to be annoyed that my baby clothes have been hijacked?
sudocrem · 13/05/2011 10:03
Sorry this is long...
A few weeks ago I decided that it was time to clear out the large quantity of baby clothes I'd been hanging on to. Despite the fact that I am pretty sure that my youngest (now 2.5) will be my last DC and am ok with this, I still found parting with them pretty difficult as I've got a few DC and some items have been passed down between them, so its "the end of an era". I know this is perhaps a little silly but I feel quite emotional about them.
DH and I are pretty skint just now and were going to sell them but decided to see if we could give away at least some of them as believe it or not the idea that they could go to someone we knew of who needed them, made it easier. As I didn't know anyone immediately I asked at the church based toddler group I go to if they knew anyone who needed baby clothes, as a lot of the mums there are active in the church and community (I do not go to the church).
Now I've been going to this toddler group for several years so know the mums there fairly well, see them socially occasionally etc. One of the mums, who is a friend, knew of someone who needed 3+ months, while another mum knew someone with a newborn.
I washed and ironed the relevant sized summer clothes, got rid of the worn ones, put most of them on hangers. It took a bit of time and effort but they did look pretty good in the end and there were quite a few rarely and some never worn, still with labels or in the package.
I dropped the clothes off at the weekend. Anyway yesterday the mum whom I'd given the 0-3 month clothes to pass on said she'd noticed there were some newish clothes there and that the newborn family probably didn't need many clothes for their baby so would it be ok if she kept back some of the best ones and sold them at a nearly new sale for her dc's nursery?
I was really taken aback so just murmured ok but am now pretty annoyed because:
- I really wanted the clothes to go to someone who needed them. I was giving the clothes to the baby and not to her so the baby's family should get to decide what they want or need, not the intermediary. I could find another family to give the extra clothes to.
2. Surely she must realize I could sell them myself and a) keep the money for my family who could do with it, b) use it for MY dc's nursery (a different one), school or cubs and scouts who are all fundraising just now or c) give some or all of it to a worthwhile charity of my choice.
3. She didn't say "X doesn't need them all so would you like the clothes back or can I sell them " -just- " I was going to do this, is it OK."
AIBU to get so annoyed about this?
Would you ask for the extra clothes back, or would you let her go ahead but tell her you weren't happy, or would you just let it go? To be honest I do still have a lot of clothes (winter ones and bigger sizes) and baby equipment which, after this lesson in misplaced philanthropy, I will definitely be selling so I am tempted to just let it go. Toddler dc goes to nursery after summer so it's my last few months at the group anyway.
TandB · 13/05/2011 10:07
I think you would be quite within your rights to say 'no, that was not my intention' and insist that the clothes either go to the intended recipient as a batch or be returned to you if the other mum genuinely thinks there are too many.
She is being extremely cheeky to be honest - particularly since it is clearly the best items she intends to keep back for her own profit.
The only difficulty is that you won't realistically know if she decides to do this anyway and not tell you. I would actually be inclined to ask for the whole bundle back.
StayingDavidTennantsGirl · 13/05/2011 10:08
As you feel so strongly about this, I think you should go back to her and say that you really want the clothes to go to someone you know, as that is making it easier for you to let go of them. The chances are that she will understand the feeling, especially if you explain it as well as you have done here. At least she has asked first, so you do have the option to tell her how you feel.
And for what it's worth, your feelings are very reasonable - the clothes have happy memories for you, and it is hard to let go of the little clothes when you know you probably aren't going to have any more - it is an end-of-an-era feeling.
So go with your gut instincts - be honest with her, and the clothes can go to the lady with the newborn - who I am sure will be delighted with them.
MrsMellowDrummer · 13/05/2011 10:17
Also, does that mean she's keeping the best ones to sell, if they're the ones that look newest? I could understand if she asked if she could have any ones that the mum of the newborn had decided she didn't want/need.
But to cherry pick the ones she wants - that's really a bit cheeky isn't it...
Finallyspring · 13/05/2011 10:22
This woman is odd and cheeky. However, I understand completely why you did not say anything. It was unexpected and most people don't like confrontation. Look at it as a learning experience. You have found out that this woman has different principles and you need to keep a distance. You have also found out that when you give stuff to people you will need to establish what you had in mind for them.
sudocrem · 13/05/2011 10:27
Thanks for replies. "belgo" yes i don't know why i said ok, and wish I hadn't. She asked just as i was leaving/trying to stop DC from running out of the door and hurrying to collect my older DC from nursery so I didn't really have time to think. Am so rubbish at being put on the spot like that. Also I was just really taken aback, a bit shocked even as personally i think this is very cheeky, and possibly even unkind to the newborn family, so its really good to get other perspectives on it.
godspeed · 13/05/2011 10:42
ooops sorry just saw that she didn't hand over the newer ones - sounds like a bossy PITA - why is it her place to decide that the family shouldn't have the nicest clothes for their baby? Definitely call her on it and ask for the newer clothes back, you don't have to justify it but if you want to just say a good friend has announced she is pg and you want to pass them to her, and when can you pack them up? Quic - before they end up on ebay!
sudocrem · 13/05/2011 10:55
Yes MrsMellowDrummer it sounds as if she intends to keep back the best stuff, so the newborn wouldn't get it. Likewise i could understand her suggestion if our DCs went to the same nursery but they don't so I feel its self-interest.
I may not have made my feeling as clear as I should have, (though I thought I did) and maybe she thinks i just want rid of the clothes and don't care how. On the other hand I do try to help out a bit with various things so maybe she just thinks I'm a soft touch.
Although I don't like confrontation I really wouldn't have minded speaking up yesterday, if I'd had the presence of mind to, but am concerned that to go back now will make me look petty after saying Ok. The more I think about it it may have been a deliberate ploy to ask as I was leaving; we had been there almost two hours. But I do like the idea of taking the clothes back to pass them on to someone who will actually get them and be able to use them.
Finallyspring I agree about keeping a distance but thankfully I only have till end of June at the group so really won't see her after that, though I might make an effort to keep in contact with one or two others from the group. Don't want this to spoil the last six weeks or so of my time at the group.
WhereYouLeftIt · 13/05/2011 11:15
OP, just say to her that she caught you on the hop with an unexpected question, and now you've had time to actually think about it you'd rather have the clothes that are not needed for the intended recipient back.
She's effectively getting you to donate to her DC's nursery, and now you've thought about it you'd rather donate to your own DC's nursery.
I don't think she'd be able to take offence at that. She hasn't had time to do anything presumably, since she only asked you yesterday.
She is quite the madam.
MichaelaS · 13/05/2011 12:15
I think YAB(a bit)U to be so upset - she was cheeky to ask, especially about the nicest clothes - but you said it was ok. She actually asked you, she could have just done it and you'd have been none the wiser. If you are not happy with it you should not have said OK.
I think the best thing is to contact her and explain you didn't think it through properly yesterday and would prefer to have the clothes back that the family didn't need/want as you would prefer them to go elsewhere. I doubt she'd be upset about it.
Some church groups get a lot of donations - many of them are bags of junk basically, which they are expected to give away, sell or throw out. Many donations are from people who are just clearing space and are grateful to have someone to take them off their hands. Obviously this isn't the case with you, you were trying to help someone in genuine need and want to ensure the best use is made of what you gave. That's really kind of you. But I wonder how much of her attitude comes from being regularly deluged with bags of damaged cheapo clothes she is expected to get rid of.
Maybe not, just a hunch!
To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.