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Urgh argh awkward IL Christmas situation

(22 Posts)
LadyBoxe Sat 26-Oct-13 20:33:53

This is going to be a bit long...

We moved to be near my ILs, as we wanted to be near family members before starting a family, and the ILs 'won'. My family live quite far away and come for weekend visits, occasionally for a week. All was going fine until we had a baby last year; in previous years we would spend Christmas with ILs and my family together. Last year we thought everyone was coming to us for Christmas day until midway through December when MIL informed us (after much pestering), that actually they weren't coming, and they wouldn't come round at any point during my family's visit because they didn't want to have to 'share' us. They clearly meant 'share' the new grandchild, as they were quite happy to share us before we had a baby. I have posted about this last year under a different nickname btw, in case this seems familiar. I was pretty upset and assumed my family must have done something to annoy on a previous visit, but she insisted that was not the case. I bent over backwards to be welcoming, said they didn't have to come for Xmas dinner, it could be boxing day, or Christmas eve, for just a cup of tea and a mince pie etc etc, I cried down the phone and said that I loved her and wanted us to be a big happy family, but they wouldn't budge. We'd invited them in August, we'd ordered the bigger turkey and everything, and my family were quite hurt at the snub as they thought that everyone got along fine.

I then said that I wouldn't be attending the IL's Christmas get-together a few days after Christmas. One of my relatives was staying with us and she was very much not invited. I don't see her very often and it was her last day, and I was really upset with them. It meant my son couldn't go either as he was breastfed at the time and fed a lot, he would have been miserable being away from me. They then said that they would come over on Christmas eve after all, because I was 'blackmailing them', but by this point I really didn't want to see them. Maybe I was being unreasonable, but I'd had such sentimental visions of my first baby's first Christmas and was upset.

ANYWAY, fastforward to this year... we have had contact with the ILs since Christmasgate last year, but I've been civil and not much more as I was really upset by their behaviour. We decided that as my mom doesn't have anyone else to have Christmas with we would continue having her visit for Christmas every year as we'd originally planned (back when we'd envisaged everyone being jolly together), as it's not her fault the ILs have taken against her, and as she lives 6 hours away and works, we only see her a few times a year.

At an IL family get-together this week one of my husband's more distant relatives suggested we all meet up over Christmas week (when my mom will be here). I awkwardly said I thought it wouldn't work, and they very nicely said that my mom would be very welcome to come along too. This relative is a very nice lady, and I would really like to go to her house - if all this unpleasantness hadn't happened I definitely would have said yes without hesitating.

However, given that my ILs have said they don't ever want to see my family around Christmas, and that my mom feels incredibly awkward about this and does NOT want to be in a room full of my ILs for a whole day in these circumstances, what do I do? I don't want this woman to think I'm just being rude/don't want to come. I don't specially want to email her and tell her all about all this as it feels like I'm slagging off my ILs, who are, after all, her relatives, and it just feels tacky. And I can't bear the thought of leaving my mom at home on her own for a day, as she gets to spend so little time with us and my son (who is her only grandson, and she dotes on him).

I tried to get them to arrange it for the weekend after, but she wasn't at all keen. They really want to see us! Argh.

If anyone has made it to the end of this essay, please advise!

CaterpillarCara Sat 26-Oct-13 20:36:51

I think you should all go. It might be fine, but be prepared to leave quickly if it is not. Your immediate ILs are being ridiculous, you don't need to make decisions that fit with there ridiculous ideas on their behalf.

PolyesterBride Sat 26-Oct-13 20:40:06

I would accept the invitation if your mum will possibly agree and just try to get through the day being sociable with the nice in laws and civil with the less nice ones. Hopefully if you can all share one day then the idea of having Christmas together in the future might not seem so terrible either for your PILS or you and your mum. After all, you don't want to have this dilemma year after year so maybe it's best to build some bridges now (or at least fake bridges). Basically this relative who's invited you is being normal and you'd like to be normal and the normal thing to do is to go and ignore anyone who doesn't want to be normal!

cloudskitchen Sat 26-Oct-13 20:40:59

I think your ILs are being extremely unreasonable. I would accept the invitation and if PIL decide then not to come that is entirely their problem. This situation is entirely of their own making x

Pancakeflipper Sat 26-Oct-13 20:44:36

I remember this. Oh it was ridiculous.

