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To think that what SIL said to DN is awful!

(284 Posts)
Lahmacun Wed 24-Jun-20 20:37:33

We were having a (socially distanced) family gathering yesterday for the first time since the lockdown started. Everyone was cheerful and things were going well until DN 8 said that he wants to go on holiday in first class on an expensive airline. SIL replied to him that she would love it too but they can’t afford it as it’s too pricey. A bit of background here: my brother is the one working full time and SIL is currently SAHM following maternity break of their second daughter soon to be 2. She’s a great caring mother and always doing her best with the kids. She’s managing all the house responsibilities on her own as my DB works very long shifts.
Anyways my nephew decided to pull a grumpy face and said to his mum that she needs to get a job so they can afford paying for his dream holiday because using his words (You’re not doing any real work!).
My mum quickly jumped in and explained to him that he should be very grateful as he gets to see his mum whenever he wants ... etc SIL looked understandably quite disappointed especially as she wanted to get back to work in September but after doing the maths, they thought they’ll wait until their DD turns 3 so they can be eligible for the 15 hours of childcare. DN didn’t look convinced and said that he wants his mum to get back to work as he’s “fed up” of hearing the word “can’t afford” (his words)! At this point SIL exploded and told him that she’s fed up of his constant lack of gratitude and appreciation and that if he’s fed up and unhappy with his family why don’t he go and look for another richer mum and dad who can pay for all the endless list of things that he wants.
I was shocked to hear that but I couldn’t say anything as she was just telling me tired she’s feeling an hour before that.
DM thought that it’s fine and kids need some harsh words every now and then to respect boundaries.
AIBU to think that you should never say this to a child as it makes them feel unloved and not important?

OP’s posts: |
Lahmacun Wed 24-Jun-20 20:40:41

Too many typos I’m sorry! I should’ve proofread before creating the thread.

OP’s posts: |
Fiona1987 Wed 24-Jun-20 20:41:02

Personally, I can understand why your SIL snapped and it was a good response to your nephew. It was a harsh comment, but he won't be traumatised by that.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Wed 24-Jun-20 20:41:51

I don't think it's ever good to 'explode' at a child, but it sounds like your DN needed to hear a few home truths. I guess SIL was embarrassed it was brought up at all and embarrassed he kept going on about it. He sounds a bit bratty to be honest. I would hope I wouldn't have exploded but I think the content of what I said would have been exactly the same.

bingsulaflop Wed 24-Jun-20 20:41:58


I highly doubt an 8 year old child is going to appreciate how many ££££ it costs to fly first class to a holiday destination, nor do they appreciate what a SAHM does (I've been one for nearly two years - I know how unnoticed things go to some)

This hardly needed a new thread..

Sorry to be blunt but this seems like a pointless argument.

JellyBellies Wed 24-Jun-20 20:42:30

I think DN needed to hear the truth. Life's not fair and that's how it is. You don't get everything

thistimelastweek Wed 24-Jun-20 20:44:03

Doesn't sound like feeling unimportant is your nephew's problem.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Wed 24-Jun-20 20:44:12

In terms of importance, we have a rule in our family that no member is more important than the other. My DCs aren't more important than me. They have higher needs than me, what with being children and all, but we are all equal players in our family.

Cartesiandebt Wed 24-Jun-20 20:44:56

Not ideal, but that sounds like a perfectly understandable response from SIL. Your DN was being obnoxious and bad mannered, and probably playing to the crowd a bit with his ‘poor me’ act. He needs to realise his behaviour is unacceptable

Aquamarine1029 Wed 24-Jun-20 20:45:03

You're nephew needed to hear it. He's being horrible to his mum and he needs to know that his words hurt. He sounds like he was being a total brat.

Wecandothis99 Wed 24-Jun-20 20:46:27

She's right

LadyPrigsbottom Wed 24-Jun-20 20:47:01


Charles11 Wed 24-Jun-20 20:47:34

I’m wondering who dn heard this kind of thing from? An 8 yr old wouldn’t normally tell their mother to get a job as they were fed up of hearing they couldn’t afford certain things.

trilbydoll Wed 24-Jun-20 20:47:45

I think that's fine too. He was rude first grin it would have been more diplomatic to go down the 'work hard at school get a good job and buy what you like route but we don't always make the best decisions under pressure!

exLtEveDallas Wed 24-Jun-20 20:47:53

I’m with SIL. At 8 years old your nephew should know better.

ConstantlySeekingHappiness Wed 24-Jun-20 20:48:19

Telling his mum to go back to work because he’s fed up being told his parents can’t afford something.

He needs a bloody good reality check.

No I don’t think what she said was awful.

I wonder where he gets these first class holiday ideas from?

HogDogKetchup Wed 24-Jun-20 20:48:34

Don’t blame your SIL at all. Sounds like she’s having a tough time in lockdown with two children and likely no support (nobody has any atm!) and snapped.

Maybe see how you can help rather than judge her pretty measured response.

PeonieCole Wed 24-Jun-20 20:49:54

Sounds like your nephew was being obnoxious and showing off for the crowd a bit. I don’t really blame your SIL for snapping - it sounds like he needed a bit of a shock and some home truths.

Nixen Wed 24-Jun-20 20:50:08

Your nephew sounds like a wee shit. If he was mine I’d be telling him his dad and I would be going first class and he can sit in economy if that’s his attitude!

chrestomamci Wed 24-Jun-20 20:51:27

I’d be mortified if my 8 ye old spoke to me like that. Sounds Like your SIL was just telling him some hoke truths... at 8 he should understand a little more about being grateful for what he has

Redwinestillfine Wed 24-Jun-20 20:51:28

Good on your SIL, sounds like he needed bringing down a peg or two. Absolutely disgraceful that he talks to her like that.

Stompythedinosaur Wed 24-Jun-20 20:51:54

8yo is old enough to know better than to say something so hurtful. I'd be wondering where he has got the idea that his mum "isn't doing any real work". Is his dad supportive of his mum's role?

I'm not saying it wouldn't have been better to calmly express her disappointment in his poor behaviour and give an appropriate sanction (maybe undertaking some of the jobs his mum does every day so he can understand how much work she does), but I don't think it was too bad. I wouldn't have thought it was particularly traumatic.

Wheresthebiffer2 Wed 24-Jun-20 20:52:29

The child sounds like a spoilt brat, and it's high time he heard some truths. I totally think your SIL was right in what she said to him. He needs to learn to be grateful, I mean there are loads of children and adults who cannot afford to travel by plane, at all, let alone first class. And this year, especially, a lot of families won't be having their normal foreign holidays. The child needs to get real. Okay, maybe not as harshly, but he needs to understand, in a age-appropriate way, that ALL families will be struggling this year.

Calic0 Wed 24-Jun-20 20:52:30

I seem to recall being told by my DM to call Childline when I decided to act like a whingey brat. This doesn’t sound particularly different and, given the sense of entitlement this 8yo already has, I don’t think he is any danger of not feeling important enough.

ellenpartridge Wed 24-Jun-20 20:52:59

The DN sounds an absolute horror

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