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"Leave the prawns for the adults"

(166 Posts)
MrsMushroom Fri 11-Jan-13 11:43:06

My SIL has just said this to my two DDs ged 8 and 4 as they were getting served takeaway and DD1 asked for a prawn.

Aibu to think "WTF?" about that?

SIL knows the DDs...they both eat seafood, spicy stuff...and if she wasn't sure if they'd like the prawns, then wouldn't it be normal to ask me? Or to offer a piece of one to try?

She has no DC. but not sure if that's any excuse.

She'd served them with bowls of plain rice....I was waiting for her to finish serving herself and thought she'd be doing a selection of bits for the DDs but I was wrong...she stood aside so I could help myself and I then gave the DDs a prawn each....and a bit of everythng else...despite SIL's instructions to "leave the prawns for the adults"

The other adults who were sharing the meal were just finishing some work in the shed and had told us to go ahead...there was plenty for everyone...

Odd? Greedy? What? I can't stop thinking about it!

Spuddybean Fri 11-Jan-13 16:31:32

Spuddybean - what would your dsis do if you dished up everyone's meals, making sure everyone had a bit of everything (too many everys there, but you see what I mean)? Or if you said to her "No, please don't take all the X for your girls - leave some for the rest of us. And maybe just give them a bit less, because they always seem to leave it, and it is wasteful. We will make sure that there is enough left for seconds, so they won't miss out if they do want some more"?

We see them rarely and usually when we do there are loads of us, so dishing up is not really doable. She has been asked to give them less but says no, they are massive eaters and always eat everything. I don't know where she gets that idea from as they are rakes and never eat a thing. At mums the other day she asked if she could make them some pasta and tuna, mum said yes and went upstairs for a bath. When mum came down the 2kg jar of pasta was empty and the bin was full of pasta, about 4 tins worth of tuna and 2 jars worth of sauce was also in the bin. Sis had cooked up all the pasta and tuna mum had in the house, the girls ate about 3 mouthfuls each then she binned the lot. Mum was angry and challenged her. Sis rolled her eyes and said 'it's only pasta'. They are wasteful people, they turn every light on, even garden ones all day, they leave taps running. If we go out she girls have about 10 different expensive drinks untouched in front of them. They are told they don't have to say thank you or please etc. Sorry to rant - but it boils my piss.

5madthings Fri 11-Jan-13 16:34:21

new year I think that's a bit different, every now and then dp and I give the kids an 'easy dinner' is fish fingers etc and then once they are in bed we have a special meal, like you say 'date night'. To sit down and eat with the children and give them fish fingers whilst you best steak wouldn't be nice but if they are non the wiser and its a treat for you and dh its different.

It would boil mine too, Spuddybean! A kilo of pasta, two tins of tuna and a jar of sauce PER CHILD??? I have teenage bottomless pits sons, and they wouldn't eat that much!

Anniegetyourgun Fri 11-Jan-13 16:52:09

It may have been "only" pasta (and tuna, and sauce), but someone paid good money for that and now will have to pay again. How incredibly thoughtless.

Now I understand that news report about some massive proportion of food that goes to waste every year. Spuddybean's DSis is single-handedly doubling the national average.

Spuddybean Fri 11-Jan-13 16:59:15

I know SDTG it is conspicuous consumption for the sake of it. sis also tells everyone how much the girls clothes are etc and they rarely wear the same thing twice. they are in massive debt and earn very little. Sis seems to have an enormous chip on her shoulder about her self worth and confuses spending money with love. She uses it to prove to herself that they 'deserve' things and are as good as everyone else - same with manners. she sees them as being deferential rather than nice or polite. It's very sad really. She knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

peeriebear Fri 11-Jan-13 17:04:44

Spuddybean, I want to kick your Sis in the clopper. I'm amazed at your restraint at not visiting physical harm upon her.

Spuddybean Fri 11-Jan-13 17:06:29

It's not about the money tho Annie, it is the ugly disposability of everything attitude which makes me feel sick to the pit of my stomach. At their birthdays last month, she encouraged the girls to tear thru presents, discarding them on the floor, not knowing who they were from, not thanking anyone. Amongst the leftover shredded wrapping paper were notes of money where cards had been ripped open in a frenzy. i thought i was going to vomit.

BerthaTheBogCleaner Fri 11-Jan-13 17:17:17

If I want a chip off someone else's plate, I ask, and if they say yes, I take one. Really doesn't matter how old the other person is, does it? And if my children want a chip off someone elses's plate, they ask, etc.

OP, I think you should do what SDTG suggested - tell your SIL that she is teaching your children that it is ok to nick other people's food. Ask how she would feel if she were eating a biscuit and your child came over, grabbed it out of her hand, ate it, and then laughed and said it was a joke? (Obv if she says she would be fine with that, you must take care to do it yourself at every opportunity!).

