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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 25, 2005
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    MA
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    Default Vent: Christmas Family Drama

    So... mostly just a vent here, but if anyone has any words of wisdom I won't reject them!

    Over the summer, SO and I went to the Cape and bought his entire sister's family t-shirts (sister, husband, 2 boys, 12 and 5). They moved over the summer so we never mailed them- they live far away. SO's mom went to visit grandsons and family for Christmas, so SO and I sent along box with t-shirts and a Fenway puzzle. We were petrified that we were going to get shirts too small, so we bought a bit big.

    SO this AM we got a text from sister which read: I MUST approve all future gifts you get my children. I could understand that if we had gotten them inappropriate t-shirts that said Budweiser or something on them, and honestly could not figure out what in the world could have been wrong with the gifts. Later, SO is texting his mother, who informs him that the puzzle was too old for the 5 year old and the shirts are too big. When SO says, well, we sent things that were from the heart, we aren't taking orders for gifts, he is informed that he is being a jack ass and that the gifts were a waste of money.

    My take on this is that the sister should of said thank you for your thoughtful gifts and donated them to charity if she didn't want them. And there are a number of tactful and caring ways she could have redirected future gift giving for her children, including please don't get anything, they have way too much stuff.

    This, I'm sure you can imagine, is not the first time something like this has happened. I want my SO to have contact with his family, but can't help but feeling like telling him to cut out family that make him feel like shit.

    Ugh. I don't know how to support him with this. Additionally, his father died almost 10 years ago, and since then his mother has routinely left town to see his sister and family at every available opportunity, including every. single. christmas. leaving him pretty much alone.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep. 24, 2004
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    Piedmont Triad, North Carolina
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    2,161

    Default

    Some people and family are toxic. Live your own life. Don't cut off all contact just minimize the back wash effects. Send gifts cards, etc. don't expect any response.


    6 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan. 2, 2009
    Location
    Michigan
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    446

    Default

    I USED to have a family member who did obvious re-gifts/bad gifts routinely!!! After 10 years of this I decided not to "play" anymore. Don't encourage this kind of behavior.

    good luck,

    KH
    Strange how much you've got to know Before you know how little you know. Anonymous


    1 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 18, 2010
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    california
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    Default

    I would let it go and be thankfull you live some distance away. I wrote about my mother coming two years ago for Christmas in a thread about strange Christmases and I am thankfull she is not here now.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb. 25, 2012
    Location
    Montana
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    Default

    Agree with hosspuller. just wierd and bad behavior, and sorry your SO is hurt. A GIFT is just that, a GIFT! you thought of them, you got something for them...how nice! Thats what the season is about (thinking of others, not gifts). I hope you both focus on those who make you feel wonderful! As for dealign with your SO I would just support his feelings without any direction/advice about what he should do with his family. That can be very tricky,but validating how he feels probably feels very, very supportive!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec. 4, 2007
    Location
    Ontario
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    Default

    If they are going to be idiots about the thoughtful gifts you would give then don't give gifts anymore.

    This has drastically cut down my spending at the holidays with my family. I only have a few people I still shop for, most people get a homemade cake
    Riding the winds of change

    Heeling NRG Aussies
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    6 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
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    Packing my bags
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    Default

    they make eggnog for that.

    At least they acknowledged getting the presents!

    I used to give my sister stuff, and years later she never even said she got them, much less said thanks.

    yes, you are really evil people, erring on the side of caution, buying shirt that might actually still fit in summer...and how mean spirited of you to send one puzzle for 2 kids, overfacing the younger one (probably not, but I guess SIL throws groceries out the second the best-before date rolls around)

    you are better off with both, sister and mother away for the holidays.

    Give the man a big hug. and pick curtain number 3: laugh hysterically about the antics!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
    Personally, I think the moderate use of shock collars in training humans should be allowed.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov. 25, 2005
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    MA
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Alagirl View Post
    they make eggnog for that.

    At least they acknowledged getting the presents!
    LOL. I said he should've texted back, "Ummmm.... Your welcome?" this morning.


    8 members found this post helpful.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May. 11, 2010
    Location
    PA
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    816

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    I have my own family drama to deal with and what I have found best is to keep a distance. However, for years I tried to make it work. Each year I found myself hurt and pissed. My husband probably would have had no problem nixing the trashy relatives years ago, but continually listened to me when I was made upset and supported me in whatever decision I made. For a while that was trying to make it work. Now it is creating holidays and involving people we actually want to be around.

    I suppose my point is, your hubby has to make the decision about whether or not he wants to continue communication, and if so, how much. In the interim you just need to support him.

    And finally...what a beeotch. Sorry if that's harsh but is bad manners all around, not to mention cold and heartless. We constantly buy things big for the small kids in our family, otherwise when the season hit when they could wear them they would be too small!


    2 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
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    11,371

    Default

    Sometimes, you just can win for losin'.

