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Was I unreasonable r.e dd's birthday present?

(100 Posts)
babybearsmummy Sat 13-Jul-13 12:24:15

It was my little girl's first birthday on Wednesday. Apart from the presents from dp and I, my brother and dd's parents, she didn't even get a card from anyone else.

So dp's parents phoned dd's great grandad to remind him and he reluctantly sent a card. He also visited dp's parents on the Tuesday and was dragged round to ours to say happy birthday. He stayed for all of about 5 mins and was miserable, ignored dd etc. So he left and I let it slip as he's a misery anyway!

Dp's parents visited dd's great nanny yesterday and asked if she'd sent a card or called us to pop over to hers for a bit (she lives a five min walk down the road) and she screamed at them that she's has 'no time to' (I'd just like to add here that she had just been into town to go shopping for gifts and cards for a grand daughter's christening, also that she's not very old- early 60s before there's any accusations of granny bashing and having a go at an old woman, she is a very spring chicken!) Anyway!.... She then proceeded to snatch up a blank card from a drawer and scribble happy birthday on it and grabbed something she'd knitted and shoved it into a bag.

So when dp's parents came over and explained and went to hand me the bag, I just lost it and burst into tears. I don't have any contact with any of my family and haven't done for a long time due to them 'siding' with my abusive ex when we broke up, but I still talk to my brother as he has always been supportive. So I have been completely gutted by the fact that dp's family, who all live very close, just will not give dd their time of day. She's the only great grandchild on their side and dp's parents are absolutely fuming too.

So I sent the card and 'gift' back via dp's parents and given them a message to pass on to everyone who's not bothered with dd that if it's too much hassle to acknowledge her, then don't bother!

Was I unreasonable? Or am I being PFB? I don't want people to be held under duress with regards to contact etc, so would I also be unreasonable to cut what little contact is there with the extended family?

DaddyPigsMistress Sat 13-Jul-13 12:55:31

I can see why you are upset buy you are being unreasonable and very rude to send back the gift. I would apologise.

Lovingmybabiesbottom Sat 13-Jul-13 12:57:16

Oh good grief. Pls reign in this kind of behaviour as your child grows up. You sound like hard work. I fear that you may likely turn out to be one of those mothers that expect so much from their daughters and they become the subject of mumsnet threads.

You can't go around returning gifts!

HoldingHigh Sat 13-Jul-13 12:57:45

My nan sent all but one of my children cards and presents on their birthdays. I was a bit pissed off obviously but she said she forgot so <shrugs>. I let it go. I have too much other stuff going on.

At least it was your DD's first birthday so she's not really going to know any different. Hopefully great-gran will remember next year? If not, you could always visit weeks in advance and drop subtle hints?

DuttyWine Sat 13-Jul-13 12:58:54

How do you know the card from the great grandad was reluctant???? confused

My ds 1st birthday was a big event but that's because me and dp families are very 'party' people. Me and dp invited lots of family and close friends and we cooked lots of food and put on drinks etc.

Some family turned up with presents, some cards and some empty handed... It really didnt matter to us.

Do you generally get on with these people and do you make an effort with them and spend time with them regularly?

Justfornowitwilldo Sat 13-Jul-13 12:59:12

21 year old has baby, becomes mother.
21 year old has baby becomes mother, 42 year old becomes grandmother.
21 year old has baby, 42 year old becomes grandmother, 63 year old becomes great grandmother.
One year on for baby's birthday, mother is 22, grandmother is 43, greatgrandmother is 64.

Yes, you're being thick and rude.

mynameisslimshady Sat 13-Jul-13 12:59:13

It also sounds like your ILs are stirring a bit, why tell you all that about screaming and snatching cards and that she had been shopping for gifts for her grandchild? In their shoes I would have just said that she remembered and bought a card and knitted something without the additional stirring information.

insanityscratching Sat 13-Jul-13 12:59:14

I think you've totally over reacted and I don't think dp's parents stirring has helped (there was no need to tell you about the manner in which the card and knitted gift was given) If it mattered to you so much you should have invited them all round for tea and cake on her birthday.
YABU and it's probably going to mean your dd's family is even smaller.

QuintessentialOldDear Sat 13-Jul-13 13:00:39

Did you make a birthday party and invite them? And they snubbed you? If so you are right to be miffed.

But if you did not make a party, but expected the world to rally around with presents and cards, for a ONE YEAR OLD, yab totally and utterly U. You have behaved badly here, and I think you really ought to apologize.

PurpleRayne Sat 13-Jul-13 13:01:28

YANBU I'd be offended by the sending of such a card and gift - sent only under duress - and with such a lack of affection and thought. If they can't be bothered then they really shouldn't bother at all.

I would have done the same as you. But - you do now need to lower your expectations of having a loving involved extended family. Focus on your nearest and dearest.

