Etiquette Hell

General Etiquette => Family and Children => Topic started by: PennyandPleased on November 27, 2012, 04:22:06 PM

Title: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: PennyandPleased on November 27, 2012, 04:22:06 PM
Last week was DBF's youngest sisters birthday. In her town there is a semi-famous jewelry shop that has very popular bracelets that are very unique. DBFs sister has been shamelessly hinting that she wants a bracelet from this shop.

For her gift I bought her two. (For what it's worth they were $40 each.) I had them wrapped in the store's logo covered box and wrapping paper so there was no question where they were from.

At her birthday dinner her older brother was there with 3 kids. Two are girls aged 1 1/2 and 3.

After dinner we gave her gifts and I have her the bracelets. Everyone made a big deal that she "finally " got her bracelets from "special store" so again there was no question where they were from. Right after gifts were opened the older brother and his wife got ready to leave and started packing up. While they were doing so the Birthday Sister was showing the 2 baby nieces her bracelets. They loved them because they were so shiny and such. The kids were playing with them and seemed to love them. I was present for all of this and there was only a few people there so there is no question that Birthday Sister knew I was watching this. When the parents of the nieces were ready to go the Birthday Sister said to the nieces: "okay girls you can have my new bracelets. They were not the ones I asked for anyway. ". And she put the bracelets on the kids and then the kids left with their parents.

This was done right in front of me and there is no way that Birthday Sister could think I didn't see the exchange. I'm really angry that this happen. For one I know that the bracelets are as good as gone and my 80$ is out the widow. I'm also very angry that she would do this in front of me.

DBF was working that night so he was not there for this and when I got home and told him what happened he didn't seem to see the big deal. My feeling on it was that if she didnt want the bracelets that was fine but she could have exchanged them Or at the very least waited for a different time to give them away.

Am I over reacting for being angry about this? Was what Birthday Sister said and did as rude as I think it is?
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: alice on November 27, 2012, 04:24:41 PM
That is terrible.  Didn't anyone say anything?  I would have had to say something if my daughters were given gifts like this? 

I am so sorry that happened.  I don't blame you for feeling hurt.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: WillyNilly on November 27, 2012, 04:25:25 PM
Yes, it was absolutely rude.  What a horrible thing to do!  She sounds terribly ungrateful and I think you now know to pretty much not ever get her anything of value going forward and merely token gifts from now on if any at all.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Yvaine on November 27, 2012, 04:25:45 PM
Yes, it was rude. People can do whatever they want with gifts--even if it's something that would deeply sadden the giver--but the proper etiquette is to dispose of them out of the giver's sight.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Twik on November 27, 2012, 04:28:55 PM
Of course you are not over-reacting. Your DBF seems to feel that his sister is such a snowflake that the correct response should have been "Oh, I'm so sorry, let me go and buy you exactly the ones you want!"

Next time he gives you something, perhaps you could immediately give them to someone (or throw them in the garbage, whatever) with a shrug that "it's not exactly what I asked for". Perhaps that would get through to him why you don't disrespect givers like this. Otherwise, I might consider turning the D to an X, if he really doesn't get why such behaviour is unacceptable.

In any event, I would never get this child another present until she apologizes. Which, from the attitude of her family, will probably be never, so consider it money well saved.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: afbluebelle on November 27, 2012, 04:29:12 PM
That's incredibly rude, but I can't help but wonder if her family was like mine growing up. I had to sacrifice a ton of presents I liked because younger cousins (on both sides) expressed interest in them. My parents were pushovers, and the one time I tried to keep one, the consequences sucked. Plus, I still had to give it up.

You were there though, so I am sure that you got a way better feel of the dynamic. I'm just still (not so) secretly mourning the loss of my remote control helicopter.  :'(
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: PennyandPleased on November 27, 2012, 04:35:16 PM
Thanks all.

For what it's worth DBF was very sympathetic and took my side but basically was like "ooohh sister just loves those kids so much." He did say don't buy her gifts anymore though.

Also the Birthday Sister is 26 so not a child.

Afbluebell- I'm sorry you dealt with that as a child. That is completely wrong. I'm sending imaginary hugs and gifts your way.

I don't plan on getting her a Christmas gift. I won't see her for the holiday so no awkward moment if I don't.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Sophia on November 27, 2012, 04:36:47 PM
That was a deliberate and premediated slight. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: SPuck on November 27, 2012, 04:37:47 PM
I think you have the right to say something once (someone with better words could come up with that), and take this as a lesson learned. If she ever has the gaul to question why you never give her anything else as impressive, you have the right to tell her why.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Yvaine on November 27, 2012, 04:39:30 PM
That's incredibly rude, but I can't help but wonder if her family was like mine growing up. I had to sacrifice a ton of presents I liked because younger cousins (on both sides) expressed interest in them. My parents were pushovers, and the one time I tried to keep one, the consequences sucked. Plus, I still had to give it up.

I experienced a bit of this too and it stinks.  :( >:( But in this case, the little zinger she added at the end shows the real spirit of the giveaway, I think.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Outdoor Girl on November 27, 2012, 04:40:54 PM
I'd never give her a gift again.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Roe on November 27, 2012, 04:43:55 PM
Definitely never give her a gift again!

How incredibly rude and insensitive!  I agree with a PP, it seems as if she meant it to hurt you. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CrochetFanatic on November 27, 2012, 04:44:14 PM
After something like this, she'd be darn lucky to receive so much as a verbal "Happy Birthday" from me, because she's basically shown what other people's thoughtfulness means to her.  >:( And if her feelings were hurt after that, tough noogies.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: DottyG on November 27, 2012, 04:46:49 PM
I'm stunned by this one.  That was so incredibly rude - especially with, as Yvaine said, the zinger at the end.

Like others said, you can do what you want with a gift once it's given to you.  But, come on.  There is a right and wrong way to do so.  This was so much the wrong way.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Dr. F. on November 27, 2012, 05:13:49 PM
Twenty-six??

I was picturing at most a 16-year-old. Good grief. She's way more than old enough to know how rude that was.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: JenJay on November 27, 2012, 05:27:33 PM
Un-freaking-believable! That is without a doubt the absolute last gift I would give her. Ever.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 27, 2012, 05:28:58 PM
I would be expecting BF to have a "come to diety" talk with his sister or he'd be an XBF.  That's inexcusable of her and it would be inexcusable of him to let her get away with it.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Kaypeep on November 27, 2012, 05:30:02 PM
I'm equally as stunned that the parents of those 2 little girls let them take the bracelets.  That's too young of an age to have jewelry like that, and just downright inappropriate to take the bracelets even if they were offered. One of the parents should have said "Oh no, the girls are too young to wear those. Besides, you just got them as a gift.  It's not appropriate to pass them to the girls right now."  Seriously, the fact that no one in the family stood up to this and pointed out how wrong it was really floors me.  I hope you don't overextend yourself for any of these people until or unless they do the same for you.  Odds are you'll get similar treatment for your thoughtfulness.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: weeblewobble on November 27, 2012, 05:31:45 PM
She wouldn't get so much as a card from me from now on.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Cutenoob on November 27, 2012, 05:32:35 PM
Me reading your post had my jaw drop. Just....no. You..no. I'm sorry you had to see that.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: RegionMom on November 27, 2012, 05:35:42 PM
I know that once a gift is given, that it is up tho the recipient what to do with it, no strings attached by the giver.
However,
she had wanted a bracelet from this store.  Everyone saw and commented long and loud.  To then pass it off to children, in front of the giver, is rude, ungrateful, and downright mean.

The little girls have learned that if they ooh and awe enough, they can have anything they want.  That is poor parenting. 

OP, you have learned to never give her a gift again.  So, think of all the future money you will save!   >:D
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: LeveeWoman on November 27, 2012, 05:38:24 PM
I'm with those who say they'd never give her another gift.

I wonder what the chances are that you'll get a thank-you note.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: JenJay on November 27, 2012, 05:42:50 PM
However, she had wanted a bracelet from this store.  Everyone saw and commented long and loud.  To then pass it off to children, in front of the giver, is rude, ungrateful, and downright mean.

