AIBU or are my inlaws? VV long - sorry!

(120 Posts)
dimebardolly Thu 06-Dec-12 17:49:15

Will try to make this as quick as possible because if I went into every thing my inlaws have done to piss me off, you would still be reading this time next year!

It was my daughters birthday last week. All birthdays are special to me and I have always been very particular that cards and presents are opened on the day. After all, it is a birthDAY, not birthWEEK, birthMONTH etc. I know not everyone feels like this but I honestly do and I have asked them many times over the past decades to respect this. Anyway to get to the point, when her day arrived, she had no cards or presents from her nanny, grandad, both her aunties and one of her uncles (they all live near each other but about 70 miles away from us). She did get a gift from another Uncle (these relatives are all my in-laws btw) which she was very happy about as it meant she wasn't entirely forgotten by her extended family.

My mil sent a text at around dinnertime wishing my daughter a happy birthday. I replied that I would pass on her good wishes but she was wondering why she hadn't even had a card to open from her. 5 minutes later my fil telephoned. He asked to speak to my daughter and I agreed but I said I wanted to talk to him first. I asked why no-one had bothered to send any cards etc. First of all he said he was going to bring them down that day but he wasn't well. Then he said he couldn't send them because he had been away on holiday. Finally he said my sil would have brought them down but she isn't well either. I pointed out that:
1) There was never any question of him coming down that day. 2 weeks previously I had spoken to my mil to say that we were busy on the day (school, afterschool clubs, dinner with schoolfriend etc). She asked if she should post her stuff and I happily said yes. I also agreed to gift wrap should she like me to.
2) Yes, he had been away for the preceeding week. However, this had been planned for ages and he could have posted her stuff early.
3) My sil hadn't arranged to visit. At no time did she mail me, text me or call me. If she had, perhaps something could have been done but this wasn't the case.

It appears to me that basically, my daughters birthday wasn't important enough to any of them to bother going to the post office, buying a stamp and sending a card. My fil huffed and puffed and kept telling me I was "taking this all the wrong way".

My question is, is there a right way for your childrens grandparents (their only gp's as both my parents are dead) to not bother marking a birthday? For a bit of background, everyone always makes a big fuss over the family birthdays and I was told in no uncertain terms that for my fil's birthday this year, he was expecting to be taken away on holiday (he got a weekend away from us, a trip to Rome from one daughter and a trip to see the Northen lights from another of his sons).

For the record, I always make sure presents and cards I send are sent promptly!

Thanks for reading and for any replies. I feel I need to get some other points of view before I even think about visiting at Christmas!

YABVU. And you sound like bloody hard work.

Words and hugs matter infinitely more than cards.

I know a few people who, like you, are precious and anal about cards and believe me it is not an endearing quality hmm

Really?? U r being way OTT.

ENormaSnob Thu 06-Dec-12 17:55:34

I think you are being pretty ott tbh.

Although I wouldn't be going out on a limb with expensive gifts in future as they are obviously not that into birthdays.

NothingIsAsBadAsItSeems Thu 06-Dec-12 17:56:37

Some of my birthday cards/presents when I was little were always over a month late as the same relatives always forget. Didn't bother me never been that into presents but it bothered my mum a lot

Not a very helpful reply though blush

HappyJustToBe Thu 06-Dec-12 17:57:14

I think YABU. Sorry.

WipsGlitter Thu 06-Dec-12 17:57:14

It's important to you. Not them. You can try to make it important to them, but it won't work. Get a grip.

StripyMagicDragon Thu 06-Dec-12 17:57:33

my inlaws don't mark big events at all, and no birthday cards or presents from them ever.
however, they love my daughter and take an interest in her life. they fuss over her and always listen to her and praise her for achievements. I would rather that than a card she wouldnt bother about anyway.
if your inlaws are otherwise engaged in your child, yabu.

NothingIsAsBadAsItSeems Thu 06-Dec-12 17:57:52

Oh, the same relatives also forget DSs birthday - Again I'm not too fussed

DoingTheBestICan Thu 06-Dec-12 17:58:44

You sound a bit wound up about this,I can understand you wanting your dd to have her bday cards on her bday,but it's not like she never had anything to open on the day is it?
What did your dd say about it?

EleanorGiftbasket Thu 06-Dec-12 17:59:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

whois Thu 06-Dec-12 17:59:25

OMG are you for real?

YABVU and a massive p.i.t.a

sue52 Thu 06-Dec-12 17:59:27

You seem to be making a fuss about nothing. Your FIL sounds like hard work too. I wouldn't want to pass on such a moany atitude to my children. It's how you treat people al year round tha really matters.

