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DM and Christening

(31 Posts)
offside Fri 26-Jun-15 10:11:36

Hi Mnners

I've posted briefly about my DM before and I would like some objective opinions and/or advice.

Our DD is getting Christened in a few weeks. Myself and DP decided we didn't want a big "doo" as I have a massive extended family and as we're getting married soon we thought that we could make the Christening a more intimate affair.

Our families have never properly met so thought this would be a nice opportunity for us all to get together and have a lovely meal together at the place we are having our wedding reception.

I explained to my DM that it was only going to be immediate family and Godparents. She agreed.

A few weeks later she told me she had invited my cousin. I explained again that it was only immediate family and Godparents and that it's not fair to invite some and not everyone. She said "so do I have to uninvite them?" I said yes.

Fast forward to very recently and I mentioned that I had booked the table and was just waiting for sample menus to be sent across. She told me that 3 of my cousins were coming and she had also told three of my aunties (who have husbands and children). I told her that she knew what the deal was and we weren't inviting extended family. She said that "I haven't invited them, I told them you weren't sending official invites out but they are more than welcome to come". I told her that we had already been through this when she had invited one of my cousins and that the plan was for an intimate event. She said "we'll what do you want me to do then, uninvite them?!" I said yes, like she was supposed to have done first time round.

She told me that "you can't just pretend it isn't happening". I said I wasn't pretending anything and if anyone asked I would tell them the truth and it wasn't her place to invite people.

We left it that she was going to uninvite them. From previous experience, I guarentee this won't happen.

I'm sick and tired of her thinking she can take control of things in my life. Part of me wants to tell her the Christening is cancelled and jus have the Godparents but I know that my beautiful nieces have new outfits and are really looking forward to it.

I just don't know what to do anymore. I need to make a stand but how do you do that with someone who just doesn't listen to you and doesn't care?

bumpertobumper Fri 26-Jun-15 10:39:41

that is very annoying of her, but it sounds like you are going to have to get in touch with the relations and tell them v sorry but mum got the wrong end of the stick, is a v small gathering and you are looking forward to seeing them at the wedding etc.

Do they know what she's like? Can you do it in a 'you know how she is' way?
is there a bar/ enough room at the venue where extra unexpected guests can go if they do turn up?
Are the relations likely to come just on her say so? I would check with the host that I was actually expected if I received a second hand 'come along' from hosts mum.
Good luck, hope it all goes well

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 26-Jun-15 10:51:28

What bumpertobumper wrote re the relatives. Your nieces may well have nice outfits but its no reason to have them at the christening. Your original plan was for this to be only immediate family and godparents, your mother overstepped the mark totally here (she's probably trying to make it all about her). I presume your mother has behaved not too dissimilarly over your wedding as well.

Your mother will likely not apologise to you for the mess she has caused nor accept any responsibility for her actions here.

Stop giving her more power, tell her what she needs to know about your life which is the barest of minimums. You also need to raise your own boundaries a lot higher with regards to your mother. You need to detach emotionally as well as physically from her. Is she the sort of woman also who has favourites or plays one sibling off against the other?.

MimiSunshine Fri 26-Jun-15 10:56:16

If your wedding is soon then your nieces can wear there outfits then.
But you need to take control of the situation, your mum invited one, you told her to univite them and somehow instead invited about six more people.
Call them and say sorry you've just found out your mum said come along but it's god parents and grandparents only (don't say immediate family as there are different interpretations of that) but really looking to seeing them at your wedding.

Don't make anything up or say crossed wires, your mum knew what she was doing wasn't what you wanted. If she gets embarrassed well hopefully that will be lesson learnt

Joysmum Fri 26-Jun-15 10:57:30

Christening a are help in a public church and people can't be united to that.

However, expkainations are best done beforehand that any celebrations post service are limited to immediate close family only and you will be heading straight off to that afterwards so unable to stay and chat.

Do this yourself as you can't trust your mother and be sure to point out that she's been very unfair to embarrass your extended family but putting them in this position.

Joysmum Fri 26-Jun-15 10:58:06

Oh bum, apologies for not proof reading before posting blush

pocketsaviour Fri 26-Jun-15 11:29:29

If you go ahead and accept them attending, you're giving your mother the message "what offside wants doesn't matter, offside's mum can just do whatever she wants because it's all about HER".

