Mumsnet Logo
My feed

to access all these features


AIBU to not want to bother with 1 sibling now?

47 replies

CrapBag · 04/04/2011 20:43

Ok, she is much younger, will be 14 (going on 18) next month. We have the same dad, she has been brought up very differently to me. I was brought up with good manners by fairly strict GPs, her mum doesn't seem to know the words rules and boundaries and as a result my half sister is very much a selfish, spoilt brat. Because of the big age gap and the way she is growing up, I don't see us having a great relationship when she is older. I have 3 other grown up half siblings of 18, 19 and 24 that I adore and we get on very well, even though for most of our lives we didn't live together either.

My issue is presents.

Youngest sister never bothers with getting me a card or even sending me a text or facebook message to say happy birthday or anything. The birth of both of my children was a complete non event to her and her mother even though since she was born I have looked after her, taken her out, bought her things, ran errands and helped out whenever I was asked to (and I was always happy to do it). As I forgot her mothers DS's birthday one year (I had always bought for him and looked after him too) the mother has barely spoken to me since, not even given me cards whereas she used to always buy a present and refused to acknowledge the birth of either of my children. When I didn't buy for ungrateful youngest sister one year, she really kicked off at my dad and I got an earful about it. TBH, I was completely fed up of never even getting a thank you and pissed off about the way they were after I had a child after all the years of me doing things for them because I was happy to do it.

Basically my dad said it wasn't fair for me to buy for my older siblings and not the youngest, so last year I bought her a lovely present, never got a thank you and my birthday, xmas, DS's birthday and the birth of DD was all completely ignored by youngest sister and her mum (I still always sent cards to her mother and her son too, I stopped buying them presents a couple of years ago because money is tight). Its her birthday next month and I really am not interested in bothering with her. My other siblings all make a huge effort with my children. Even though they are all away, whenever they come back they see them and always bother with them at birthdays and xmas (even if they are completely crap at remembering my birthday, they always bother with my children).

I know it sounds petty and awful of me (especially seeing how she is younger) but I am fed up of spending money on someone who is very ungrateful and couldn't give a crap about me or my children. My dad even phoned her on my birthday and had a bit of a go at her about not sending me a card (her best friend lives in my street so she is always around here) and she swore she wa dropping one off to me later. She never did. She also swore to my dad that she said thank you to me last year, she never did.

WWYD? Would you bother anymore (and no flaming please, still a bit hormonal and PND)?

OP posts:

thinkingkindly · 04/04/2011 20:50

No I don't think I would bother. Just say you thought you weren't doing presents anymore, but you are happy to restart if she wants to.


candleshoe · 04/04/2011 20:53

I have been buying presents for my 10 years younger, only (therefore really special) cousin. I am now 38 and she is 28 - she has not once said thank you or reciprocated so this year I am not bothering. #

But I still think you should give your sis the benefit of the doubt for a bit longer.


emmy12 · 04/04/2011 21:20

Think maybe 14 yr olds are still kids at the end of the day - only really think about themselves. What you decide now may well be the path for the future. You could be bigger - just send her a card and a box of chocs - that way you leave the path a bit more open for when she is an adult. I'd be inclined to give her a chance until she's a bit older.


SequinsAndSparkles · 04/04/2011 21:36

She's 14 Hmm 14 year olds generally are a bit self obsessed. It's a bit petty of you given how much older you are. What exactly do you want from her? She's still practically a child, give her a break.


MorticiaAddams · 04/04/2011 21:39

Tough one. My first thought was as she's 14 your Dad should be including her on his cards and presents. I think I probably bought for my siblings and parents at that age but it would only have been something small, I didn't have quite as many as she does and no nieces or nephews.

I also wasn't into children or babies at that age and I know it's not nice when it's your children but they are yours and you can't expect everyone to be interested in them. They really were a non-event for me too.

She should send you a thank you or make a phone call when you send a present though. She's old enough to do that. We never received them from two of our nephews and so stopped sending money when they were 16 and now just send a card. They are both in their 20s and live away from home (without partners) but are included on pils cards and gifts for dc. I wouldn't expect anything from them as men are not so good at that sort of thing and I'm sure Gomez wouldn't have thought of it at that age. Sorry I'm trying to make some sort of point but going way off track!

In all honesty I think most of the fault lies wit their parents. As I said, I think she should be included on your Dad's cards and presents but if you also send something for her Mum's other dc then she should make the effort to get something for you all and include her on it too.

Just out of interest, do the older siblings share this mother?


thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter · 04/04/2011 21:43

emmy12 I know you are trying to give her benefit of doubt but she's 14 - I have always sent thank you cards for birthday/christmas/etc from being old enough to write/draw and still do. Sadly as CrapBag has said her upbringing has been leaning towards the dragged up variety.

OP YANBU - get her a card (bog standard/corner shop/not a special sister type card), chocs (black magic?) and I'd be tempted to send her a book in social manners - Debretts or the like! Wink

My Mam has been going through something similar with ungrateful nieces - she had a 'cull' on present giving this Christmas - which is soo not her (v generous to her last penny) but was sick of being took for granted.