    We've got one thread about an OP who was sad that she thought her BF hadn't gotten her anything, then when she did get gifts, she is still disappointed because he didn't get enough of the right stuff. And we've got you with a potential SIL who ought to be old enough to know better. Ingrates.

    The appropriate response when you get a gift is "THANK YOU."

    That said, I am "in charge" of all of the xmas shopping to and from pretty much everyone in my family and for all of our gifts for DH's family. I'm pretty serious about asking for a list. Luckily in my husband's family, there are RULES. Dollar limits. Lists are expected and doled out--especially for the kids and in those cases, we also get sizing info.

    The gifts you got were from a vacay, not really Xmas gifts (though I see no harm in that), but you might have a better reception if you guys ask for info on what the kids want/need.

    Still, good gravy that's ungrateful. She must be a real peach.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct. 6, 2002
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
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    15,374

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    The gifts were a waste of money... because people that spoiled/rude don't deserve gifts. End of story. Donate to a charity in their name from now on and send them a card. Done.
    ~Veronica
    "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
    http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/


    6 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2005
    Location
    New Jersey
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    Are we married into the same family?

    I am still trying to figure out how to walk the line between myhusband and his family. They treat him and me like crap and he just so wants everything to be somewhat normal. The conclusion we have come to is that I have wiped them out of mylife since I refuse to allow toxic, rude, selfish people into my life and try not to get angry when my husband tries and comes home from a family thing depressed and dissapointed.

    Sme people were not raised with manners and common decency. I am sorry for the position you are in. If it is anything like mine I wish you the best. It's not something I would want anyone to deal with.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov. 25, 2005
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    MA
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    Default

    Update:

    He just listened to a vm his sister left him earlier in which she informed him that he could "be a fucking douchebag about it if he wanted but that her 12 year old kid doesn't want to do a fucking puzzle."

    Excuse my language- but those were the exact words used. I'm appalled. I don't know how his mother maneged to make him and his sister.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
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    May. 11, 2010
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    PA
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    Ugh.....he needs to cut her off stat. Those words could have come directly out of my siblings mouth. I can tell you I havent felt better since I kissed his a** goodbye!


    3 members found this post helpful.

  15. #15
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    Nov. 20, 2010
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    Upstate New York
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    Default

    What a clod. But makes me feel better, too, since I just left dinner at the Home, brother and SIL were also there to be with Mom, and SIL made a pointedly rude remark to me at the time. Meant to dig, and insult the rest of us.

    Some people just don't know when to shut up!

    But yes, you were both very thoughtful. Just remember that there are those in this world whom you can never please. That's part of their oxygen - as your topic says - drama. You will never win, so do what's comfortable for you. And I'll bet your SO is very happy to have found you.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ruth0552 View Post
    Update:

    He just listened to a vm his sister left him earlier in which she informed him that he could "be a fucking douchebag about it if he wanted but that her 12 year old kid doesn't want to do a fucking puzzle."

    Excuse my language- but those were the exact words used. I'm appalled. I don't know how his mother maneged to make him and his sister.
    hmm, if she is anything like my sister was....it's not about him, but her letting him feel the wrath of her verkackta Christmas.
    One time I got a two page email from her, out of the blue. When I opened it it was nothing but a tirade about how my life sucked and I sucked etc...It wasn't me, it was her.
    But yeah, there is a delete button. And one can hang up a phone.
    So all plusses about not being in the same zipcode as her.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
    Personally, I think the moderate use of shock collars in training humans should be allowed.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul. 22, 2012
    Location
    CA
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    805

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    My response to that sort of BS would definitely be no more gifts for them. Send 'em a card next year. How incredibly rude of them to not be thankful that you even thought to buy them gifts.



  18. #18
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    Nov. 25, 2005
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    MA
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    We actually did ask what to get them... she said cash for the older one and something Mario or a Disney Junior movie for the younger. Except, we aren't sending $10 to the older one, and we have no idea what the younger one already has. So he picked up the puzzle. I think we asked for more specifics or other options and she basically said there were no other options and made it sound like it didn't matter what we got them.

    This kind of thing has happened before- and he has said things to his mother about just cutting her out of his life. To which his mother has said that he's not "allowed" to do that. Meanwhile, she really never makes any attempt to contact him, ever.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct. 9, 2000
    Location
    California
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    7,987

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    Ugh, that sounds horrible. What a bitch of a SIL and sister to your DH. Consider yourself smart that you chose not to spend Xmas with them. Next year I would give them nothing, not even a card.
    My Mustang Adventures - my blog!
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  20. #20
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    Jan. 4, 2005
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    Washington State
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    Next year just send a card. Not a gift card, just a regular one. If you feel you just have to give a gift, donate to a charity in their name. Like the one where you can buy a goat or a cow for some poor African village (someone posted a website about that here once). Give the kids the gift of charity. They are obviously not going to learn about it from their parents.
    Crayola Posse - Pine Green
    RIP Whinnie Pine (June 4, 1977 - April 29, 2008)


    2 members found this post helpful.

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