And to make the comment that those weren't the specific bracelets that she had asked for anyway, within hearing of the giver! That's the part that killed me!! What a brat.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Venus193 on November 27, 2012, 05:44:45 PM
It sounds like we've found another Snake In the Restaurant consensus.

OP, your description of the incident made me think she was 12 instead of 26.  What an entitled brat.   No gifts for her ever again.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: doodlemor on November 27, 2012, 05:45:25 PM
Her behavior was malicious and cruel. 

Be sure that your SO is fully supportive of you and your needs, because at age 26 I doubt that baby sister will change for the better.  It sounds like there have been few consequences for her misdeeds in the past, and her family accepts her as she is.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CinnamonGirl on November 27, 2012, 05:58:45 PM
How very rude! I'd never give her a gift again.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Lynn2000 on November 27, 2012, 06:01:09 PM
Wow. Yikes. That is really bad. Not only to give away brand-new gifts in full view of the giver, not only to comment that you're giving them away because they "weren't exactly what you wanted," but also to give them away to very young children who can't appreciate them and may actually be hurt by them? (Thinking of small parts/charms or clasps that pinch, for example.) That's just kind of crazy. I'm also surprised that the parents of the children didn't say something to stop it.

The only--only--way I can see it being semi-understandable would be if, as a PP said, there was a culture in the family of always being pressured to give something away to someone else if they admired it. Sister may be so used to this that she just did it automatically without even thinking, and perhaps said something about the bracelets not being what she wanted as a way to tell herself she was "okay" with her much-desired new present being given away. And she's been so brainwashed that she didn't even think to apologize/explain to the OP later.

Okay, I don't really believe that.  :P I think the OP would have picked up on that dynamic or at the very least her BF would have explained it when she told him what happened. Since he said not to get his sister any more presents I'm guessing he doesn't see any excuse for it. No more gifts from me.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Auntie Mame on November 27, 2012, 06:11:54 PM
And that would be the very last gift she ever got from.   Ever.

Seriously, wow, I...wow...

1) You are not crazy 2) She was rude 3) The bright side, you never have to buy a prsent for her again.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Amava on November 27, 2012, 06:12:36 PM
You know, I was really glad to see you express that you were angry, several times, in your OP.
You /should/ be. Angry enough to draw your conclusions.
Next time, no gift. Or something from the dollar store!
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Bluenomi on November 27, 2012, 06:18:43 PM
I'm equally as stunned that the parents of those 2 little girls let them take the bracelets.  That's too young of an age to have jewelry like that, and just downright inappropriate to take the bracelets even if they were offered. One of the parents should have said "Oh no, the girls are too young to wear those. Besides, you just got them as a gift.  It's not appropriate to pass them to the girls right now."  Seriously, the fact that no one in the family stood up to this and pointed out how wrong it was really floors me.  I hope you don't overextend yourself for any of these people until or unless they do the same for you.  Odds are you'll get similar treatment for your thoughtfulness.

This! No way would I let my 2 1/2 year old keep a $40 bracelet from someone, especially if it was a present they had just be given by someone who was standing there!

I wouldn't be giving sister a present again
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hillia on November 27, 2012, 06:26:08 PM
Nothing to add except...yeah.  She'd never, ever get another gift or card from me.  And the parents of the little girls were equally rude.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: FoxPaws on November 27, 2012, 06:31:39 PM
Knowing that she is 26 makes me believe this was a deliberate slight. If there were a give-away-anything-that-is-admired culture in the family, your boyfriend should/would have explained that.

As hurtful as this incident was, it did provide you with some valuable insight into the family dynamics and the personalities involved, including your guy. Good information to have going forward; it would definitely factor into any decisions I made concerning my future with this man.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: sevenday on November 27, 2012, 06:42:58 PM
I would ask your boyfriend to speak to his  parents and request that they intercede to get the bracelets back.  $80 is a lot of money.  If the problem is that the girls would be upset -they are young enough that this will not be a lasting scar on their psyches to have a bracelet they were 'given' taken away and replaced with something more age appropriate (and cheaper!).  Heck even speak to the kids' parents directly, explain that you realize the girls like them, but they are not sized properly and are not appropriate for the age, offer to replace with suitable replacements, go from there.  I would not take an $80 snub like that.  Tell the parents that you want the bracelets back so you can replace them with the "Specific" ones and then simply return them and don't buy anything else for that girl.  At 26 she should know better.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: rose red on November 27, 2012, 06:57:24 PM
I'm from a culture who gives admired things away and I am horrified.  And even though we give things away, we don't give away gifts given to us.  That's an insult and a rejection to the giver.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Venus193 on November 27, 2012, 07:01:32 PM
You know, I was really glad to see you express that you were angry, several times, in your OP.
You /should/ be. Angry enough to draw your conclusions.
Next time, no gift. Or something from the dollar store!


I like that.  It sends a message.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: afbluebelle on November 27, 2012, 07:31:08 PM
Yep. Deliberate... she is an Aaron Tippin country boy level of tool box  :P



And I'm hitting up the after-Christmas sales for my helicopter this year ;D Just have to keep it away from the kiddo  >:D
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Venus193 on November 27, 2012, 07:56:19 PM
I would ask your boyfriend to speak to his  parents and request that they intercede to get the bracelets back.  $80 is a lot of money.  If the problem is that the girls would be upset -they are young enough that this will not be a lasting scar on their psyches to have a bracelet they were 'given' taken away and replaced with something more age appropriate (and cheaper!).  Heck even speak to the kids' parents directly, explain that you realize the girls like them, but they are not sized properly and are not appropriate for the age, offer to replace with suitable replacements, go from there.  I would not take an $80 snub like that.  Tell the parents that you want the bracelets back so you can replace them with the "Specific" ones and then simply return them and don't buy anything else for that girl.  At 26 she should know better.

Brilliant.

I wouldn't take this either.  No amount of money should be wasted on an entitled ingrate like that 26-year-old spoiled brat.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Otterpop on November 27, 2012, 08:21:45 PM
I would ask your boyfriend to speak to his  parents and request that they intercede to get the bracelets back.  $80 is a lot of money.  If the problem is that the girls would be upset -they are young enough that this will not be a lasting scar on their psyches to have a bracelet they were 'given' taken away and replaced with something more age appropriate (and cheaper!).  Heck even speak to the kids' parents directly, explain that you realize the girls like them, but they are not sized properly and are not appropriate for the age, offer to replace with suitable replacements, go from there.  I would not take an $80 snub like that.  Tell the parents that you want the bracelets back so you can replace them with the "Specific" ones and then simply return them and don't buy anything else for that girl.  At 26 she should know better.

I agree with this totally.  Not only are you NOT crazy or overreacting, the offense is so bad it will affect your relations with her in the future.  I would ask your fiance to intervene, or her parents.  If she didn't want the bracelets she could have given them back for you to reclaim your money.  Or, she could have exchanged them for the ones she did want.  But to give them to toddlers in front of you was a gesture of great disrespect.  (BTW if you don't give her a gift in the future, she will be sure to make an issue of that as well - so you are better off dealing with this now).
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Morticia on November 27, 2012, 09:01:29 PM
I really don't think it's okay to ask for them back. There are etiquette rules about that.  I think, though, that instead of looking at it as being out $80, you spent money you were willing to spend in the first place, and the investment has paid off so well that you never have to buy her a present again. It's like the gift that keeps on giving.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: KenveeB on November 27, 2012, 09:15:57 PM
I really don't think it's okay to ask for them back. There are etiquette rules about that.  I think, though, that instead of looking at it as being out $80, you spent money you were willing to spend in the first place, and the investment has paid off so well that you never have to buy her a present again. It's like the gift that keeps on giving.

