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To think that a 32yo man doesn’t have to spend his bday with his parents?

(248 Posts)
Emma090 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:00:09

My DH and I are living with my parents in the week and his parents at the weekend while we wait to move into our first house (just exchanged).

DH’s birthday is next Wednesday. DH works long hours and won’t be home that early, so my parents offered to take us out for dinner locally. We assumed we’d celebrate with DH’s parents when we see them at the weekend as they live about an hour away.

DH’s parents have just suggested we go out for dinner (local to them) on Wed, but DH has told them (not as tactfully as he perhaps could have done tbh) our plans as above. They got very upset and FIL has just finished lecturing my DH about how much he has hurt his mother etc.

DH is now saying we should cancel on my parents and spend it with his instead. AIBU to think that this all a bit ridiculous?

RuthW Thu 18-Apr-19 07:06:05

I'm 50. My parents like to see me on my birthday just as I like to see my adult daughter on hers. Nothing wrong with it. His birthday, he gets to spend it how he chooses.

EdtheBear Thu 18-Apr-19 07:11:43

Nobody in life has to do anything!

However your birthday isn't just a special day for you, it's also a special day for your parents, especially your mum.

I'd suggest inviting his parents to join you both and your parents.

BeanBag7 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:12:59

Can't you all have dinner together? At a restaurant half way? Although I don't jew how you suggest that now without offending his parents.

If he actually wants to spend time with his parents, and not just because they made him feel guilty, then I'm sure your parents will understand

HaventGotAllDay Thu 18-Apr-19 07:13:48

Nobody has to do anything on their birthday that they don't want to.

Why can't both sets of parents participate?

FineWordsForAPorcupine Thu 18-Apr-19 07:13:50

It sounds a bit like both sets of parents have decided what will happen, and your DH has just let himself be steered, resulting in upset all round.

Yes, he is a grown adult man. So why doesn't he decide what he wants to do, then invite who he wants to invite? Rather than have mummy and daddy #1 and mummy and daddy #2 squabbling over who gets to give him his birthday tea??

(And honestly, the situation where you go from one set of parents to the other from day to day sounds weird. I'm guessing this was already an attempt to "share" out your time and "make it fair" to both sets of parents, but it sounds like it has played into a very strange dynamic where you and DH are being bickered over by the older generation like kids trying to share an x box. I hope you can buy a house soon and move out, then start a slightly more grown up relationship with both families)

YouJustDoYou Thu 18-Apr-19 07:15:43

Oh Jesus. Mummy having a strop and son giving in to mummy. What a joke.

adaline Thu 18-Apr-19 07:16:40

Well - if I was given the choice I'd rather spend my birthday with my parents, not my in-laws.

Emma090 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:17:23

I think tbh he was quite happy to do nothing on his actual bday as he won’t be home till 7.30 and has to be up at 6, so he saw dinner at our favourite local pub with my parents as just a bonus. We’ve suggested having dinner with both sets of parents, my parents are very happy to do that (she just likes to keep the peace) but his parents seem to want it to be a more exclusive family thing of us, them and my SIL.

AuntieStella Thu 18-Apr-19 07:18:15

You were wrong to make assumptions about when his parents wouid want to see him for his birthday.

And it strikes me as perfectly normal to want to see your own parents, rather than your ILs on your birthday.

Perhaps your parents couid take you out at the weekend instead?

And yes, your DH really does need to learn some more tact. He seems to have thoroughly upset his parents to an extent that sounds wholly disproportionate and would not have occurred if someone's used ordinary basic courtesy and basic adequate manners.

HoraceCope Thu 18-Apr-19 07:18:20

it is mid week, they are simply jealous and unreasonable. he will see them at the weekend.

Shoxfordian Thu 18-Apr-19 07:18:21

Maybe you can all have dinner together?

