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Family WhatsApp photo ban

(148 Posts)
olympicsrock Sun 11-Aug-19 03:29:53

I probably am being unreasonable here but i’m annoyed and upset and need to chat about this.

Background: dh brother and sil are having a difficult time. They have dd 7 who has SEN. SIL started a business 3 years ago that was a bad idea, sunk more money than they had into it, had an affair.

DH and BIL were competitively close growing up. 7 years ago they were partners in a business, BIL lied , business failed we and many friends who invested lost money, BIL and SIL bought a 6 bed house and new car at this time.

DH and BIL fell out, DH picked himself up career wise and after a very difficult time ( PND etc) we are doing well. We have two DS aged 7 and 4. BIL has now not worked for 2 years. Turned down a job that DH found for him ( working for a friend. Good job but not good enough for BIL. Still living in big house.
BIL is now depressed due to financial difficulties, not working, likely to divorce and struggling to cope with fact that his daughter has SEN.

The problem. PIL are trying to help BIL and 6 months ago suggested that I didn’t post pictures of my DS on family WhatsApp group as it may be difficult for BIL as he feels the comparison. SIL does put pictures of their DD on the family chat. As do other members of the family. At this time I said that I would send over half the photos to grandparents individually. No problem and I did this to a degree anyway particularly if them doing anything that was vaguely an achievement/ like sports day, baking etc. I usually post once a week or less to the family group and maybe another few pics to grandparents individually. I didn’t want to not send pics to the other SIL and nieces and nephews etc.

Yesterday at family wedding lovely FIL asked me ( and BIL asked DH ) separately if we could not post pictures of our children any more as he feels the comparison and it contributes to his depression. FIL suggested that the family have a separate WhatsApp group for everyone apart from BIL. I know that PIL hugely enjoy getting the pics that I send ( they have told me many times) and other SIL does too. We all live a long way away. DH is trying to patch up the relationship with BIL and thinks I should just go along with the plan.
I just feel a bit irritated by this. I like the family WhatsApp community , don’t feel a group with everyone apart from BIL and SIL is right and can’t really be bothered finding everyone in my contacts list every time i’m trying to be nice and maintaining family relationships.

SummerInTheVillage Mon 12-Aug-19 18:41:20

The difference is that if a woman said she was depressed, no-one would doubt her.

Tosh! I would doubt anyone who said they had it but hadn't seen a doctor. If you're ill go to the doctor and get diagnosed.

Whatever your gender.

saraclara Mon 12-Aug-19 16:05:06

BiL has no diagnosis @saraclara. He says he has it. That's all.

The difference is that if a woman said she was depressed, no-one would doubt her.
It is notoriously difficult to get many men to seek help for depression. There's a reason the vast majority of suicides are men. Casting doubt on them when they do actually admit to being depressed is hardly helpful.

differentnameforthis Mon 12-Aug-19 10:10:40

With no diagnosis how does anyone know BiL has depression? Just because he says so? Nope.

Spot on. There was a HUGE thread on here recently about women shouldn't self diagnose ASD. Yet this guy is allowed to self diagnose depression. Tells you everything, doesn't it?

Fourtimesthefun Mon 12-Aug-19 07:16:36

I don't understand why you're being so quick to vilify your PIL, the people who stepped in to help when your BIL nearly lost you your house through his lies.

Is it not more likely SIL got wind of what was going on through you leaving the group, BIL has backtracked and blamed it on his parents. Your DH, having seen you determined to make a stand against his brother's known manipulative behaviour is falling over himself to brush it all under the carpet?

You said yourself your PIL have personally told you in the past they love seeing your photo updates, why on earth would they come up with the idea of you not posting them?

SavingSpaces2019 Sun 11-Aug-19 23:05:37

How this can be interpreted to mean don’t post photos on WhatsApp I have no idea
PIL had already spoken to your DH and said that to him, and cos he isn't bothered about SM etc he went along with it.
Maybe they used emotional manipulation to get him to agree - as obviously he doesn't hate his brother despite the history.
Your DH was in on it.
Even a stoner high on weed - who is also crap at communication - wouldn't have made that leap grin

I bet your DH's feeling like "that was a close call!" grin grin

saraclara Sun 11-Aug-19 22:40:23

@hangingwithmygnomies, thanks for your response. My best friend is a guy who has some mental health issues that very few people know about. I've known him for a very long time, and he always said he would never go and see anyone about it. I finally managed to persuade him to ask for help, but unfortunately the appointment didn't go well, and that was the end of that. That was 12 years ago. I find it really difficult to sit by while he goes through what he does, when I feel that therapy or meds could possibly help. But he has the sterotypical male attitude to it.

olympicsrock Sun 11-Aug-19 22:24:51

Hanging - when I asked BIL at the wedding if he would like to come for a drink while I babysat he smiled and said politely thanks. I wasn’t 100% sure whether he actually planned to take me up on the offer. I was inferring that he had no interest in my boys because of FIL’s talk not because of anything BIL said directly to me although at previous family gatherings he had not really engaged with the boys.

Anyway i’m going to try to simmer down down and try to move on from this

Hangingwithmygnomies Sun 11-Aug-19 20:27:40

Olympicrocks I wonder if you saying to your DH what FIL said he maybe took it upon himself to agree with FIL? Still curious though, as to what BIL said when you offered to babysit and you said he made it clear he had no interest in your DC. Did you maybe misunderstand what he said? Glad at least all is out in the open and hopefully you can all move forward and BIL can either get help or deal with his depression in a way that helps. I know my husband struggles with our DS's SEN needs (and myself at times too) which is why I said I could see it from his point.

