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Holidays

AIBU - family holiday and family don't spend time with us.

47 replies

Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:16

Hi All,

AIBU?

We have recently had a family holiday with my husband's family (long weekend away in the UK) - MIL, two brothers, their partners and one little baby. We have a toddler and I'm currently pregnant so could be hormones playing a role in this but I am feeling really angry and hurt. Since coming away we haven't spent anytime with the wider family, they have gone off to do their own things - which include sitting in pubs eating long lunches or drinking. We have done more kid friendly stuff separately and I understand that people don't always want to do that. But one day we suggested a picnic lunch somewhere as people didn't "have any plans", an hour later they had all decided to go for lunch and then a vineyard, obviously we could have joined but just not toddler friendly and would have been more hassle for us than enjoyment. We have fed our toddler separately because there is no understanding of toddler mealtimes, which is fine but we had a meal out one evening where we didn't sit down until 7pm because everyone wanted a drink beforehand and then people wanted starters so it didn't finish until 9pm. My BIL then said that me and my husband were "manic" because we were desperately trying to entertain an overtired, hungry toddler!

I just don't feel welcome and feel like they don't want to spend any time with us. I feel we are a fun family to be around, don't take ourselves too seriously, up for a laugh, we easily make friends so not used to people not wanting to spend time with us. To give a bit of background, last year, my BIL called me and my husband freeloaders because he thought we were taking advantage of my MIL - she babysits maybe once a month (if that) and we send the dog to kennels where she works once a week - on these days she walks him and offers to drop him back. Occasionally she will have him overnight if we are desperate. I've never asked for this, this is all arranged by my husband and his mother often offers help, but interestingly my BIL waited until my husband and MIL were asleep that night and laid into me on my one night to enjoy myself. Still hurt by comments, but feel I have been forgiving to him (not my usual nature 🤣).

Anyway, feeling angry and hurt by this holiday and already thinking next year will be even worse as we will also have a baby (if BIL thinks we are manic now we will be extra manic next year). What does everyone else think? If you think IABU please be kind I'm already hormonal and upset.

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CloseYourEyesAndSee · 13/06/2022 08:17

They clearly wanted an adult focused holiday. Don't take it personally but don't do on holiday with them again.

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Lazypuppy · 13/06/2022 08:23

I think YABU, long pub lunches, why couldn't you go for the first bit and as long as toddler was entertained/napping in pushchair, then leave?

Evening meal at 7pm is perfectly normal time to eat, especially on holiday. If toddler was hungry before i would have fed or snacks etc and again taken toys/kindle et to entertain at dinner then put to sleep in the pushchair.

Sounds like you wanted them to just move to your toddler schedule, you don't say how old toddler is, but everything you've described we managed to get involved with at various toddler ages, just takes a bit of pre planning

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BaaCake · 13/06/2022 08:26

Don't go again it's just not your thing

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MsTSwift · 13/06/2022 08:29

You speak like the holiday is obligatory! It’s not! Kind of with them though wouldn’t fancy living by a toddlers schedule on my holiday unless it’s my toddler.

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WimpoleHat · 13/06/2022 08:31

I must admit, it sounds to me more like they didn’t want to do toddler style things rather than they didn’t want to spend time with you per se. Perhaps they hadn’t realised that your routine was as it was when the trip was suggested. No malice necessarily intended - but if I were away for a weekend, I’d like a drink before dinner too. Just a mismatch of lifestyle - not anyone’s fault.

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Yodaisawally · 13/06/2022 08:32

I wouldn't revert to toddler schedule on holiday now we're thankfully past it. Give it a break now until your kids are older.

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Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:32

Thanks. It's hard not to take it personally when they only take pictures or post on IG when we are not there. From the photos it looks like we weren't even on holiday with them! I think you're right, best not to go next year although husband will be disappointed, although might be better if he goes without us.

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MrsElijahMikaelson1 · 13/06/2022 08:34

Well-by next year your BIL’s baby will be a toddler so he may prove more understanding of the situation 😉 He’s obviously a bit jealous too and maybe wants his mum to do stuff for him as well so I’d ignore that.
or don’t go away with them ever again-but don’t moan that you’re left out then!

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SausageAndCash · 13/06/2022 08:34

It’s really hard to integrate a toddler into a majority adult group holiday.

But they do sound a bit clueless.

And BIL sounds horrible.

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BaaCake · 13/06/2022 08:35

Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:32

Thanks. It's hard not to take it personally when they only take pictures or post on IG when we are not there. From the photos it looks like we weren't even on holiday with them! I think you're right, best not to go next year although husband will be disappointed, although might be better if he goes without us.

Sounds a bit like they just invited you as they felt they should/to make it cheaper for themselves tbh.

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Fleur405 · 13/06/2022 08:35

It doesn’t necessarily sound like they don’t want to spend time with you, just that they don’t want to spend their holiday doing things only suitable for a very small child. You can’t expect people to go out for dinner at 5pm or to not have starters with their meal. I think you have to try and fit in with them rather than the other way around. So join them for the meal part of a pub lunch and then head off for a walk rather than expect them all to fit around your daughter. It’s only one weekend perhaps you’d be better to pass next time.