Is he a man who will always do what his Mum wants though? Be careful op

HoraceCope Thu 18-Apr-19 07:19:06

let him decide op.

fleshmarketclose Thu 18-Apr-19 07:20:49

My adult dc and their siblings come to me on their birthday. I cook their favourite meal and make a birthday cake all partners are included. Obviously if they have other plans we tend to celebrate on a different day it's not a problem. I think DP should get the choice of who to celebrate with and I expect he'd choose his parents and you and your parents should graciously accept this.

HoraceCope Thu 18-Apr-19 07:21:03

Just because he is 32 doesnt mean he shouldnt see his parents op, would you have a meal with your parents on your birthday?
why should you cut him off from his parents?

let him chose

Gentlemanwiththistledownhair Thu 18-Apr-19 07:24:16

I can't believe the amount of pp's suggesting that you're BU. YAsoNBU!

Sure, when you're 6, your parents seeing you on your birthday is a big deal. But he's a grown man! Mind you my mil throws similar childish strops about "her boys", so i'm probably sensitive to it...

MeredithGrey1 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:24:46

His parents are being unreasonable imo. Yes I’m sure it’s nice to see your adult children on their birthday, but it’s his birthday, so to get upset when he doesn’t want to go to dinner an hour away when he’s going to be home late and has to get up early is making the birthday a bit more about them than him.

missmouse101 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:25:13

YANBU at all. Common sense prevails here. The original plan was perfectly fine. What a ridiculous fuss from his mother making it all about her. He's a grown man.

Emma090 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:26:08

@HorsceCope if you read my original post rather than just the title - it’s mid-week and he works long hours, so wanted to see his parents at the weekend when he had more energy and time to celebrate properly with them. But they are insistent on spending his actual bday with him.

Lobsterquadrille2 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:26:46

Surely the point is not that he actively doesn't want to see his parents, but the effort and time/late hour that it would involve. If he gets home at 7.30pm and they are an hour away, that's starting to eat at 9pm at the earliest. And he has to then (I assume) eat, get back to your parents' house and get up at 6am.

I wouldn't even consider it.

megrichardson Thu 18-Apr-19 07:27:46

I agree with the poster upthread who said 'be careful'. The whole thing is ridiculous, he is a grown man. If his parents can be manipulative over this non event, what other stunt could they pull in the future?

saraclara Thu 18-Apr-19 07:27:50

He doesn't have to. But maybe it's their tradition? It certainly is ours, and my kids are that age. No way I'd kick off if they wanted to change that though.

Sounds like he messed up informing them though. If it IS usual for them to be together, they might have already made plans which now need un- making.

Sparkletastic Thu 18-Apr-19 07:28:50

How utterly bizarre of them to make a fuss - particularly when you are staying with them every weekend.

billybagpuss Thu 18-Apr-19 07:29:25

It’s not practical to see his parents. By the time he’s got home, changed and got there it’s going to be at least 9pm.

stucknoue Thu 18-Apr-19 07:30:07

Dinner half way, a 30 minute drive is reasonable for both of you

Oakenbeach Thu 18-Apr-19 07:30:29

I can't believe the amount of pp's suggesting that you're BU. YAsoNBU!

I agree. Wanting to see your adult children on their birthday to the point of getting upset and angry if that doesn’t happen is ridiculous and really rather pathetic.

JustAnotherMillennial Thu 18-Apr-19 07:32:27

Yanbu OP, I love my parents dearly but if my birthday falls on a weekday then I probably won't go out, happy with a takeaway with DH and the kids.

The weekend we can all celebrate together etc

saraclara Thu 18-Apr-19 07:32:31

"Sorry mum, but I don't finish work until 7:30, so driving up to you will only give us a short time, and I'll be really tired. I'll be much better company at the weekend, which was why I thought this would be better"

Youseethethingis Thu 18-Apr-19 07:32:33

YANBU! It won’t really be much of a celebration with his parents mid-week if they are a hour away, he doesn’t get home til 7.30 and has to be up at 6. The fact that your PILs are kicking off and wanting you both to go somewhere local to them, and won’t compromise is just ridiculous. I would be so pissed off with their behaviour if I were your DH.

