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MIL hasn't got DD a gift

(41 Posts)
kickassangel Thu 24-Dec-15 05:19:30

I don't actually know the full details about this, and I am very emotional/depressed right now (hate that I live so far away at this time of year, but would actually hate to have to go home to see family, and then hate that most of all) so quite a high chance that IABU

But - DH went back to UK in Sep and saw his mum while he was there. She gave him some gifts to bring back for Christmas. I'd forgotten about that, and was wondering why we hadn't got a parcel from MIL. She is a HUGE fan of Christmas, and getting and giving gifts is the biggest part of it for her, so I was thinking the PO must have messed up (I know we're missing a parcel from my parents).

Anyway - this eve DH remembered about the gifts and went and got them. One for him, one for me. Nothing for DD. There's been NO communication from her about can we get something on her behalf, or a card or anything.

So, I have no idea if this year she sent something without telling us and it hasn't been delivered, or told DH to get something and he's been a muppet and forgotten, or it's deliberate and pay-back because somehow we/I displeased her.

So - do I rush to the shops tomorrow and get something from her for DD? What if she did send something and it just hasn't arrived? Or are we playing into her hands by doing this?

In other news - my sister also appears to have completely and utterly failed to send even a card for us/DD. But then she tells me she could raise DD better.

It just feels like both our families are conveniently forgetting about us because we're a) far away (in the US) and b) have a child on the spectrum who isn't good enough for them. Both MIL and DSis are very critical of DD's behaviour when we do visit.

Or it could be that they have all been wonderful, but the mail service is causing all this angst. (But they haven't - we'd have got an email from them if they did send something).

Hurr1cane Thu 24-Dec-15 05:29:05

I wouldn't read too much into your sister not sending one. My sister rarely remembers if she isn't up here on Christmas Day and it's nothing to do with DS having SN. Sometimes I totally forget my own very young sisters birthdays too, because they live so far away blush

The MIL one is hard though? Maybe she just meant to send one and forgot and it got mixed up in her head because she gave your DH some presents to take back?

IamCarcass Thu 24-Dec-15 05:29:39

"Hi Mil, we were looking for your presents and didn't see the one for DD, did you send it with the others or by post? Just checking to see if we have mislaid it in our house". Just get your DH to call her.

IssyStark Thu 24-Dec-15 05:31:36

Get DH to phone his mum adapt. He could say something like 'sorry mum, can't remember what you said was happening about DD's present. I know you told me but just realised as we were putting presents pit that we didn't have one for DD.'

No use fretting about what she could have meant - ask her straight out.

Btw, there's no way DH could have hidden it away elsewhere?

kickassangel Thu 24-Dec-15 05:43:40

I'm thinking DH will need to call her, but he has to work tomorrow so may not be easy. Also, she's at her sister's and not sure if we have the number. He definitely doesn't have a present anywhere else.

My DSis and I ALWAYS give to our kids. Her two came to stay with us this summer and I took them both shopping for a day (they're older teens) and gave them cash for birthday/Christmas. She is frequently late with sending gifts to us (she doesn't work but is too busy to get to the post office), but always emails to let us know whats going on. So far this year, nothing!

I'm just hoping that the post office have fucked up. I know that my parents sent a parcel 3 weeks ago and that hasn't arrived, but there's no way to find out where it is. Except MIL would email to tell us something had been sent. Then email a week later to see if it's arrived yet etc.

I am currently thinking DParents - lost by PO, DSis - flakey and crap, MIL - deliberate as she did this before 2 years ago.

Or it could be the PO being crap, and me being depressed and going off the deep end.

MackerelOfFact Thu 24-Dec-15 06:00:12

Are you sure DH hasn't mislaid it somewhere? Surely he'd have noticed if there were only two when he collected them?

It's quite a big ask for people to buy and post/give presents weeks and weeks ahead of the big day. I think late presents and cards are always going to be part and parcel (excuse the pun) of living overseas. Seeing it as a deliberate snub is quite a leap, unless there are other issues.

I'd get another present for DD from MIL, and if something turns up, save it for her birthday.