@saraclara I hadn't thought of that. I have dealt with severe depression in my Mum when I was a young teen to the point she tried to take her life twice. No one had a clue she was at such a dark place, so I should know better really!

olympicsrock Sun 11-Aug-19 18:55:33

Goosebumps - I wondered this too. After BIL denied all knowledge I asked DH ( who is known for crap communication ) what BIL has actually said. He said that they had been talking about DN moving schools and that things had been difficult and that he was sad that his daughter would not achieve the same as other children. DH asked if this was one of the triggers for him being down and BIl said yes. How this can be interpreted to mean don’t post photos on WhatsApp I have no idea.
It’s still a bit muddy but I tend to think that PIL are mostly to blame working things up in their mind. They have been totally fixated on sorting this all out.

EKGEMS Sun 11-Aug-19 18:37:46

Oops didn't read to the update I'm so glad it's been settled

EKGEMS Sun 11-Aug-19 18:32:59

I have a SN child and I LOVED photos of the other children in our families though I've had people hesitate to show theirs to me but I've always reassured them I was fine with it. Your FIL and BIL are misguided and wth will he do with school group photos?

Dandelion1993 Sun 11-Aug-19 18:21:45

If bil has an issue with it he can leave the group.

Nottodayx Sun 11-Aug-19 18:20:10

I think YABU.

They haven’t said stop sending pictures of your DC, just create a group without BIL in.

I don’t see the issue

Yabbers Sun 11-Aug-19 18:13:30

I do know how he feels my daughter still can't walk at 2.5years and is being tested for various things. When I see friends/families kids walking who are younger it does get too me but no way would I try and stop them from posting or sending photos. I try and celebrate the little progress my DD is doing.

Been there. It is hard. Ten years on it still hurts a bit. I hope you find your answers soon.

I have a child with Sen. We have a family group chat and my cousin puts pictures on of her son who is the same age as mine. I understand why she shares them but it can hurt. I completely get it’s my issue but when you see your child struggling it’s hard seeing other kids.

I do get that it hurts, but I see it as my responsibility to avoid SM if I think it will hurt. You can’t control the world. It hurts seeing it in the supermarket, in the playground, in the park. It’s better for me to work out how to deal with it, rather than to expect others to change their behaviour.

LolaSmiles Sun 11-Aug-19 18:08:35

I wondered this.
Did he complain to his parents about it, make a big drama and big scene only to do what drama llamas do which is complain about it but then insist nobody raises anything with people directly. Then when his parents have said something he's back tracking and denying it because that creates friction between you and the parents.

It still seems to me like this is all some silly overgrown competition between brothers where one gets on with life and the other needs a fuss and attention in any way possible (as long as other brother doesn't get any positive attention)

LilyTheSavage Sun 11-Aug-19 17:26:21

Glad it seems to be resolved OP.
A very difficult situation and if indeed, this did come from the PIL and them projecting, then they are very meddlesome.

cava14una Sun 11-Aug-19 16:23:48


I agree with what you have just said.

JingsMahBucket Sun 11-Aug-19 16:23:27

@GloriousGoosebumps I was wondering the same thing. Is the BIL backtracking?

GloriousGoosebumps Sun 11-Aug-19 16:14:48

I'm pleased it's all worked out but originally you said "Yesterday at family wedding lovely FIL asked me (and BIL asked DH ) separately if we could not post pictures of our children any more as he feels the comparison and it contributes to his depression." So how can bil now say this has all come from the parents in law?

youarenotkiddingme Sun 11-Aug-19 16:13:07

Aarggghhh I don't have a problem with normal or typical as it generally just means 'within range of norms for the age'.

My ds actually is disabled and has autism and neuro genetic disorder. I've also been known to say things like "he's just being a normal teen!" (Hes 15 next week and that pretty much gives people an idea of what I mean winkgrin) and they also know I'm meaning he's not being stroppy due to autism - but due to hormones.

Aaarrgghhh Sun 11-Aug-19 16:04:24

Just seen the update. i think leaving the group and explaining why was a good decision. Interesting that it seems to have come from the FIL and not the brother. Unless I have read that wrong.

Aaarrgghhh Sun 11-Aug-19 15:55:13

normal' 4 year oldhmm

I sometimes before hearing the phrase NT would struggle to find what to say but normal is accurate. A disability is an abnormality or not the norm so why is it such a bad word to use? Genuinely asking here but since learning NT it’s what I would use. Just for added information, my daughter has extra health needs and is behind developmentally.

olympicsrock Sun 11-Aug-19 15:49:24

PIL have read but not replied to my message. It was BIL who phoned and spoke to them but I suspect frank talking was done. This is so rare for a family that brush everything under the carpet.

Aaarrgghhh Sun 11-Aug-19 15:48:35

Telling him that he's no longer welcome on the group where all sorts of family stuff is discussed is hardly likely to help him get better. Basically he'd be being told his family are rejecting him in favour of a couple of photos every ten days.

Well that’s just stupid then isn’t it. If he has the issue then he should leave the group, depression or not, I wouldn’t pander to bullshit like this. I’m not even doubting the triggering etc but if it’s that much of a big deal then he should leave the group not ask for one person to never share a photo while he and others are able to.

Aaarrgghhh Sun 11-Aug-19 15:41:52

I have depression, I also have PTSD. Babies (like newborns up to a year) are my trigger. Not as bad now as I was before thankfully but anyway on to my point. It’s not a reason to ban someone from posting pictures when you yourself are doing the same. If seeing pictures of another’s children is a trigger then surely you leaving the group makes sense, not asking one other person to stop. What a petty arsehole.

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