To worry about the birthday present I've just sent?

(34 Posts)
Terabithia Mon 20-Mar-17 11:04:48

My partner's mother is very into buying gifts, which is lovely, but I find it very hard to know what to buy in return. She spends a small fortune on us, and often buys me expensive face creams, perfumes, etc. I often feel bad as firstly I can't afford to send such gifts in return, and secondly I find it really hard to know what to buy for her.

I don't know her well as she lives a long way away, but I like her and am keen to maintain good family relations! I've noticed that she can take offence at things very easily, and that she has set ideas about how things 'should be'. One of those things is the traditional idea that it should be the woman in a partnership who takes care of sending out cards, presents, etc., to the extended family.

However, over the past few years since I've been with my partner, he has sent her a birthday present such as perfume, and DD (from my previous marriage) and I have sent her something less expensive (this year a box of Milk Tray chocolates). She seems to be happy with this. This year, as usual, I attached a card signed by myself and DD to the chocolates.

This morning, she sent a text to my partner to thank him for the chocs. I remarked that I was glad she'd got them but it was a bit strange she'd texted him instead of me, and he casually mentioned that he hadn't bothered to send her anything this year.

So she thinks this £4 box of chocolates is from all of us, and I feel terrible about it. I know it's not all about money, but I do think she will feel offended. She would never say anything - she's too polite - but for some reason (I don't really know why as usually I don't much care what people think) it feels important that she has a good opinion of me.

Am I being unreasonable to feel a bit cross with my partner about the situation, and is there anything I can do to help rectify it?

BarbarianMum Mon 20-Mar-17 11:12:53

Poor woman. Must be lovely to know that your son can't be areas to make any effort for you sad. Still this is the problem with bringing your ds up to think that it is a woman's job to do these things .

Birdsgottaf1y Mon 20-Mar-17 11:14:17

Did you ask him why he hasn't bothered to send his Mum a gift?

He is out of order. Don't be railroaded into taking over the 'Wifework', though.

Tell him to fix this, even if he has to lie about the gift getting lost etc.

JungleInTheRumble Mon 20-Mar-17 11:15:16

YANBU to be annoyed with your partner! He should be calling his mother to apologise...

SparkleTwinkleGoldGlitter Mon 20-Mar-17 11:18:42

Must be nice to know her son thinks so little of her he couldn't even be bothered to buy a nice something. If his bothered all other years like she didn't notice just getting a £4 box of chocolates this year. I'm guessing as she lives a long way away he doesn't even see her often so a little effort on her birthday isn't really too much surely

Did you ask the lazy sod why he didn't bother this year?

MimiSunshine Mon 20-Mar-17 11:22:18

But you signed the card from you and DD so she does know you thought of her.

Do not get guilted into taking on the wife work. So she thinks it's a woman's drop, so what? It's not and her beliefs don't have to become your beliefs.

If her son can't be bothered then that's between them

MimiSunshine Mon 20-Mar-17 11:22:38

*job not drop

dowhatnow Mon 20-Mar-17 11:24:47

Tell him to send some flowers or something with an apology.
It was passive aggressive to send the thank you for the chocs to him though. I think she's mad at him not you.

ImFuckingSpartacus Mon 20-Mar-17 11:25:49

Must be nice to know her son thinks so little of her he couldn't even be bothered to buy a nice something

Well, she taught him that when he has a woman, he doesn't need to do things like send his ma gifts...shot herself in the ass there, didn't she?

KatharinaRosalie Mon 20-Mar-17 11:26:43

Wait, what - you and DD sent her a box of chocolates, card clearly signed by you and DD - and she thanks your DH and DH only? That's rude.

Coastalcommand Mon 20-Mar-17 11:26:57

Could he send another present and apologise saying they must have got separated along the way? Not your responsibility, but horrible to think of her being disappointed.

xStefx Mon 20-Mar-17 11:28:37

can you do an interflora today ?

KatharinaRosalie Mon 20-Mar-17 11:33:30

My MIL has opinions about how things should be. I could see she expected that I take over all wifework, card sending and such.

I didn't. We get along just fine, after she has adjusted her expectations.

You sent her a gift. Your DH is an adult and if he decides not to bother, that's really not your issue. I would not want my DH badgering me about presents that I send to my parents.

shovetheholly Mon 20-Mar-17 11:41:39

I have the same setup. In my case, it is made 10000 times worse by the fact that my gay BIL's partner is the Best Wife Ever! (And a brilliant cook and all-round lovely guy). grin

I second the plan of hitting the roof with your DH and telling him in no uncertain terms to get his finger out - ordering flowers today or saying that there's a problem with an order and using Amazon prime to rectify the situation might work!

Pinkheart5915 Mon 20-Mar-17 11:42:44

As his brought her nice gifts all other years she must of noticed her son couldn't be arsed when she got a £4 box of chocolates this year.

Receiving a cheap little something is fine if it's come from a thoughtful place but with your dp it didn't he was just too lazy to go to the shop and put in a bit of effort for his own mother.
No only couldn't he be bothered to go to the shop or order her some flowers or similar he must of put his name on the chocolates you brought!

YANBU to be a little pissed off and I think his lazy arse should order his mother some flowers for delivery

Terabithia Mon 20-Mar-17 11:51:13

Thank you all for helping me to put this in perspective. smile

I strongly suspect my partner may have Asperger's Syndrome, and I know it's not his fault, but I admit I find it hard to live with at times; he doesn't seem to 'get' social norms or see why things like gifts can be important sometimes, so perhaps that explains why he thought it was all right to just not bother this year. I don't think he's inconsiderate by nature, so this took me a bit by surprise.

I suppose I shouldn't have taken it for granted that he'd do the same this year as he has previously, but honestly it can be a bit exhausting trying not to make even small assumptions about what he'll do / how he thinks, lol.

EineKleine Mon 20-Mar-17 11:59:10

It was fair enough to assume he would do it. This is not on you!

KatharinaRosalie Mon 20-Mar-17 12:01:31

If he really simply cannot see the significance and understand presen-giving, surely his mum would know this, she has lived with him for a few dozen years or so.
Therefore no need for you to worry about it.

I understand that not all women mind the wifework, but just a warning - if you sort out an extra gift now, whether it is by ordering it yourself or nagging him, present and card buying for his side of the family will be your task from now on.

EineKleine Mon 20-Mar-17 12:13:06

If you do engage, get him to put a reminder in his phone for next year and send flowers now. It stays his responsibility.

Terabithia Mon 20-Mar-17 12:16:45

EineKleine, the phone reminder is a great idea, thank you.

Terabithia Mon 20-Mar-17 12:17:50

KatharinaRosalie good point! Yes, his mum must realise this too, I think I've probably been a bit silly worrying about it. smile

Rubies12345 Mon 20-Mar-17 12:35:28

Could you do one of those Amazon fast deliveries and then tomorrow DH can say oh I thought it would have arrived yesterday with the chocolates.

Flyinggeese Mon 20-Mar-17 12:36:01

Would it be a solution in future to just send a family present anyway? I.e. Not two separate presents; one from your partner then another from you and your daughter? Unless of course this is a very new relationship.

LadyPW Mon 20-Mar-17 13:09:28

I'd assume that his mum texted him and not OP to make a point that HE'D forgotten and that OP had remembered her side.

user1484750550 Mon 20-Mar-17 13:26:36

Could you do one of those Amazon fast deliveries and then tomorrow DH can say oh I thought it would have arrived yesterday with the chocolates.

Good idea.

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