Author Topic: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10  (Read 13040 times)

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hobish

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #45 on: December 31, 2012, 03:43:00 PM »
I don't think the OP has stated that SIL is evil incarnate.  I don't think the OP is mean or evil in thinking that the family has been dancing to SIL's tune for 4 years now.

Yes SIL has had some tough times, but it's kind of like The Boy Who Cried Wolf.  Drama and catastrophe can happen to anyone at anytime and most of us are willing to help in any way to lessen the pain and problems for those involved.  However, it is exhausting to have every celebration, get together or family event hijacked by the same people even when there isn't a current problem.  I think it tends to make the rest of the family less prone to be empathetic when there is a true catastrophe.

That's pretty much what i was thinking. When someone is asking for "a little slack" all the time it wears thin. I remember the threads about this lady, too, and the OP has been rather gracious in the face of what sounds like a not-very-nice special snowflake. There is a tendency, not on EHell but in the world in general, to assume that people who have had tragedy befall them are just the nicest, sweetest, most lovely people in the world and that's simply not true. Bad things happen to jerks, too, and sometimes people take advantage of tragedy. It's sad, it's ugly, and it definitely happens. There is nothing to gain by pretending that SIL was an angel before all this; we know she wasn't.

Lady Snowdon didn't yell at SIL, didn't chastise her, and so far as SIL knows didn't so much as roll her eyes. In the bare bones of it all, no matter what the reason, SIL was the one who acted rudely. You don't co-opt someone else's party, even if the sky is falling.
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snowdragon

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #46 on: December 31, 2012, 04:17:41 PM »
What bothers me is when does the slack stop.

The baby is out of danger or the doctors would not have released her from the  hospital.  The anniversary of the other baby's death will always be around this time of year - so does SIL get to co-opt everyone's holiday for all time because of that anniversary?  When do the reset of the family get to celebrate without putting this family first and foremost and stop moving things, or holding them hostage from making other plans because they want 3 of 4 weekends in one month saved for them?
  Being in a constant state of sympathy is wearing and the people around this baby's parents need to heal, to get on with life and to be able make plans. SIL has had 4 years of slack, but the rest of the family has had no such consideration. Asking to have control over their own schedule and not have their parties co-opted is not too much to ask.  I feel for the OP - she's in one tough position and she's in the position that gets the least support.

Deetee

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #47 on: December 31, 2012, 04:23:49 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

snowdragon

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #48 on: December 31, 2012, 04:58:52 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

mj

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #49 on: December 31, 2012, 05:13:35 PM »
The way I read it is that you all are having separate celebrations for the holidays.  This is your husbands family of origin and his sister who has to celebrate at a different time due to complications and some serious issues.  If your husband is upset about waiting to celebrate with his sister, than that's one thing and he needs to address it.  However, I can't understand the OPs frustration because your ILs aren't supposed to be the center of your holiday with your husband.  You and DH are.

At some point, siblings do have to branch out and start owning their own holidays.  If a SIL has the capability to "ruin" it, then something is going wrong.  And I'm saying this with my own set of IL dysfunctions -- DH and I learned how to have our own holiday without needing external support and many marriages do have to learn this.  I think this is where you and your DH should put your focus from now on.

CuriousParty

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #50 on: December 31, 2012, 05:17:06 PM »
Perhaps I missed some posts or read them differently, but I didn't see anyone say the OP was wrong or unfeeling. Several posters who sympathize with the SIL also expressed sympathy for the OP. It is a difficult situation all around.

I do think the posters who suggest the SIL is "crying wolf" or over-dramatizing the situation are underplaying the reality. The SIL may be a drama queen, sure, but a hospitalized two month old with a bone infection in the context of a recent loss of an infant child is pretty dramatic in cold hard fact. Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you.

The OP and her family of course need to have their own world remain as normal as possible, and I'm glad they were able to travel to the OP's extended family this year (though it seems that was also not drama free, regrettably). But it seems that for the section of the family that involves SIL, the reality is that this year, yet again, will not be normal, and it may be easier on the OP to just flow with that.  It seems she has decided to, and I wish her the best.