I agree, I don't think it's appropriate to ask for the bracelets back. They were given to SIL, and she had the right to do with them what she wanted. What she chose was incredibly insensitive, rude, and IMO a deliberate slight. But she still had the right to do it, and the bracelets belong to the little girls now. I wholeheartedly agree with no more presents for SIL, though! She wouldn't get so much as a card from me.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hmmmmm on November 27, 2012, 09:18:59 PM
I'm equally as stunned that the parents of those 2 little girls let them take the bracelets.  That's too young of an age to have jewelry like that, and just downright inappropriate to take the bracelets even if they were offered. One of the parents should have said "Oh no, the girls are too young to wear those. Besides, you just got them as a gift.  It's not appropriate to pass them to the girls right now."  Seriously, the fact that no one in the family stood up to this and pointed out how wrong it was really floors me.  I hope you don't overextend yourself for any of these people until or unless they do the same for you.  Odds are you'll get similar treatment for your thoughtfulness.

This! No way would I let my 2 1/2 year old keep a $40 bracelet from someone, especially if it was a present they had just be given by someone who was standing there!

I wouldn't be giving sister a present again

I completely agree with this.  I don't know what your relationship has been like with your DBFs family in the past, but this would put a complete damper on any future relationship with this sister and the parents of the two girls. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Shoo on November 27, 2012, 09:31:14 PM
I would be expecting BF to have a "come to diety" talk with his sister or he'd be an XBF.  That's inexcusable of her and it would be inexcusable of him to let her get away with it.

I agree with this 100%.  He'd get an ultimatum from me, for sure.  You put her in her place or you're gone.  Period.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: bopper on November 27, 2012, 09:35:58 PM
All I have to say is that if that is the way his sister acts and he didn't really see what the problem is, then he may not stand up for you to his family. Be very careful.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Shoo on November 27, 2012, 09:37:24 PM
All I have to say is that if that is the way his sister acts and he didn't really see what the problem is, then he may not stand up for you to his family. Be very careful.

Seriously.  This guy does not have your back.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: QuiltLady on November 27, 2012, 10:20:07 PM
Thanks all.

For what it's worth DBF was very sympathetic and took my side but basically was like "ooohh sister just loves those kids so much."


What she did was a very deliberate and direct snub to you.  It had nothing to do with loving the kids, IMO.  Her words were proof enough and for your DBF to minimize your feelings, and excuse her behavior, isn't any better. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: JenJay on November 27, 2012, 10:33:41 PM
I really don't think it's okay to ask for them back. There are etiquette rules about that.  I think, though, that instead of looking at it as being out $80, you spent money you were willing to spend in the first place, and the investment has paid off so well that you never have to buy her a present again. It's like the gift that keeps on giving.

Agreed!
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: RegionMom on November 27, 2012, 10:40:09 PM
Speaking of dollar store jewelry, I have a couple of magnetic necklaces/bracelets from there that often get complimented, as they are unique and fun to play with!  Different colors, length changing, mesmerizing.

In fact, during a visit to the state where some family lives, when my niece was 21/2 or so, it kept her duly entertained at a restaurant.  If not for the concern of magnets breaking off for a choking hazard, I would have given it to her. 

Hmmm...now that she 7, it would be a fine gift!  (now, where to buy one, since I still wear mine...in fact, DD aged 15 has one also that she wears sometimes.)
Hey, thanks, e-hell!

...adds to Christmas shopping list of ideas...



Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: zyrs on November 27, 2012, 11:06:34 PM
Evil Zyrs would just follow what he saw in a Mork and Mindy Christmas special one year and just always buy her a dollar store saucer for every gifting holiday.  Asked about it Evil Zyrs would be sure that she'd appreciate something shallow.

I would never buy her another present.  And I'd have a talk with my SO - they need to have your back in this.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hawkwatcher on November 27, 2012, 11:51:39 PM
I know that once a gift is given, that it is up tho the recipient what to do with it, no strings attached by the giver.
However,
she had wanted a bracelet from this store.  Everyone saw and commented long and loud.  To then pass it off to children, in front of the giver, is rude, ungrateful, and downright mean.

The little girls have learned that if they ooh and awe enough, they can have anything they want.  That is poor parenting. 

OP, you have learned to never give her a gift again.  So, think of all the future money you will save!   >:D

I agree with everything in your post, especially about the poor parenting.  Those children are going to be in for a rude awakening when they get older.

I also agree with the other posters who commented about the OP's BF's meek reaction. I would be concerned that his behavior is a sign of things to come.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Venus193 on November 28, 2012, 01:32:53 AM
I know that once a gift is given, that it is up tho the recipient what to do with it, no strings attached by the giver.
However,
she had wanted a bracelet from this store.  Everyone saw and commented long and loud.  To then pass it off to children, in front of the giver, is rude, ungrateful, and downright mean.

The little girls have learned that if they ooh and awe enough, they can have anything they want.  That is poor parenting. 

OP, you have learned to never give her a gift again.  So, think of all the future money you will save!   >:D

I agree with everything in your post, especially about the poor parenting.  Those children are going to be in for a rude awakening when they get older.

I also agree with the other posters who commented about the OP's BF's meek reaction. I would be concerned that his behavior is a sign of things to come.

If family history is any indication, I wonder.  Obviously the SO's sister hasn't had hers yet.

If the BF didn't have an issue with this I seriously think he's not fit to marry.  He needs to learn that this behaviour (which must have been enabled by the parents for a long time) is not acceptable.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: peaches on November 28, 2012, 02:18:53 AM
Horrible behavior. I'd be upset, too. And inappropriate on the parents' part, as well. They should have intervened. Toddlers don't need $40 bracelets.

When sister's birthday next rolls around, if BF thinks she needs a gift, he can pick it out and pay for it.

Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: cicero on November 28, 2012, 02:45:30 AM
All I have to say is that if that is the way his sister acts and he didn't really see what the problem is, then he may not stand up for you to his family. Be very careful.

Seriously.  This guy does not have your back.
i agree - this was really bothering me.

you say he agreed with you - but he excused her behavior (and did i see anywhere that he is making attempts to get the bracelets back?).

and there is no question that her actions were deliberate and mean.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Auntie Mame on November 28, 2012, 03:20:41 AM
All I have to say is that if that is the way his sister acts and he didn't really see what the problem is, then he may not stand up for you to his family. Be very careful.

Oh, good point.  I see a lifetime of this man excusing and defending his family's mistreatment.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Last_Dance on November 28, 2012, 04:40:33 AM
Evil Lilya would show up at the next birthday with cheap plastic bracelets and give them directly to the kids. You know, since your SIL obviously wanted to start a tradition.... >:D

All kidding aside, she was horrible to you. Count another for "never buy her a present again."
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: weeblewobble on November 28, 2012, 04:59:59 AM
Thanks all.

For what it's worth DBF was very sympathetic and took my side but basically was like "ooohh sister just loves those kids so much." He did say don't buy her gifts anymore though.

Also the Birthday Sister is 26 so not a child.

Afbluebell- I'm sorry you dealt with that as a child. That is completely wrong. I'm sending imaginary hugs and gifts your way.

I don't plan on getting her a Christmas gift. I won't see her for the holiday so no awkward moment if I don't.

If he was indeed sympathetic, I would cut him a little slack.  But speaking as someone whose DH was programmed to accept outrageous sibling behavior as "just the way she is" believe me when I say you need to start changing those patterns now before you get married.  Because it will not get better.  If she is this PA and outlandishly rude to you now, imagine how it will be if she feels you're "stealing all of the attention" with a wedding or having a baby?

Him: "She just loves those kids so much."
You: "That doesn't justify being rude to me."

Him: '"That's just the way she is."
You: "Well, this is the way I am.  I don't accept being treated that way.  And I definitely don't accept someone who's supposed to love me telling me it's OK."

Him: "She didn't mean to hurt your feelings/didn't meant it that way."
You: "I doubt that very much.  And the point is, she did hurt my feelings.  I need you to stop minimizing that."

Another favorite is, 'Well, you don't want to make a scene on her birthday/Christmas/Thanksgiving/Mother's Day, etc."  If anything, those are the times to stand up for yourself.  No matter what date it is, it's not OK to treat you that way.  If you're held hostage by trying to preserve "special moments" you lose any progress you've made protecting the not so special moments. 

