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To think my sister is batshit

(164 Posts)
CaptainJaneway12 Tue 23-Apr-19 16:22:59

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!

Shebertherbert Tue 23-Apr-19 22:45:24

I feel like the op is one, one of my sisters might write about me.

I don't want children. I have no interest in children. I live hundreds of miles away from my family. I can be a good aunt for a week on holiday taking them out, treats, playing games. I could just not sustain that level of interest in my nieces and nephews over a longer duration.

I used to send birthday and christmas presents. I have 11 nieces and nephews. So this was pretty expensive. I very rarely got a thank you from either the children or the adults. One time I genuinely forgot a birthday. My ds rang me to ask where her dd gift was. I thought this was very rude. I am not obliged to buy presents. So stopped buying gifts regularly. Other peoples childrens birthdays are not my priority. My cat is the nearest I have to a child. I can imagine me making some remark about how he didn't get a present for his birthday. Should one of my ds's be so rude as to expect a gift again.

HelenUrth Tue 23-Apr-19 22:43:59

It's a nasty thing to do to punish a 5 year old for the perceived mistakes of her parent.

That the parent's "mistake" is not getting birthday presents for the dogs, and the child is being punished is an incredibly nasty thing to do.

No matter how clever the dogs are, they will never understand when it is their birthday, unlike the poor 5 year old.

OP, are there any other family members who might have insight into your sister's behaviour?

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Tue 23-Apr-19 20:53:40

It does sound weird that the attention just suddenly waned. I wonder if she was looking forward to having her own children, she voiced as much to her partner and he said no. I just can’t imagine someone being such a keen Aunty and then just switching off. It sounds as though something happened to cause the initial excitement and then the subsequent coldness.

Squickety Tue 23-Apr-19 20:30:21

I'm going to be a slight voice of dissent here, not because I think your sister is being reasonable, I definitely don't, but it might give you an insight into why she's doing this.

I'm childfree/less - not infertility, not never wanted children, just circumstances. I tell everyone I didn't want them (too late now anyway) but no one but me and DH really knows the truth. DB has 2, now tweens Obviously every birthday / Christmas I buy presents for DNs, DB in return usually buys a hamper or something similar for me and DH at Christmas even though I've told him there is no need.

Last year we got Ddog. He gave me the kids Xmas list, and asked if we wanted a fancy cheeseboard or a hamper. I told him to save his money as they are expensive but if he wanted to get something in return I'd really like it if he could please get a toy for Ddog, it cost 8 quid and I sent him the link to where to buy it. He didn't bother and never mentioned it again. I KNOW she's not a child, and I KNOW she won't know any different, but she is the closest thing I will ever have and it would have made me happy plus she just loves getting new toys.

So it's not the present for the dog itself, it's the lack of care for what's important to me, when for years I've been making effort and spending money on DNs. Which I won't stop, obvs, and I'd never say anything, but I am slightly hurt about the whole thing!

When you don't have children you do get relegated to second class in a lot of people's eyes, it may be that it stings a bit more for your sister than you realise. She's def BU by taking it out on your little DD though!

QueenArseClangers Tue 23-Apr-19 19:59:52

There was a thread a while ago about a woman’s SIL wanting to bring her hyper dogs to her toddler nephew’s bouncy castle birthday party. Sounds just as barking grin

user1498581287 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:54:29

It is'nt nice to premptively withhold a child's present because of no dogs present, though and if my sister had done that when my daughter was 5, I would have felt my sister was being really a bit odd, definately.

user1498581287 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:48:13

I wondered if it was something like she actually couldn't have children, but if you're sure it isn't , it could be a more generalized thing of feeling people without children don't have such a fuss made of them, so the dogs needing presents is almost a random, symbolic 'requirement'! rather than her being a bit loopy about her dogs. (Although, she maybe as well!)

I love dogs , but I've never heard of people being upset family don't buy dogs presents!

you would be entitled to tell her it's odd , as most people have said- the only thing is though, its obviously a bit sad making for you and your daughter.

The other way you could deal with it is to contact her and say-did you really want me to have got the dogs a present? I didn't realise- but I can , if you want me to. Then go and buy them a bowl or brush and some treats each, wrap them up, get them a card each, and take them round . Put the dogs birthdays in your birthday calender and get them a little present every birthday and xmas-in fact do doggy treats at easter as well, to be on the safe side!

