Is this reasonable or cheeky?(81 Posts)
I’ve had an odd message from DSDs mother and I’m wondering if she’s being reasonable or a bit cheeky...
My partner and I have one child together and he also has a child from a previous relationship who stays with us a couple of nights a week. DSDs mother also has a 12 year old son who’s father lives abroad. My partner pays child maintenance and he also buys school shoes, uniform, sports equipment, pays for school trips.
DSDbis a lovely little girl who enjoys going shopping. At Christmas I took her shopping to choose an outfit as a gift - she chose a hoodie and jeans from Gap. For her birthday she chose some pink Adidas trainers. The only other thing I’ve bought her is some hair clips, as a thank you for helping me choose a birthday gift for my niece who is about the same age.
I received a message from her mother last night saying could I stop buying DSD expensive gifts and send the money to her instead. That way she can decide what the money is spent on and she can ensure that the older son also gets something as he feels left out. Is this reasonable or a bit cheeky? I don’t think she gets any maintenance for the older son as his Dad lives abroad.
They weren’t in a long term relationship when she got pregnant with DSD, I think they’d been seeing each other for about 3 months. He moved in with her when they found out she was pregnant as he thought it was the right thing to do, it lasted about a year. When he moved out she told him that he would never see her elder son again but then applied for CMS for him, although her claim was rejected. I don’t know why she thinks he should pay for the elder son.
I do also feel sorry for the elder son, he has no contact with his father or his fathers family. DSD has quite generous paternal grandparents too and often goes back from a weekend there with more gifts. I have considered sending him a small gift at Christmas but I’ve never met him and DP doesn’t see him anymore.
So they were Christmas and Birthday gifts and a pack of hair clips. I think I would just remind her of that and that you don’t want to give money as a present. She has nothing to complain about. Her DD’s gifts are her own whether money, toys or clothes.
It can’t be nice for the boy or his mum seeing him miss out but she must know that it’s not your place to make it up to him. Was your DH a father figure to him when they were together. I don’t think he should pay maintenance for him but it might be nice to get him a little gift at Christmas and maybe for his birthday off DSD.
Ignore her and let your partner deal with her.
I could ubderstabd her asking you not to buy her crazy extravagant gifts (games consoles every week etc) but asking you not to buy her an outfit from gap for her birthday is crazy. Asking you to send the money to her is even more crazy.
Your latest update makes the whole thing a lot more understandable from her POV. She's not really fed up with you, you're just the latest person buying gifts for DSD and not for DSS.
I totally get why you and DH's family are doing as they're doing, however there's a second child who watches his sister come home from visits with generous gifts, and who gets additional gifts at Christmas, and additional gifts on her bday. While he gets none of it.
I'm sure his mum tries to rebalance it, but she's obviously finding it difficult to treat her kids equally given the imbalance in family interest.
I would be inclined to start buying Christmas gifts for both of them, and cut back on the other gifts (birthday excepted). But YMMV.
If you wanted to be nice to the elder son you could have dsd buy him a gift at Xmas or his bday (with your money). I wouldn't entertain what the mum is suggesting though. It's insane.
I mostly see your side, but from her POV, she may be struggling to but her a winter coat/school shoes and then the daughter comes home with a winter outfit, say, when she has a tonne of leggings/hoodies or whatever the outfit was.
I think that may be the way forward - buying the elder child a birthday and Christmas gift from DSD with our money.
DP buys her school shoes and winter coat. DSD’s mum messages him if she ever needs anything like that and we/he buy it for her. Along with school uniform, school trips, sports equipment.
Agree with @lannieduck. Of course OP and her DH have no responsibility to the older boy, but if I put myself in the mum’s shoes, it must be difficult to watch DS see DD getting lovely gifts, time with her dad and a whole other family that loves her. I’d definitely be trying to make it up to DS if I were the mum.
I think it would be a really lovely gesture to get the boy a gift at birthday and Xmas. Not something you are obliged to do at all, but a lovely gesture all the same.
Blended families are a minefield!
We thought we’d cracked it as DSD is such an easy going little girl and seemed to accept me and our new child quite easily. We hadn’t thought of DSDs half brother as his mother stopped DP from having any contact with him and we were focussing on our little family.
I suppose she tried to argue that her ds was a "child of the family" when she applied to the CMS for him. (I doubt your OH was with her for long enough though).
I really like the idea of helping dsd buy her brother a present. I don’t know if it would be feasible but could suggest she asks her mum for ideas or ask her yourself (or dp, although that might be stirring things up given the batshit maintenance request). I’d be nice as I appreciate it must be difficult to see the disparity as a mother, but firm. Your dh had only been with her 3 months before preg with dsd and stayed another year or two and she thinks he should pay maintenance for her other son?!
I’d just say something like, “oh, those were just birthday and Christmas gifts - you’ll have to speak to dh about the maintenance side of things, I don’t get involved.” She’s bonkers!
I’d definitely be trying to make it up to DS if I were the mum.
But you would do it yourself, not expect someone who never sees him to make up for your shortcomings. I don;t see the requests stopping. She's a cheeky mare, OP. Don't give her an inch or she will be back for the mile.
I do feel sorry for her son but in no way is he your D H responsibility.
Maybe as pp have said Christmas and birthday gifts are the way to go.
My older dc have £££ off their df. Younger ones don't see theirs. No issue as they accept it's just the way things are.
She needs to see her ds right, not your dh.
How rude!! Some people are sooo cheeky! Continue to buy things and tell your step daughter that she has to leave it at your house due to her mother not liking it
She wants £ for the son but refuses to let your DH see him? She's definitely a CF. I would give the boy a gift on occasions, it's not his fault his mums a loon.
Her other child is not your problem. To me it sounds like she wants the money for herself. I have DS with my ex and DD with my OH. Sometimes DS comes back with stuff my ex or my family has bought him. DD doesn’t mind!
Carry on what you’re doing. It is your. I should to do as you please with.
She should be grateful you are a fab step parents and help out with clothes etc etc.
She does have an issue with money. I earn a professional level salary and DP earns about half as much but we do both work full time. She works 16 hours a week in a supermarket and is topped up with maintenance and benefits. She has said before that she thinks he should pay more maintenance due to my salary (she doesn’t know exactly what I earn but she knows what I do so she will have a rough idea of what I earn).
I have always stayed out of financial conversations with her. Messages between us have always been about pick up and drop off times and that’s about it. She’s usually civil but frosty, which is fine. I was never the OW but I can see why she may not like me due to the situation.
She does sound like a cf but I do feel sorry for the son . When I was growing up I was friends with a family, their mum was single mum and they had different dads ( not judging) they were also quite poor , mum didn't work , on benefits. Anyway the girl had a generous grandmother and would go and visit and come back with new outfit looking lovely her siblings got nothing well they weren't her biological GC so fair enough but I always felt bad for them as they had no contact with their dad or dads family.
Obviously this is not your concern as you've never met him but maybe you could send a little something or maybe have a little thought for how he'd feel .
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