Poppea

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #51 on: December 31, 2012, 05:19:36 PM »
I don't think the OP has stated that SIL is evil incarnate.  I don't think the OP is mean or evil in thinking that the family has been dancing to SIL's tune for 4 years now.

Yes SIL has had some tough times, but it's kind of like The Boy Who Cried Wolf.  Drama and catastrophe can happen to anyone at anytime and most of us are willing to help in any way to lessen the pain and problems for those involved.  However, it is exhausting to have every celebration, get together or family event hijacked by the same people even when there isn't a current problem.  I think it tends to make the rest of the family less prone to be empathetic when there is a true catastrophe.

A newborn in the hospital for 4-6 weeks is "The Boy Who Cried Wolf"?  What counts as a "current problem"?  The rest of the family (besides the OP) is more than willing to accomodate the sick baby.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2012, 05:21:11 PM by Anthera »

Poppea

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #52 on: December 31, 2012, 05:25:13 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

The OP and her DH already had their Christmas just the way they wanted it already.  This is a post Christmas gift exchange with 6 people, 4 of whom are the family with the sick baby, and the other two are the grandmother and aunt of the baby.  Quite frankly, if the OP wasn't willling to accomodate the sick baby she would probably find herself without any guests.

« Last Edit: December 31, 2012, 05:35:48 PM by Anthera »

snowdragon

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #53 on: December 31, 2012, 06:04:16 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

The OP and her DH already had their Christmas just the way they wanted it already.  This is a post Christmas gift exchange with 6 people, 4 of whom are the family with the sick baby, and the other two are the grandmother and aunt of the baby.  Quite frankly, if the OP wasn't willling to accomodate the sick baby she would probably find herself without any guests.

  In my family this would be the "family" Christmas -the celebration with the WHOLE family  - and one group is continually needing to have the others work around them.  That's neither right nor fair.  Nor is it right to for them to reserve an entire month "just in case" - if the situation is that precarious = Cancel it entirely but you don't get to co-opt every weekend for a month or the family get together forever or take over other folks parties - I don't blame the OP for being put out. And if the other guests did not want to come to the party I provided - fine but then they need not be surprised when my part of the family starts decline invites to things with the larger group.

mj

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #54 on: December 31, 2012, 06:14:06 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

The OP and her DH already had their Christmas just the way they wanted it already.  This is a post Christmas gift exchange with 6 people, 4 of whom are the family with the sick baby, and the other two are the grandmother and aunt of the baby.  Quite frankly, if the OP wasn't willling to accomodate the sick baby she would probably find herself without any guests.

  In my family this would be the "family" Christmas -the celebration with the WHOLE family  - and one group is continually needing to have the others work around them.  That's neither right nor fair.  Nor is it right to for them to reserve an entire month "just in case" - if the situation is that precarious = Cancel it entirely but you don't get to co-opt every weekend for a month or the family get together forever or take over other folks parties - I don't blame the OP for being put out. And if the other guests did not want to come to the party I provided - fine but then they need not be surprised when my part of the family starts decline invites to things with the larger group.

Thats the thing, though.  This is the OPs husbands family culture that the OP is trying to change.  There is already a dynamic there that for years the OP has been beating her head against.  There is the MIL and 2 SILs who all seem to be in agreement, but the OP is not.  From the other thread, the MIL wasn't up for celebrating this year due to the baby's illness.  And from this thread, both SILs are worried about the dates due to issues with the baby. Those 3 family members cannot say it any clearer - their interests lie in what's best for the baby, not celebrating. 

If you look at it from another angle, wherein this holiday has had a repeated pattern for the OP in that her husbands family is not as interested in it as she is -- maybe they are the ones who feel they are "cutting slack" for the OP. For as much as throwing around the term "cutting SIL slack", most members of this group likely feel they are doing it for the OP in light of the entire situation starting four years ago.

Poppea

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #55 on: December 31, 2012, 06:31:51 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

The OP and her DH already had their Christmas just the way they wanted it already.  This is a post Christmas gift exchange with 6 people, 4 of whom are the family with the sick baby, and the other two are the grandmother and aunt of the baby.  Quite frankly, if the OP wasn't willling to accomodate the sick baby she would probably find herself without any guests.