MorticiaAddams · 04/04/2011 21:43

Sorry I went way off track there and still managed to get it wrong. It's two younger bils not nephews.


candleshoe · 04/04/2011 21:46

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter - crackin' name! Grin


thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter · 04/04/2011 21:51

Right so! candleshoe Grin


emmy12 · 04/04/2011 21:55

Thatwould: I have a 14 yr old niece who's never sent me a thank you card for presents. I think it's down to her parents, not her. I know my family went through phases where it could've fallen apart. Somehow my eldest sister got us all together as adults - kind of showed us how we should be behaving. Don't really think you can judge a person's lifelong character by their behaviour at 14.


thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter · 04/04/2011 21:57

emmy12 that's Sad - but you are right it is up to parents/family to teach manners.


TeddyMcardle · 04/04/2011 21:59

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter really is a great name!
She's 14, don't worry, I was awful at 14 and I'm lovely now Grin


FabbyChic · 04/04/2011 22:01

I wouldn't send a present but I'd definately send a card, maybe with a fiver in it.


Maryz · 04/04/2011 22:05

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter · 04/04/2011 22:06

Actually FabbyChics idea is much better than mine - cash - that's what teens want minimal effort -too--! Grin

Teddy Grin (not my 1st choice - was gutted Mamalazarou was already taken!)


tomhardyismydh · 04/04/2011 22:17

you have 2 threads on this? did you not like what you heared on the other one?

looks like a similar responce...Hmm


DandyLioness · 04/04/2011 22:22

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

brass · 04/04/2011 22:43

at 14 if she hasn't been taught how gift ettiquette works I think it would be beyond her.

The problem is her mum. That's where you need to tackle it.


LDNmummy · 05/04/2011 01:26

Send her a card so her birthday is not unacknowledged by you as she is young and prob does not realise how rude she is being. But don't spend money on presents if you don't have it. Your stepmum sounds dreadful though.


KatieMiddleton · 05/04/2011 02:17

What about your Dad's responsibility to bring up his youngest daughter? I see a lot of mud being slung at the mother but it takes two parents to make a baby.

Yabu to expect anything from her. She's still a child. I agree with your dad you should treat her the same as other siblings re present giving. Just bung a tenner in a card. It says "I've made a gesture but not a huge one" and she'll be pleased with the cash.

I think you have to be the bigger person here


ilovemydogandMrObama · 05/04/2011 02:46

Agree with others. A card and a gift certificate from somewhere or another.

If she doesn't respond, ask her (or text, email, FB whatever) if she received it, and leave it at that.


skybluepearl · 05/04/2011 07:12

she is still a child -maybe continue to buy her a voucher and text to ask if she got it and what she bought. expect nothing in return and you will free yourself up of feeling hard done by. She is very young and maybe you need to show her how to behave in a mature fashion.


hecate · 05/04/2011 10:19

she's 14. Even if she's a brat, you should still be the grown up. Send her something. If you don't feel she deserves a big thoughtful gift, bung a tenner in a card.

She is a bratty 14 yr old. One day she may be a lovely person who remembers her kind older sister who was always nice, even when she was being selfish (as teens are prone to being!)

Don't wash your hands of her while she is still a child. Give her the chance to grow up. Also, you have no idea what an influence on her growth you could be, for good or bad.

You're at a fork in the road now. You can go either way. Cast her off or not.


ConnorTraceptive · 05/04/2011 10:26

I would do the card with a tenner in it until she is 18. At 14 you really can't expect her to be buying presents or cards for you and your children.

As for thank you cards that should be down to BOTH her parents to make sure that is happening.


CrapBag · 05/04/2011 10:48

Thanks for your replies.

My dad has tackled her on this. It has always been my dad has got something and cards and his on/off DP (the mother) has done something separate with the children. When I had my DS my sister insisted she had got me a card but she never actually gave it to me. Last year she told my dad she said thank you for the present because he asked her, she never did. When it was my birthday, given the hard time I had been given by my dad, he phoned her and reminded her about my birthday and she insisted she was dropping a card off later, she never did. So my dad has been trying to get her to do these things but she just lies to him. Her mum isn't going to get her to do it as she has never got over the fact that I forgot her DS's birthday the year I was about to have DS, we had just been evicted and were in an awful flat with a nightmare landlord. I kind of had other things on my mind that year. I also get pissed off that I am the one who gets shit for it but my other siblings don't get anything said to them.

The older 3 have a different mum, hence the completely different way in which they have been brought up.

I do check to see if she got presents etc, and she still struggles to say thank you. Year before last I was sat with her and asked her if she liked the xmas present I had just handed her (without a word from her), she just said "oh, yeah" like she couldn't have cared less. I just looked at her and my nan said "I think she is waiting for a thank you" and my sister just said it as if she really couldn't give a toss. It is the ungrateful attitude that comes with it and the expectation that I should always be making the effort but shouldn't even expect a single thought in return.

Maybe I really don't understand teenagers but I know I would never have been allowed to behave the way she does. I always said my thank yous and was very grateful for receiving presents from others and appreciated the effort. I also used to use my pocket money to buy presents too. When my sister gets £15 for washing a car, it pisses me off that she can't go and get a sodding card with it.

OP posts:
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Sign up to continue reading

Mumsnet's better when you're logged in. You can customise your experience and access way more features like messaging, watch and hide threads, voting and much more.

Already signed up?