GeorgeTheBleeder Thu 18-Apr-19 07:32:54

This is ridiculous. You’ve just exchanged on a house? Cancel all the nonsensical, tiring, inconvenient birthDAY complications and simply have a combined birthday/housewarming - to which both sets of parents are invited - once you move into your own home.

HoraceCope Thu 18-Apr-19 07:32:54

i am sure your parents wont mind if that is what he wants to do op,
just go with the flow

Butterfly84 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:34:01

Hmmm...maybe the fact that you're staying with them every weekend is causing some issues. It seems like your MiL was upset because 1. she's got a good enough house for son to live in but he doesn't want to see her on his birthday and 2. the way that your DH declined the offer.

I think you need to stop being so hard on your PiL. It's a really kind thing to let you stay with them weekly, I know a lot of parents who wouldn't do this. Your DH needs to apologise for letting them down rudely. Yes, it's up to him what he does on his birthday but there's no need to be rude and unappreciative.

PolarBearBubbles Thu 18-Apr-19 07:34:54

I live 20 minutes from my parents and rarely see them on my birthday, nor have I done since I left for uni at 18. I think it's bizarre for an adult to arrange to see their parents on their birthday rather than doing something with their own family.
I'll spend the day/evening with DH and the kids and probably see my parents at the weekend.

TrojanWhore Thu 18-Apr-19 07:35:08

Well quite saraclara but he didn't use either tact or manners did he?

He was blunt and that's why it kicked off.

OP and her parents are collateral damage from his inadequacy.

BarbaraofSevillle Thu 18-Apr-19 07:35:57

it’s not practical to see his parents. By the time he’s got home, changed and got there it’s going to be at least 9pm

^^ This. If they're the type of people to get upset about what are perfectly reasonable arrangements, they're hardly likely to want to go out for dinner that late.

Margot33 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:37:43

Its up to your husband. If hes tired and works long hours then celebrating at the weekend would be sensible as he'll be able to enjoy it. Just stick to what he wants to do. They'll get over it.

KC225 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:39:58

Ordinarily, I would say no you don't have spend a birthday with anyone. However, when you are living at someone's house ...... It puts a different slant on it. Don't make things awkward if you still have to live there.

I also suggest a go out to dinner with both sets of parents. Its not that far, can he knock off half a hour early.

grasspigeons Thu 18-Apr-19 07:42:33

Obviously i agree with the sentiment that he is an adult who can do what he likes but i do feel that a birthday is important to the person that gave birth as well as the person that was born. Being too tired or busy is one thing but spending it with the in-laws is a bit 'ive replaced my mother with my partners mother' its not quite the same as spending it with your own partner or kids.

ineedaholidaynow Thu 18-Apr-19 07:44:25

I’m assuming PP who see their parents/DC/siblings on their birthdays all live near each other.

If it was either DH’s or my birthday and it was mid-week, it would probably be just us 2 going out for a meal, then we would try and see the respective parents whenever it was possible. But at various times in our lives we have lived between 2 - 5 hours from our families.

As an aside, as both sets of parents are so used to seeing you, have you discussed how much you are going to see them once you move out?

NameChangeNugget Thu 18-Apr-19 07:46:11


Your mil is getting irrationally excited about a non-event

Settlersofcatan Thu 18-Apr-19 07:46:11

I suspect the issue is that he said "I already have plans with my in laws" sending the message that they are more important to him now. If he had said "I would love to celebrate with you, but I only finish work at 7 so can we go out at the weekend?" it would have been fine.

Ninkaninus Thu 18-Apr-19 07:50:12

I think mummy and daddy need to be reminded that their little boy is an adult working man now and works long hours, and also that they are being incredibly selfish and childish to be fixated on having to celebrate his birthday on the actual day when it means their son (whose wellbeing should matters more than their preferences) will suffer.

I would find people like that so, so tedious, and YADefinitelyNBU!

Hazlenutpie Thu 18-Apr-19 07:52:39

Completely ridiculous! No you should not change your plans, your parents have very kindly offered and it’s all arranged.