It's a bit unusual!, but there's no reason why you can't- and I suppose if your sister had have had children , you would have been spending money on them.

If you did that, in the first instance, I might do the present buying and delivering, without your daughter, so she didn't realise her present had been withheld because of the dogs insulted feelings! but next year , she might enjoy going to a pet shop to help pick a present because-auntie likes the dogs to get a present!
You might have to let them off a thank you note though!

Thesnobbymiddleclassone Tue 23-Apr-19 19:41:51

She wants presents for her dog? Is laugh in her face!

It's in no way the same

lablablab Tue 23-Apr-19 19:35:03

"Oh I'm so sorry! The dogs must've been so disappointed! I wish they'd said something. Was there something in particular they really wanted? A transformer or a Barbie doll? Or a trip to chessington? Did they have a party? Maybe I could take them to soft play to make up for it?

What did I just read?! I cannot believe you're comparing your pets to my child?! Are you joking??"

... is more along the lines of my response. I wouldn't ignore this. She needs a wake up call. Your poor dd. sad

Sashkin Tue 23-Apr-19 19:25:34

There definitely more than two of them, DH works with at least two people like this (they bring their dogs into the office, expect the dogs to be treated like equal coworkers).

edenhills Tue 23-Apr-19 19:25:19

Are you sure it wasn't a joke that was worded badly? It's hard to get the inclination in a message sometimes. What's her sense of humour like?

ImFreeToDoWhatIWant Tue 23-Apr-19 19:25:03

She clearly wants the drama. Don't give it to her. I'd message with "That's fine, no worries." And I'd never contact her voluntarily again.

LynetteScavo Tue 23-Apr-19 19:24:51

Your sister is batshit crazy.

Moralitym1n1 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:24:42

* of her own

Moralitym1n1 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:24:01


Moralitym1n1 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:23:36

she announced birth before I had told people that mattered

The above and the dog/birthday present thing ...

No, no, no.

Distance yourself gently and quietly. Do whatever you need to gently discourage your dad's interest/excitement about her.

This kind of crazy doesn't go away and often gets even worse with age.

I really really hope she doesn't have kids if he'd own

MarieIVanArkleStinks Tue 23-Apr-19 19:21:02

Yes, her recent behaviour does sound batshit. But it's so off the wall it does raise the question of whether there's a piece of the picture you are not seeing here, OP. It's true some people are just hopeless, but in a sister with whom you previously had a good relationship the symptoms would probably have manifested themselves long before now.

Your DC comes first, and you're right to keep your distance and protect her from feeling rejected by a close family member. Cutting your sister out of your life sounds very drastic, but I'd certainly be keeping her at arm's length as long as she keeps up this kind of attitude.

I'd be out of patience with her too.

Unicornshopkeeper Tue 23-Apr-19 19:17:37

I've also definitely read this before

Slightly scary to think that there's two of them

CaptainJaneway12 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:12:43


CaptainJaneway12 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:12:04

Yes she did! I'm not on sm but my DH is and she was posting about being excited about being an aunt, as I said before she announced birth before I had told people that mattered, posted lots of pics of her holding baby...
Then 4 months hit and it wanted off to very little. Then snide remarks about kids, about them being a tie, and generally dismissive... Now this.

CaptainJaneway12 Tue 23-Apr-19 19:09:06

Never posted before about this, first time it's been an issue.
I was disappointed that she wasn't that interested in DD before, but this is the first time she has been put on par with the dogs... 😑

RockinHippy Tue 23-Apr-19 19:03:16


I think DD made her realise kids aren't accessories or dolls and it put her off.

I think you've hit the nail on the head there.

This reminded me of my SIL when DD was tiny & this was exactly it. DD was fine as a quiet pretty accessory so that SIL could take her out with her friends who did have DCs. The minute DD had an opinion of her own though, she was mostly dropped like a hot brick l. SIL is also childless by choice.

Cherrysoup Tue 23-Apr-19 19:02:30

Dogs are not the same as children. She’s being ridiculous. Why has she decided now is the time to stop buying presents when you’ve never got the dogs any?

I adore my dogs, but I couldn’t tell you their birthday!

whitesoxx Tue 23-Apr-19 19:01:12

Barking mad (literally). Birthday presents for dogs? Ffs

nauseous5000 Tue 23-Apr-19 18:59:54

Have you posted about this before? I have mega deja by

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