivalent of an easy bike path on a different day. Make lunch plans at a restaurant that’s a bit outside her comfort zone, but not a $200 investment, meal of a lifetime type of thing, like sushi or some cuisine she’s never tried.”

“Maybe a farmer’s market or event with a lot of food trucks and she can try a bunch of different things. It can be a fun adventure for her, if she’s up for it, guiding her to expand her palate.”

“On the other hand, if she’s not remotely interested in growing in her food adventurousness, then it’s just proof that this meal, and any future similar meals, are not for her.” ~ SummitJunkie7

It sounds more like the OP was being considerate, not cruel.

The OP’s daughter-in-law isn’t an adventurous eater. This isn’t the activity for her.

Written by Amelia Mavis Christnot

Amelia Christnot is an Oglala Lakota, Kanien'kehá:ka Haudenosaunee and Metís Navy brat who settled in the wilds of Northern Maine. A member of the Indigenous Journalists Association, she considers herself another proud Maineiac.