His mother needs to wind her neck in.

lboogy Thu 18-Apr-19 07:53:16

Why are you even involved in where he spends his birthday? He should spend it where he wants and naturally I'd imagine he'd prefer his own parents

Hazlenutpie Thu 18-Apr-19 07:54:53

I suspect the issue is that he said "I already have plans with my in laws" sending the message that they are more important to him now. If he had said "I would love to celebrate with you, but I only finish work at 7 so can we go out at the weekend?" it would have been fine.

Bollocks to that. He was right to tell the truth. His parents need to back off from an adult son.

LemonTT Thu 18-Apr-19 07:55:48

It is his birthday so he decides. He has.

Whilst his mum is making a fuss, so are you.

I’m sure your parents will be ok with it. He can leave work early. Job done. Life goes on.

Hazlenutpie Thu 18-Apr-19 07:56:20

Yes but he’s already accepted an invite from his in-laws. He’s not six, he’s 32 FFS.

woolduvet Thu 18-Apr-19 07:58:21

I'd say, that's lovely. We've booked a meal at my local pub at 8. See you there. Just to let you know I'll be leaving straight after cake as I'm up early. Or we can do something else at the weekend.

Westfacing Thu 18-Apr-19 07:58:50

but DH has told them (not as tactfully as he perhaps could have done tbh) our plans as above.

Conversation was probably something like, we'd like to take you and DW out for your birthday, and reply Oh, no thanks, I'm going out with in-laws.

That would be a little hurtful, but I'd keep it to myself - speaking as a mother of even older sons!

ukgift2016 Thu 18-Apr-19 07:59:48

I would be a bit upset too if my DD chose to spend her birthday with her PIL and not include me!

But most people are here like to paint the PIL as the enemy so go ahead!

Hazlenutpie Thu 18-Apr-19 08:00:52

Jesus what is wrong with you people? You don’t own children, especially ones who are adults.

ittakes2 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:02:16

I am one who thinks I would be upset if my child said they wanted to spend their birthday with p'n'law and not me. I suspect your parents were being kind in offering - I also suspect they would understand if the plans were changed.

ittakes2 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:04:35

Lots of people are saying his parents are being controlling - but are they? Did they insist you change? Their feelings were hurt - and they told him. People can't help their feelings but I see a bigger problem if they can't tell their own son how they feel. Your hubby has decided to change plans - so its you being controlling if you don't let him do what he wants on his birthday.

GillianUsedToLiveHere Thu 18-Apr-19 08:04:39

To everyone saying they don't see their parents on their birthday, how would you feel about your own child, the one you gave birth to not seeing you on their birthday? It is not only a memorable day for your child but also you.

Geographically I lived almost 4 hours from my parents so could not see them if my birthday fell on a weekday but did go and see them on the weekend.

The way he phrased it is bound to be a bit upsetting to his parents but also they are being unreasonable as he will see them at the weekend and is staying over.

Quite lovely to have both sets of parents wanting a meal with him. I didn't have that kind of relationship with my ILs until about 7 years into my marriage (10 years into my relationship with Dh)

Ninkaninus Thu 18-Apr-19 08:04:40

So now, because he didn’t think to frame this in a tactful way, he’s panicking because mummy is upset and daddy has got on his case, so his solution is so be a) be rude to his PIL and uninvite himself from a previously arranged meal, and b) put you in a difficult position with everyone in the situation.

This is what I can’t stand about men who can’t deal with mummy, mostly, and daddy, being cross or upset. They always want everyone else in the situation to be okay with rudeness and unreasonable expectations, just so they don’t have to feel uncomfortable (because that’s what it’s really about).

NabooThatsWho Thu 18-Apr-19 08:04:52

Why are you even involved in where he spends his birthday? He should spend it where he wants and naturally I'd imagine he'd prefer his own parents

She’s his WIFE confused. And why do you assume he would rather spend it with his parents?

Some of the responses on here are so strange. He’s an adult, he’s working long hours and would rather see them at the weekend when he has time to celebrate properly.

The ILs are being U and only thinking about themselves. Weirdly possessive and selfish.