Sabriel Thu 06-Dec-12 17:59:38

I disagree with the other posters. I think it is quite important for children to get cards on their actual birthday. Not so much presents, if distance is a problem but how much effort does it take to stick a card in the post a couple of days before the birthday?

I would also ignore FILs upcoming birthday. Just send him a text grin

WelshMaenad Thu 06-Dec-12 18:00:20


Birthdays are important in our house too, and I have gotten pissed off with DH's family not acknowledging the kids (not so much us adults, couldn't give a monkeys, but birthdays are important when you're small).

Also, words and hugs are great, but they're not around to give hugs, and a text to the birthday girl's mum, then only a phone all when it's evident the lack of acknowledgement has been noted, doesn't exactly smack of warmth and caring, so that argument doesn't really hold water.

I hope your dd wasn't upset.

LemonBreeland Thu 06-Dec-12 18:00:47

I think it is sad if your ILs can't be bothered to send cards to your dd for her birthday.

However for you to make such a fuss is really ott.

littlewhitebag Thu 06-Dec-12 18:02:46

Blimey - get a grip! - some people are less obsessed by birthdays! I am the worlds worst for forgetting birthdays - i never remember the dates. Doesn't mean i love my friends and relations any less.

Letsmakecookies Thu 06-Dec-12 18:03:10

Kinda brought this one on yourself I think. If you hadn't been so precious and controlling, they would be much happier to send cards to your DD.

DorsetKnobwithJingleBellsOn Thu 06-Dec-12 18:03:34

Get a grip woman. They hadn't forgotten. Jeez.

elfycat Thu 06-Dec-12 18:03:44

I'm one of the late birthday gifters and I never do cards.

I prefer for birthday/Xmas gifts to be given over several days and my DDs will have Xmas gifts from the 23rd through to past boxing day (there is a reason for the early ones)

But each to their own.

YANBU to have your preference.
YABU to expect everyone else to be dictated by the above.

HoratiaLovesBabyJesus Thu 06-Dec-12 18:04:18

It sounds like they did let other things get in the way of sending things in the way...

... because perhaps they didn't realise you were going to be a bit psychotic about it. Perhaps they think it better manners to hand over cards and gifts in person, so since you had very explicitly said they weren't welcome on the day itself they carefully made arrangements to speak to DD on the day and get her presents to her when they could actually be there to share them properly.

They are a bit U to disregard what you said about the timing of presents given how particular they are about birthday presents more generally, but they are NBU compared to family in general.

KenLeeeeeee Thu 06-Dec-12 18:04:34


YANBU to want your daughter's birthday to be acknowledged by her father's family in some fashion, but YABU to place such emphasis on a material gesture such a cards and gifts. They did call to speak to her and wish her a happy birthday! When I was little, I enjoyed visits or phone calls with family much more than cards.

LaCiccolina Thu 06-Dec-12 18:05:23

Hmmm. Reading ur post I see completely why u r upset. I'm a little surprised at other responses...

What does dh/oh say? Presume there's an opinion there? I am not necessarily hot on cards but I admit I always notice who didn't send one. I also would like to b better at it but I'm 36 now so kind of given up. I don't send enough I'm sure but do get immediate family right. Considering fil is so hot on his I'm astounded he's not on dg.

I actually think u r right to comment but stop putting it from u and put the comment from dd, dd wondered where nannas present was and is upset at nothing on the day and no idea when/if she will see her or if ones expected?!

I think they screwed up and should have owned up but didn't. Wimps!

BlueberryHill Thu 06-Dec-12 18:05:32

Do your ILs insist on having birthday cards on their birthdays? If so, they should put in the same effort for their GCs. If not, you were over the top, I don't think it is fair to interrogate your FIL like that, very disrespectful.

FWIW my ILs always make sure that they send cards to their GC and presents when they see them.

LaCiccolina Thu 06-Dec-12 18:06:39

When I was little calls were great but forgotten. I'm not sure I sense materialism so much as double standards. They expect a hoo ha but stuff all others?

Bananapickle Thu 06-Dec-12 18:06:59

I think you all sound like hard work.
If you all make a fuss of everyone's birthdays (which it sounds like they do...3 holidays for one birthday, thats crazy!) then I guess YANBU to expect a bit of effort from them.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Thu 06-Dec-12 18:07:01

teach your daughter to be grateful for what she does receive and not to expect from everyone. show her how to respond to texts politely and to show her appreciation that the person thought to text. show her the world on a map and point out her location on the map (this wont be the centre of the world wink) tell her that many people will care for her throughout her life and that material goods are not a representation of how much she is loved. most importantly, encourage her to know when it is appropriate to purchase a grip.

