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AIBU?

Brother not acknowledging I’ve had a baby

21 replies

Brum1992 · 17/09/2022 18:52

My brother and his wife were unable to have children and have chosen to not adopt. i had a baby just over a week ago via c section. When I phoned my brother to let him know the baby had arrived, it was awkward and he hasn’t even asked since if we’re ok. We sent some messages about my dad’s birthday, and he didn’t even mention the fact that a new baby is here,. Over the years I’ve held back to not push anything for him with my other child so as to not upset him, but a part of me feels we shouldn’t have to hide away forever to not upset him. I can’t imagine how he feels, it’s heartbreaking to want a family and it not happen.

When it comes to things like Christmas, he expects us to jump and travel 6 hours to stay at theirs, yet doesn’t visit or make an effort for us. he won’t help my parents to visit (they’re fairly frail and can’t travel far). So when our son was born we ended up driving 7 hours when he was 9 weeks old so my parents could meet him. My brother happily came to meet my son at that point, but wouldn’t make the effort to help my parents, even though it was their first grandchild.

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

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35965a · 17/09/2022 18:54

I would stop making an effort with him and back away a bit now. His situation is sad and you’re right that you shouldn’t have to hide away on his account. Congratulations on your new baby!

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Wibbly1008 · 17/09/2022 18:59

Sounds like He is just cutting it out as it is too painful. This is sad, really sad, but don’t let this stop you celebrating your baby. I would respect he is in a predicament and then back off and enjoy your baby. Send him good wishes but put your family first. Congrats by the way!

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Brum1992 · 17/09/2022 19:11

Thank you both. I will back off and leave the ball in his court.

How would you deal with situations where he expects us to travel to them? He can be quite pushy - and I know the situation is sad, but it’s very one sided. We’re really expected to jump
through hoops to suit what he wants (it’s always been the case. waaaay before kids). He can really push the whole “you’re my sister, you should do this”.I know it’ll come up this Christmas.

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QueSyrahSyrah · 17/09/2022 19:15

If they've backed off due to the new baby (congratulations by the way!) which is understandable in their position, are you sure it'll come up this Christmas? If it's too painful for them to even talk about now, will they want to be around a new baby at Christmas?

You're well within your rights to say no, you're having a quiet Christmas at home, if he does.

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toastofthetown · 17/09/2022 19:17

I don't think it's your brother's responsibility to facilitate a relationship between your children and your parents. When either you or your parents moved to be a seven hour drive from each other, surely it was obvious that traveling to meet in the future would be arduous and as your parents aged their ability to travel far would be restricted. I also don't think it's unfair for your brother to choose to visit you when your are nearby, but choose not to take the long trip to visit.

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Shmithecat2 · 17/09/2022 19:22

Just back off. Leave it with him. And learn to say NO wrt to Xmas demands. I'm not sure why you're expecting him to facilitate your parent's visits though?

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idontthinksodou · 17/09/2022 19:24

Congratulations on your new baby. It's a difficult one with your brother, it is probably painful for him but that doesn't really excuse him not even acknowledging your baby, he would be better off being honest about how he feels but give him some time.

Tell your brother you won't be visiting at Christmas because it's too much of a drive for you with a young baby and your other child but he is welcome to come to you. With regards to your parents I agree with an earlier post that of you decided to move 7 hours away from them you can't then expect your brother to always be responsible for bringing them to you, you should make your own arrangements to visit them

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Babycakes6 · 17/09/2022 19:24

I have a cousin whose wife apparently couldn’t have kids so they refused to have Christmas with me and my baby but 3 years later they managed to get pregnant. All this grief they gave me for having a baby, I felt so guilty!

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Welliesintherain · 17/09/2022 19:26

Distance yourself from your brother

Arrange to meet up with your parents separately

Doesn’t sound like you get on so not sure why you can’t just say no when he asks but just say your staying home as it’s your baby’s first Christmas,

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missbipolar · 17/09/2022 19:29

It's not really his job to facilitate your parents relationship with your children and I think it's a bit unfair of you to expect him to

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Winterthoughts · 17/09/2022 19:36

Leave it and let him contact you next,say no to Christmas and mean it if it comes up,and sort out your own travel for seeing your folks (and congratulations).