It took YEARS with my DH to get him to see that the behavior was not acceptable and his family's instant acceptance/forgiveness of it was just enabling it to continue unchecked. I wish you all the luck in the world.

PS, also mark me down as another person who read the original post and though you were dealing with a 12 year old.  This is ridiculous behavior from an adult. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: LifeOnPluto on November 28, 2012, 05:27:42 AM
I am very much hoping that this was a moment of colossal cluelessness and immaturity. I hope that one day (sooner, rather than later) she looks back at what she did at cringes with shame at her behaviour.

I also agree with posters who've stated that the parents of the toddlers should have stepped in and said something. I'm flabbergasted that they just stood back and let their toddlers take the bracelets.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: eltf177 on November 28, 2012, 05:38:21 AM
I too agree with everything said already:

1) Birthday sister is incredibly shallow and rude
2) The girls had _no_ business asking for or taking the bracelets
3) I wouldn't ask for the bracelets back but certainly would never again buy any presents for Birthday sister


If the BF didn't have an issue with this I seriously think he's not fit to marry.  He needs to learn that this behaviour (which must have been enabled by the parents for a long time) is not acceptable.

This most of all. I too do _not_ see DBF taking your side over that of his family. This entire situation is more than likely going to be repeated at some point.

Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Corvid on November 28, 2012, 06:03:12 AM
I, too, originally thought you were talking about a teenager.  At 26 years of age there is no excuse for such juvenile behavior.  Not only rude and ungracious, but tacky as well!  Who does something like that?   :o

While I don't think you can ask for the bracelets back, I do agree that you should never buy her another gift.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: cicero on November 28, 2012, 06:15:57 AM
I too agree with everything said already:

1) Birthday sister is incredibly shallow and rude
2) The girls had _no_ business asking for or taking the bracelets
3) I wouldn't ask for the bracelets back but certainly would never again buy any presents for Birthday sister

the girls in question are 1.5 and 3 YO. they actually acted their age. Their parents should have stepped in and handed the bracelets back. at that age the thought process is Pretty-Want-Take.



At her birthday dinner her older brother was there with 3 kids. Two are girls aged 1 1/2 and 3.


Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Amava on November 28, 2012, 06:28:46 AM
Yeah, I agree with Cicero. I am all for /teaching/ children that they don't get to demand other people's stuff, especially not a gift someone has just received, but they were really still at an age that this had to be /taught/ to them: expecting them to have a whole thought process of "These bracelets belong to Birthday Sister, she just received them from OP, it would be rude to ask for them", is a bit much.

Very small children will ask for whatever tickles their fancy, and will happily accept it when it is offered to them.

So it wasn't really that horrid for the little ones to ask and accept. It was up to Birthday sister to breezily say: "Yes, they're beautiful aren't they? But no, of course I can't give them away. I just got them from OP, they're my present!" Contrary to what some people (in general, not any posters in this topic) seem to think these days, little children understand "No" very well.

And yes, if Birthday Girl was going to be so clueless about it, it was up to the parents to say: "Come now, girls. We can't just go around taking Birthday Girls presents from her. OP gave them to her, to have and enjoy!" And I might, just might, have said the latter with a pointed look into Birthday Girl's eyes, with a hint of "Are you crazy??" Heck, if I was the parent, I might even add "Imagine how you would feel if you had given Birthday Girl such a lovely present and she gave it to someone else! That wouldn't feel very nice, would it?" (What I would really mean with that, would be: "Birthday Girl, don't set such a horrid example of being boorish about gifts in front of my children!") 

Disclaimer: I don't even have any children, so this is all very hypothetic. But it's along the lines of  what I, as a teacher, would do in the classroom if Child 1 tried to give away a gift that Child 2 had given her to Child 3).
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: MindsEye on November 28, 2012, 07:40:17 AM

the girls in question are 1.5 and 3 YO. they actually acted their age. Their parents should have stepped in and handed the bracelets back. at that age the thought process is Pretty-Want-Take.


Cynical ME wonders if the toddlers' mother wanted those bracelets, and that's why she didn't step in.  Cynical ME further speculates that as soon as that family was in the car, the bracelets were taken away from the little kids and put either in mother's purse or on her wrist.  Cynical ME doesn't get let out much.

More charitable ME wonders if the parents didn't step in because they didn't want to deal with a huge tantrum if the kids were parted from the bracelets straight away, and intend to quietly return them to the birthday girl at some later date.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: HermioneGranger on November 28, 2012, 07:46:58 AM
All I have to say is that if that is the way his sister acts and he didn't really see what the problem is, then he may not stand up for you to his family. Be very careful.

Seriously.  This guy does not have your back.

Better to find out now before he becomes dear fiance...  That would be the last time she received a present from me too. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Venus193 on November 28, 2012, 07:52:54 AM
I don't think it matters why the parents didn't step in on this.  A three-year old is old enough to be taught that this is inappropriate and a 1.5 year-old is not too young to begin learning that you can't always get what you want.

Most of all, this was insulting to the OP.  However, if the BF doesn't address this with his family I wouldn't date him again.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: JenJay on November 28, 2012, 07:56:30 AM
I think P&P's boyfriend is taking a bit of an unfair beating by some posters. She said he was very sympathetic and he told her not to buy his sister anymore gifts. Most likely the comment about "she just loves the kids so much" was meant to take the sting out of having given away the bracelets, not justify it. I honestly don't think it would be appropriate for him to contact either of his siblings and demand them back, for reasons other posters have stated re once a gift is given, etc.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hillia on November 28, 2012, 08:02:00 AM
I don't think he should ask for the bracelets back either, but I think he should have a strong word with his sister and the parents of the toddlers.  I know in general it's rude to point out someone's rudeness, but in the case of standing up for one's SO the rule can be bent a bit.  'Sis, OP spent a lot of time and money picking out those bracelets because you specifically asked for them, and what you did was mean, disrespectful, and rude.  Don't expect any gifts from either one of us until you show that you realize how awful that was and are truly sorry'.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: FoxPaws on November 28, 2012, 08:12:04 AM
I don't think the BF should ask for the bracelets back and I am on the fence as to whether he should say anything, but I do think that this whole incident should serve as a Yellow Flag (or maybe an orange cone?) for the OP. As in, Caution! Look carefully and watch for hazards on the road ahead.

I would be paying very close attention to the family dynamics at this point: Does everybody cater to birthday sister? Are gifts always treated as no big deal? Does BF ever confront his family? Are the children always appeased instead of being taught or told no? Is BS hostile toward the OP in other ways?

These are not questions the OP needs to answer for anyone besides herself, but I do think she needs to answer them.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Kaypeep on November 28, 2012, 08:17:18 AM
I disagree that the BF needs to address this with his family.  As long as he's supportive of the OP and backs up her decision to not buy presents (or nice presents) for the sister, I think he's doing just fine.  As someone who has a mother with "issues" I've had to say "That's the way she is" when mom behaves badly.  Me, bro and sis just ignore her, while SIL will get very upset.  We do our best to encourage SIL to ignore mom's outbursts and walk away. That's what we do.  We do not placate mom, give in to her, etc.  We will leave, walk away, ignore her, etc. until she decides to act "normal" again.  She's been told several times about her behavior but she can only change herself.  In the OP's case, DF can't make his sister do anything.  Yes, he CAN speak speak to her and explain what she did was offensive, and ask for an apology or something like that.  But honestly, I don't think he should be put in this position and I doubt she will change.  I say as long as BF has the OP's back and supports her in how she decides to go from here, he is good in my book.  Unless the Sis is doing other things that send out a signal that she's out to get the OP and hurt her, I'd chalk this up to SS/cluelessness and mark her as someone not worth spending time and money on because she doesn't know how to be gracious or appreciate nice things.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Eden on November 28, 2012, 08:49:18 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CaptainObvious on November 28, 2012, 09:12:51 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Yvaine on November 28, 2012, 09:14:41 AM
Yeah, I agree with Cicero. I am all for /teaching/ children that they don't get to demand other people's stuff, especially not a gift someone has just received, but they were really still at an age that this had to be /taught/ to them: expecting them to have a whole thought process of "These bracelets belong to Birthday Sister, she just received them from OP, it would be rude to ask for them", is a bit much.

