regarding MIL and DS's party(375 Posts)
MIL is a massive PITA in general. Total narcissist PITA. I could fill a whole board with tales of her shennanigans. However.........
DS is going to be 2 in a few weeks time. A big deal for me, he is my only PFB and this is the first birthday he will be really interactive IYSWIM. We are having a party for him at my DPs. Buffet, bouncy castle, music etc.
MIL lives 300 miles away and has only been to see DS once.
I asked her if she would like to come up for his birthday (more fool me but a) she is is GM and b) thought it might get me out of any Xmas obligations to go down to her.
She would love to.
She then decided she would come up on the train. The mainline station is a good 45 minutes drive away from my DP's so 1.5 hours round trip to get and get her.
Then she decided she would stay in a B&B in a near by town, rather than "put anybody out". Fair enough, but the 1.5 hour round trip now incorporates going to this town, getting her checked etc. So lets call it minimum 2 hours.
Then she decides, instead of coming up on the Friday, she will come up on the Saturday. On DS's actual birthday. I was not happy as obviously we will be doing things with him, getting ready for the party and enjoying the day so a 2 hour hole in that was annoying.
I told her the party was starting at half past two so she needed to be at the station for around 11am ideally.
She has texted me today to say she has got her tickets. ARRIVING AT 13:50.
So, DH will have to go and pick her up and miss DS's entire party? I don't fecking think so.
I am just so angry. I am certain it is deliberate.
I don't know whether to
a)change his party to the Sunday to accomodate her or
b) tell her to change her effing tickets or
c) tell her "That's fine but we won't be able to pick you up from XX at that time and you will have to get 2 connecting trains to where my parents live. Oh. And you will probably miss his party."
I am sorry that's long. I just want to scream
Agree that she sounds a PITA but I do think you sound as if you're building it up and making it a massive deal of it too.
She wants to come to the party - excellent. She hasn't seen much of her dgs and she's making the effort to come. Good.
She has said she'll stay at a b and b to avoid being a hassle - Great. Sounds ideal to me.
You are making it into a thing.
She's cocked up the travel times so just say 'Oh dear, sorry. We wont be able to pick you up.' (Don't go into any whys or wherefores. Just tell her.)
Then leave the ball in her court. She can get a taxi, book an earlier train, be late for the party or not come. Her choice. Don't get embroiled in her shenanigans.
You're definitely not BU. Totally agree that you need to tell her to get a taxi as it's not possible for you or DP to pick her up. Be calm, be matter of fact & be completely unmovable on this! And you may as well let her know that as she's going to be arriving during / just before the party you won't be able to help her to get to her B&B / help her settle in until MUCH later. Even if it was just about possible for your DP to pick her up & get back in time, it wouldn't be fair on him to miss the preparations or on you to be left getting things ready by yourself. It's going to be pretty hectic anyway! What a shame for her to be so bloody awkward when you've made the effort to invite her & try to include her in the birthday celebrations - try not to let it spoil things for you!
Option A. Take the lead.
Cancel B&B, most accept cancellation 48 hours prior, and mention a rat infestation toher as the reason or the like. Rebook a lovely one nearer, "il will go so much nicer if you are close MIL and it will sane you so much on taxis, we cannot let your pay ££ on a taxi".
Option B. deal withy the cards you have in hand.
Acknowledge receipt of her arrival time and looking forward to seeing her at your place, and how impressed you are she is coming all the way on her own steam. Big thank you and so thoughtful given both DH and you will be unavailable.
I would take option B. less work.
That said, my DM who lies overseas always gies me her arrival time but it does not follow that she expects to be picked up. It gives an idea of her actual arrival time at my nearest train station.
How far is she coming from? I know Friday tickets are v expensive (and would mean extra night of B & B) so coming on Sat makes sense. Plus this way you get most of the day with your ds rather than having her around from first thing.