Pandemoniaa Thu 06-Dec-12 18:07:02

It's always nice to get cards on the day but actually, it's not worth making such a fearsome pain in the arse of yourself over. Your FIL does sound rather hard work but I'd have been buggered if I'd been prepared to accept an interrogation of the type you describe before I was allowed to wish my gc a happy birthday. Please don't be surprised if they don't bother to send anything next year.

HazelnutinCaramel Thu 06-Dec-12 18:07:16

How old is your DD?

I don't think there's much excuse for a capable adult to not send a grandchild a card in time for their birthday. It's not like its sprung on you is it?! However, you were unreasonable to say anything - you've made yourself look petty and grabby. Dignified silence would have been better.

Giving you the benefit of the doubt, it does around like there's a lot IOC back story here which is making you blow it out of proportion.

TheLightPassenger Thu 06-Dec-12 18:07:58

I agree with Blueberry, I think that the GPs could have made more effort, but you were massively rude to reply to the text and phone call in this manner, particularly as you made it clear they weren't welcome to visit on the birthday itself.

mrscogon34thstreet Thu 06-Dec-12 18:08:05

FFS! YABVVU! Do you really need to ask?! Are you this high maintenance over every aspect of life?

This will make you itch - my Mum's birthday is just after Christmas, I don't buy her a present until Spring/Summer when there is actually something she wants seeing as she's just had loads of Christmas presents. Hope that keeps you awake at night!

MerylStrop Thu 06-Dec-12 18:09:16

You seriously need to wind it in.

Your inlaws are maybe a bit crap about birthdays.

In the scheme of things, it's not a big deal, unless you choose to make it an issue.

If you do make it a big issue, your daugher will end up feeling disappointed in her grandparents because of YOUR expectations. Not nice or fair.

Also you seem to have made it clear to your ILs they weren't welcome to visit on her birthday. Just their gifts. Yuck

Mulledandmerry Thu 06-Dec-12 18:10:30

Cards and gifts are not a 'right' not even for kids and i have taught mine right from the start that its the thought that counts, even if that thought is just a pleasant message. It is a very good lesson to remember. Try to be less outraged and a bit nicer

ErikNorseman Thu 06-Dec-12 18:10:44

YABO (outrageous)
Get an actual grip.

whattodoo Thu 06-Dec-12 18:11:06

I can understand your disappointment, particularly for lack of at least a card.

But I think you sound very domineering and confrontational.

There doesn't seem to be any warmth in the relationship with your ILs, which is a shame but I presume there is history.

How old is DD? What does your OH think?

fivefoottwowitheyesofblue Thu 06-Dec-12 18:12:32

I am completely with you OP. It pisses me off when this happens - and it happens with both DC every year so I should be chuffin used to it by now.

I fail to see what you have done wrong! You asked why they hadn't sent cards to their GD on her birthday.

KittyFane1 Thu 06-Dec-12 18:13:48

YANBU to arrange B'days as you wish but YABVU to demand your way or no way.
You sound very rude OP. What did you want? Your PIL on the doorstep with presents at 9 am? They could have posted them? No to both. If you wanted gifts hmm you should have invited them for the day. They live 70 miles away.
You sound rude and very hard work.

MrsBungleBear Thu 06-Dec-12 18:14:36

I think your DD's grandparents WBU not to send a card in time for her birthday, however, I think you are really BU to respond in the way you did. I think your response was really confrontational and unnecessary.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Thu 06-Dec-12 18:14:40

Birthday cards are pointless shit. You are being ridiculous! I can't believe your an adult.

alarkthatcouldpray Thu 06-Dec-12 18:15:52

I would feel as you do. You feel how you feel about such things.

On a less restrained day I may have said something, ideally a dignified silence would have been a better option.

stifnstav Thu 06-Dec-12 18:15:57

You need to get other points of view before visiting at Christmas?!

Christ on a bike, are you going to still be weird about it at Christmas?! Shall I lend you a grip?

TwitchyTail Thu 06-Dec-12 18:18:57

What, are grandparents and aunts supposed to send birthday cards?

<Frantically tries to remember when niece was born>

Surely a phone call with good wishes does just as well as a piece of overpriced folded card? I can't believe you reprimanded your in-laws about something like this. I would apologise to them.

TeeElfOnTeeShelf Thu 06-Dec-12 18:20:53

My mother used to be like you until my brother spent about $10 (I'm American) sending her a card overnight.

She got a grip after that.