Moopsboopsmum Thu 24-Dec-15 06:19:34

I know how you feel and it's horrible. I had this last Christmas, turns out DM had totally the wrong address and the parcel was lost. I was really upset though,
also no phone call or acknowledgement of us on Christmas Day. But lots of photos of them all having a great time. I think people to resent it when you choose to not rush 'home' for Christmas. We don't go because we can't afford it and the welcome is never very warm! Don't let this ruin your Christmas!

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 24-Dec-15 07:01:09

YANBU to feel as you do.

I sincerely hope I am wrong here but it may well be that your MIL has actually not bothered to buy your DD anything at all. (Have also seen this type of scenario on the SN Children's forum of this website when the grandparents reject the child or openly criticise the child's parents; do post on there too).

Your DH needs to contact his mother today and find out what is going on.

Did your DH not say anything to her at the time; did his mother not explain that this gift is for him/you and that gift is for your DD for instance?. What did she also do two years ago - not send your DD anything at that time either?.

On a wider level do you really need people like your sister in your life at all?. What does she bring to the table?. She and her children seem to take, take and take and really give nothing back. What do you say in response when she says you could be raising your DD better?. FWIW I reckon you are doing a fab job with your DD actually.

BondJayneBond Thu 24-Dec-15 07:11:37

If this was my mum or MIL, I'd be phoning to ask something like "can't find DD's present, I'm sure you'll have already told DH, but did you ask DH to buy DD a present for you, or is it in the post?"

But this bit about MIL having done this 2 years before - does she have form for deliberately not giving your DD Christmas / birthday presents?

Caprinihahahaha Thu 24-Dec-15 07:14:38

Sadly children with SN do get left out by family.

The year my son was diagnosed his brother got eight presents and he got literally nothing.

I'll never really understand it. It's a sort of denial thing I think - it's too hard to figure out what's an appropriate gift or something.

FreakinScaryCaaw Thu 24-Dec-15 07:26:54

I hope it's just a mix up?

I can't understand the mentality of leaving out sn dcs? ? Mind boggles fconfused

MagicalMrsMistoffelees Thu 24-Dec-15 07:44:22

What?! People exclude children with special needs but openly continue to give presents to other children in the family without special needs???

Why would someone do that?!

OP - try to take a step back, concentrate on your little family and not allow the actions of others to bother you. If they behave badly that is a reflection on them not you and certainly not your daughter.

Caprinihahahaha Thu 24-Dec-15 07:51:01

It certainly happened here. And genuinely, my family are nice ordinary people who I never in a million years would have guessed would do that.

My eldest son had his birthday and all the presents turned up. Two months later and he waited for the postman three mornings on the trot for his brothers presents so he could help him. He was more upset even than me, when nothing arrived.
It's odd. I never actually even challenged it openly but I never spoke to any of them for about a year. There was never a fight or discussion. I was too upset.

Tinseleverywhere Thu 24-Dec-15 07:56:17

If she has never done anything like this before it may be a mistake of some kind. I know she has been critical, but that doesn't mean she would deliberately not give a gift. Will your dd notice there is no gift for her if you and Dh don't open yours from Mil when she is there? That would give your DH time to ring her and if there is a good reason she forgot, you could take your dd shopping to choose something and have your Mil pay you back. I can see how a gift could be overlooked if she bought them in advance and gave them to him to bring over in his luggage.

NowBringUsSomeFuzzpiggyPudding Thu 24-Dec-15 08:17:50

Really hope it's a mix up.

The idea of leaving a child out because of SN is just... sad shock angry

kickassangel Thu 24-Dec-15 11:20:16

Sorry, I went to sleep.

MIL has massive form for this. She has been known not just to cut people out of her life but to deny that they ever existed and destroy all evidence that they did (photos, no one allowed to mention them etc).

2 years ago DD had upset MIL when we visited in the summer. That year she said she'd send something later but didn't. Just after I had an emergency appendectomy she said that I should nip out to get DD something and she'd send the money for it. When I said that I couldn't go shopping she told me that I should buy online. She refuses to learn how to use Amazon US although it is just as easy as using UK and she regularly does that. Around the same time she emailed to ask me when I was going to sort out DD because she isn't like other children.