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Goldbar · 17/09/2022 19:37

Like people have said, he doesn't have to facilitate your relationship with his parents and neither do you need to jump through hoops to do as he wants either. It would be perfectly reasonable for you to stay at home this Christmas.

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ClocksGoingBackwards · 17/09/2022 19:39

Is it that he expects you to travel to then because he wants to see you, or is it because you want to see your parents and he won’t bring them to you?

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NoParticularPattern · 17/09/2022 19:40

Leave the ball in his court and get on with your life. You are being a bit unreasonable to expect him to facilitate your parents in having a relationship with your children though. If you and your parents want to build that relationship then that up to you guys, not your brother.

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londonrach · 17/09/2022 19:41

I can see both sides here. Congratulations on your new baby. Give your dB space. You don't realise the pain till you been thought it. They need space.

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Sceptre86 · 17/09/2022 19:45

This is the point where you discover your backbone. You have two kids and presumably a partner, why is it always your family that you have to go to for Christmas, what about his? Is there any reason you can't celebrate at your own home? Is there a reason why each Christmas must be at your brother's home other than he wants it that way? If my brother didn't congratulate me on the birth of my child yet expected me to travel 7 hours to spend Christmas with him I'd tell him to go swing. You must have a very understanding partner to go along with this, my dh would be calling it out for what it is.

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Aprilx · 17/09/2022 19:59

I can see your position and his in the first paragraph. Perhaps yours a little bit more even, I am in his position though, childless not through choice, but I accept that other people have children and it is part of life. But I don’t really have any suggestions.

Your second paragraph I really don’t understand. Offering to host Christmas doesn’t seem like a bad thing and you can surely say no. I am baffled as to why you think he should drive your parents to you.

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Brum1992 · 17/09/2022 20:13

@Sceptre86 we tend to alternate between going to my husbands parents and trying to see my parents. we spend lots of time with the in laws and they came to help with our son while I was in hospital.

in terms of my brother facilitating my parents visiting, I had just wanted him to drive them to the train station. They would then sit on a train and we’d pick them up at the other end. Me and my brother moved away (me much further), but my brother is always in the area for work. I had just had a difficult birth that ended up with an emergency c section and the recovery hadn’t been straightforward.

That said, I still visit my parents more than him. I guess a part of me thinks he could generally make more effort. For example, I would sort out their shopping from here during lockdowns, and he didn’t do anything for them, despite being closer.

other things he won’t do is send my parents mothers or Father’s Day cards because of his situation. He doesn’t often acknowledge birthdays (this has always been the case).

just to be clear - I have never ever pushed any of this on him, and I leave it to him to talk to me when he’s ready and have never pushed him to interact with our son. I guess just a text to say, I hope you’re both ok, and that you’re recovering.

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Journeylikenomother · 17/09/2022 20:13

Oh OP, I feel your frustration. My BIL & wife have barely acknowledged the birth of our DD (now 16wks). We haven't received so much as a card welcoming her, never mind visiting or getting her a gift. Over the years, DH never forgets birthdays / Christmas for all THREE of their kids, often having to msg to ask if they received the gift we sent.
Always us going to visit them or meeting at PILs, never them coming to us. Some people are just so self-absorbed. Sad.

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Shmithecat2 · 17/09/2022 21:15

Looking at your previous posts OP, why do you continue to make an effort with your brother? He's not good to you, never has been. I wouldn't want someone like him in my children's life anyway.

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SleepingAgent · 17/09/2022 21:25

Brum1992 · 17/09/2022 19:11

Thank you both. I will back off and leave the ball in his court.

How would you deal with situations where he expects us to travel to them? He can be quite pushy - and I know the situation is sad, but it’s very one sided. We’re really expected to jump
through hoops to suit what he wants (it’s always been the case. waaaay before kids). He can really push the whole “you’re my sister, you should do this”.I know it’ll come up this Christmas.

Have you ever replied "you're my brother, you should do THIS then"? in response. Maybe try it sometime.

Or is he a misogynist who thinks women should always run round after the men of the family?

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