DontmindifIdo Thu 06-Dec-12 18:20:56

I think if your in laws are the sorts to want a big deal made of their birthdays, then they should also make at least an equal fuss of a child's birthday. If they want "low effort" birthdays, then fine, but that goes for them too. Cards arriving on actual birthdays are more important to me than expensive gifts the week after.

Stop making an effort with them, let your DH do it, and tell him you don't want large sums spend if they can't be bothered doing the same back.

monsterchild Thu 06-Dec-12 18:22:17

YABU I get that you prioritize birthday acknowledgment over other expressions of affection, but really, you're creating a pretty poisonous atmosphere. I'm not surprised FIL got defensive, you're making him responsible for her happiness.

So why is a card better than a text for the birthday? Didn't they give her birthday wishes on her birthday by text? Most kids don't have a strong preference either way, and social media is as welcome to them as hard copy.

I do think you're OTT by intercepting the call and you don't say that you let him actually give his intended birthday wishes because they didn't come the way YOU wanted them to come. Personal contact is not as important to you as a gift?

Also, your DD will mimic your actions and priorities, so imagine her watching you holler at FIL for not sending what you (and she by default) feel is appropriate birthdayness. I feel bad that your DD (and you, really) believes that her GPs don't really love her, because love is only shown through material things.

BlameItOnTheBogey Thu 06-Dec-12 18:23:25

YAB totally nuts. YOu can not dictate to other people in this way. YOur daughter won't care when she gets a card/ present and you run a very real risk of damaging your relationship with your in laws over nothing.

TidyDancer Thu 06-Dec-12 18:23:37

You sound really high maintenance and you are being unreasonable.


Convict224 Thu 06-Dec-12 18:23:50

I think little actions speak volumes.
Sending a birthday card on time is clearly unimportant to your ILs . Now you need to work out whether this indicates a lack of affection for your daughter or just that they lack organisation.
i think you are NBU .

mrscogon34thstreet Thu 06-Dec-12 18:25:51

You are setting a TERRIBLE example to your child about gratefulness and love.

Get a grip - there are people starving in the world with no clean water and you are picking fights with family over a piece of card.

In fact I don't think I've ever seen a AIBU which as pissed me off as much as yours!

BlueberryHill Thu 06-Dec-12 18:29:53

Is there some background that we are missing?

TidyDancer Thu 06-Dec-12 18:32:19

Really, Convict? hmm

The OP's ILs are probably just being normal, in handing over birthday cards and presents when they see the birthday child. It's not their fault the OP is anally retentive.

skatebauble Thu 06-Dec-12 18:32:22

How old is your dd?

FestiveDigestive Thu 06-Dec-12 18:33:11

The rudest part is that you made it clear to MIL that she was not welcome to visit on the actual day. Why? An after school club could easily be missed to see grandparents on a birthday. Why was dinner with a schoolfriend more important that seeing family?

I always invite MIL (as well as my parents) over in the early evening of a DC's birthday and then we can all have a meal together and sing Happy Birthday when we have a cake. This in addition to the party that the child will have with friends. The children love having a special family meal.

If I said to my family or in-laws "We are too busy for DD to see you on the actual day" but then expected them to post presents, I would feel unreasonable and ashamed of myself. If having presents on the day is that important then you make the time to let relatives visit DD. For them to give up their time to visit is worth a lot more than a material present/card anyway.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee Thu 06-Dec-12 18:33:44

Well you did ask.

hiviolet Thu 06-Dec-12 18:33:49

God, I don't know why so many people are giving the OP a hard time. I think it's unbelievably shitty to not bother to make sure a child gets cards on her actual birthday.

SugaricePlumFairy Thu 06-Dec-12 18:34:34

Both you and FiL sound a little like hard work.

Him expecting to be taken away on holiday as you say he is is incredibly entitled.

Is this worth a falling out which means you'll stay away for Christmas?

ElsieMc Thu 06-Dec-12 18:35:27

Yes, surprised at some of the responses on here. Nice response Eleanorgiftbasket.

It is always difficult when inlaws don't meet your expectations, particularly when you perceive it as aimed at your child.

I don't think the OP is being materialistic, she simply expected the paternal grandparents to put in the same effort she has for her child and feels they have fallen short, rightly or wrongly.

I had all this with my inlaws many years ago. It wasn't that they forgot, they just used the childrens' birthdays to let me know whether I was in or out of favour which is childish, hurtful behaviour. The problem with this high risk strategy for family relationships is that - in my case - I gave up caring what the hell they did.

FelicityWasSanta Thu 06-Dec-12 18:35:41

Please say this is a reverse?!