  In my family this would be the "family" Christmas -the celebration with the WHOLE family  - and one group is continually needing to have the others work around them.  That's neither right nor fair.  Nor is it right to for them to reserve an entire month "just in case" - if the situation is that precarious = Cancel it entirely but you don't get to co-opt every weekend for a month or the family get together forever or take over other folks parties - I don't blame the OP for being put out. And if the other guests did not want to come to the party I provided - fine but then they need not be surprised when my part of the family starts decline invites to things with the larger group.

One of my cousin's has a DH with MS.  We always have to work around his disability when there are extended family celebrations.  We can never ever have an extended family celebration at my house because it is not wheelchair friendly.    Same with another cousin's little boy with the severe peanut allergy, if that branch of the family is coming menus need to be peanut free to protect him.

Its neither right nor fair that the SIL has lost a newborn and had another one hospitalized for 4 weeks.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2012, 06:33:53 PM by Anthera »

snowdragon

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2012, 06:40:14 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

The OP and her DH already had their Christmas just the way they wanted it already.  This is a post Christmas gift exchange with 6 people, 4 of whom are the family with the sick baby, and the other two are the grandmother and aunt of the baby.  Quite frankly, if the OP wasn't willling to accomodate the sick baby she would probably find herself without any guests.

  In my family this would be the "family" Christmas -the celebration with the WHOLE family  - and one group is continually needing to have the others work around them.  That's neither right nor fair.  Nor is it right to for them to reserve an entire month "just in case" - if the situation is that precarious = Cancel it entirely but you don't get to co-opt every weekend for a month or the family get together forever or take over other folks parties - I don't blame the OP for being put out. And if the other guests did not want to come to the party I provided - fine but then they need not be surprised when my part of the family starts decline invites to things with the larger group.

One of my cousin's has a DH with MS.  We always have to work around his disability when there are extended family celebrations.  We can never ever have an extended family celebration at my house because it is not wheelchair friendly.    Same with another cousin's little boy with the severe peanut allergy, if that branch of the family is coming menus need to be peanut free to protect him.

Its neither right nor fair that the SIL has lost a newborn and had another one hospitalized for 4 weeks.

And how long does the OP have to pay for the fact that the SIL has lost a newborn and had another get sick? The rest of her life? After four years I would be questioning it, too.   
 We don't know that the MIL and the other SIL are ok with this or if they are feeling put off but putting up with it for another year -there not here to say either way -but I don't think hte OP deserves the harshness that she has gotten here, either. 

penelope2017

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2012, 06:48:21 PM »
I don't think the OP has stated that SIL is evil incarnate.  I don't think the OP is mean or evil in thinking that the family has been dancing to SIL's tune for 4 years now.

Yes SIL has had some tough times, but it's kind of like The Boy Who Cried Wolf.  Drama and catastrophe can happen to anyone at anytime and most of us are willing to help in any way to lessen the pain and problems for those involved.  However, it is exhausting to have every celebration, get together or family event hijacked by the same people even when there isn't a current problem.  I think it tends to make the rest of the family less prone to be empathetic when there is a true catastrophe.

A newborn in the hospital for 4-6 weeks is "The Boy Who Cried Wolf"?  What counts as a "current problem"?  The rest of the family (besides the OP) is more than willing to accomodate the sick baby.

Just agreeing with Anthera in this entire thread. I'm curious as to what counts as a "current problem" if this doesn't myself.

Poppea

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #58 on: December 31, 2012, 07:18:43 PM »
I remember the previous posts about the SIL and while it was beyond horrible what happened to her, I remember thinking that her behaviour was still a bit much (long, public, raging tantrums at events she organised over things that were very innocent)
 
However, I don't think that really has a bearing on this event. You can't request that Christmas not be altered because it will be, but you can choose how to respond (and whether to attend).

