All out of patience

So, I think I have time for one more blog before the end of the year – but it’s not ending on a light note.  :/

This weekend we held a Julefrokost for 6 guests (the 7th one pulled out just before we ate).  A lot of time, expense and effort went into the night.  It was well planned in advance, the apartment was re-organised, I trudged my way through stupid weather to get extra utilities from IKEA, food and drink prepared, music playlist and hyggelig ambience created etc….  And for what???

For the first hour before eating the language spoken was – Danish.  Throughout the meal, the language spoken was – Danish.  I sat there incredulously and wondered how rude people can be to their hosts!  Leaving the room for a while, just to get away and take out my anger on the dirty dishes gave me time to cool down.  Both my partner and I were sorely (and quietly) disappointed with the guests and agreed that we are never hosting an event with those guests again.  I feel that I am better off sticking to international friends and distancing myself more and more from Danish society.  I am tired of trying and it shouldn’t be that hard to maintain decent friendships.

I started this whole blog site trying to be balanced and not turn it into another site condemning Danes to hell, but think I am becoming more and more prepared now to air my opinions and stick 2 fingers up to anyone who is offended.  I don’t need my life to be any harder than it already is and if I isolate myself from anyone after this post – so be it.

It is hard enough to try and work through learning a foreign language on your own.  But when supposed friends act the way this lot did then the motivation to continue learning the language goes severely out of the window.  I now have to drag my lip of the floor and find that motivation again.

After the initial rude behaviour and when all reverted to English, I was able to see the night through – just about.  But it didn’t take away the anger and disappointment of the earlier part of the night, hence this blog.  My coping strategy for events like this are to just drink heavily – it takes the edge off.  This is not the ideal/best way to have a fun, entertaining evening and no one should feel the need to have to do this, just to get through an event.  I would be mortified if I knew anyone who had to use this strategy, particularly if it was because of my actions.

I guess I am tired of bashing my head against walls here, and fed up with having to drink lots and talk bullshit.  Whatever happened to being civilized, showing a little more respect to your hosts and talking properly around the table to each other?

Peace out!

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15 Responses to All out of patience

  1. kutubuku says:

    HUGS!

    But yes, I never invite any Danish guests in my house and I have heard of similar things happening to my friends when they invite Danish people in their house. They would just speak Danish and ignore the foreign guests.

    I have lived here for 7 years and happily sticking to my foreign friends ONLY.

  2. annmucc says:

    *More hugs*
    When we invite people over so far I have always made sure that there are also non-Danes, so at least people will speak English! And if at an event where no one speaks English to me I am not against identifying the person most likely to speak English to me (and there normally is at least one half-reluctant victim) and talk to this victim for a while then slowly go to the others and have one on one conversations – Not ideal, as not exactly the most polite way of doing things, but saves my sanity at such events.

  3. loobylou2 says:

    Thanks for the hugs 🙂
    Well, backlash started minutes after I posted – can’t say I am happy about it but I guess I should get used to it if I’m going to be brutally honest about my opinions…

    • Ugh, a backlash? Well, fuck ’em.

      Like Eva, I normally avoid Danes with the exception of those I have personally vetted. Our dear friend Heather has served a delicious meal to Danes who pointedly ignored her throughout the meal, so please don’t take any of this personally–it just goes with the territory.

      And of course a Dane might explain it all away by claiming shyness, or even more comical, modesty!

  4. loobylou2 says:

    Well, these Danes don’t fall into the shy or modest categories…

  5. HOX says:

    Just got that déjà vu feeling. Quite frankly I’d prefer to talk to myself than experience that crap again, so I just don’t invite. ‘Dirty foreigners’ are the best bet.

  6. etellerandet says:

    Shit man. Been there, done that. It hurts. I understand.

  7. loobylou2 says:

    Ok, so I’ve had a little feedback from the guests… Lets deal with the main points mentioned:

    Blogging here v telling guests –
    I appreciate that this is the main gripe. But consider it from my point. It has become very tiresome to ask people to revert to the common English language. It’s also very demoralizing when you are the only non Dane in the room (which happens a lot). I think it’s only too obvious when someone is totally failing to join in and is becoming increasingly isolated, thus losing any voice they had in the first place. That doesn’t take a mind reader to work out. The guests here have all known me long enough to know that I can’t yet converse in everyday Danish very well, something I shouldn’t have to keep reminding you about.

    Feeling hurt? –
    Firstly, I’m amazed at the sudden interest in my blog, when others have been following it/showing interest for some time now. And, just how hurt do you think I feel by the type of behaviour mentioned above, from a room full (not just one) of supposed friends? For these reasons, I prefer to reach out to a friendly, international crowd/community – who can empathise and understand my problems here.

    The language –
    I may have suggested that it would be nice to hear a little Danish at some of these events. However, I didn’t agree to you all coming here and exclusively speaking Danish for a prolonged period. I will not be bulldozed into listening to several Danish conversations at any one time. This isn’t going to speed up my language progression skills, and will naturally have the opposite effect. I am learning this at my own sweet pace and don’t need anyone trying to fast track my progression.

    To summarise, I am not going to be made to feel guilty or sorry for being socially ignored/excluded, and feeling ultimately bullied – yes bullied. Most of you are aware that I am already suffering from stress, low self esteem and have become more and more introvert. And, you seem to forget that I also have problems with stress headaches and very high blood pressure. With this in mind – if you do take offence so easily when I fight back with the only voice I seem to have these days, and when I feel victimised, then – ‘c’est la vie’ and ‘farvel’.

    I am going to take some time and space away from social events etc and focus on myself for a while. See you on the flip side, if you’re still around.

    • This is a wise move.

      Your comment about being rushed along by well-meaning Danes hoping to accelerate the learning process is one I know too well. And because I’m a stubborn woman, it makes me very very resistant to learning more Danish, which is the opposite of its intended effect.

      I hope your Danish friends will be able to understand a little better the hurt and frustration you felt at your own party, and will take pains to behave differently in similar situations in the future.

      • loobylou2 says:

        Thanks Heidi,

        Well, they’re not exactly apologising, and I have been ‘unfriended’ (admittedly, after removing & blocking further comments)… I just think it’s best left/forgotten about until after the New Year now.

        I need to get back into the spirit of stuff – and what great way to start than with a little more shopping and compiling/editing the Christmas Eve music list – and listening to all the old classics… The Pogues/Kirsty McColl will always be my number one at this time of year with their Fairytale of New York 😉

    • etellerandet says:

      Word! They’re not friends. They’re on a power trip after being called out on insensitive behaviour. If they didn’t mean to treat you casually, a simple apology would be in order. Doubling down like this shows their contempt for your feelings in sharp relief.

      • loobylou2 says:

        I think that what happened here totally got took out of context. This blog is intended for me to let off a little steam and write about my experiences in DK, and to be read by a larger/wider audience. However, it was ‘discovered’ and taken personally by those a little closer to home. But, I am still not apologising for their behaviour.

  8. loobylou2 says:

    Well, 2 of the guests from this experience have come through and taken a less personal approach. We had a fab New Year and I didn’t have to lift a finger in the kitchen – always a bonus! Lets see if it rubs off on the others… 😉

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