If into you are being ridiculous OP... And Rude.

OhBuggerandArse Thu 06-Dec-12 18:36:59

It's at moments like this I would like a button that you could just click to say 'unreasonable'. Can't be bothered engaging with such a controlling and entitled op, but would like to add some weight to the 'yes you are being massively and unpleasantly unreasonable' pile just to help forestall the inevitable picking out of two or three posts that try to see her point of view as evidence that she was right all along.

Notmadeofrib Thu 06-Dec-12 18:37:53

Oh right so birthdays are SOOOOO important, but you won't let them visit:

1) There was never any question of him coming down that day. 2 weeks previously I had spoken to my mil to say that we were busy on the day (school, afterschool clubs, dinner with schoolfriend etc)

so basically you chucked their wish to be all inclusively and lovely back in their face, but you want them to jump through hoops to please you. Right. OK.

I think you're causing some of the problem really. Spin it their way and you're a proper diva pain in the ass. Sorry YABVU

dawntigga Thu 06-Dec-12 18:40:54

::passes a grip to op cos you need one::


CatsRule Thu 06-Dec-12 18:43:10

I thought you sounded grabby and cheeky until I got further down your post to the point where your fil was expecting to be taken on holiday for his birthday from you! Wtf! He is an adult and expecting an expensive present and not only that telling you what to get him in what sounds more like a demand!

I can now understand your attitude and annoyance even if I don't agree with it or the example set for your dd. I do think for kids cards and presents should be given on the day, cards at least.

Your dd's birthday incident makes you look bad for what you said but as an overall your inlaws are expecting one standard for them but providing a kuch lower one for your dd.

Overall I don't think yabu but you would be the better person to rise above it and in future gift them what you decide not what they demand unless it's reasonable.

glastocat Thu 06-Dec-12 18:43:37

You sound completely mad. It's a good job thank god you aren't related to me, I would tell you to get a grip.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Thu 06-Dec-12 18:43:37

basically OP

it is absoloutely fine for you to express your expectations for protocol on your DD's birthday. family members however are not obliged to conform. they can opt in or opt out. your family seem to have opted out of your particularly controlling set of rules for the day and are going to deliver the gifts they bought with their money how they see fit.

TeeElfOnTeeShelf Thu 06-Dec-12 18:50:00

I do believe we've scared her off...

BoundandRebound Thu 06-Dec-12 18:52:33

I think that's horrible

A horrible view of life, family, importance of material goods and how to treat extended family to be passed on to your poor child.

I find your entire post depressing and almost unbelievable in its crassness and view of life.

LittleChristmasBearPad Thu 06-Dec-12 18:52:43

YABVVU. You should relax a bit

Nancy66 Thu 06-Dec-12 18:56:00

Your child's birthday is nowhere near as important to other peope as it is to you.

interrogating people about cards that weren't sent in time is very bad form.

So, to answer question, you are v. unreasonable.

They ABU and YABU. You are too rigid with routine and demands. They are grabby and materialistic.

Oh me, they aren't allowed to come down but they have to pander to your rules of you DD only having a birthDAY and only opening presents on that day.

They are expected to fork out for presents they aren't allowed to watch her open?

FFS materialistic much.

YouCanBe Thu 06-Dec-12 18:59:10

I think you are B kind of U too. I know you say it is important to you, but you would do better to let go of this as an issue, because it is a tiny one, in the grand scheme of things, and not worth the angst, really. It sounds like they love your daughter, ring her to pass on their love on her birthday, that's what is important.

YABU, you all sound like hard work tbh.

kerala Thu 06-Dec-12 19:04:10

YANBU I can see OPs point and think its not as narrow as missing out on material things - its the lack of thought that hurts. A message is being given. I wouldnt have said anything and think she was rather aggressive in her response but I would also be a little hurt if none of DPs family acknowledged a childs birthday whilst expecting a big fuss to be made of theirs.

Alliwantisaroomsomewhere Thu 06-Dec-12 19:06:55

Get a grip. You sound like hard work, OP!

HazelnutinCaramel Thu 06-Dec-12 19:08:07

My mind boggles at being told in no uncertain terms that FIL expected to be taken away on his birthday. I'd have bought him a pair of socks.

KittyFane1 Thu 06-Dec-12 19:08:20

Some telling off here OP sad

tyaca Thu 06-Dec-12 19:15:23

how old is your dd?

I am very glad you are not a member of my family. Lighten up.

Alligatorpie Thu 06-Dec-12 19:18:11

I don't think YABU.