DSis may have decided that presents are too expensive and that we should cut back, but she never said anything to me. She worries about spending too much (her husband is a multi millionaire but she believes that it is all his money and he gives her a small amount of housekeeping money. A whole other area of discussion between us). Or she may have decided that now her eldest is 18, we no longer buy for the children. Only my DD is 12 and I would see that as unfair. (My parents did similar when we were kids. Once DSis hit 18 they decided some things weren't necessary for adult children. I was 15 and they thought it was fair if they stopped for both of us at the same time, rather than age.)

OR - it could be that the post office are sitting on everything. I shall phone my parents soon. Not sure about what to say to DSis - I don't want to appear grabby, but something along the lines of "did you send anything our way?". The post office can't/won't investigate from this end.

DD is quite happy with the idea of late gifts, but if people have really not sent anything I'm gonna have to fake it.

NowBringUsSomeFuzzpiggyPudding Thu 24-Dec-15 11:29:10

God your MIL sounds awful.

I get that you're in a horrible position and you don't want to upset your lovely DD, but actually is it really worth covering for MIL by buying something 'from her'? I don't know, I just wonder if maybe your DD will find out your MIL's true colours soon enough anyway and pretending that she is a nice person will just complicate things. I'm sure she would be over the moon with what she is already getting.

I'm really sorry you're going through this. I know people generally say that presents are just presents but this shows it can go so much deeper than just 'stuff'.

It's MIL's loss but that doesn't make it any easier for you does it sad thanks

AnchorDownDeepBreath Thu 24-Dec-15 11:34:35

Can your husband call MIL today?

Ask him to call and see if she sent DD's separately. If she says yes, you'll know to look out for it. If she says she didn't send anything, it's an excellent opportunity to start the conversation that needs to happen - namely that she cannot exclude your DD.

Of course, she might say "Oh I asked you to get her something and I'll send the money", or "I forgot, could you grab something?" and then you're no real further forward in knowing if she's just covering for herself or if she really did, but at least then she's less likely to repeat it in the future.

Get it out of the way this Christmas before DD is really old enough to notice/care. It'd be difficult to explain why some years she gets a present from MIL and some years she doesn't, or even worse, why she never does at all.

And ignore your sister. I imagine you'll care less about that once MIL is sorted, but your sister sounds like she has enough issues as it is, so let that one slide for this year and just check with her next year if you're buying for each other.

Beth2511 Thu 24-Dec-15 11:36:41

My MIL has spent 150 on DSD and nephew but not so much as got DD a card because she doesnt like me. Fanilys are weird but sod em

kickassangel Thu 24-Dec-15 11:52:49

Beth that is awful!

The thing is, I may not even have noticed if it weren't that I know I'm waiting for this parcel from my parents, so was sorting things out. Because of the distance, we have an arrangement with some family that we only do presents for children, or we get ourselves a nominal gift from them and they do the same at their end.
But we do NOT have that in place for DD. She's 12 and gets excited about parcels etc. Of course she wants her aunty/nana to give her a gift.

Fortunately, we got something for DD from my parents, otherwise there would be not one thing from anyone in the UK. Just feeling very cut off and lonely. I would so love to have a warm and welcoming family.

ThumbWitchesAbroad Thu 24-Dec-15 12:33:10

Oh kickass - so sorry to read this from you! sad

Families can suck arse sometimes, they really can.

I can't say whether or not your MIL is being a deliberate cunt again, or if it's postal or your DH; but why in the name of hell did your DH not notice at the time he was given the gifts that there wasn't one for your DD? I assume she is his DD too, he should have been all over that at the time.

Your sister - God knows.

We've been over here for 6 1/2 years now, and it's getting harder to even get cards out of my family for birthdays. I know they don't "really matter" , but actually I think they do, it's nice for the boys to have them to look back on. Except half of them, they don't, because Dad or my sister has forgotten to post them and then decided it's not worth it.
I'm no saint, mind you - I've literally just, today, posted my Christmas cards to my family. Christmas Eve. They'll be lucky to see them this year! But also I haven't received cards from them either, and the same will apply. Does suck a bit if they're not here until after Jan 6th though.

