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To ignore this message?

(18 Posts)
KellyBoo800 Wed 04-Jan-17 11:46:36

This is not a MIL-bashing thread. I adore my MIL. However, my stepMIL has been a bit of a nightmare the past year or so. Her and my DH aren't particularly close.

For background, she came to visit us last year for a week (without her husband, my wonderful FIL) and although she can be difficult, she was welcomed and enjoyed herself. On her last day with us she was really mean to DSD about her colouring in - DSD was 6 at the time, and SMIL told her off for colouring in different directions etc and basically doing what children do. when DSD had finished and was really proud of her picture, SMIL just said "it would have been better if you'd listened to me". We didn't react to this, but I did take DSD for a walk to the shop shortly after and explained to her not to pay attention to her criticism.

Anyway, DSD's birthday was just before Christmas. FIL & SMIL live overseas. SMIL has just sent me a message on Facebook asking if DSD received her birthday card. That was it - no "hello", "Happy New Year", "Hope you had a nice Christmas" or anything like that. Just "Did DSD get her card?". For what it's worth, DH tried to call her and FIL on Christmas Eve but had no answer so we both sent her a message on FB (FIL isn't on there) wishing them a merry christmas and got no response.

WIBU to ignore her? DH has tried to call and thank them a few times now, she could just have easily have sent a message to my DH but decided to message me because she clearly thinks it's my responsibility to thank her when I don't think it is. DH will send her a message to thank her, but I don't know what I can say to her without replying "yes, thank you" which I don't really want to do because it just re-inforces her perceptions that I'm my DH's bloody keeper!!

KellyBoo800 Wed 04-Jan-17 11:47:39

Reading this now I notice that this is making a mountain out of a molehill - I just want her to accept that my DH is actually somebody who she is capable of talking to without going through me all the time, and it's not my responsibility to always say thank you on his and his daughters behalf!

RoseGoldHippie Wed 04-Jan-17 11:49:14

I don't understand why you would ignore it? Just tell DH to text her from his phone saying card received thanks!

Celticlassie Wed 04-Jan-17 11:50:11

Reply and say 'did you not get DH's message?'. That way you're replying but not answering.

Soubriquet Wed 04-Jan-17 11:50:14

Glad you've posted that second post because really it's a non issue isn't it

Contact her, don't contact her. Do whatever you want but is it really breaking your fingers to type yes thank you and send?

pigsDOfly Wed 04-Jan-17 11:51:26

I'd reply, 'yes, didn't you get DH's message'?

xStefx Wed 04-Jan-17 11:51:39

yes I agree, just be as blunt as she is with you

"Yes it was received " should suffice

MangoBiscuit Wed 04-Jan-17 11:51:54

Can you just say "Yes, thank you. Did DH's message not come through? If not, sorry for the delayed thanks."

All social niceties covered, whilst still politely indicating your DH is the one who handles this.

pigsDOfly Wed 04-Jan-17 11:52:17

xpost with Celtic

ohfourfoxache Wed 04-Jan-17 11:54:54

Totally agree with Celtic and Pigs

KellyBoo800 Wed 04-Jan-17 11:57:18

Soubriquet no but tbh why should I? All communication to my DH comes through me and it shouldn't. My DH tries to contact her, and rather than responding she comes straight to me. It's not a life or death situation but it's irritating, re-inforces her idea that I'm the secretary of the whole family, and I want to put an end to it.

Celtic thanks for the suggestion - I'll just let her know that DH has tried to contact her, or better just tell her I'm not sure so she should ask him. She's going to take offence at whatever I say but at least this might put an end to it.

TheWorstNoel Wed 04-Jan-17 12:00:34

You said in your OP that she and your DH 'aren't particularly close' - maybe she feels she can foster a closer/warmer relationship with you?

JustSpeakSense Wed 04-Jan-17 12:28:20

'Yes, thanks. Did you receive our Christmas messages?'

FatalKittehCharms Wed 04-Jan-17 12:33:36

I would just go with *CelticLassie's suggestion:

Reply and say 'did you not get DH's message?'. That way you're replying but not answering.

I wouldn't tell her DH has tried to contact her. But I would tell her 'I'm not sure, you should ask DH', as you suggest, OP.

KellyBoo800 Wed 04-Jan-17 12:39:09

Thanks all, I won't ignore her but will get her to talk to DH instead.

Noel I appreciate what you're saying but I've tried over the years to foster a closer relationship with her - eg by inviting her to use our house as a base when she visits the UK because her own children are reluctant to put her up for more than a night. She's very big on manners, which is why it's pissed me off so much that her message to me seems so rude. I can't believe it's accidental because she puts so much emphasis on manners. So she's making a point that I didn't thank her quickly enough - I get that it's important to thank people, but it's DH's responsibility to do that, not mine, and he tried to anyway.

My FIL, whilst lovely, is a bit of a hermit so it could well just be that she's used to having to act as his PA and expects me to do the same with DH.

dollydaydream114 Wed 04-Jan-17 12:49:34

I do think you're making an awfully big deal out of this.

I appreciate that you feel she should have contacted your DH rather than you, and yes, it's annoying when people assume the wife is 'the secretary of the family' but that is really common among people of certain generations and I doubt it's personal. Or if, as you said, her relationship with DH hasn't always been great, maybe she actually just finds it more comfortable to talk to you than him.

I would just reply and say something like "Yes, the card arrived safely - thanks, it was very kind of you. DH actually tried to call you and FIL on Christmas Eve but I don't think you were home - did you go somewhere nice? Anyway, I'll let DH know you've been in touch as I expect he'll want to give you and FIL himself."

Facebook messages at Christmas are all very well but I know my mum misses loads of messages/posts on there - it's not always that reliable with notifications and the way it shows things in a newsfeed or on someone's wall timelines can be quite haphazard, so it's always possible she didn't even know you'd tried to get in touch that way when you sent your 'merry Christmas' messages.

The thing with your DSD and the colouring-in is a bit harsh and I would have been annoyed by it too - but again, not necessarily unusual for some generations who sometimes think they're encouraging kids to do better by pointing out mistakes. confused

KellyBoo800 Wed 04-Jan-17 13:19:49

Dolly you are right I am making a bigger deal out of it than I need to - which is what is bothering me. I need to just step back and be polite and then maybe try to tackle it when I'm less bothered by it! I get that some people do act like a secretary to their family but I just don't like having to do it just because they expect me to. DH was completely mothered in previous relationships so it took a lot of emphasis on my part early on that he should be doing things for himself (including keep up communications with family who are not local) so I feel that she is unravelling that. But that's not her fault, you're right.

ThisThingCalledLife Wed 04-Jan-17 14:29:35

stop letting her play games with you!

Either ignore her messages or just answer back with a question.
She doesn't have the decency to be civil with your dh or nice to his and dsd are just the 3rd parties who can be used/played to further whatever her agenda is.

Leave dh side of the family for him to deal with.
SMIL can either learn to be civil with your dh or let FIL arrange contact.

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