Iloveacurry Thu 18-Apr-19 08:05:02

We live about 1 hour from my ILs. My husband has never spent his birthday with his parents. We usually see them at the weekend near his birthday. It’s just too far for a week day.

IncrediblySadToo Thu 18-Apr-19 08:05:03

I suspect the entire problem was his delivery. If he’d said ‘That would have been lovely, but we wouldn’t get to you until at least 9 & by the time we’ve had dinner & driven back it’s going to be too late when I have to leave for work early on Thursday. I’d far rather celebrathe with you at the weekend when we can have a much more relaxed time’ his parents might have still been a bit disappointed but not quite so upset. Instead I expect he just waded in & said something tactless like ‘No, can’t do that, Emma’s Mum & Dad are taking us out for dinner at my favourite pub’


He needs to ring his Mum, apologise for upsetting her and just explain that it’s too far and too late mid week, that he’s looking forward to celebrating with them at the weekend.

YOU need to ask him why he thinks it’s ok to ditch your parents, to appease his mother, to do something that doesn’t suit you or him because he’s upset his mum by being a tactless twat.

TooBusyHavingFun Thu 18-Apr-19 08:05:52

I'd rather spend my birthday with my parents than my in laws. I'd suggest meeting half way.

FraggleRocking Thu 18-Apr-19 08:06:54

YANBU and I’m really surprised more people aren’t saying that but obviously it depends on an individual family and how they celebrate birthdays whether the ‘actual day’ matters. In ours, we don’t care, it’s when we can all be together and enjoy it.
He chose the weekend so he would have energy and enjoy it. Totally understandable. I’d say to his parents that the meal in the week isn’t even a proper celebration, they are welcome to join but you’ll still see them at the weekend as well.

NabooThatsWho Thu 18-Apr-19 08:06:58

To everyone saying they don't see their parents on their birthday, how would you feel about your own child, the one you gave birth to not seeing you on their birthday? It is not only a memorable day for your child but also you.

Errr...when my children become adults they are free to decide how to spend THEIR birthday. No point throwing strops and guilting people into doing what you want.
But I seem to be in the minority here.

fonxey Thu 18-Apr-19 08:07:05

His parents are behaving like babies and guilt tripping their son. I'd rather my child choose to come and see me than have to guilt trip them into doing so.

It's midweek too, so not even practical especially if you're going to see them at the weekend as well! I feel had for your husband being trapped like this.

Neither my mum or my OH's folks would behave like this because it is not normal.

Because I'm a bit bitchy I would give them a choice now. See them midweek for a quick and hurried meal where you will basically not be sticking around. And then go and do something else on the weekend and they will not get to see you.

They can come over for a shared meal.

Or wait a couple of days and have a nice relaxed meal with some qt together.

noodlenosefraggle Thu 18-Apr-19 08:07:05

Frankly, as a 32 year old married man who has to live with his in laws, id want to go out on my own with my wife on my birthday. If it was a choice between seeing my parents and my in laws, Id choose my parents. Why arent you going out by yourselves? He isnt your parents son, why do they want to spend his birthday with them? i get a card and a cheque from my MiL on my birthday, as does my DH from my parents!

Lobsterquadrille2 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:08:42

@ittakes2 surely it's more to do with the timing and practicalities of his parents being an hour away and him working long hours? It's hardly a choice between one set of parents and the other. I'm assuming the weekdays with one set and weekends with the other is because of proximity to respective workplaces.

I didn't see my DD on her 21st because she was 250 miles away at university. I didn't for a second think that she "chose" her friends over me!! I respect her "choices" given the distance, and the small fact that she's an adult rather than a possession.

MrsFassy Thu 18-Apr-19 08:09:04

But OP's husband isn't necessarily choosing his in-laws over his own parents, it's more that they're the more practical option, due to work/distance etc.

Plus, if it was really about the in-laws wanting to see their son in his birthday, then they'd happily have accepted the invitation to join OP, her husband and her parents. Instead they're kicking off and demanding it's just them and it has to be the OP and her husband who travel. That sounds more like people who simply want their own way.