As she will undoubtedly not un-invite the aunties, you will probably have to get in touch with them and explain that your mum has lied to them and that you are not having a social gathering. Sorry that they've been inconvenienced.

You might also want to think about mum-proofing your wedding. Or possibly uninviting her. Sounds like she has the potential to create absolute chaos then sit enjoying the mess and attention.

firesidechat Fri 26-Jun-15 11:53:41

* Your nieces may well have nice outfits but its no reason to have them at the christening.*

I think nieces were originally invited. Well that's how I read it. It's the cousins and aunts of the op who weren't.

I would uninvite the extras and stick to the original plan. Your mum is a pain and if she suffers a bit of humiliation then so be it.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 12:17:21

bumper no one knows what she's really like, she's "lovely" to everyone outside of the family home and spins stories to make herself look like the victim whenever things similar to this happen.

As we're having a meal in a restaurant I suppose there's nothing stopping them coming but could I really expect them to sit elsewhere when we're all sat together?

You're all correct, I need to go direct to my relatives and tell them what is happening.

Attilla she is definitely one to make things about herself. Whilst I was pregnant she had no interest in me whatsoever, never once asked how I was or how my midwife appointments went...I was in a bus crash, I had bad sciatica, I had the flu and nit once did she ask me how I was. This led to me saying when I had our DD I didn't want anyone at the hospital, her response was "but I'm not just anyone, I'm your mother!" I told her that this was about me and my little family, not her.

She won't apologise. In her own words "why don't you just accept that I'm always right", I need to raise my boundaries and detach. She does have a favourite. My "yes man" brother who at 35 still lives at home and is mummied. Those two are constantly criticising myself and my older DB and also my DF.

She has already started on the wedding. I have to invite her best friends to the whole day and also friends of my aunty who would be travelling from a few hours away. I told her that if she wants certain people invited, she will have to pay for them. She has now started dropping into the conversation when she gets an opportunity how she has been invited to a wedding and a birthday party of friends of my aunty and how she can't wait. I have stopped responding to this.

I need to set an example with the Christening so she doesn't continue it with the wedding. I am trying and I know by doing so she will become the victim and to the family I will be the hideous daughter.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 12:18:37

Yep, nieces have always been invited. They are also flower girls at our wedding so the outfits wouldn't be worn then either.

I hate that she has put us in this position.

Nanny0gg Fri 26-Jun-15 12:21:28

and to the family I will be the hideous daughter.

So? In the grand scheme of things does it matter?

You'll be much happier without all the drama and tension.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 12:23:58

Nanny true. Very true.

I don't think it's so much that I'm bothered about what they think of me, it infuriates me that they don't know the real her.

QuintShhhhhh Fri 26-Jun-15 12:24:10

But it is not really going to be a nice meal together with your mum there, is it? Can you put your foot down and uninvite her?

Joysmum Fri 26-Jun-15 12:24:18

No reason to invite others to the meal, as I said unthread just make it clear you and godparents won't be dining a meet and greet after the service, as you are heading straight off afterwards.

Lottapianos Fri 26-Jun-15 12:26:55

'In her own words "why don't you just accept that I'm always right", '

Yes, I've had this as well - 'see! Your mother is always right' on the occasions when she did get something right. Controlling, engulfing mothers are so tough to deal with. I second the advice to tell her the bare minimum from now on. It sounds like you're very good at standing up to her actually, but detaching and keeping her at arms length means it cuts down on her ammunition she can use against you.

'and to the family I will be the hideous daughter.'

I have had these fears as well but you know what? The rest of the family don't know the ins and outs of your relationship with your mother so they can think what they like.

I'm so sorry you're dealing with this, it really hurts and its not what you hope for from your own mum sad

Bilberry Fri 26-Jun-15 12:37:44

Most Christenings I have been too have been part of a normal Sunday church service. Thinking about it, I have been to more Christenings where I have no idea who the child is or they are just vague aquaintances (I go to church regularly) than I have to ones I have been invited to. If you Christening is like this then could you tell your relatives they are welcome to come along to the service but say with the wedding on the horizon you are keeping the celebrations low key immediate family only and you have to consider your budget.

Sallyingforth Fri 26-Jun-15 12:47:01

Yes. Anyone can attend the Christening. Your child is being welcomed into the Christian community and these cousinsare all Christians_aren't they_?

