Author Topic: Easter expectation  (Read 9208 times)

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Daydream

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2013, 11:17:17 AM »
I sent it on Sunday and last night he replied "We are doing something else this year"  and signed their names.  I wrote back and said ok and have a nice time.

Now he sent me a text saying his wife is upset.  I put them on the spot.  They should not feel pressured to host and that I know full well our kids are older and don't hunt for eggs anymore so why would I assume!!

But after 12 years of doing the same thing, was I wrong to assume?  Do I need to apologize?

I truly don't think you did anything wrong and I really dislike these responses from your brother.  The first one was curt enough, but the second was really off-putting. 

"Putting someone on the spot" implies that they now feel forced to do something they don't want to, and that doesn't seem to be the case here.   They obviously decided they don't want to host anymore and aren't going to.  But they weren't going to tell anybody and expected you to automatically know that? 

I can't be sure from your post, but I took you asking if you could bring anything to mean that you probably have dinner there, too.  Easter is about more than egg hunts, plus you said your sister has small kids.  So that part of your brother's rebuking really rubbed me the wrong way.

They certainly have the right not to host, but the considerate thing for them to do would have been to let you, Other Sister, and anyone else know this well in advance either directly or by dropping a hint: "We've decided not to have Easter at our house this year," or "We're thinking about going out to dinner this year for Easter.  What are you guys planning?"

I think they know this and that's why they're lashing out at you like this.

We see the term "passive aggressive" used a lot when the behavior is really either just passive or just aggressive, but I think your brother and SIL really fit the bill here.

Imagine if they were members of E-hell or a similar forum, were planning on hosting this year as usual, and you hadn't contacted them to ask what you should bring,  Or, if you'd emailed to "ask if" they were hosting.   

If you felt you had to sit on your hands until they contacted you, we might be reading a post from them a day or two before Easter about how their Sister/SIL hasn't asked what she should bring this year.  "Does that mean she's not coming and isn't going to tell us?  Or she's just planning to come and not contribute anything?  How dare she! "

Or, "Sis called and asked "if" we were having Easter at our house this year.  What does she mean by "if"?   She knows we always have it and our other sister has small kids, so we'd be having an egg hunt as usual.  What is is she trying to imply here?  I don't know if we've usually contacted her first in the past and that's why she's asking.  But should we HAVE to contact her first all the time?  Do we have to do everything...?" 

I realize that Easter is more than two weeks away, so maybe they were working up the nerve to tell everyone, or picked a date when they planned to tell you they weren't hosting.  Maybe that date was to be on the 15th, 21st, or whatever, and they felt "put on the spot" because you dared to approach them before their "secret" date they'd agreed upon. 

But again, how were you to know that?  You might have wanted to plan and do your shopping early for whatever dish you were bringing. 

I think you were being considerate by asking and wish you a very happy Easter, however you decide to celebrate.   :)

Hmmmmm

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2013, 11:30:56 AM »
OP, I agree with NyaChan.

Your post implies that your Bro and SIL normally initiate some type of communication or invitation.  I think you should have phrased your question as "what are your plans for Easter?" versus the assumption that they are hosting.  Although we host 4 or 5 out of 5 family holidays per year, my SIL sent me a note early last week asking "Are you hosting Easter this year?"  I appreciated her not assuming, even though it would have been a pretty good assumption.

However, I do place quiet a bit of blame on your Brother and SIL.  I think it was wrong of them to not communicate to the family that they were breaking with a 12 year tradition. They should have communicated that very early to everyone. 

To keep family harmony I'd send the text suggested. But I must say they way over reacted.

heartmug

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2013, 12:15:29 PM »
Yes, to answer many of you who had the same question:

the pattern in years past would be my SIL would email me and my siblings and say "Lunch will be a 1:00.  Adam can you bring some coins and small candies to fill the eggs.  Beth can you bring a fruit salad.  Claire can you bring some cookies, but  not chocolate as I will have a lot of chocolate candy."

Now part of the problem was this year I could not remember how far in advance she would email us.

And we were always free to suggest something else.  One year I told her that I had just made a great lemon cake for a friend's birthday and could I bring that instead of cookies and she had no problem with that.