I would be pissed off if my child's grandparents didn't send a card on her birthday. I don't think that is asking for too much. I hope she wasn't upset.

StinkyWicket Thu 06-Dec-12 19:20:33

I think YANBU. If they never had any intention of sending a card or gift - fine. But what is the point of sending one after the fact? Either send one in time or not at all.

I would never had said anything though.

MrsDeVere Thu 06-Dec-12 19:20:47

Blimey O'Reily shock

You insist that your DD only gets gifts and cards on the exact day of her birthday
You tell your ILs that there is no question of them seeing her on her birthday because she has after school club.
You ask them where her cards etc are
You insist that you speak to your FIL before he is allowed to talk to you DD.

Bloody hell.

I can't think of anything else to say really.

MrsClown1 Thu 06-Dec-12 19:22:11

Dont let it bother you. I hardly ever send cards to anyone, even though I love them to bits! They sound lovely grandparents. Please dont let this bother you and spoil things.

I do think they are needy though and very selfish for expecting such big presents for birthdays! My dad gets a box of chocs and a ticket to a show or something! My parents would be mortified if they thought I was spending all that money on them. Times are hard.

Haberdashery Thu 06-Dec-12 19:23:31

How old is the child? If six, then I can see why she might be upset. If ten, YABU.

ChestyNutsRoastingOnAnOpenFire Thu 06-Dec-12 19:25:10

I don't think YABU at all

It doesn't take much to send a family member a card in time for their actual birthday.

I too would be disappointed in them especially in view of FIL birthday demands.

Blimey you sound OTT.

FernandoIsFaster Thu 06-Dec-12 19:35:33

You all sound a bit crackers and very materialistic.

heidihole Thu 06-Dec-12 19:36:55

I'm so sorry OP I know this isn't what you want to hear but YABU sad

You sound like hard work. I hope my son doesn't marry someone like you

1978andallthat Thu 06-Dec-12 19:49:03

Yanbu. She's a child. Sounds like they were trying to make a point. Wankers.

dimebardolly Thu 06-Dec-12 19:52:13

Thanks for all the replies.

I understand why so many of you think IABU and I've found it useful reading.

For what it's worth, there are reasons why (relating to my upbringing) I try to make birthdays a very special occasion and my inlaws are fully aware of these. However, I never demand a present, only a card so my daughter (10) can see that they were thinking of her. I only wish they were a part of her life on a regular basis but they aren't. Sorry, I didn't make it clear - my mil had no intention of coming down on the day - she was merely asking what we were doing. If she had wanted to come down, then we would have incorporated her into our plans.

They do make a huge fuss over birthdays themselves (I know that many people don't and I respect that) and if I ever forgot to send a neice or other relative a card (and a present), I would never hear the end of it. Understandable, I suppose, given my views!

My daughter did speak to grandad and thanked him for the phone call. She was disapointed, not because she didn't get anything but because she sees how every other member of the family is thought of on their day. I see now that perhaps I was getting more and more wound up on her behalf when the only person who was really fed up was me. My husband works away but he wasn't surprised when I told him. I guess he is used to his family more than I am!

At the end of the day, I will let it go, visit at Christmas as usual, with a smile and try not to take it personally. I can't change the way I feel but I guess I need to change my reactions.

thanks again.

MsElleTow Thu 06-Dec-12 19:59:27

Your PILs, who are your DD's only GP's, aren't allowed to see her on her birthday because she has got an after school club and is seeng a school friend, and you have got all pissy with them because her cards and presents weren't there on time! shock.

Fuck me! Do you want her to see her grandparents? Oh, and if I were them you wouldn't be very welcome at Christmas TBH!

MuddlingMackem Thu 06-Dec-12 20:08:21

In my opinion, YANBU.

I agree with you about a birthDAY celebration and agree with getting cards to children so they have them to open on the day. My dad is even more so on this, on one occasion wanting to drive through to drop a card off the night before so dc would have it in the morning, even though we were going to be visiting on dc's actual birthday. I talked him out of that one and convinced him that dc would like better to be handed them when we called round. grin FWIW, if dc have birthday's mid-week, we make the effort for gps to see them the weekend before and the gp's have always been happy with that. It has got easier now that dc are old enough to phone to say thank you for presents though.

As far as your in-laws are concerned, I think it does show where your dd is in their priorities and, given their outstanding hypocrisy on the issue, I can see why you're steaming. Unfortunately, I think the only thing you can do for your daughter is manage her expectations, although that's probably a task better handled by her dad as he can criticise them with impunity, and you definitely can't.

PickledInAPearTree Thu 06-Dec-12 20:09:58

I was going to say yabu as I thought they wanted to visit.

