To think my sister is batshit(164 Posts)
Younger sister, good relationship and quite close, not as much over the last couple of years though - she isn't as available with work / life etc.
When I had my daughter she was very excited to be aunt - she overstepped occasionally, calling in unannounced and daily and announcing birth on Facebook before I had chance to tell family... But I let it go as was pleased she was excited. This lasted around 4 months, then she lost interest.
She now sees DD at family gatherings, takes very little interest and has said she does not want children of her own. She never asks after her and seems frustrated with her after a short time. It upsets me as DD loves her aunt and is not naughty, just normal with lots of energy.
Sister is married and they both say that they never want a family and I know this to be true (so it's not down to fertility issues) as I took her to get map once last year and she wants to get sterilised. Despite this I still thought/hoped that she was pleased to be an aunt.
She has 2 dogs that she dotes on and sends me lots of messages/pictures of them (I don't do this with DD as she doesn't seem interested and I do t want to be a baby bore to her) I'm not really a dog person but feign interest and always ask after them and get them little doggy treats/toys if I visit.
Previously with birthdays she has dropped a present over and wished DD happy birthday. This year (5th,) nothing. I messaged her about a week after asking how she was, didn't mention birthday as assumed she had forgotten and didn't want to make her feel bad. She replied she was fine, and asked if DD had a good birthday, so hadn't forgotten. I replied she had and would love to see her aunt. She responded, "well bear in mind I won't have a present for DD, you didn't get -Dog1- or -Dog2- a birthday gift so we won't be doing birthday gifts either."
To be clear, I am very generous at Christmas and birthdays with her and her husband and am aware she has an extra person to buy return gifts for so go a little extra for them. (I have said not to bother buying for me and DH) and I have never done birthday presents for the dogs... Never occurred to me and wouldn't even know when their birthdays are.
DH says sister has lost the plot, I'm inclined to agree. Feel sorry for my DD as her adoration for her aunt obviously isn't reciprocated.
I haven't replied to sister. Don't even know what to say!
I need to be careful as I don't want my mum to get the brunt of it all and she will if I reveal what I know.
I hadn't responded to the dog birthday message and will not be attempting to contact her for the foreseeable. How can a grown adult be jealous of a child, their niece no less!?! I am so disappointed in my sister...
I agree that some distance will help. Do it quietly without drama.
Your DSis may eventually realise what she’s lost - or not - but better to keep her away from your DD now before any greater attachment develops.
Oh dear, your moms explanation makes sense in a warped kind of way. Your sister needs to grow the fuck up and I would be avoiding her like the plague after how she's spoken about my child if I were you OP
Spoke to my mum today, she saw sister over Easter and my mum said she was behaving quite aggressively, like she was looking for a fight. One of the comments she made was that my mum has several pictures of my DD on display but only two of her and that it was hurtful to sister. 🙄
Mum thinks that the issue is that she was the baby of the family and got lots of attention and everyone made allowances for her because she was young and that DD has "stolen" her limelight and role as "baby". For context sister is 27!!
I asked mum if she knew anything about her decision to not have children herself and she said that sister refers to children as messy, yukky, social life ruining, figure ruining etc... Mum also confessed that over the years sister has referred to my DD as "the brat". I think mum is finally telling me because it's all coming to a head now so there is no point trying to spare my feeling any longer.
So it seems her jealousy and loathing of my child has been festering for years...
I'm a mixture of angry, speechless, hurt... The lioness in me is ready to charge but that probably isn't the best solution.
I would cut back on the very generous presents for her and her DH.
I earlier suggested your sister might have issues of her own, but failed to mention that this is no excuse. I heavily despise passive-aggressives for being utter cowards who are unable to state openly what their issues are, and therefore resort to making the 'grand gesture'.
My DC's aunt has started ignoring birthdays too, as there's been an evident division in the family following an acrimonious funeral. We have sent her DC birthday presents for years - they are now both teenagers - and have never received as much as a thank-you note.
When grown adults start making innocent children the butt of their angst with their parents, it's time to protect the children from those spiteful, immature adults. For us, NC has been a long time coming with this particular 'aunt'. Privately, I'm delighted.
I agree with some PPs that this is very odd behaviour, as she used to be very enthusiastic about your DD. Is it possible that she’s developing a MH disorder?
And yes, maybe she’s in a controlling relationship? I didn’t know that my DSis’s marriage was abusive until she told me about it either.
I would say when are the dogs' birthdays, why didn't you tell me? And what would they like?
Then buy them presents.
Your DSIS seems upset, just give her what she wants.
Is it unreasonable and batshit? Definitely yes, but I would indulge her in a kind way and see what happens.
I think you should ring her or meet up and talk about it.
I would be a bit worried about my sister if this happened all of a sudden.