Jan49 Sat 13-Jul-13 13:01:38


I think it was wrong of you to send the card and gift back. You only have IL's version of events anyway. What they describe as grabbing, scribbling and snatching might be described by someone else as fetching a card, writing in it and then picking up a gift. The great grandparents might show more interest when she's a little older. Babies aren't as interesting to a lot of people as children that can talk.

Most children won't have great grandparents and their oldest relatives will be their grandparents. Your dd seems to have quite a lot of involved family. Is it really such a big deal if the great grandparents aren't interested?

QuintessentialOldDear Sat 13-Jul-13 13:02:36

"I'm not bothered about the cards and gifts which is why I sent them back," Have you been brought up in a cave? How is it possible to come to motherhood and have NO manners?

TheOriginalSteamingNit Sat 13-Jul-13 13:03:01

Yes, YABU, sorry. If you wanted a family get together, you should have organised one, but all this chasing around for cards is a bit silly.

squeakytoy Sat 13-Jul-13 13:04:27

well you have now blown it really with your attitude.. your daughter has many more birthdays to come, with extended family who will remember the way you have behaved over this birthday..

HandMini Sat 13-Jul-13 13:04:55

YABU and painful. Fucking hell, I would never "send back" a present and card. How rude and entitled.

QuintessentialOldDear Sat 13-Jul-13 13:06:30

So you were actually walking door to door to family, putting them on the spot, asking for cards and presents?

This thread beggars belief, the more I think about it, the more unreasonable it gets!

MadameDefarge Sat 13-Jul-13 13:08:52

speechless. really. weird, entitled, bizarre. the only, and I emphasise only, reason for doing this is PND.

I hope you get help and are able to apologise graciously when you are better.

If its not PND, then wow, who made you queen of the world?

WorraLiberty Sat 13-Jul-13 13:10:16

Blimey, you sound incredibly rude and entitled.

And imagine being dragged around to visit a baby on its Birthday when that baby will have no clue anyway.

Really you need to calm down or you'll make an enemy of all of them.

GeppaGip Sat 13-Jul-13 13:10:29

I think you were being unreasonable to return the gift


I totally understand why you are upset and yanbu to be so. I have a similar situation so I understand the disappointment when you want your child to have a big, loving family and no matter how hard you bend over backwards, people just don't care. It is even more the case when you come from a disfunctional family and you want different for your own children - but family members don't comply.

We have issues like this on both sides and whilst we have little contact with in-laws now over a major disagreement, we also have issues on my side. I won't cut off contact but I have stopped chasing them to spend time with their grandson and care about him. They're too self absorbed and you know what - they are the ones who miss out because you are young, have your own life and family in front of you. Soon all those people that don't care will depend on you and your son for entertainment and comfort and will you be there for them like they weren't for you? If you are like me, then you won't be and then maybe they will realise what they threw way (or maybe not - ignorant people never see outside their own little bubble). Your kids won't even know any different and will have loving parents, and you will be their example.

Arisbottle Sat 13-Jul-13 13:10:30

Yabu, no one cares about your child's birthday as much as you and in reality very few people care at all.

A lot of fuss about a day very few people care about, including the child.

pigletmania Sat 13-Jul-13 13:11:00

Yabvvu I am afraid, a gift is that, a gift freely given with no expectation. It was wrong of your dp parents to ask for gifts, that is rude! It's their loss, forget about them!

Cravingdairy Sat 13-Jul-13 13:11:03

If you had invited people round for a bit of cake they would have brought cards and presents. You can't expect great grandparents to remember birthdays, buy cards and presents and come round with them spontaneously. It's lovely if they do, but they have done parenting and grandparenting. They are maybe tired, fed up and with health issues that you might know nothing about. You need to adjust your expectations of what is realistic. Good news is I doubt they will be troubling you much in the future.

MadameDefarge Sat 13-Jul-13 13:11:08

I know my ds' family love him. and my family love him. Nobody really bothers about presents or cards. Being loving family day to day is good enough. And for older rellies, even more kind.

You really need to get over yourself. Your child might well be the reincarnation of the daiai lama. for everyone else, they are a nice new baby in the family. nothing more, nothing less.

barbarianinvasion Sat 13-Jul-13 13:11:30

Wait. So you not only demanded gifts and cards, but then threw a strop and sent them back when they were not to your liking. And you still think you're the victim here?

Seriously, how can you even think you're anywhere near reasonable?

MadameDefarge Sat 13-Jul-13 13:12:22

I suggest you pull yourself together, apologise to those you have offended, and carry on.

EhricLovesTeamQhuay Sat 13-Jul-13 13:12:54

YABU and absurdly rude. You will have no family left at all if you continue to behave like that.

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