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To think that after 30-odd years she should understand me?

(49 Posts)
vvviola Tue 17-May-16 20:32:36

It is possible I'm being a bit over-sensitive.

I'm quite reserved and hate having attention drawn to me. DM is the complete opposite. She's outgoing, loves a fuss, will talk to anyone about anything. She doesn't understand me.

It is my birthday today. We went out for dinner this evening - me, DH, DC and my parents. And again, despite me asking her not to, DM disappeared before dessert to arrange for the whole candle-on-dessert, staff-singing-happy-birthday thing.

She knows I hate it. I'm not 7 anymore (although I'm pretty sure I hated it when I was 7 too). AIBU to think that at this stage of my life she should just accept my personality and not inflict things on me because she would like it or she thinks it would be fun.

(I didn't make a fuss, incidentally. I kind of half-smiled, said "I wish you hadn't done that", thanked the staff and ate my dessert)

And if I try to bring it up it will all be about how I'm no fun/a stick in the mud. But I just don't like that sort of thing. I'm dreading my 40th.

scaryteacher Tue 17-May-16 20:37:40

My Mum still doesn't entirely 'get' me, and I'm 50!

A11TheSmallTh1ngs Tue 17-May-16 20:45:52

Go on holiday for your 40th.

As for 5 min of cake and singing, I would either put a stop to it (by leaving every time) or just get over it. Ungracious acceptance seems like the worst option.

vvviola Tue 17-May-16 20:51:33

But you see A11, leaving in the middle of a meal would be making a fuss/drawing attebtion to myself and therefore the absolute worst option for me.

I suppose I'm wondering why I have to be gracious (I did try, honestly), when surely at this stage (having known me all my life, and me having said a few times during the meal that under no circumstances were there to be any sparklers/candles/singing), she could just accept that I hate it.

Paintedhandprints Tue 17-May-16 20:57:08

The sparklers/ attention are for her, not you.

Ragwort Tue 17-May-16 21:04:54

You need to take control of the situation, organise your own evening, at home if necessary, so there is no chance of the candle & singing etc.

Or just refuse to go out with your DM on your birthday - just arrange it for your Dh and Dc and don't tell your DM.

TiredOfSleep Tue 17-May-16 21:06:47

Next time, make sure you speak to the restaurant first strongly requesting they don't do it. Make a polite fuss in private to them to make it clear you don't appreciate the attention.

YouMakeMyDreams Tue 17-May-16 21:07:56

My mum does this and gets arsey if I ask her not to. It's one of many ways I'm different to her that she either chooses to ignore or just doesn't get. Wish I had a magic solution.

WhereYouLeftIt Tue 17-May-16 21:10:10

"But you see A11, leaving in the middle of a meal would be making a fuss/drawing attebtion to myself and therefore the absolute worst option for me. "
Yes it would be - the one time you'd have to do it. Because I totally guarantee she'd never pull such a stunt again!

But you're not going to do that, you're not that type. So how to get her to back off? You probably can't sad, she's decided she's right and you're wrong. I wonder if, had you contacted the restaurant beforehand and made clear to them that sparklers would not be welcome, it would have gone your way? Or would she have just stood up, tinged her glass loudly with a knife and bellowed out 'Happy Birthday'?

Honestly, I think the only thing you can do is to not invite her to your birthdays in future. You can't trust her to put your preferences above her, ever. So sorry. The suggestion of going on holiday for your 40th is a good one.

Oly5 Tue 17-May-16 21:11:18

My mum used to do annoying stuff like this, and criticise me for my less than perfect house.
But she also had amazing qualities too and now she's gone I'd do anything for one last night of her making a fuss of me.
This isn't a big deal OP. But take control of future birthday parties by going on hols!

ollieplimsoles Tue 17-May-16 21:11:28

Mil is like this with dh and dbil, the attention is all for her, not you.

If she wanted to make you happy she wouldn't do things like this.