I know it's a cliché, but the only thing you can really do is to make your Christmas all about the nuclear family you have - do things just the 3 of you, make it special that way. And even though your MIL hasn't sent a gift, if your DD asks, maybe just give her some cash? I know she has SN, but my 12yo niece (and in fact her 2 younger sisters as well) are all about saving money at the moment, so it's their preferred gift!

Anyway - hope you have a lovely Christmas just the 3 of you. thankswine x

kickassangel Thu 24-Dec-15 13:11:36

DH didn't notice because she gave him a bag with gifts in. It was also his birthday so he pulled out a gift for that, and didn't really look in the rest of the bag, just left it in the drawer. Then he got the bag out last night, and saw only 2 gifts, one without a label on. We opened it and it's for me.

He totally switches off/becomes like a zombie about anything to do with his mother OR gifts because, actually, she's completely frantic about them, they have to be perfect, she counts how many cards she gets and who got her what etc manically, like a five year old. Which is why it's so hard to think this would be an oversight on her part. DH's memories of Christmas as a kid aren't that happy - they were all about MIL being happy and getting her the perfect gift. So, he just dumped the bag in a drawer, duty done. When I said we'd had no parcels arrive then he just said "I got them" and last night we actually looked inside the bag for the first time.

DH is just totally emotionally detached. He long ago knew his mother is horrific, but manages to deny/avoid it and doesn't get why I still get emotionally sucked in by it all. I'm not sure which one of us is less healthy - his complete blanking of the issues, or my over involvement. It still stings that some family seem to have just brushed us off as if we're out of sight and out of mind. I have no problems at all with being late, and happily have low-key, no gifts for adults agreements, but 'forgetting' a 12 year old! MIL has no other grandchildren btw, it's not like she's just got overwhelmed and mixed up.

Next year I want to go visit his step sis (who is lovely), although according to MIL she never existed. I love spending Christmas with someone who doesn't exist and has never existed and will never exist, but who has 3 grown up kids, a DIL, 4 dogs, 3 cats and grandkids.

OR - it's lost in the mail and MIL didn't tell us she sent something even though we've skyped recently and she could have emailed us. IF that's the case I will be very happy, and slightly embarrassed.

Hissy Thu 24-Dec-15 15:34:33

Id ask her, on the pretext of the missing parcels.


If she hasn't sent anything on purpose, the this needs to be well and truly sorted out... You need to tell her it's not acceptable

LaContessaDiPlump Fri 25-Dec-15 20:58:29

Is it possible that you guys are next on the 'unperson' list for MIL? Have you actually heard from her recently?

kickassangel Sat 26-Dec-15 01:21:49

So - (I know it's late in the eve in the UK) - I was right in my earlier guesses.

Parcel from Parents arrived in yesterday evening's mail. It had been posted nearly 2 weeks before the final deadline but at least it got here.

Sister, allegedly, sent hers on the last possible day, but it hasn't got here yet. So it is her being flakey.

MIL - def. didn't get anything for DD. It was hard to talk to her as we did a phone call and she was at her sister's with all the extended family. But she def. didn't send anything, and DH is sure she didn't say get something and she'd reimburse us (and there'd have been discussions about how much etc which didn't take place).

DH now minimizing - sure she just forgot of something. But he's a rabbit in the headlights with her. The moment there's any conflict he starts scratching, gets eczema flare-ups, or angry or goes into full-on avoidance mode. I don't blame him. She does a fine turn of being horribly stressed/unhappy/weeping/migraines until she gets her way when suddenly there's a miracle and she becomes well again. It really does feel easier to change how everyone else around her is behaving, than to discuss with her what the problem is if she's upset.

Anyway - DH went to the shops yesterday and got DD a computer game. DD delighted. MIL hates computer games.

I wish we could be on the no contact list, but he's her only child and she's a widow. In spite of the fact that she never initiates contact (it's too hard for her to learn how to use Skype/Google voice etc) we are constantly berated for not keeping in touch with her enough. This from the woman who sold a house and moved without telling us.

At least we're 4,000 miles away.

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