Mumsnet Logo
My feed

to access all these features


AIBU to send the eggs back

23 replies

SalisburySoup · 12/04/2011 18:49

PILs haven't bothered with DC in months. They've never been especially fussed and prefer BILs DCs. We've raised the issue with them several times and each time they make an effort for a few weeks coming to ours and letting us visit their house (they only live around the corner!!) but then it tapers off again, they'll arrange to come over and will cancel because they're "busy" or "ill", same for if we arrange to call round at theirs, but then we'll find out afterwards that they were actually visiting BIL or had taken his DCs out for the day.

As it currently stands they haven't seen DC since September. For his birthday and Christmas they arranged to come see him but then never did, we didn't find out they'd cancelled until gone 9pm both times and DCs gifts were left in our porch. There's been no reason for them not coming and when DP brought it up in October he was told they were busy but would make time to see him soon. We've had no contact from them since and our calls aren't returned.

This afternoon when we got home there was a bag of Easter eggs in the porch "love from Nanny and Grampy" on the tag.

AIBU to send them back? DP wants to send them back with a note telling them to shove them up their arse but I think that's going a bit far but I can see his point about returning them. They haven't bothered with DC since September so DP wants no contact, DC is at an age now where he's starting to question why Nanny and Grampy don't want to see him and DP doesn't want him hurt by their random dipping in and out of his life especially as they've had multiple opportunities and multiple second chances, he thinks enough is enough. They can be very vindictive though and we live in a small community, I know they'd tell everyone that I'm blocking them from seeing their grandchild and I can see them getting nasty over it. At the same time though DP is firm on his view of it and I agree that it's not on.

Advice anyone?

OP posts:

clockwatcher666 · 12/04/2011 18:54

Invite them over for an afternoon over Easter and tell them you will save the eggs so they can give them to Dc personally?


dearyme · 12/04/2011 18:55

take the label off and say they are from you :)


pigletmania · 12/04/2011 18:59

YANBU how out of order that is. Good idea clockwatcher


Beamur · 12/04/2011 19:04

I'd keep the eggs - at least that way your kids get the impression that the GP care enough to give them Easter eggs.
Sadly though, I think you are going to have the unenviable task of trying to shield your kids from their GP's favouritism.
I wouldn't bother with more chances/invites etc, they are only going to let you down.


glastocat · 12/04/2011 19:04

Huh, my sainted MIL gave my kid a book about holy communion last year instead of an egg. We are not Catholic. So I feel your pain.


elmofan · 12/04/2011 19:04

Fab idea clockwatcher Grin they sound dreadful


CBear6 · 12/04/2011 19:07

clockwatcher has the right idea. You might get lucky and see them squirm if your kids decide to ask their grandparents to their faces why they're second best.


Beamur · 12/04/2011 19:11

I really do sympathise as my Granny has perpetually favoured my Uncles kids in the family (Dad is one of four and I have a lot of cousins) - but I embarrassed her hugely once, she was knitting a cardi for one of the 'golden children' and I liked it a lot and asked if she would make me one too. She replied that she couldn't because the wool was expensive, to which I replied 'but not too expensive for X and Y?' To her credit she did make me one. It was itchy and I never wore it!!


Xiaoxiong · 12/04/2011 19:14

clockwatcher's idea is great. You could even get your best acting together, gin up the enthusiasm and say what a brilliant idea it was them dropping them off early, you've hidden them away so they can be produced as a surprise when the GPs are over and how excited your DC is to see them and open the eggs together on Easter weekend. They would have to be truly heartless to then forget to turn up or cancel because they're busy. Perhaps you could even organise an Easter egg hunt with your BILs kids as well so all the GCs are together in one place.

It's odd though - they certainly remember your DC enough to bother to go out, get eggs, leave on the porch and write a nice note, so it's not like they've just forgotten him completely. Maybe there's another reason they don't want to come round? Perhaps they find it hard to get around your house (steep stairs, no helper bar in the loo) and don't want to admit it because they're worried they'll seem like they're losing their independence?

Is this something you could bring up with your BIL? It could be something you've never even thought of, and maybe the BIL would have some idea. Maybe they're afraid of just dealing with one GC at a time and think your DC would be bored with just his GPs and no other children around as well?


atthecarwash · 12/04/2011 19:16

you say they haven't bothered since September....but then you say they have given gifts? Do you think they feel unwelcome?


minipie · 12/04/2011 19:16

OK so obviously the GPs should not favouritise.

However, surely it's better that your DS gets something from them rather than nothing at all?


exoticfruits · 12/04/2011 19:24

Just accept them on their own terms. Say thank you for eggs and accept them. Don't expect a lot but carry on being pleasant.