Very small children will ask for whatever tickles their fancy, and will happily accept it when it is offered to them.

Agreed. It's unreasonable to expect that toddlers will have perfect etiquette and social graces. At least one of them is still in diapers! We don't spring from the womb knowing these things. It's the parents' job to say no and to explain it to the kids at their level of understanding (thus forming part of what they will learn about etiquette as they continue to grow).
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: kansha on November 28, 2012, 09:24:49 AM
at the very LEAST BF should be repaying OP her $80, imho.... >:(
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CaptainObvious on November 28, 2012, 09:26:12 AM
at the very LEAST BF should be repaying OP her $80, imho.... >:(

Why?? He didn't do anything wrong.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: learningtofly on November 28, 2012, 09:31:35 AM
At 26 the birthday girl should just go out and buy her own bracelets.  I mean, she apparently can afford to give away $80 in bracelets.  She hinted about wanting bracelets from that store.  At 26 she should be smart enough to know that if they weren't the specific ones she wanted she could exchange them.  I vote deliberate snub.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Eden on November 28, 2012, 09:35:36 AM
at the very LEAST BF should be repaying OP her $80, imho.... >:(

Why? He has absolutely nothing to do with this situation at all.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 28, 2012, 09:36:16 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

Edited to add:  What if OP had that conversation with BF's sister, and sister pitched a fit and involved the rest of the family?  OP is then labeled a troublemaker and everything that BF does to support OP will be "her fault," as opposed to BF taking a stand with his sister on his own initiative.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CaptainObvious on November 28, 2012, 09:39:52 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

What? So because a few of you have decided on a "policy", no one is allowed to disagree? I'm not understanding?
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: MorgnsGrl on November 28, 2012, 09:44:10 AM
At 26 she should be smart enough to know that if they weren't the specific ones she wanted she could exchange them.

I agree with this. How could she not realize that she could trade in these bracelets for the ones she really wanted? My 12 year old knows that. She had to know that was possible, so the fact that she just gave away the bracelets means, to me, that she either doesn't appreciate gifts (in which case she shouldn't get more) or that she was deliberately being hurtful to the OP (in which case, yeah, no more gifts.)
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Yvaine on November 28, 2012, 09:44:33 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

What? So because a few of you have decided on a "policy", no one is allowed to disagree? I'm not understanding?

Yeah, I never thought this was a hard and fast rule, etiquette or otherwise--just that with some families it's what works best. Other families work differently.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: scansons on November 28, 2012, 09:48:56 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

What? So because a few of you have decided on a "policy", no one is allowed to disagree? I'm not understanding?

It's not just us.  DH and I got similar advice in pre-marriage counseling.  And it's really worked out well.  It's a lot easier for a family member to dismiss the thoughts/feelings/opinions of someone they didn't grow up with/ raise.  In this case, BF's sister obviously doesn't care about the OP's feelings.  Otherwise she wouldn't have pulled such a stunt.  So it dosen't help the OP to address it directly.  Sister already proved she dosen't care what the OP thinks or feels.  It's a lot harder, one would hope, for her to dismiss her brother saying "hey you hurt my gf's feelings.  That was out of line and unnecessary." 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 28, 2012, 09:49:49 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

What? So because a few of you have decided on a "policy", no one is allowed to disagree? I'm not understanding?

I edited my post to try to explain my understanding of the "policy."

I think if OP has the conversation with the sister, it will be counterproductive and whether BF backs her or not, any future relationship with his family may be difficult, to say the least.  BF presumably knows his sister and how to approach her in a manner that will improve the situation and, who knows, OP may even get the apology she deserves.

Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CaptainObvious on November 28, 2012, 09:53:37 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

What? So because a few of you have decided on a "policy", no one is allowed to disagree? I'm not understanding?

I edited my post to try to explain my understanding of the "policy."

I think if OP has the conversation with the sister, it will be counterproductive and whether BF backs her or not, any future relationship with his family may be difficult, to say the least.  BF presumably knows his sister and how to approach her in a manner that will improve the situation and, who knows, OP may even get the apology she deserves.

But the BF already said to just not buy gifts anymore. To me that is his solution, and to push him to make a big deal about it when he doesn't feel it is, is not fair to him. We all have opinions about things, and they aren't always the same, if the OP feels that it is an issue, then she should approach the SIL. I don't agree that spouses need to get involved, I believe that people need to "fight their own battles".
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hmmmmm on November 28, 2012, 09:57:48 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

I think that is a general go to rule when the issues impact both members of the couple, like telling MIL that she can't babysit the kids if she continues to smoke around them. 

But in this case, this wasn't a joint gift.  It was a gift from the OP and very clear slight by the SIL to the OP only. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 28, 2012, 10:02:09 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Lynn2000 on November 28, 2012, 10:08:00 AM
Some good advice from other posters here. I like the idea of someone saying something to Sis; the OP would have to decide if it was better coming directly from herself, or from her boyfriend (and of course only if BF felt the same way). It seems like the OP is close enough to Sis to give her very nice presents and has a relationship with her and the family on her own, since BF wasn't even present at the gathering. And, IMO, this was a pretty egregious thing to do--obviously Sis may disagree that she did anything wrong, but it's not a matter of just the "tone" being hurtful or something that is open to much debate. Sis was given bracelets of a type she asked for, that were not cheap, and she gave them away to toddlers right in front of the giver, on the same day, while saying that they weren't what she wanted. If someone (like Sis) can interpret that as not being terribly rude or hurtful, I'd be curious to hear their version...

Honestly in reality I personally would probably not ever say anything to her (or have my BF saying anything), though, because I don't like confrontation. I would just write her off in terms of gifts. I would try not to stew over it, because that only hurts me, but I would just put her in the category of people I don't get gifts for and try not to ever think about it again. I really like the person who said this was actually the "gift that keeps on giving"--one $80 gift to last a lifetime! (Because now I know not to ever give her anything again.) If she, or anyone else, makes a comment about not getting gifts for me, I would be happy to tell them why.

I also really like FoxPaws's advice:
I don't think the BF should ask for the bracelets back and I am on the fence as to whether he should say anything, but I do think that this whole incident should serve as a Yellow Flag (or maybe an orange cone?) for the OP. As in, Caution! Look carefully and watch for hazards on the road ahead.

I would be paying very close attention to the family dynamics at this point: Does everybody cater to birthday sister? Are gifts always treated as no big deal? Does BF ever confront his family? Are the children always appeased instead of being taught or told no? Is BS hostile toward the OP in other ways?

These are not questions the OP needs to answer for anyone besides herself, but I do think she needs to answer them.

Personally I don't like to make the leap to telling someone to dump their SO over one incident, but I think it's smart of them to, by themselves, figure out if this IS just one incident, or part of a larger pattern. And if part of a larger pattern, is it a pattern they can live with for the future? Patterns can be really hard to see when you're in the middle of them. Maybe the OP could ask a long-time friend if they've noticed any patterns in the things she mentions/complains about relating to BF and/or his family.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: scansons on November 28, 2012, 10:11:19 AM
If OP was close enough to the birthday girl to buy her such generous gifts, I'd say the OP is close enough to address this herself. BF shouldn't be involved. He did not give the gift and wasn't even there.

OP, I'd probably call or visit BF's sister and say something like, "You may do what you like with gifts you receive but to give the bracelets away in front of me was incredibly insensitive, and your comment about them not being the ones you wanted was additionally ungrateful and cruel. I specifically picked those out because I knew you wanted bracelets from that place. You really hurt my feelings." And then I'd go silent and let her respond. I would not further justify my feelings. If she was genuinely apologetic I'd accept. Anything else would be met with repeated, "Regardless, what you did was rude and hurtful." And would quickly excuse myself and be done with it.

I agree, why is on the BF to get involved? In relationships there will always be things that aren't agreed upon. And there will always be something that the other person doesn't think is a big deal, it isn't a "red flag", it is just a difference of opinion.