You don't have to be accusatory or defensive. Just ask what her side is and work from there.
I would worry that her partner has had a hand in her aloofness and her change of heart toward children.
Is he controlling? Does she have to answer to him about expenditure? Do you sense anger there under the surface? Have you ever noticed anything between them that made you wonder if everything was ok?
Just text back, "ok no worries, we 'll stop pressies for Christmas and bifthdays between us x" That puts an end to all gifts now. Unfortunately you can't make her care although it's hurtful. It's the same for me with my siblings, people are too self absorbed.
She deliberately didn't get your 5 year old a present?
What a spiteful bitch. I wouldn't want anything more to do with her.
DH says sister has lost the plot
She certainly has.
Feel sorry for my DD as her adoration for her aunt obviously isn't reciprocated
This is a much bigger problem If your sister was sane I'd suggest you tell her that your DD adores her, but I'm not sure it would help here. I'd invest energy in thinking of strategies to help DD over the loss of her aunt. Just leave your sister to her dogs unless she actually does need medical help. Even then I don't see what you can do. Don't drop her but a bit of distance might help.
I was thinking what Squickety said and other posters have hinted. She seems aggrieved that her 'family' is not acknowledged in the same way yours is, with presents to each member. She knows damn well her dogs don't care, and they aren't the same, but she wants her share of consideration, of attention.
And I agree with what a pp said about childless people having less 'weight' in a family. Not always, but their needs/foibles are often considered less.
Imagine a hypothetical extended family holiday where you hypothetically HAD to choose from a holiday home that was child friendly or a holiday home that was dog friendly. You couldn't have both. You'd choose the child friendly one. You bet she knows that. You bet it stings.
Not that I disagree that her behaviour is utterly sickish by the way! But I don't think she's actually batshit enough to think her dogs are actual children.
I think she sounds completely bonkers. I’ve never wanted a dog but I have 4 cats who I adore (as do my DDs), but I’ve never even thought about their birthdays. My DSis had a beloved DDog previously (she finally got a puppy again recently which she and her family adore), but I wouldn’t even know the exact birthday.
I’m afraid your sister is very self absorbed, so I just wouldn’t ever mention to your DD the possibility that her auntie will give her a present. She’ll soon stop being upset about it, as I’m sure she gets plenty of other presents.
My sister sounds very similar to yours OP! I posted an incredibly similar post to your first post some time ago under a different user name. My sister has now gone on to have a child! 🤔
However you handle the your sister wanting presents for her dogs and maybe needing some help or concern herself, I would slightly take a mental note of the fact, that she currently doesn't seem have a very good understanding of children/chilhood.
It's worrying that she would think that it was ok to hurt child's feelings, to make a point to you. She doesn't seem to have thought, but little niece will be sad, if I don't send a present-and the fact that didn't even occur to her, would make me a bit wary of asking her to babysit etc. I don't mean that nastily and it's something you could be quite subtle about, but while your daughter's still little , I would try and keep at the back of your mind that your sister-at the moment anyway, (hopefully she will improve) but at the moment she doesn't seem to understand that your daughter is a little person in her own right, and that she has feelings etc.
if it was me, I might try and talk to your sister on her own maybe, and ask if she really meant it, about needing dog birthday presents and if she's ok and not feeling generally upset etc. I might offer to start buying her dogs presents , if she'd like it.
I would try and tell her that she'd been hurtful,as well, though and I definately think I would keep an awareness that your sister might be a bit in need of support/ supervision around your daughter, until she shows more of an understanding that your daughter is , a person , with feelings etc and only a little person at that.
Another vote for the "Don't be so bloody ridiculous" route. She needs telling.
id wrap individually little do treat for 7x her dogs birthday for this is after all their real age.
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I think she's trying a bit too hard to convince everyone that she doesn't want kids.
She does sound a bit unhinged in not acknowledging her 5 yo nieces birthday over her dogs not getting birthday gifts that year that you've never normally sent them.
It smacks of jealousy to me.
I adore my dog she gives no shiny shits about what day it is though!!!
I'm a dog lover and owner. My dog is part of the family, sleeps in our bed. I don't do a birthday celebration or presents for her though! It would mean nothing to her. Your sister sounds absolutely batshit. I wonder if something has happened in her life to make her behave this way.
Yes she is nuts! She sounds like my sister!!!!!! Children are not the same as pets, I say that as a dog owner. My sister had a child eventually. Even then she told me she resented me for giving my parents the first grandson and granddaughter, I mean I had no control over the sex of my baby but ok 🤷♀️ I’ve slowly cut her out of my life. I’ve reached a point where I’ve stopped caring. It’s her loss that my children are not part of her life. Minimise contact, it’s not worth the aggro.
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