Here's the situation. My mother-in-law likes to have dinner parties but she expects me, or other female guests (like her other daughter in law), to do a lot of work to help her. Set the table, lay the food out, clear the table, do the dishes. It's a fair amount of work, as we all know. I work full time, and very long hours, and live about 50 minutes drive from my MIL. I don't want to go over to her house and work her party!
When I entertain I ask my husband and housekeeper to help so that my guests can be guests.
My husband told his mother once that if I am invited as a guest, I like to be a guest, and I didn't like spending the evening working in the kitchen. So, after that, next party, she had her neighbor help do all the pre work and then come over to do the dishes afterward. I was so embarrassed and sent that neighbor home. Today she invited us for dinner in March or April and, guest what, I'm not going!
This is perhaps better suited on Craigslist under "Rants & Raves" but the question is whether as a guest do you volunteer to help the host or if the host asks for significant help, how do you feel about that?