I think most of us have agreed on a policy of requesting that a SO deal with their own family.  As an example, in my SIL thread, most of the posters said for me to have DH deal with his sister.  Same thing applies - BF needs to have OP's back on this and have a talk with his sister, especially if he wants to remain OP's BF.

What? So because a few of you have decided on a "policy", no one is allowed to disagree? I'm not understanding?

I edited my post to try to explain my understanding of the "policy."

I think if OP has the conversation with the sister, it will be counterproductive and whether BF backs her or not, any future relationship with his family may be difficult, to say the least.  BF presumably knows his sister and how to approach her in a manner that will improve the situation and, who knows, OP may even get the apology she deserves.

But the BF already said to just not buy gifts anymore. To me that is his solution, and to push him to make a big deal about it when he doesn't feel it is, is not fair to him. We all have opinions about things, and they aren't always the same, if the OP feels that it is an issue, then she should approach the SIL. I don't agree that spouses need to get involved, I believe that people need to "fight their own battles".

I think as a policy, it's more about not letting family drive a wedge between a couple.  There are many situations (on this board even) where a family tries purposely to drive a wedge between a couple.  In those cases knowing that they always have to deal with their relative if they slight the SO actually can help. 

In this case, I sort of agree with you.  BF said no more presents.  That's what I'd do.  The question becomes down the rode when sister realizes she's not getting gifts from brother's SO what happens?  If sister approaches OP and wants to know why she isn't getting presents, or even pouts publicly.  What? 

Does OP say "Hey, your brother told me not to give you presents because you gave the last one I gave you away in front of me."    Does the brother cop to it, and take the hit or does he forget that's exactly what happened and blame OP? 

Worse does sister just go to her brother and start complaining about how OP never gives her gifts?  What does he do then?  Say "I told her not to, you gave her last gift away in front of her."  Or does he shrug it off and blame OP? 

I don't see a way that he get out of having to deal with this, or not deal with this eventually.  The real questions become: now or later?  and take responsibility or don't? 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: wolfie on November 28, 2012, 10:15:50 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CaptainObvious on November 28, 2012, 10:18:39 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

Exactly!
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: rashea on November 28, 2012, 10:22:14 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

How would you handle it if your sister came back and asked you later? I think the reason I would bring it up now is for me to avoid dreading it coming up every time I saw her.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Zilla on November 28, 2012, 10:22:29 AM
First off it isn't just the sister.  It's the parents of BF plus the parents of the little girls.  They allowed all of this to happen without a hiccup.  This sends a sign that this family is used to giving gifts to the little kids. (I am amazed the bracelets weren't falling off of them as they toddled off)
The OP now knows how this family operates and furthermore her own BF isn't that concerned with it as well.  So why try and pit herself or her BF against this entire family?  That doesn't bode well for future relations.  I think instead OP got an expensive but valuable lesson on how to proceed in the future.  Either buy a gift that might be given away or not get a gift at all.  I personally think the sister was incredibly rude to give her two new bracelets away in front of OP. (and how convenient there were 2 litle girls able to receive one each)
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 28, 2012, 10:28:01 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

Exactly!

If it is symptomatic of a larger issue - that the sister does not respect her brother's SO, then by talking to her, BF will have set the boundary.  Otherwise, sister will think "Oh woe is me, ever since my brother met OP, he doesn't want to see me.  I don't know why."  By talking to her, she will know exactly why.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Zilla on November 28, 2012, 10:36:12 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

Exactly!

If it is symptomatic of a larger issue - that the sister does not respect her brother's SO, then by talking to her, BF will have set the boundary.  Otherwise, sister will think "Oh woe is me, ever since my brother met OP, he doesn't want to see me.  I don't know why."  By talking to her, she will know exactly why.
You are suggesting that the brother cut his sister out of his life over this issue?  And choose his girlfriend over his family?
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: wolfie on November 28, 2012, 10:39:15 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

How would you handle it if your sister came back and asked you later? I think the reason I would bring it up now is for me to avoid dreading it coming up every time I saw her.

My sister specifically I would be very surprised if she came back and asked me later. She likes to pretend that everything is happy family and ignores anything that flies in the face of this. But if she did I would say that she showed that since gifts to her were a burden, as evidenced by her giving them away, I thought I would stop burdening her with them. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 28, 2012, 10:48:05 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

Exactly!

If it is symptomatic of a larger issue - that the sister does not respect her brother's SO, then by talking to her, BF will have set the boundary.  Otherwise, sister will think "Oh woe is me, ever since my brother met OP, he doesn't want to see me.  I don't know why."  By talking to her, she will know exactly why.
You are suggesting that the brother cut his sister out of his life over this issue?  And choose his girlfriend over his family?

A PP suggested pulling back on the relationship.  As far as BF making the choice between girlfriend and family, if the girlfriend doesn't want to see his sister/family, it may cut seriously into the amount of time BF spends with his family.

In the general scheme of things, a mere girl/boyfriend (dating) shouldn't trump family.  If the relationship is serious, however (cohabiting, engaged), then it falls to the person to judge the situation between SO and family.  Once one is married, unless the spouse is in the wrong, then the marriage trumps everything else.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Venus193 on November 28, 2012, 11:11:32 AM

You are suggesting that the brother cut his sister out of his life over this issue?  And choose his girlfriend over his family?

A PP suggested pulling back on the relationship.  As far as BF making the choice between girlfriend and family, if the girlfriend doesn't want to see his sister/family, it may cut seriously into the amount of time BF spends with his family.

In the general scheme of things, a mere girl/boyfriend (dating) shouldn't trump family.  If the relationship is serious, however (cohabiting, engaged), then it falls to the person to judge the situation between SO and family.  Once one is married, unless the spouse is in the wrong, then the marriage trumps everything else.

It sounds like Penny and her BF live together, in which case the BF should be prioritizing Penny over his birth family.

A friend of mine was married for 20 years to a man who never learned to do this.  When his toxic father verbally abused her he did nothing in her defense.  She was too chicken to address this properly in couples counseling; hence they are now divorced.

I read this thread to another friend this morning who is of the opinion that the entire family wants to be rid of Penny.  I don't see a conspiracy here and we don't have enough information to make this assumption, but I do see an entitled brat being indulged by her parents and enabled by the rest of her family.  The fact that nobody blinked at her giving away an $80 birthday gift to two toddlers says that there is a family dynamic that she has dictated by her behavior.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Decimus on November 28, 2012, 11:13:06 AM
If anything is said, the BF should say it.

1. It is harder to ignore statements from family than from "some stranger" as OP would be seen by the sister.
2. It shows BF and OP are united in their belief this was wrong and that BF has OP's back.
3. Because it was OP who gave the gift.  Sister seems the sort to think "who are you to tell me how to use the gift you gave me."  BF is a bit further, and hence can give the appearance of a more neutral observation.

However, it may not be worth saying anything.  BF may have come to the realization his sister is rude and isn't going to change, and speaking to her may achieve nothing more than an argument/hurt feelings for BF/possible family repercussions for BF (if the mother takes the sister's side, say).

Definitely don't get further gifts for the sister, though.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Eden on November 28, 2012, 11:20:14 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

Exactly!

If it is symptomatic of a larger issue - that the sister does not respect her brother's SO, then by talking to her, BF will have set the boundary.  Otherwise, sister will think "Oh woe is me, ever since my brother met OP, he doesn't want to see me.  I don't know why."  By talking to her, she will know exactly why.

A single incident of rudeness is not automatically a lack of respect or boundary-drawing situation.  This wasn't some dramatic scene or a systematic shunning of the OP. The sister did something really rude. Once. It should be addressed matter of factly without fuss and then everyone should move on. Were I the OP I would also pull back a little on the generosity of my gift giving for now.

The "policy" mentioned about only having the SO deal with their family is about overarching family dynamics and boundaries. It doesn't mean a person should not communicate at all with the in-laws. This is a specific instance that warrants being specifically addressed by only those involved (the OP and the sister). If the sister or the entire family habitually gave away OP's gifts or were rude to her, that should be addressed by the SO.

Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Jaelle on November 28, 2012, 11:35:34 AM
I think people are being very hard on the parents.

They could, maybe should, have said something, but I could easily see being so flummoxed by the situation that nothing seemed right ... and hence saying nothing at all (and regretting it later).

Also, I wonder if both parents saw this. If the parent who is not related to the family witnessed it and the other didn't, I could see shying away from the inevitable conflict to be considered the lesser of two evils. (For example, I would not want to get into it with my SIL.) It's not my place to tell her she's being rude, even if I think she is.

I can actually see the parents wondering what the heck they should be doing now on their own. I don't think it'd occur to me, after the fact, that I could/should give the bracelets back to the original giver. The sister did have the right to dispose of them as she saw fit. It was the way she did it that was rude (and fairly silly, considering).

Edited to add that I don't see anywhere in the OP that the kids asked for the bracelets. If they did, that's different. I'd be telling my boys, "Oh, no, you don't do that." If the sister just said, "Hey, you can have these!" that's when the above comes into play.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Kaypeep on November 28, 2012, 11:50:30 AM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

You make it sound like the BF will confront the sis and she will see the light and change her ways and all will be happy. If it were  me I wouldn't bother confronting my sister because I already know it will do no good. She will refuse to see herself in a bad light and by the end of the conversation I will be fuming because it will be implied it is all my fault. So my solution would be to not give her anymore gifts and pull back on a relationship with her. It doesn't mean I think my SO deserves the treatment - it means I recognize the futility of confrontation and will tailor my actions accordingly.

EXACTLY!

There have been no other comments by the OP that the sister is unfriendly or rude towards her.  Just this one instance regarding the gift. Whatever the sisters issues are, she deserves no more gifts because she's shown disrespect to OP with how she handled things.  BF agrees, no more gifts.  I don't think OP will derive any satisfaction from sister by having anyone speak to her.  At her age, she should know better.  If sis asks why no gifts later, then I'd call her out  on what she did and point out that you only give to those who appreciate them.  (I'd also like to see what sis gives OP for xmas or a birthday, or if she's rude or PA in other ways.  If this is a one off event, I see no reason to make a big issue out of it.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: cookiehappy on November 28, 2012, 11:54:06 AM
All I have to say is that if that is the way his sister acts and he didn't really see what the problem is, then he may not stand up for you to his family. Be very careful.

I agree with this.  I think you will have to make a decision on whether $80 is a big enough hill to die on.  If your DBF didn't think much of the bracelet issue, asking him to side with you on it against his family is a minefield you may not survive.  Something to think about.

Going forward, the brat gets nothing.  Not even a verbal happy birthday.  She doesn't deserve it. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: mj on November 28, 2012, 11:56:27 AM
I agree with no gift to Sis again.  And not just on birthdays, no other gifting events. 

Without more background, it's hard to say if OP should confront or just move on.  But I do think the advice to examine the relationships with BF and his family is a very good idea.

And if Sis asks the OP at Christmas, I say by all means tell her.  But I would keep it very factual and matter of fact "The two bracelets I gave you were given to toddlers, in front of me.  As I chose those bracelets because you claimed you wanted them and then chose to give them away in front of me, I was hurt and got the hint that you did not want gifts from me." 

Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Sophia on November 28, 2012, 12:11:30 PM
I had an evil thought.  For Christmas, OP's BF gives the regifter toddler gifts.  After all, they will go to the toddlers anyway.  Right? 

When offended, I feel better thinking of things to do that are evil. 
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Zilla on November 28, 2012, 12:18:57 PM
I think the BF had the best solution of all, no more gifts for the sister.  And if she kicks up a fuss (which I doubt she will) then BF hopefully will tell her it was his idea.  (this will make him a keeper)
But as for pulling back from seeing them or asking for the bracelets back or even confronting the sister over what happened does not bode well for the future.  They should tread carefully but not overreact.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Deetee on November 28, 2012, 12:28:11 PM
The BF sounds perfectly reasonable to me. He suggested no more gifts for the sister. That seems totally appropriate. I also noted that he disn't seem to get a gift for her either.

It's also the easist.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: ettiquit on November 28, 2012, 12:34:22 PM
I think that suggesting to the OP that her DBF isn't husband material because he didn't go yell at his sister is ludicrous and insulting to the OP.  The OP didn't express any concern over her DBF's reaction and certainly did not ask us for relationship advice.  I think her DBF reacted pretty much the same as my DH would, and I've never regretted any second of the 10 years we've been married.  I also noticed she hasn't posted since since the talk became geared to her relationship, and I hope it's not because she's hurt or insulted, but if it were me - I'd of had this thread locked by now.

That being said, I would spend up to, but no more than $0 on any future gift for this woman.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CaptainObvious on November 28, 2012, 12:42:48 PM
I think that suggesting to the OP that her DBF isn't husband material because he didn't go yell at his sister is ludicrous and insulting to the OP.  The OP didn't express any concern over her DBF's reaction and certainly did not ask us for relationship advice.  I think her DBF reacted pretty much the same as my DH would, and I've never regretted any second of the 10 years we've been married.  I also noticed she hasn't posted since since the talk became geared to her relationship, and I hope it's not because she's hurt or insulted, but if it were me - I'd of had this thread locked by now.

That being said, I would spend up to, but no more than $0 on any future gift for this woman.

I agree with this 100%, plus I think that expecting his Parents to step in is also OTT. I would not want my in-laws or my Parents sticking their nose into things that do not concern them. I believe that disagreements should stay between the parties involved. Getting the entire family involved never ends well.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hillia on November 28, 2012, 12:50:00 PM
My dh has spent his entire life (30 yrs) playing second fiddle to his rude, arrogant, self centered brother...who now tries to treat me the same way.  Their parents think it's funny when bil feeds the expensive steaks we bought him to his dogs, or starts ordering me around in my own home ("he just knows what he wants!").  Dh, bless him, is so conditioned to 'get along' that he can't/won't stand up for either of us.  So I stand up for myself, with the result that bil don't speak at all and I get the occasional, instantly deleted email from mil about how family always forgive each other.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: VorFemme on November 28, 2012, 01:51:15 PM
No more gifts for sister - if she asks "where's my gift?" - the OP and her BF look at Sis and tell her that she doesn't seem to LIKE the presents that were picked out for her BIRTHDAY as she gave them away at the party to the toddlers.  Since their taste isn't up to Sis's standards, they won't be burdening her with anything else that she has to get rid of...then ask for more coffee, whipped cream on their Christmas dessert, or possibly if there is any more of that *favorite dish* left.

At Christmas, you don't have to stick to just bean dip......
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: MamaMootz on November 28, 2012, 02:01:08 PM
I can see the points made by both sides here - but I agree with the posters who say that BF needs to address this with his sister. The BF has a closer relationship with her and needs to let her know that this type of treatment toward the OP is not OK.

Without more information, we don't know if that will work or not. The point is, BF knows best what will work in this situation.

I absolutely would not buy sister any more gifts. I think we all agree on that point.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Mikayla on November 28, 2012, 02:28:00 PM
I'm in the middle, I guess.  I don't think BF should be thrown to the wolves, especially since he wasn't even there.  But his sister's actions were so egregious that I don't think the solution is as simple as not gifting her in the future.

A PP made the very good point that these bracelets easily could have been returned for the ones she wanted.  So at that point, this goes beyond gifting.  Sis went out of her way to humiliate and embarrass the OP.  *This* is what may need further discussion, not the gift giving policy.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: eltf177 on November 28, 2012, 02:28:25 PM
I can see both sides of "DBF needs to talk to BS" here. It may very well be DBF knows that any talk with BS will be futile, hence the "don't buy her anything else" speech. OTOH the OP needs to Know DBF has her back, especially if the relationship is long-term.

However, until we get some further details this can go either way...
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: JeanFromBNA on November 28, 2012, 02:36:46 PM
I don't think the BF should ask for the bracelets back and I am on the fence as to whether he should say anything, but I do think that this whole incident should serve as a Yellow Flag (or maybe an orange cone?) for the OP. As in, Caution! Look carefully and watch for hazards on the road ahead.