How long do they get to alter Christmas for, for the rest of their family? Does the rest of the family never get to have a "normal" Christmas again because of this part of the family's tragedies?  I think the OP has been more than giving, and sympathetic...but she and her family need to have normalcy return - she not wrong or unfeeling because they are at differing stages than the SIL.  ( not that you, personally are saying that she but some of the posts in this thread have been harsh towards the OP). One can only live in crisis mode for so long.

The OP and her DH already had their Christmas just the way they wanted it already.  This is a post Christmas gift exchange with 6 people, 4 of whom are the family with the sick baby, and the other two are the grandmother and aunt of the baby.  Quite frankly, if the OP wasn't willling to accomodate the sick baby she would probably find herself without any guests.

  In my family this would be the "family" Christmas -the celebration with the WHOLE family  - and one group is continually needing to have the others work around them.  That's neither right nor fair.  Nor is it right to for them to reserve an entire month "just in case" - if the situation is that precarious = Cancel it entirely but you don't get to co-opt every weekend for a month or the family get together forever or take over other folks parties - I don't blame the OP for being put out. And if the other guests did not want to come to the party I provided - fine but then they need not be surprised when my part of the family starts decline invites to things with the larger group.

One of my cousin's has a DH with MS.  We always have to work around his disability when there are extended family celebrations.  We can never ever have an extended family celebration at my house because it is not wheelchair friendly.    Same with another cousin's little boy with the severe peanut allergy, if that branch of the family is coming menus need to be peanut free to protect him.

Its neither right nor fair that the SIL has lost a newborn and had another one hospitalized for 4 weeks.

And how long does the OP have to pay for the fact that the SIL has lost a newborn and had another get sick? The rest of her life? After four years I would be questioning it, too.   
 We don't know that the MIL and the other SIL are ok with this or if they are feeling put off but putting up with it for another year -there not here to say either way -but I don't think hte OP deserves the harshness that she has gotten here, either.

The baby has been dead for three years, not four.  The new baby is still recovering from her very serious infection.  If by "pay for" you mean not have SIL's family attend holidays at the OP's house my guess would be that they will always put their children's health before social obligations.

The OP is welcome to have Christmas with her own birth family (as she did this year).  She and her DH can do whatever they want.  In this case the OP and her husband are the ones that wanted the post Christmas party.  The two SIL's did not want to commit to a date and the MIL wanted to cancel it altogether. 

ETA I think the OP has been handling this situation just fine.  Its okay to be frustrated with all the plan changes, and your responses have been perfectly polite.  Maybe next year you and your DH should take a vacation somewhere far away from relatives.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2012, 07:28:09 PM by Anthera »

cheyne

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Re: Let's just reserve the whole month of January, shall we? Update post 10
« Reply #59 on: December 31, 2012, 09:50:56 PM »
1.  Bolding is not shouting.  All caps is shouting.

2.  I'm sure you're tired of giving her slack, but the truth is that she's been in a hormonal and emotional maelstrom for the past 3 years. 
Christmas 2009 - Dead baby
Christmas 2010 - Brand new baby - worried it too may die
Christmas 2011 - Toddler and anniversary of baby's death
Christmas 2012- Toddler and new baby hospitalized for 4 weeks.

This isn't even Christmas.  You and your partner spent Christmas exactly how you wanted.  This is a post holiday get together for you DH's family.  The sick baby is the main focus for the majority of this family (6/8 members).

3.  I wasn't reacting to your email so much as some of the other poster's comments about your SIL.

About the "crying wolf" comment I made upthread, SIL had legitimate crisis in 2009 (death of a newborn) and this year (newborn in hospital with infection).  I don't think having a baby in 2010 or having a toddler in 2011 qualify as a crisis.  My point was that if SIL hadn't hijacked the celebrations in 2010 and 2011, the OP would have an easier time cutting slack and helping all she could with this crisis.*

I have no dog in this hunt, I just wanted to point out that many people, myself being one of them, cannot or will not operate in a state of perpetual drama or crisis.  I do believe that SIL had legitimate reasons in 2009 and 2012 and should be accorded all the good will possible, but that her actions in 2010 and 2011 would make it difficult for me to keep up the goodwill indefinitely.

*Not to speak for the OP, these are my thoughts projected onto the OP.