Go. Tell your mom that the nice people are so looking forward to her joining them and that they are not an issue.

Tell the bonkers in-laws that you are all going and they better behave and grow up.

Happypiglet Sat 26-Oct-13 20:45:07

I would go to the nice lady's get together with your mum.
You can always leave if it gets sticky.
I think you are totally right to have your mum every Christmas my mum is alone and I cannot bear the thought of her alone on the big day. She always comes to us. My in laws have been too but only once and never since... I am not sure why really. But I have an open invite for them which they never take up. I try not to take it personally which is easier said then done ...
We see them one weekend before Christmas and again on DS birthday in Jan. they live 4 hours away.
But your more distant IL does seem to be making overtures which it might seem churlish to turn down.

Nanny0gg Sat 26-Oct-13 20:45:53

What has your DH said about all of this?

Squitten Sat 26-Oct-13 20:47:45

Your immediate ILs acted ridiculously, obviously.

However, this invite isn't from them. It's from a nice lady who is inviting your Mum to HER home. I would accept the invite immediately and your ILs are going to have to suck it up - they don't dictate the guest list for their entire family over Xmas!

I would go and make lots of very loud comments about the generous hospitality right in front of the rude feckers!

candlelight2012 Sat 26-Oct-13 20:52:39

Christmas can often bring out the worst in people.

Sometimes people just want 'their family' around and forget that when their child marries, they marry someone with a family too so getting dibs on Christmas every year is not reasonable.

I wouls accept the invitation and go with your mum, DH & DS

You have all been invited and perhaps it might make your PIL understand that it is possible to have your mum included and have a good time too

TarkaTheOtter Sat 26-Oct-13 20:53:27

I would continue to invite them and your mum every year - their perogative to refuse but I wouldn't be offering a make-up date at another time. Ie it's either "share" you or lose out.

I'd also explain to the nice inlaw the back story but would still probably go as then your nasty inlaws will see that nice behaviour makes people want to spend time with you a lesson they seem to have missed.

Chlorinella Sat 26-Oct-13 20:54:22

Accept the invite , your mother has been invited and is welcome ( remember that ) if your inlaws don't like it , that's their problem

cjel Sat 26-Oct-13 20:59:38

I'd go and enjoy. Don't let pil spoil you family get together timesx

alliwantis Sat 26-Oct-13 21:06:48

I would accept the invite and go and enjoy. It's amazing how we feel more awkward than those who are clearly in the wrong. Take large gulps of fizz and get in the spirit and let the PILS never ruin any christmas ever again. Put you and your families needs and enjoyment first....always.

LadyBoxe Sat 26-Oct-13 21:43:13

Oh wow thanks for all the replies! Amazing unanimous opinion there... I think I'll follow your advice!

cjel Sat 26-Oct-13 21:43:46

YEEEY Go partysmile!!

bluebirdwsm Sat 26-Oct-13 21:44:54

I'd go, and take your mum with you. Your IL's will have to put up with it. It's your mum, it's your Christmas - do what you want and accept the kind lady's invitation.
Be the bigger person.

cloudskitchen Sat 26-Oct-13 21:45:21

Go for it and enjoy grin

TheIggorcist Sat 26-Oct-13 21:50:04

Accept the nitery. Offer your mum the choice of whether she wants to go or not. If she doesn't, couldn't she stay home with your son? (She might love that). When my dm visits at Christmas, I will be seizing the opportunity to have her babysit so we can go out together at some point! Don't see why it has to be all or nothing.
Oh and I agree, they sound very very unreasonable.

TheIggorcist Sat 26-Oct-13 21:50:31

Invite, not nitery.

ProphetOfDoom Sat 26-Oct-13 21:53:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TyrannosaurusBex Sat 26-Oct-13 22:12:22

Go, take your mum and, as everyone else says, leave if it's not working out. Your PILs are being ridiculously childish.

I'm sorry your ILs are spoiling Christmas for you, you sound lovely.

LadyBoxe Sat 26-Oct-13 23:19:22

Ahh, you're all being so nice to me, I thought someone would come on and say I was being a right bitch! I love mumsnet.

I hope you all have lovely Christmases!

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