AngelsWithSilverWings Fri 11-Jan-13 19:09:58

Yes Sirzy I probably am being a bit touchy about the colouring stuff but she does it in a sort of " oh I knew you would forget and arn't I wonderful for remembering " kind of way. The fact is that I don't agree with play things at the dinner table so I don't bring them to restaurants.

Her DDs really are fussy and are the typical nugget and chips only kind of children. They once came to Sunday lunch and my Sil phoned about an hour before to ask what I as doing for her children ( they were 5 and 8 at the time) I said that we were all having roast chicken. She then told me that the girls don't eat roast dinners and could I do something more child friendly. I didn't have kids then so didn't have anything in so she took them to Macdonalds on the way!

So I'm not surprised that her 16 year old still wants the kids menu!

EndoplasmicReticulum Fri 11-Jan-13 19:22:03

My in-laws are both food-stealers. MIL will say "oh I'm not really hungry" and then pick just one thing from the table and have all of it. Like olives. Both my children love olives. When we go out for meals she won't order her own chips or dessert, but is expecting to snaffle other peoples'. She doesn't do this with me now. I don't share food (like Joey).

FIL takes stuff from plates if you don't seem to be eating it quickly enough. Husband says growing up he learned to eat the "best bits" first rather than leaving them until the end because his dad would have it.

Molehillmountain Fri 11-Jan-13 19:25:17

Yanbu. We have friends who invite us over for tea and cake and although the children are eating at the same time as the adults, they are only allowed the "children's" cakes which are not as nice as the "adults" ones. My children asked nicely the first time we went if they could have one of the others and got short shrift. I don't think children should get to rule the roost, be noisy or unruly, eat all of the nice food or generally mean that the adults can't have a decent time too. But how are they to learn how to interact socially in food based activities if they are excluded from large parts of them.

ToomuchWaternotWine Fri 11-Jan-13 20:08:21

OP I would simply say loudly and clearly " please stop stealing food from my children, I am trying to teach them good manners and stealing from other people is not allowed" big emphasis on the stealing!

I would also prime your dds so that if sil says "oh don't be so precious/ it's only a bit of fun/ you don't mind if auntie fatface has some do you girls?" That they reply with "I hate it when you steal my food auntie bullychops"

She sounds like an entitled greedy so and so, and a bit of humility wouldn't go amiss.

Catchingmockingbirds Fri 11-Jan-13 20:41:31

She should have ordered extra prawns if she liked them so much rather than demanding that only certain people coul eat them.

You need to stop this woman stealing food from your DDs. Next time she tries to take food from their plate say "SIL we are trying to encourage Dd's to finish all their food/teach them good manners/not take food from other plates (whatever you think will work better), could you leave their food alone please."

I also liked the suggestion of having your Dd's also telling her they don't like her stealing their food too.

carabos Fri 11-Jan-13 22:12:39

This thread is shock. I think I must be Mrs Lazy because there's just no way I would make separate meals for people based on age or any other category. It's one meal, take it or leave it. If its a takeaway, everyone gets to choose their dish and if there's negotiating to be done e.g are we having a bit of everything or would you prefer your own dish then that is done before we order so we all know what's what.

When we were growing up (child of the 60s), my GPs would actively seek out tasty morsels for the kids to enjoy and my parents took us out to eat every Tuesday - different cuisine every week. We weren't allowed to say no, but if we genuinely tried something and didn't like it, then that was fair enough, just like other adult people.

I have applied the same principles to my DSs and have one "Labrador" who will eat anything and one who is much fussier more discerning.

Thumbwitch Sat 12-Jan-13 10:20:29

Spuddy I am beyond outraged at your sister - that's disgusting behaviour!! shockangry It's not just that she cooked faaaarrr too much, it's that she didn't even give anyone a chance to say "oh don't worry, stick it in the fridge, someone else will eat it later" but binned it! I hate wanton waste.

HollyBerryBush Sat 12-Jan-13 10:37:58

Food sharing is a social acceptance - it creates social bonding, thats well documented in anthopological studies.

Think about it - you offer a crisp or a biscuit to a collegue - you are telling them subconciously that they are part of your group.

The taking of the food says they accept being a part of your group.

There is also a subconscous pecking order with food. A bit like Goldilocks and the three different sized bowls of porridge - Daddy sized portions, Mummy sized portions and baby sized portions. So the heirarchy is that children get what the adults don't want. Quite simplistic but a lot of cultures still practice that.

Mind you, in my experience it tends to be 'feed the kids first so we can sit down in peace'!

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