It’s All Mom’s Fault

by admin on February 17, 2011

When I got married about 15 years ago, my mom asked me for a mailing address for her to send a gift. I thought it odd since I was only 15 miles away but so be it.

My wife and I get married without a hitch and moved to our new home. On our first Sunday back after our honeymoon we went to my parent’s church (the one I grew up in) to join them at the service and then go to lunch. I noticed people at the church who had known me for all of my 27 years were acting cold and distant and, in some cases, quite rudely toward me and my wife.

I found out later that mommy dearest had put an announcement in the church bulletin the week of our wedding that said the new bride and groom “expected” gifts from (insert VERY high end store name) to be sent to 123 Blah Blah St. with insurance.  Yes, “expected” as in you WILL send me a gift or else.

I also found out later that a woman in the church had made a beautiful quilt with my and my bride’s name on it to give to us but, after reading that announcement in the church bulletin she decided not to give it to me.

So, thanks to mom’s helpfulness, I am now a greedy, self-centered a-hole in the eyes of the church and the community I grew up in. So, I can either explain that mom put that in there and make myself look like a mom-hating shmuck or I can continue to be disliked by the friends and families I grew up with. Besides, after 15 years, although people still remember it and think I am a turd, it is too late to do anything about it.

Oh, and keep in mind that not all things “just blow over” as my wife said this would.  0322-09

Too late to do anything but in my church, a little chat with the pastor would have rectified the situation.   Besides, people who love you will exercise the principle that love covers a multitude of sins and just forget about it.

You’ve also had 15 years of married life to demonstrate kindness, generosity and gratitude to friends and family thus dispelling any negative impressions.

{ 57 comments… read them below or add one }

Cat February 20, 2011 at 4:13 pm

If you know anything about gossip, you know you did not need to go to any great lengths over this. I’d pull the biggest church gossip aside and, in a stage whisper, say, “I am so embarrassed over that announcement Mom put in the church bulletin. She meant well, but we are just in love and want to marry. Gifts are not at all important to us. I just don’t know where to look, I am so embarrassed by it, but what can I do?”

Believe me, everyone in the church would have known by the next Sunday.

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Drunkenatheist February 21, 2011 at 3:10 pm

@aventurine: I don’t consider myself to be a “bridezilla” type (man, I hate that term). As a matter of fact, I’m the one pushing for the city hall wedding whereas my boyfriend would prefer the big wedding for all of his family. (My response? If that’s what you want, we’re swapping roles. I get stressed when organizing a party for 20; I am NOT taking on party planning for 200.)

With that being said, there are not words to express how livid I would be if that happened to me. Okay, I lied, there are words to express it but they just aren’t appropriate for E-hell. Hopefully, cutting your MIL out of your life wasn’t too difficult on your husband. I have had to cut out close people in my life for treating me awful, and I know it can be really hard on you; I know that I occasionally miss one or two friends and I have to really remind myself that resolving things with them will just lead to more hurt for me.

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aventurine February 22, 2011 at 12:53 pm

@drunkenathiest:

” Hopefully, cutting your MIL out of your life wasn’t too difficult on your husband. ”

We married in ’91, and endured her drama, guilt trips, and ham-fisted attempts at controlling our lives with varying levels of tolerance and good humor for years. He finally made good on years of warnings and cut her off cold in ’97. I actually had a (*slightly*) harder time with it than he did (the mind wants to remember the fun times, and she could be quite fun when she wanted to be). He said then, and still says, that it was one of the best things he ever did for himself, and her behavior before and since made it easier than he’d thought.

She’d have been an eHell recurring character for the ages. It was pretty bad. :(

Thanks for your kind words!

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aventurine February 22, 2011 at 12:54 pm

’99, not ’97. ’97 marked the beginning of the end. – eye roll -

I have a terrible memory!

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Mrelia February 22, 2011 at 10:48 pm

It’s been my experience with small town gossip and “scandals” that some people just won’t let go, no matter what the evidence. This is part of why I hardly ever visit hometown, people I would have thought to have known me better were quick to believe some very negative and untrue things about me and from what I understand, STILL think these things. I made my case at the time and don’t need to be “forgiven” for sins I did not commit. I wonder about those parishioners judging the couple in their absence.

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Kimbubbley February 23, 2011 at 9:54 am

For those who think that people should have / might have forgotten by now…

I was very good friends with a priest in our parish who was around the same age as I was at the time that the diocese moved him here. We went to movies and outings together – with my FIANCE – all the time.

Shortly before my own wedding – over which he was to preside – he left the priesthood to marry a member of the congregation with whom he had fallen madly in love. Being several years our senior, his love was not comfortable with our friendship and it died fairly quickly after our individual marriages.

Very, very many people in the congregation assumed that he left the priesthood to marry ME and branded me a scarlet lady. That my own banns clearly named a wholly different man did not matter. They had decided that it must be my fault and that was that.

This was all 10 years ago. To this day, when I shop in the town near my parent’s house and parish church, there are people who will walk up to me and with a face full of accusation and judgment, ask me how ‘priest’ and I are doing. I smile and tell them that I and mine are doing very well, thank you, and that the last I had hear, ‘priest’ had two children of his own and he and wife were enjoying life. 9 times out of 10, they snort as though I have told a lie and walk away without further conversation.

People believe what they want to believe when it’s juicier/better than the truth…and I do NOT live in a “small town”.

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Adica March 11, 2011 at 12:59 pm

I’m pretty sure that as soon as I found out what had happened, I would have put my own announcement in the church bulletin explaining the situation in a tactful manner (something along the lines of there having been a big misunderstanding, we had no part in the original bulletin, apologizing for it, a thank you to everyone who wished us well, etc.), and then tactfully explaining the situation to anyone who enquired. My mother would also have gotten a (somewhat less tactful) lecture about it.

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