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Family battles over possessions

(40 Posts)
Edenviolet Tue 18-Mar-14 22:03:00

What do you do when you feel completely stuck in the middle?

DM and dsis have a long standing battle raging over some jewellery and in recent weeks it has reached fever pitch and both of them are unhappy. I'm completely stuck in the middle but have told both of them I can't and won't get involved. I'm sick of hearing about it but they won't stop fighting.

Do things like this ever get resolved? If I hear the words rings or earrings one more time I may scream!
The jewellery belonged to my late step grandmother and was given to DM. It is all either too small for her or not her style but she got it valued and just kept it.
Dsis asked for one of the rings as she wanted it, DM initially kept saying no but after many arguments DM I think threw it at her. Dsis would now like the matching items but DM has said no. Dsis keeps trying to find the jewellery when DM is at work but can't.
DM has told me she has hidden it but won't say where so that dsis can't pressure anybody to tell her where it is.

On a daily basis there are arguments about it and its really really irritating.

Walkacrossthesand Tue 18-Mar-14 22:10:41

I began to write about tuning it out etc, but that's so obvious there must surely be more to it than this? If you're deeply uninterested in the issue, why are you in the middle?

tribpot Tue 18-Mar-14 22:14:26

Are you all living in the same house? It sounds mad, exhausting and very stressful.

FWIW, I think your DM needs to put the jewellery in a safety deposit box where nobody can get to it.

balia Tue 18-Mar-14 22:14:55

Take the jewellery from the hiding place and hide it yourself (or bin it). Tell them they can't have it until they stop squabbling. Try putting a DVD on to distract them, maybe 'In the Night garden'? If that fails you will have to send them to different rooms.

Oh wait...

Edenviolet Tue 18-Mar-14 22:23:01

No I don't live there (thank god!) dsis moved out recently (few weeks ago) but still has 'her' room and a key for there (long story). I get regular phone calls and texts about the ongoing saga (I've started ignoring the phone now as i can't bear it).

I don't know where the jewellery is and don't want to. Couldn't bin it as its worth a lot and DM would be livid. I think she wants to sell some but dsis doesn't want that to happen as doesnt see why DM should have the money. She says she should have it as she would wear it.

mrscumberbatch Tue 18-Mar-14 22:26:41

I see a lot of this with estate sales.

Either sell it and split the proceeds between ALL involved with the previous owner. (So all children/partners)

If there is a specific piece wanted for sentimental value and it is worth more than their 'cut' off the goods in total then they should 'buy' it from
the remaining members.

oldgrandmama Tue 18-Mar-14 22:28:28

It's your mother's jewellery. It was given to her. Your sister should stop going on about it. It's NOT hers, she has no rights to it. If your mother wants to sell it, then she can. Your sister is being ridiculous.

sykadelic Tue 18-Mar-14 22:39:03

Agree with oldgrandmama. You said in your OP that your DM was given it. It doesn't matter if she melts it down, chucks it in the ocean, sells it or whatever - it's HERS!!

There is no "middle" here because your DSis is trying to steal from your mother. The decision was made by your DGM and your DM now owns them.

Tell your DSis to stop being grabby and stop trying to STEAL from your mother.

tribpot Tue 18-Mar-14 22:43:45

She says she should have it as she would wear it.

Or in other words, she wants some expensive shiny things she didn't have to pay for.

I think you just need to keep repeating the line 'I don't want to get involved' or 'please leave me out of this' over and over. And do not engage with either side, ever.

NotSuchASmugMarriedNow Tue 18-Mar-14 22:54:24

Its your mothers jewellery to do what she wants with. Why on earth does your sister think she can demand to have something which doesn't belong to her.

Sigh, people are strange.

Holdthepage Tue 18-Mar-14 23:07:36

The jewellery was left to your DM your sis is being grabby. Instead of keeping out of it why don't you tell her to leave your DM alone?

Edenviolet Tue 18-Mar-14 23:22:32

I don't particularly want to argue with either of them as I have enough going on in my own life. It is getting out of hand though. I can't even bear to answer my phone as I know that's all they will speak about. Dsis reasons that the rings don't fit DM and she never wears jewellery and DM insists its hers but I think as she gave in with one piece of it that dsis now knows all she has to do is keep pushing for the rest.