Out of curiosity @Emma090 what are the usual arrangements for birthdays?

GreenTulips Thu 18-Apr-19 08:09:25

Sounds like the poor bloke just wants some peace! You’re all fighting over him like some prized possession!

I don’t care if my kids decide to celerbrate with their partners or friends and I have done so for years!! Can’t remember the last time I did anything with family on my birthday - how ridiculous

Ninkaninus Thu 18-Apr-19 08:09:56

I’m not sure it actually was his delivery. People like that are weirdly possessive anyway and don’t really understand that when a man has a wife, that that is now where his priority lies, and where it should be. They are childish, selfish and entitled and would likely be upset no matter how it was phrased.

And my children are both grown up now. I think of them fondly on the day, see them on their birthdays if that is how it works out, but otherwise we can speak on the phone on the day, or near to it, wherever suits them or us best. I wouldn’t dream of demanding that they come see mummy because mummy needs to be the main priority on their special day!

HoraceCope Thu 18-Apr-19 08:14:11

i think a meet halfway suggestion is an excellent idea.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:15:56

I think meeting halfway is an excellent tides too.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:16:05


Ninkaninus Thu 18-Apr-19 08:18:06

I don’t think so, personally. It’s just rewarding their selfishness and entitlement and letting them know that a guilt trip will work to their advantage every single time from now on.

But I despise it when people try to manipulate me, so maybe I’m being a little bit harsh.

Flaverings Thu 18-Apr-19 08:18:39

I think birthday norms are one of those things that really differs between families.

In my family the norm is that it's very important to send a card, but that's about it. Presents, meals, parties etc are just for children really. It's no big deal, but Christmas is all about multiple get togethers and presents.

In DP's family birthdays are very much a family event with a set routine of all (adult) siblings and partners around to the parents' house, ceremonial present-opening, cake, song etc. and it must be on the actual day. It's very much about keeping the parents happy.

ineedaholidaynow Thu 18-Apr-19 08:19:23

How would the PP on here who always see their adult DC on their DC’s birthday feel if their DC decided one year to either spend their birthday solely with their partner or their mates?

I would like to think that once DC is an adult and is absolutely free to choose who he spends his birthday with, I would accept his wishes and not throw a strop if he didn’t want to spend it with me. I can’t imagine that he would want to spend every birthday with me, and I think I would have partly failed as a parent if he couldn’t be independent enough to spend it with other people, at least once in a while.

Flaverings Thu 18-Apr-19 08:19:34

People like that are weirdly possessive anyway and don’t really understand that when a man has a wife, that that is now where his priority lies, and where it should be

This. I think a lot of problems can be solved when your new family takes priority over your old family.

scaryteacher Thu 18-Apr-19 08:19:51

I didn't see ds on his birthday for six years, from age 17, as he was boarding at sixth form in the UK, and then was he was at university.

My Mum hasn't seen me on my birthday every year as we lived 180 miles apart from when I was 20, and then further as she lived abroad for a couple of years, and then I moved abroad in 06 to follow dh.

Dh was often at sea or working elsewhere on my birthday.

The OPs pils need to get over it.

Wolfiefan Thu 18-Apr-19 08:20:40

He needs to decide what he would like to do for his birthday. Then do it.
OP if you’re newly married and about to move into your first home then you both need to set a precedent. Or the rest of your life will be you being guilt tripped into doing things you don’t want to.

NameChange92 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:26:10

yanbu his parents are being ridiculous

That being said -
Are his parents able to travel to you for his birthday? If so i’d invite them along with you and your parents on the day. And not engage in any further discussion about it, they’re invited, it’s their choice whether or not they accept that invitation.

If they aren’t able to travel to you i’d be tempted to go with natural consequences I.e. do what they want and go to them on his birthday, but leave to get home at the time you would have if you’d gone for dinner at the local pub, e.g. he gets home at 7.30, time for him to change + you drive an hour and arrive at 8.45-9, you spend 30mins and leave at 9.30pm.