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ImAvingOops · 13/06/2022 08:36

Okay, so you should have dealt with your bill by bringing it up the next day in front of dh and mil and asking mil outright if this is how she feels, because you'd rather she was honest with you. I doubt very much that it came from her and she will give bil a quiet bollocking. If it was from her, she'll be pissed off that bil dropped her in it, which will also result in a bollocking. Either way bil will know not to bully you when you are alone. It's not too late to bring this up now - take control of it!

Re the holiday. I'm sorry but you do sound a bit uptight. But they also sound a bit inflexible. It wouldn't kill then to do a few toddler friendly activities but equally you could feed your toddler when she's hungry and just go with the flow a bit more. In all honesty, people whose kids are older really don't want to centre their holidays around what is fun for toddler.

I think separate holidays are the way to go in future. But you only learn this by doing.

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Abouttimemum · 13/06/2022 08:37

Oh just wait until that baby is a toddler!
you’re not unreasonable OP and it’s shame they don’t want to spend time doing enjoyable things with your toddler.
I’d holiday without them i future.

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lassof · 13/06/2022 08:37

Give it a few years. Once you all have toddlers/older kids, they will want to do more kid-focussed stuff. In the meantime maybe just skip the next few holidays or just invite the parents.
Totally ignore the ridiculous comments from bil - unless he does it again, in which case, don't stand for it!
Enjoy the rest of your holiday.

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PurpleWisteria · 13/06/2022 08:40

Have a chat with DH's parents. It sounds to me like BiL is trying to drive a wedge into the family and isolate your branch.

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RampantIvy · 13/06/2022 08:41

TBH I wouldn't want to go on a toddler focused holiday either. You are simply at a different stage of life from them. You just want different things from a holiday

I think you should just go on holiday with your own little family and not do big family group holidays.

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Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:44

@Lazypuppy for the meal, we did feed toddler beforehand and took all the things to entertain, also took pram so they fell asleep in pram on way home, but whilst doing all of that we were called manic, I feel like we can't win. We either try to integrate into the adult activities and get called out for it or we don't spend time with anyone and then it's a bit pointless us even being there.

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lightunderthesea · 13/06/2022 08:45

Don't give it another thought. It's not that they don't want to spend time with you, but a group of people don't need to accommodate a toddler's routine, especially because actually you could have participated in all of those activities to an extent, albeit probably with a bit of extra work for you and husband.
However, when you had suggested a picnic and presumably explained that it was a way to spend time together which was a bit easier for you, then it wasn't great that this one suggestion was completely dismissed.

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Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:46

@Abouttimemum unfortunately the baby is the other BIL's. The BIL who made all the comments has no children and it doesn't look like him or his partner want them anytime soon!

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ImAvingOops · 13/06/2022 08:48

First time parents can get very set in their ways re babies routines, so maybe it seemed a bit full on to bil. But then, he has no experience of trying to keep a fractious toddler happy at a restaurant and he is also a prick, so on balance just ignore him!

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Wombat27A · 13/06/2022 08:49

What you need on holiday doesn't fit with their needs. Don't go again. Have a proper family holiday.

It could be worse. We organised a 50th anniversary holiday for in-laws. Bil & sil went off alone at every opportunity & Pil left early, once the golden child was no longer there. I skivvied around for them all weekend, never again.

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Alwayspaintyournails · 13/06/2022 08:51

Your Bil sounds like a bit of a dick.
However, that said there are ways to join in with a toddler too. Our children have grown up knowing not every outing is child focused and I think it’s helped them to be better socialised than some of their peers.

Like others have said you could do a mix…
Long pub lunch - pub lunch then local walk in pushchair or run around park / nap in pushchair whilst you have a drink or coffee and chat.
7pm dinner - 5pm M&S kids microwave number then toys and supper snacks when out for dinner. Option of pushchair nap.

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AngelinaFibres · 13/06/2022 08:54

Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:46

@Abouttimemum unfortunately the baby is the other BIL's. The BIL who made all the comments has no children and it doesn't look like him or his partner want them anytime soon!

This is your answer. Neither of my brothers have children, neither ever wanted them . They would never have gone to a child friendly thing or altered their schedule to fit the schedule of a toddler. Your lives are very different. Going on holiday with any other people is tricky, going with people who have totally different lives is never going to work.

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Bishbashbosh123 · 13/06/2022 08:56

@Wombat27A gosh that sounds awful!!! How do you cope with your feelings about it? I want to be more laid back and I suppose a bit more rational about people not wanting to spend time with a toddler (totally understandable) but can't help feeling hurt by it!

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WhatTheWhoTheWhatThe · 13/06/2022 08:58

I think family holidays only work if everyone accepts people doing their own thing. My kids are teens now and I wouldn’t really be interested in toddler friendly meal times and activities. I’ve just been on holiday with SIL AND BIL and they have a 6 month old and it was a breeze really for them to slot in around adult plans and we spent most days together. As much as I like my other in-laws they have a toddler and a five year old and I wouldn’t choose to go on holiday with them as I’m just not in a toddler/young child frame of mind anymore!

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