I would be paying very close attention to the family dynamics at this point: Does everybody cater to birthday sister? Are gifts always treated as no big deal? Does BF ever confront his family? Are the children always appeased instead of being taught or told no? Is BS hostile toward the OP in other ways?

These are not questions the OP needs to answer for anyone besides herself, but I do think she needs to answer them.

This is great advice, period. 

For Christmas, I would get her a $10 gift card to the dollar store.  That sounds about right.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Just Lori on November 28, 2012, 02:56:44 PM
The timing couldn't be better.  I say bro sends his sister an email to the tune of "Dear Sis - It sounds like the bracelets weren't much of a hit at your birthday party.  For the sake of our continued relationship, I think it's better if we no longer exchange presents for birthdays and Christmas.  Love, Bro."
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: BarensMom on November 28, 2012, 03:43:14 PM
The timing couldn't be better.  I say bro sends his sister an email to the tune of "Dear Sis - It sounds like the bracelets weren't much of a hit at your birthday party.  For the sake of our continued relationship, I think it's better if we no longer exchange presents for birthdays and Christmas.  Love, Bro."

I like this.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Kiwichick on November 28, 2012, 05:38:46 PM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

It depends on the personalities and families I guess.  If I insulted and hurt my sister's husband I would expect him to tell me how he feels.  I don't see why my sister has to step in the middle.

I wouldn't think I could get away with treating him like dirt because he chose to call me on my behaviour and my sister didn't.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: miranova on November 28, 2012, 06:02:06 PM
Having the boyfriend tell her sister that her actions are hurtful and rude has nothing to do with getting actual results, it's the principle of it.  If my hypothetical boyfriend sat back and shrugged while his family treated me that way, that would be a huge warning flag to me and I'd be reevaluating.  Every relationship is different of course, and only the OP can decide if she is happy with her boyfriend's reaction but I don't think there is necessarily a right or wrong expectation here.  Some of us would expect our SO to intervene, some wouldn't.  It's not wrong either way, it just may be an indication of lack of compatibility if the OP and her BF are not on the same page here.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: LeveeWoman on November 28, 2012, 06:04:16 PM
The timing couldn't be better.  I say bro sends his sister an email to the tune of "Dear Sis - It sounds like the bracelets weren't much of a hit at your birthday party.  For the sake of our continued relationship, I think it's better if we no longer exchange presents for birthdays and Christmas.  Love, Bro."

PennyandPleased was the one who bought the bracelets. Nowhere in her post does it say her boyfriend contributed a dime.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: mj on November 28, 2012, 06:08:13 PM
But Captain Obvious, it's not only just about the $80 or the gift.  It is about the fact is that the OP, his girlfriend, was shown disrespect by his sister in front of other family members.  If BF doesn't call his sister out on the disrespect now, then it bodes ill for OP's relationship.  Because sister thinks she can get away with treating OP like dirt and will continue to do so, unless and until her brother calls her on it.

Edited to ask:  But was it from the OP only?  In the original post, BF wasn't there - were the bracelets from both?

It depends on the personalities and families I guess.  If I insulted and hurt my sister's husband I would expect him to tell me how he feels.  I don't see why my sister has to step in the middle.

I wouldn't think I could get away with treating him like dirt because he chose to call me on my behaviour and my sister didn't.

Yes, but you probably wouldn't have done what the Sis did in the OP.  These kinds of things happenings usually do signal a step in from the original family member, that's why people are suggesting the BF intervene.

Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: LifeOnPluto on November 28, 2012, 08:15:44 PM
I'm curious to know why the sister gave the bracelets away, rather than exchange them?

Was it because she couldn't be bothered? Because she felt embarrassed asking the OP for the receipt? Because she (as the BF claims) loves the nieces so much that she wants to give them whatever they ask for?

Whatever, the case, I think the OP and her BF should together, tell sister that (a) they would have been willing to exchange the bracelets on her behalf, if only she'd asked; and (b) that it was really hurtful of her to give them away in front of the OP; and (c) they'd prefer not to exchange gifts with the sister in the future.

I think it's also worth having a conversation with the parents of the toddlers. Could it be that they genuinely had no idea how much the bracelets were worth, and just thought they were really cheap or something? Perhaps when they find out the value, they'll think twice before letting their toddlers accept future gifts from the sister.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CrazyDaffodilLady on November 28, 2012, 08:21:04 PM
I recommend making any future gift giving (or not) the BF's responsibility.  If he gets a gift for his sister, it's from him and the OP.  If sister complains about a gift or lack thereof, she can be told to direct her complaints to the BF.

Without further information, I'm not willing to criticize the parents of the girls who received the bracelets.  They were at the party with three young children, and I imagine most of their attention was on the children.  They may not have been aware of the significance or cost of the bracelets.  At the time the bracelets were handed over, the parents were trying to wrangle three children out the door.  The regifting may have been barely a blip in the chaos.  It may have been like "Oh thanks . . . Susie, don't take your coat off . . . Tiffany, put the cat down . . . Brian, you can have a drink when we get in the car . . . Susie, I said don't take your coat off . . ."
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Hillia on November 28, 2012, 09:02:54 PM
The OP mentioned that the bracelets were from a very specific,well known store; the store's name was displayed on the wrapping and the box, and there was much conversation when the gift was opened about where they came from.  So the parents of the toddlers knew at least that these were not junky discount store bracelets, but something that cost a bit, even if they didn't know the exact cost.

And I don't cut the sister any slack either...how can you be 26 years old and not be aware of how to exchange an item at the store?  If she couldn't be bothered and just wanted to insult someone by tossing their gift aside, well, she accomplished that, and now can reap the rewards of her nastiness.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: Jaelle on November 28, 2012, 09:17:51 PM
As I noted before, too ... the OP doesn't say that the children ever asked for the bracelets, just that they admired them. I can imagine the parents being reluctant to contradict the Sister on what was her decision. After all, it's not their place to tell her she's being rude or that she shouldn't give them away ... they're her property; she can do whatever she wants.

This is all on Sister.

If the kids asked, I'd feel differently. As a parent, I imagine I'd have swooped in and said, "Oh, no, we don't do that!"
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: CrazyDaffodilLady on November 28, 2012, 09:34:55 PM
The OP mentioned that the bracelets were from a very specific,well known store; the store's name was displayed on the wrapping and the box, and there was much conversation when the gift was opened about where they came from.  So the parents of the toddlers knew at least that these were not junky discount store bracelets, but something that cost a bit, even if they didn't know the exact cost . . . .

The parents may have been distracted, or not even in the room, when the bracelets were opened and discussed.  The parents could have been dealing with a diaper change, wandering children, fussiness, etc.



Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: LeveeWoman on November 28, 2012, 09:48:54 PM
Times like this make me wish the OP would come back and answer some rather important questions.

One question I would ask if this is typical behavior from PennyandPleased's sister-in-law.

Another would be about how this brat's family usually handles it.

Another would be if her sister-in-law has shown other signs of discourteous behavior toward PennyandPleased.

ETA "I" bolding.
Title: Re: Gave away gift in front of me
Post by: doodlemor on November 28, 2012, 10:15:16 PM

And I don't cut the sister any slack either...how can you be 26 years old and not be aware of how to exchange an item at the store?  If she couldn't be bothered and just wanted to insult someone by tossing their gift aside, well, she accomplished that, and now can reap the rewards of her nastiness.

Maybe I'm getting cynical, but I suspect that Baby Sister has been calling the shots in that family for a long time.  Her behavior was malicious and deliberate - an intended insult.

I wonder if this is the same boyfriend's family that refuses to let anyone else hold the family baby.  I also wonder if it is the same "almost" MIL who loves to joke to the OP that her BF is cheating on her.  OP posted about several difficult situations in the past. 

If this is the same crew, then I hope that PennyandPleased will  think very carefully before she commits permanently to this man.  As the years go by it is unlikely that Baby Sister and the family will get any better. 

OP loves her DBF, and he is no doubt a lovely young man.  He needs to understand his family dynamics and be ready to protect OP next time.  And the time after that........