DM is no better to be honest, I was last things by the same person but when I left home DM took them as she thought they were "worth something" and didnt want them leaving the house and I never saw the items again. That's another reason I'm loathed to get too involved as it seems dsis has only learnt from DM!

Edenviolet Tue 18-Mar-14 23:22:51

Left not last

cozietoesie Tue 18-Mar-14 23:30:29

This is all madness and you would be well advised to stay out of it completely. Just because their relationship is all to pot is no reason for you to allow yourself to feel harrassed or to be drawn in to the melee.

I'd tell them both that you won't discuss the matter any more - and stop answering the phone or put it down if they insist on pursuing the topic.

Edenviolet Tue 18-Mar-14 23:41:07

Iam amazed at how much trouble a few £k of jewellery can cause sad

cozietoesie Tue 18-Mar-14 23:49:45

Oh you can encounter naked savagery over a few pots and pans or some bed linen when you have estates being settled - but it seems to me that these two are using this jewellery as the outward way of handling a horrible relationship. If it wasn't the jewellery, it would be something else.

I'd keep well out of it.

firesidechat Wed 19-Mar-14 08:01:53

It's your mother's jewellery. It was given to her. Your sister should stop going on about it. It's NOT hers, she has no rights to it. If your mother wants to sell it, then she can. Your sister is being ridiculous.

and

Its your mothers jewellery to do what she wants with. Why on earth does your sister think she can demand to have something which doesn't belong to her.

Sigh, people are strange.

and

The jewellery was left to your DM your sis is being grabby. Instead of keeping out of it why don't you tell her to leave your DM alone?

and

any others that I may have missed.

Why on earth do some people behave so irrationally over a few shiny baubles.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 19-Mar-14 09:38:04

I think the phrase you want is 'I don't want to know'... or 'I don't want to hear about it'.... 'you're telling the wrong person, sort it out between yourselves'.

Deathwatchbeetle Wed 19-Mar-14 12:02:44

I really hate this! Luckily, it will never happen in my family, we have nothing worth fighting over!! My friend told me of her BIL's sister who snatched the ring off her mother's finger whilst she was still in bed and probably not cold yet!!!

My fingers are so fat anyway it would be pointless me hovering over any family jewellry!!!

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 19-Mar-14 12:21:20

And the next person that tells me my DS is at a disadvantage because he doesn't have any siblings I shall remember this tale and meet them with a hollow laugh.....

summertimeandthelivingiseasy Wed 19-Mar-14 12:26:38

Do what cogito says.

If they ring, tell them you will not discuss jewellery as the whole thing is making you very unhappy, and if they do, you will put the phone down. Then do it.

I am not sure what you can do to make them act like grown ups hmm

Viviennemary Wed 19-Mar-14 12:30:47

If all the jewellery was left to your Mum she has absolutely no obligation to give any of it away unless she wants to. People seem to think they have rights to this and that. They have really got no right to anything unless it's stated in the will. Or if they care to contest the will. Can't believe your sister is trying to find jewellery that isn't hers to find. She could be in deep trouble. I'd tell her that if she was my sister.

BillyBanter Wed 19-Mar-14 12:35:41

I was about to say I agree with this:

It's your mother's jewellery. It was given to her. Your sister should stop going on about it. It's NOT hers, she has no rights to it. If your mother wants to sell it, then she can. Your sister is being ridiculous.

Then I saw your mother has taken your jewellery. Is your sister asking for your DM's or stuff left to her that your DM is kindly 'keeping hold of'?

cozietoesie Wed 19-Mar-14 12:36:16

I would tell her nothing and just leave them to it on that or similar matters, Viviennemary. They're now so used to living like warring tribes that they're probably excitement junkies - which means that they'll be like this for years/ever, on jewellery or something else.

If I was in the OP's position, I would disengage from the pair of them.

Edenviolet Wed 19-Mar-14 14:25:18

All the jewellery was def left to DM.

When I was a child my step grandmother (the one whose jewellery DM now has) would send me things like lovely old books, trinkets etc. I don't know if they are valuable I just liked them but when I left home DM wouldn't let me take them so she has them sad it was more sentimental value but its not the end of the world. SGM didn't ever send anything to my siblings as I was the oldest so she saw more of me before emigrating and didnt really have the same relationship with db and dsis.

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