If they complain you weren’t there very long then you calmly point out yes, that’s why you wanted to leave celebrating until the weekend as he has to work tomorrow. Then make really nice plans for a leisurely celebration with your parents at the weekend.

harriethoyle Thu 18-Apr-19 08:31:34

I find it bizarre you are nonplussed that his parents want to see him on his birthday yet have arranged for him to see yours...

Acis Thu 18-Apr-19 08:32:38

Not sure about this one. I would have no problem with my DC spending their birthdays with their partners rather than coming to us. I suspect I might be unhappy if they were spending time with their partners' parents rather than us.

ChuckleBuckles Thu 18-Apr-19 08:36:27

I find it bizarre you are nonplussed that his parents want to see him on his birthday yet have arranged for him to see yours...

They all live in the same house so bound to bump into each other I would have thought.

Your DH has set you up to fail here OP by his lack of tact, you will be at fault with the il's if he doesn't go now on Wednesday because of your "interfering" parents having the nerve to think they could take out their SIL for a birthday meal , and if he bins off your DP it will make life very awkward around the breakfast table on Mondays to Fridays.

lablablab Thu 18-Apr-19 08:39:41

His parents are being unreasonable to expect him to drive an hour over to them and an hour back on his birthday after a long day at work!

It's his birthday, not theirs. I think they're being ridiculous, mean-spirited and selfish.

If they really must see him on his birthday, then they can come to him. Invite them to dinner. He can explain he hadn't realised how important it was to them to celebrate on the actual day (wtf?!) but he has a late finish and an early start so he really needs to stay local.

Speak to your parents about doing dinner with them another night, if they wouldn't mind, to keep the peace.

Do you plan to have dc? I can see some batshit in law behaviour coming for the future...

diddl Thu 18-Apr-19 08:41:07

I don't think that he should cancel having accepted, but I suppose I find it a bit odd that your parents didn't think that just the two of you might want to go out.

AspergersMum Thu 18-Apr-19 08:43:44

YANBU and this topic is hilarious. I didn't realise how invested people are in their birthday - I thought that stopped around age 12, except for perhaps 18th, 40th, 80th where it seems more customary to celebrate with family and friends.

IfNotNowThenWhy Thu 18-Apr-19 08:45:06

To everyone saying they don't see their parents on their birthday, how would you feel about your own child, the one you gave birth to not seeing you on their birthday? It is not only a memorable day for your child but also you.

Um..if he was 32 and married I don't think I'd expect to see him on his birthday!
And no, birthdays belong to the person whose birthday it is NOT the person who gave birth!
Having said that, why is everyone saying the MIL is making a fuss? OP said it was the FIL making a fuss ( just because he said "your mother is upset doesn't mean she is!)
OP-yanbu. Stay in and get a takeaway or just go locally the two of you.

WeeDangerousSpike Thu 18-Apr-19 08:45:17


If it's so important for them to see him on his birthday, then given the circumstances they need to travel to see him. I doubt very much they make all the effort on their birthdays - I bet he has to travel to them because its their birthday. Works two ways.

Absolutely not reasonable to be travelling like that between shifts so close together. Just not practical.

As for PP with he can leave work early Ffs! You're his boss are you? What if he's a surgeon. GP. Bus or train driver. Bin man. Carer. Anyone who works alone in a shop. Or just works in the real world in any number of roles where you can't just sod off when you feel like it?!

I suspect his delivery has aggravated the sitiluation, OP. but tbh his parents taught him his manners

Chocolatecoffeeaddict Thu 18-Apr-19 08:46:35

Why are you not just the two of you going? Odd that either of you would want anyone's parents there for a birthday meal out.