You say she lives 300 miles away! Perhaps to get there earlier would mean leaving at a ridiculous time?
You do sound quite U I think based on what you've told us here, but I don't know any other background.
If she left her house at 8am she could be at the mainline station for 11am.
I don't think that's massively early tbh
Plus she doesn't think 300 miles is far when we have been to see her with a baby / toddler in tow.
Could she leave at 9am then? I would suggest she changes the times and either get someone else to get her, or get your dh and ds out of the way to get food ready. Ds may sleep on long car journey and be ready for party when he gets back.
PS. Having a 2yo around is a PITA when you are trying to get a party ready! You will not be able to pay a whole lot of attention to him anyway.
If she left at 9am and got to us an hour earlier it wouldn't be as bad
I get what you are saying about DS being a PITA when trying to get a party ready, but I am really excited for his day.
If this was just a one off with her I wouldn't be so annoyed, but with her history this is textbook and deliberate.
Spoken to DH
He is going to ring her tonight and tell her to change her tickets to an earlier time as we will not be able to pick her up at that time. He will give her the option of getting herself from the station to the party but point out she will miss it if she does so makes no sense and she needs to change them.
Don't pander to her. Cheery text as someone else suggested and list of cab numbers. Let her sort herself out, she's a grown woman.
Definitely be very straight with her and let her know that she'll need to make her own travel arrangements to get to your house as you won't be able to collect her at that time. End of. Then if there is any fall out your DH can deal with it.
Can we have an update later...?
I will update following DHs phone call to her tonight.
I predict tears, tantrums, accusations and 3 months of not speaking
She hasn't seen her other grandchild since Easter as her other son and DIL won't speak to her. That's not something I ever want to get to because I feel she has a right to a relationship with DS and he with her until he is old enough to decide on things like that. I feel like she tries to force these situations to play the victim.
I do hope you can find some sort of resolution. I am a GM and I don't understand your MiLs actions at all. Does she have health or mobility issues which prevent her from getting an early train?
BTW - how old is your MiL?
She is 70
Which sounds old until I tell you last year she spent 3 months traveling round Africa on her own. Not through a travel agent or anything, independent travel, staying with locals she knows through a church group and traveling round in Jeeps and getting her own flights.
No health issues
I think a phone call is a mistake with a person like this. you need a communication which looks breezy, but is carefully formulated to have exactly the right content and tone. She will be able to cut in with things like "don't you want me at my grand child's birthday?" on the phone, and queer the pitch. I am very worried that your dh will get off the phone and sheepishly reveal that he has agreed to her original attention-seeking plan.
the party is at 2.30, she needs to get there earlier
here is a taxi number
suggest she doesn't check in first, and she is welcome to freshen up at yours
you are very much looking forward to seeing her but you regret that there is so much going on on the day that she will need to make her way to you. you hope she will be able to do this in plenty of time to enjoy the day
Good God if she can get around Africa on her own she can make her own way from the B&B to the party! She cant begrudge a taxi fare that badly either i wouldn't have thought.
Good luck OP.
Catgirl I do sympathise as my own Dm is a class A narc. However, you must recognise that she has successfully sucked you in as you were tying yourself up in knots trying to accommodate her.
C was the only sensible option. You just tell her nobody can pick her up then so she comes earlier or makes her own way. Then back off. Do not engage. Do not Justify, Argue, Defend or Explain. Make sure DH is clear on this before he calls her. Write it down on a bit of paper he has in front of him when he calls if necessary. Good luck.
You should have text her yourself before speaking to DH!
No doubt she will be an expert at manipulating him and you will end up pissed off with both him and her and she will get at least some of it her way.
I hope I'm wrong!
In fact, text her now before DH gets in!
Text her now before DH rings her.
Phone calls are great for 'normal' people, not narcs!
She has time to bring it backs to HER, make DH feel guilty, cry etcetc. Texts you can prepare what to say, text it, then any toxic reply you can ignore.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.