I think you were a bit ott maybe but my mil has recently become very disinterested in ds so I can see where you are coming from a bit - it's hurtful sometimes.

My mil is good with cards etc but i would rather her spend the time to visit than the money.

narniasnarnia Thu 06-Dec-12 20:19:12

My sister is like you OP - she can remember who didn't send her a birthday card in 1983, and believe me, she still holds a grudge....

Lets just say she no longer has very good relationships with much of her family and inlaws, because as you can imagine she holds a grudge against nearly every family member she has, and boy does she let you know it.

Get a life....

BlueberryHill Thu 06-Dec-12 20:23:30

If they are treating your daughter differently to other members of the family, yanbu in your feelings. I still don't think that you should have tackled your fil, but more from the POV that it won't make a difference.

EnjoyResponsibly Thu 06-Dec-12 20:32:42

Dime you've taken a pasting well. I think your last sentence is the measured approach going forward. I can see why you're upset TBH, but as you evidently can't change them (as DH says "you cant educate shit") finding a way to live with it so DD doesn't get upset too is crucial.

redbusandbigben Thu 06-Dec-12 20:38:07

I don't think you are being unreasonable!

Your little girl is 10 - of course she would like birthday cards / presents on her 10th birthday! It's one day and a special day to your DD.

Shame on those adults who could not be bothered!

Shenanagins Thu 06-Dec-12 20:39:03

Op after your second post i can see your point although i do think it was wrong to tackle your fil about it but then he sounds like an arse over his birthday so maybe not.

maybe its time to treat them in the same way as they treat your dd.

MrsDeVere Thu 06-Dec-12 20:50:15

I think you are just going to have to accept that you cannot impose your feelings about birthdays on anyone else.

I understand you feel strongly and you obviously have reasons to. Other people are not going to understand and you will be forever disappointed.

Surely its better to accept the situation now and let go?

For your sake?

You don't want your DD to pick up on it all and begin to feel that there is something wrong with her and her GPS don't love her.

You continue to make a big deal of her birthday, make it special for her and anything else that comes her way will be a bonus.

eccentrica Thu 06-Dec-12 21:03:13

You are not being unreasonable. I think it's important for kids to have a big pile of cards to open on their birthday, and much more so as they are her only grandparents.

I'm in my thirties and I still get cards from various aunts, uncles, etc. who are in their seventies, eighties and nineties!

Notmadeofrib Thu 06-Dec-12 21:04:52

well I thought you'd disappeared in a puff of indignation, so well done for coming back... not the easiest of replies to read.

Sounds like rolling with the punches is the only way - you got to accept people are just plain weird!

ll31 Thu 06-Dec-12 21:17:15

Yabu. .. plus I always think its nice to get cards and presents after your birthday. I'd wonder what message you're giving your children when you greet a birthday phone call with such an attitude

Narked Thu 06-Dec-12 21:30:14

I understand why you're upset. It's not asking much for someone to post a card or drop it and any presents round before the child's birthday. At 10 she will notice that her grandparents couldn't be bothered.

Your reaction to it was rather extreme, but you have your reasons.

MollyMurphy Thu 06-Dec-12 21:43:13

You don't expect cards/gifts and outline how and when they are given - they are gifts FFS. If you get one at all you should be grateful. Obviously they didn't forget and were calling to say happy birthday to her. It was massively rude for you to launch into an attack about it.

Its your daughters b-day and if you want to make a big deal about it you should go right ahead...but don't expect everyone else to climb on board. Sorry, YABU OP.

DontmindifIdo Thu 06-Dec-12 21:52:12

What I'm interested in, is why you would never hear the end of it if a card doesn't go to your DH's side of the family. I think you've made a rod for your own back by doing it. So I'd tell them that from now on, cards and gifts for his side is DH's responsibility, then stand back - if he wants to do it, then he can get them cards etc.

I do'nt think it's unfair to expect your DD to be treated the same as everyone else, if birthdays weren't a big deal in your DH's family, then it would be understandable, but adults can't expect a fuss to be made over their 'big day' but think it's ok for them not to make a fuss of a child.

Take a step back, it will reduce their ability to hurt you and your DD. If they aren't 'important' then their lack of attention will be less noticable. And your FIL has had his last big gift, if he can't be arsed to make an effort for his DGD there's no way he should be getting such valuable gifts from you.

KittyFane1 Thu 06-Dec-12 21:52:59

At the end of the day, I will let it go, visit at Christmas as usual, with a smile and try not to take it personally. I can't change the way I feel but I guess I need to change my reactions.