LillithsFamiliar Thu 18-Apr-19 08:46:58

His original plan of not doing anything would probably have worked well. It's become an issue because that changed to going out with your parents.
You're adding to the bickering tbh by framing it as he 'has to spend it with his parents'. He wanted to do nothing. When it became a choice between ILs or parents, of course he chose parents.

kateandme Thu 18-Apr-19 08:48:03

* he had more energy and time to celebrate properly with them. But they are insistent on spending his actual bday with him*

could he say this to know then it might placate this type of mother and make her feel he is actually choosing them.could he maybe say he was looking forward to going to so and so loally at the weekend.
talk to your dp and let him knw whatever he wants to do is fine.but he is coming home from work probably close to knackerd so he needs to do what he WANTS to do not for others.

tashac89 Thu 18-Apr-19 08:52:58

Christ. DP's parents are at a festival every year on his birthday and we're on a kid free weekend in London. He sees them before going, I don't understand the issue.

Missingstreetlife Thu 18-Apr-19 08:53:45

Presume you could go to theirs from work and stay afterwards. No law says you have to go to your parents first even if you usually do. That's not the point, they are being daft.

HoraceCope Thu 18-Apr-19 08:54:21

i imagine the op dh said yes to the meal offer because her parents are paying? or just why not have a meal tbh?
he was unfortunately tactless and his own parents took offence.
not the end of the world.

ineedaholidaynow Thu 18-Apr-19 08:58:23

I must admit I can’t see why OP and DH just don’t go out together for his birthday. I would have thought as they have no time apart from living with parents (either hers or his) it would be nice to just have some couple time.

Emma090 Thu 18-Apr-19 09:00:00


Before this year, we lived about 5 hours away, DH saw them about 3x a year, and not usually on his bday. Before we were together, he saw them less often.

BobBobBobbingAlong Thu 18-Apr-19 09:00:25

His parents sound like dicks. His mother getting upset over not seeing someone on their actual birthday and having to wait until the weekend is just bizarre. And then getting your husband to lecture your adult child about his wrongness is pathetic.
He may have been tactless but they shouldn't behave like toddlers.

Loopytiles Thu 18-Apr-19 09:02:03

DH is U for being so passive about his birthday wishes. Lots of people work long hours: doesn’t mean we can’t also do normal “life admin”.

OP seems a bit passive too.

Odd IMO to have dinner out with his in laws on his birthday rather than just go out as a couple.

A bit off, when the in laws were attending, not to invite his parents and suggest a venue half way in the first place. Having been invited, the parents are U to make a fuss.

ineedaholidaynow Thu 18-Apr-19 09:03:47

Oh OP I suppose it is the novelty factor and the fact that he is going out with your parents this year that has hit a nerve. Could they come to the meal on Wednesday?

I assume you have moved to be closer to parents?

Saracen Thu 18-Apr-19 09:04:02

Well, I think the principle of your DH not necessarily spending his birthday with his parents is fine. But he's known them for 32 years and presumably could have anticipated that this is what they would expect. In which case he could have thought about how to break the news gently that this was not the plan this year. Sounds like he was rather rude to them. That isn't on, especially as they're being kind enough to let the two of you stay with them every weekend.

But it's crazy that your DH is now responding by letting you and your parents down in order to fix things with his own parents. I think it should be adequate for him to give them a proper apology and ensure he spends some time with them at the weekend.

ddl1 Thu 18-Apr-19 09:04:12

I don't think you're unreasonable at all. I think the whole idea of 'it must be on the DAY!', however much trouble it causes the person who's supposed to be celebrating, is very unreasonable. It's not as though he's not going there at all. And it makes perfect sense that the weekend is a better time. Under the circumstances, your dh should probably just have stuck to the 'working day versus weekend' issue, and not mentioned tea with your parents, as this seems to have sparked off a 'us versus the in-laws' jealousy on the part of his parents. You have invited them; they have turned it down; now it is up to them and your dh to deal with it. Best for you not to get involved any further, or you and perhaps your parents will become the 'bad guys' in their arguments.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Thu 18-Apr-19 09:05:05

To think that a 32yo man doesn’t have to spend his bday with his parents?

Doesnt have to spend it with his ILs either ....

Saracen Thu 18-Apr-19 09:06:09

Sorry, cross-posted with your update that he hasn't been in the habit of celebrating his birthday with his parents in previous years, so I guess he wouldn't have been expecting this demand. Still, he should have been polite in turning them down.

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