SusanAndBinkyRideForth Tue 17-May-16 21:13:58

I may be projecting, but is it possible that she does know you hate it, but just doesn't care?
After all - she loves attention and will get loads from organising this.

houseeveryweekend Tue 17-May-16 21:17:14

Im a great supporter of just asking clearly for what you want. If you dont really like something just tell her. You dont need to be rude but you do need to be clear and direct. Maybe for your 40th you should plan what you want and just tell your mother what is happening and if she does something you dont like say clearly 'thank you for the thought but i didnt want that so please dont do it again'. She might make a bit of a fuss if she is used to you putting up with whatever she wants usually but if you stand your ground calmly she will eventually get the message. The important thing is not to let it get heated emotionally, dont enter into any arguments dont accept any guilt etc just say 'this is what i want and this is what is happening' and then leave it at that. Because you do have a right to decide what happens around you and you dont have to do things you hate to placate anyone. xxx

Kitty3E Tue 17-May-16 21:18:31

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Foofoobum Tue 17-May-16 21:20:06

My mum did things like this and loves to throw surprise parties. I made her promise me she would never throw me a surprise party and she's stuck to it but she always has to sing happy birthday to me and I hate it, especially in public. It might be a bit extreme but I was diagnosed with Asd and then she agreed to stop behaving like that with me realising I wasn't just being rude and doing it to wind her up (yes I went over 30years with her thinking I was trying to humiliate her)

Sadly this behaviour is more about your mum - as it is with my mum too. I guess tho your birthday is an important anniversary for her too. Maybe addressing a compromise with her in advance of agreeing to a family meal would work?

TheSpottedZebra Tue 17-May-16 21:25:22

Oh god, I'm like you, I HATE a fuss. Luckily my mum does too, so shed never do that to me. So you have my sympathy!

Can you tell her - when you're less emotional in a week or so - that you hate it. Really hate it. And unless she'll promise to not do that kind of thing ever again, you'll just not meet up with her for those types of occasions.

vvviola Tue 17-May-16 23:07:40

You know Kitty, I was going to ignore that, but I've decided not to. My DM nearly wasn't able to be here today, as she was critically ill a year ago. You have no idea how pleased and relieved I am that she is in the position to be able to annoy me right now.

I adore her and love her.

It doesn't mean she doesn't drive me crazy sometimes. And this particular way was upsetting today and I needed to vent. It doesn't mean I'm not glad to have her around. I just hoped someone would have a magic wand that would stop her getting people to sing bloody happy birthday at me when I don't want it.

ollieplimsoles Tue 17-May-16 23:09:31

kitty that was really nasty

GiddyOnZackHunt Tue 17-May-16 23:13:43

Oh ffs Kitty there are people here who've lost every type of loved one. If every complaint about a DH, a DC was met with 'At least your D is still here...' then MN would be a bit thin.

GiddyOnZackHunt Tue 17-May-16 23:16:11

vv I too would be mortified by that sort of thing. Luckily my close family are the same. Can you arrange future celebration meals at home with a takeaway where you aren't on display for her big ideas?

fatmomma99 Wed 18-May-16 00:49:37

You should have done a 'cake smash', and as they were singing, just banged your forehead down into the middle of it.

(this seems to be in big, bold text, so hope it doesn't post that way).

And flowers for kitty. I've lost a parent too, and it's hard sometimes.

sneepy Wed 18-May-16 07:09:46

So you know your mum has form for this yet you go out with her anyway? After 30 years, you should know better.

And then you come on a public forum to whinge about it.

You really don't like attention at all, do you?

pearlylum Wed 18-May-16 07:15:55

I am surprised that you feel your mother should understand you.

That's not a given.
As she has form for birthday cakes in public then don't have a meal out with her for your birthday. Have a private cake and tea celebration at home- she can sing all she likes there.
Then have a meal out with your OH.

Nothing to dread about your 40th at all.

Patterkiller Wed 18-May-16 07:16:08

sneepy err no. I didn't get any of that from the Op's post.

GrinAndTonic Wed 18-May-16 07:27:27

My DM doesn't get me either and I am 36. She buys me presents she likes for my birthday/Christmas, refers to herself as Mummy when talking to me (but doesn't do it to my siblings) and basically refuses to acknowledge that I am an adult with my own opinions, beliefs and life.
I am trying to change how I act but 36 years of guilt is a hard to kick so one step at a time as I know she will never change.

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