Cahoootz Thu 06-Dec-12 22:16:59

YABU very, very, very unreasonable.

You are putting all your issues onto everyone else. You sound very uptight about this and have blown it out of all proportion. You will be the one that makes your DD feel bad about this, is that what you want? Do you want her to feel that her GP's don't care for her and that she should be dissapointed.
My DC's were never dissapointed or judgey when they didn't get cards or presents from relatives.

TBH your PIL don't sound very nice either.

Does your DH have an opinion on this?

Alisvolatpropiis Thu 06-Dec-12 22:33:34

YANBU I'm quite surprised at some of the responses you've had. But then I'm one of those people who is anal about cards grin.

gimmecakeandcandy Thu 06-Dec-12 22:33:47

I think you are being treated quite harshly here op. yes your feelings sound a bit ott but you obviously have good reasons for this if they treat other birthdays with more importance. Treat them like they treat you and concentrate on your own little family and don't waste your energy on them x

NannyEggn0gg Thu 06-Dec-12 22:52:45

But she's not imposing 'her' feelings!
Her inlaws think birthdays are important too - just for everyone but the OP's family by the sound of it!

I think your DH needs to speak to them.

MumOfAPickle Thu 06-Dec-12 23:16:10

YANBU and I thought that from the start. MN can be a bit weird about this stuff IMO. You pretty much aren't allowed to expect anything from anyone (especially gp's) without being grabby, entitled, controlling, spoilt etc. All terms levelled at the OP here. But in RL I don't know anyone who wouldn't expect a card for their dc's from the grandparents on or before their birthdays. Lack of one would almost certainly be commented on as pretty slack IME. Not sure how many people would confront it the way you did OP but fuck it, why should you seethe in silence when il's are obviously not backwards in coming forwards grin


My ils sent ds £40, guess what dd got, NOTHING. This is the worst in a long list of shitty behaviour from them but my dcs having Grandparents in their lives are more important so I bite my tongue and suck it up like a big girl.

Rudolphstolemycarrots Thu 06-Dec-12 23:47:58

I think it really doesn't matter whether the gift/card is given two weeks before or after.

drcrab Fri 07-Dec-12 00:10:23

Sorry but YABU. My sil is like that. The family are 'scared' of her reactions now. This year my FIL forgot my birthday and happened to ring on the day (he'd been ill) and we got joking about it. I then told my dh to remind them to send a card to my sil whose birthday was the following week. They didn't make it on time because the sil and bil were going away and had taken the cards away. Omg there was all round 'panic'.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Fri 07-Dec-12 00:11:55

They should have got their acts together and sent a card in time. But your reaction is very extreme OP.

timeforachangebaby Fri 07-Dec-12 00:26:36

you are awful, you want everything on the actual birthday, but she was too busy to see them, thats downright rude in itself.

andapartridgeinaRowantree Fri 07-Dec-12 00:44:58

Don't think its unreasonable at all to expect a card from the grandparents of a ten year old on her birthday.

Do think its unreasonable to be so confrontational with FIL about it. Not you place. Not your parents.

OTTMummA Fri 07-Dec-12 10:39:54

I don't think yabu, not if they make a fuss over their own birthdays. That is quite hypocritical and nasty, especially if your DD grows up seeing the vast difference in how they celebrate FIL and MIL's special day. Who demands a holiday for their birthday?! That alone would be enough to piss me off. Just because he is your FIL doesn't mean his poor etiquette should be excused hmm

EldritchCleavage Fri 07-Dec-12 13:53:47

I agree with OTT. Even so, I think your reaction esp to FIL on the Phone was unfortunate.

Please do leave all the card and present-giving for DH's family to DH. And play down expectations of them, fro your DD's sake. If they are hypocritical and a bit crap, better to underplay it all than have your DD upset by the disparity in treatment.

diddl Fri 07-Dec-12 14:04:47

Does she usually get a card on time?

If it´s just this year that caught them on the hop then let it go!

That said, I don´t think it´s asking a lot for GPs to send a card in time to be opened on the day.

Who told you that FIL was expecting a holiday for his birthday?

And why didn´t you laugh and ignore?

lisianthus Fri 07-Dec-12 20:54:59

YANBU; you made it clear that your ILs were never intending to visit and that you would have cleared your DD’s birthday schedule so they could visit if they wanted to.

Everyone else in the family expects a huge fuss made over them- your FIL has demanded that each person pay for him to go on HOLIDAY?! shock then they turn around and don't even care enough to put a stamp on an envelope for your DD. I really hope you won't be doing this. Send him a card instead.

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