But if you have booked a party afterwards that is a private affair. I hope you will have a set table plan with named places.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 13:05:11

I know Christenings can be attended by anyone. I should have addressed this earlier. The Christening is taking place a good hour or more away from my relatives who have been invited by my DM. They know they can attend church but I can't expect them to come to the Christening and not invite them to the meal. The issue was never them coming to the church.

I guess it would be for them to make the decision to travel to the church knowing the meal has been booked for immediate family and Godparents.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 13:13:39

lotta yes, I get the "see, your mother is always right!" too.

You are right, they don't know the dynamics of our relationship. She can drip feed poison to them all she wants. I have never had a close relationship with any of them and I put this down to her.

She's always going on holiday with my cousins and aunty's. She is the only one whose daughter doesn't go and whosee daughter isn't invited. I'm sure they get the stories of how awful I am because I won't capitulate to her and I am not afraid to challenge her. Not that this makes a blind bit of difference to how she behaves. If it wasn't for my DF I would definitely be going NC.

Trooperslane Fri 26-Jun-15 13:24:01

Why don't you accept that I am an adult and can make my own decisions about my family?

Hard, I know. But she needs to hear it.

Lottapianos Fri 26-Jun-15 14:13:30

offside, loads of sympathy. I'm the only one out of the extended family who has declined an invitation to a family wedding (first cousin is groom) this summer. It has not gone down well. I've had guilt trips from my dad and my aunt, and my reason for not going (best friend having a baby that week and may need me) has been picked apart. But you know what? I'm still not going because I refuse to go along with the fantasy performance of happy families and put myself through the bullshit. So they can bitch and snipe all they want but I've made my own decision and I'm sticking to it.

People like our mothers will never see you as an adult with your own mind and free will, you will always be either a 'good girl' (doing what's expected of you and toeing the line) or a 'bad girl'. It sucks. Stand firm.

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 26-Jun-15 14:22:44


re your comment:-
"If it wasn't for my DF I would definitely be going NC".

Ultimately you well need to go NC with her and your dad. Infact I would seriously consider doing that very course of action now.

I think you may well find that if you were to examine your father's role in your family of origin, you may well find that your DF is actually her enabler. People from dysfunctional families do end up playing roles and yours seems to be one of scapegoat (for all their inherent ills).

Engulfing narcissistic mothers and narcs anyway always but always need an enabler to help them.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 14:51:08

Lotta you are right, she'll never see me as my own person. She will only be happy with me as long as I bow in her presence.

Attilla my DF is most definitely an enabler. He complains to me about her behaviour, but she treats him the way she does because he's allowed her to get away with it for so many years. He complains that's "she's getting worse". I tell him that he needs to put his foot down, but to him it isn't worth it. The fall outs they have when he doesn't do what she does are huge. Think not speaking to one another for weeks, she is his registered carer but she won't care for him in these times. He spent money on his teeth recently and she won't let it drop. She is always complaining about how much money he spent on his teeth (around £300) and uses this as justification for having a new kitchen "because she needs a new kitchen!!" To put this into context, on two separate occasions recently two strangers have been in the house for various things and both of them asked if it was a new kitchen and when it was installed because it looks brand new. She doesn't need a new kitchen. She wants a new kitchen because my very wealthy aunty (I would say my parents are not even comfortable let alone wealthy) has just had a new kitchen and because she is bored. She will end up with a new kitchen to make life easier for my DF.

My DD adores my DF though and he her, I couldn't spoil that relationship.

offside Fri 26-Jun-15 14:54:09

Just another note on favouritism...she has a favourite grandchild also who she openly describes as adorable. I told her yesterday that they are all adorable (there's three grandchildren), she said "no they're not!! We've yet to think of a word for (your DD) but it's not adorable. Noisy and messy maybe, but not adorable!" This makes me want to put my protective coat around my DD even further and not let her have anything to do with her.

Lottapianos Fri 26-Jun-15 14:59:53

'she said "no they're not!! We've yet to think of a word for (your DD) but it's not adorable. Noisy and messy maybe, but not adorable!"'

I'm speechless shock How incredibly nasty. Is the 'adorable' grandchild a boy by any chance? She's obviously playing favourites again. Parents like this tend not to change when they become grandparents. And I have found that people like this do indeed 'get worse' as they get older, maybe because they've been getting away with it for so flaming long that they think there are no limits to the shit they can expect people to take!

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