PlopPlopPing · 12/04/2011 19:40

Why do you think they are like this?


SalisburySoup · 12/04/2011 20:36

They've always been like this. They send gifts because it's expected of them, SIL gets angry about the favouritism and had words about it when only BILs kids got gifts one Christmas and no one else got any, she told everyone at the club where PILs are on the committee that play favourites and they didn't like that because they brag to people about how they live for their grandchildren but it's a front. We've never done anything to make them feel unwelcome and they're only in their very early 50s and very active so mobility and access aren't issues. DP has asked them the same questions and they think he's being silly and making a big deal of nothing.

It does go deeper than just playing favourites, they play the children off against each other and little scuffles break out in the school yard because Nanny said this or Grampy said that. They compare the children too and not in a positive way, none of the other children in the family quite measure up to their favourites or ever will. DP says they were the same when he was a child and BIL was favoured then, he and SIL had to share a room until he was 15 and BIL moved out because BIL "needed" his own bedroom and his own space, there are other examples bit some of them are awful and make me feel sad for DP and SIL.

I just don't know what to do abou them any more.

OP posts:

helibee · 12/04/2011 20:46

Sailsbury. I feel so sorry for you all. You and your dp sound lovely and you are trying to do the right thing to protect your children.

My nanny used to be similar. She would visit us once a year and come bearing sweets and chocolate. My brother and I hated it. All we wanted was to see her more often and we got to a point where we refused the sweets as we just found it so sad. She saw one set of my cousins all the time. They got all her time and affection and it really hurt us. My other grandparents we saw every week and they treated my cousins and my brother and I the same. We were very close to them.

How old are your dc? Does SIL have dc too? Could you meet up with them for Easter and make a fuss of all the kids?


YouaretooniceNOT · 12/04/2011 20:55

September?, more interested in other Grandchildren, no Christmas contact, leaving Easter eggs on the porch, ignoring your calls, confusing/upsetting/knocking your children's confidence and with the added threat of the Grandparents spreading lies around the community about the reasons why you have blocked them seeing their Grandchildren?

They do not deserve the children or you for that matter in their lives.

I would seek a good/very experienced therapist and have a chat before you make that decision. You can then decide together with therapist and your Husband if cutting them out altogether is the best option and how to go about it if it is.

Good luck x

(no commas - tired!)


Loonytoonie · 12/04/2011 21:08

Who's the more dominant PIL? I'm betting it's the MIL...
Do you get on with your SIL's partner/husband? Is he reasonable like you? (You sound lovely btw) If it were me I'd be sorely tempted to go with him as the 'partners' and tell them gently how you're all feeling - that way, you can't be accused of petty jealousy as I'm sure that's what they'd accuse your DH and his sister of. Sounds like these PIL's have messed with your DH's (and his sis's) heads Sad.

If your children are at an age where they start noticing, and getting hurt, I'd tell them so. See what they do.

Not sure what else to suggest other than that. What does the 'golden' BIL say about it all?


PlopPlopPing · 12/04/2011 21:18

Aaaah your poor DH! He and his sister must have felt so rejected growing up! That's so sad!


LyingWitchInTheWardrobe2726 · 12/04/2011 21:36

It's a tough one as they're not great grandparents but they're your DC's grandparents. It's not really about you and your DH, it's about your DCs... what will be gained from snubbing GPs who are generally not that bothered anyway?

You can accept the eggs, give them to your DCs and tell them who they're from and make sure that you or they thank GPs. Your DCs will make up their own minds when they're old enough.


TheSkiingGardener · 12/04/2011 21:49

I would say to the grandparents, "I'm afraid we aren't able ro accept your gift as the children are becoming confused as to why you are uninterested in them most of the time. We think it is best to stop contact while this situation continues"

I hate favouritism over GC's. Grrrrr.


YouaretooniceNOT · 12/04/2011 22:55

What are your thoughts now OP?


WhereYouLeftIt · 12/04/2011 23:14

OP, sadly I think your DP's preference for no contact is probably best in the long run. The 'playing the children off against each other' - no, I'd want to keep my DC away from that.

As for them spreading that you were blocking access in your small community - follow your SIL's lead. "You know, they only live round the corner, but from last September they haven't come to see DC once, not even at Christmas or birthdays. We phone and they don't call back. We've given up with them." Said to everyone, starting tomorrow.


pigletmania · 13/04/2011 00:06

YANBU their behaviour is disgusting. People have pulled them up on this behaviour and they still do it. I would ask dp to give them the eggs back, and tell them why. They sound toxic tbh, playing children off against each other and causing upset, better not to have anything to do with them until they change. Mabey cutting off contact all together may be what they need.

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?