I did send the text last night and have not heard anything.  But my brother also has a very busy work schedule and when he is home, his phone is not always on.

Thanks everyone!
The trouble is not that the world is full of fools, it's just that lightening isn't distributed right.  - Mark Twain

bah12

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2013, 03:43:56 PM »
I think you shouldn't have assumed that they were hosting (I get why you did...but it shouldn't have been communicated that way in the email). 

However, being that this is something they've been doing for the last 12 years in a row, I think they should have preemptively said something to the family...to let them know to make other plans and not wait for them to organize Easter.  Also, while I can see where your SIL may have felt like she was put on the spot, I don't know why your brother chose to text you about it.  I know that sometimes I get upset about seemingly minor things and then I get over it.  If I communicate that to my husband and then he tells the "offending" (for lack of a better word) party, it is even more embarrasing and upsetting to me.   In some ways, I can see him wanting to give you a small aside and let you know that this is a sensitive subject for her, but not text you as if you did something wrong.

I like replying to his text with the suggested wording earlier...that you truly didn't mean to put them on the spot and are fine with the Easter plans (or lack of them) where they stand. 

camlan

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2013, 03:53:09 PM »
If you've been hosting the same event at the same time for over 10 years, it is not surprising that other people would start to consider it a tradition. And if you are cancelling a tradition, you should let everyone know.

When, exactly, were they going to tell people they weren't hosting the family Easter celebration this year? Either they had to get the word out, or other people would start to contact them, asking for the time, what to bring, etc. And what if people waited until a few days before Easter to contact them? Then there'd be a couple of families scrambling around trying to figure out what to do for Easter.

Yes, the OP could have worded her message a little bit differently. But I'm not sure that would have changed the reaction of the brother and SIL. I really do feel that they either had an obligation to let the rest of the family know of the change in plans, or they have to accept that the rest of the family would assume Easter would be at their house again. I don't think they are rude for not wanting to host the whole gang, but I do think they were slightly rude in how they handled things.
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Shortylicious

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #20 on: March 13, 2013, 09:27:53 PM »
If you've been hosting the same event at the same time for over 10 years, it is not surprising that other people would start to consider it a tradition. And if you are cancelling a tradition, you should let everyone know.

When, exactly, were they going to tell people they weren't hosting the family Easter celebration this year? Either they had to get the word out, or other people would start to contact them, asking for the time, what to bring, etc. And what if people waited until a few days before Easter to contact them? Then there'd be a couple of families scrambling around trying to figure out what to do for Easter.

Yes, the OP could have worded her message a little bit differently. But I'm not sure that would have changed the reaction of the brother and SIL. I really do feel that they either had an obligation to let the rest of the family know of the change in plans, or they have to accept that the rest of the family would assume Easter would be at their house again. I don't think they are rude for not wanting to host the whole gang, but I do think they were slightly rude in how they handled things.

Totally agree with this post. They hosted this event for 10 years! I would have just assumed the same too. My family is pretty laid back with arranging events and it's very common for emails to go around and around while we hammer out details. I can't imagine anyone getting upset or feeling put on the spot! Jeesh. Take a chill pill SIL and just enjoy spending time with family and friends!

CaffeineKatie

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #21 on: March 16, 2013, 06:10:57 PM »
I agree with Daydream--I have a feeling (from the SIL's SS-ish response) that if the OP hadn't sent the email and had made other plans when she didn't hear from her brother/sil, there would have been a "WHY isn't OP coming--we ALWAYS host Easter" email instead.

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #22 on: March 16, 2013, 11:59:13 PM »
I don't think the OP was rude, or wrong, for assuming she was invited to her Brother and SIL's Easter Party. If they've been hosting it every year for the past 12 years, it's a fair assumption to make that they'll be hosting it again this year. As a PP said, is the OP supposed to be mind-reader?

I personally think their response was over-the-top, although it's unclear whether the SIL was genuinely upset, or whether the Brother was exaggerating somewhat. It was kind and generous of the OP to be the bigger person and send them that text.

Winterlight

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2013, 12:37:39 AM »
If you've been hosting the same event at the same time for over 10 years, it is not surprising that other people would start to consider it a tradition. And if you are cancelling a tradition, you should let everyone know.

When, exactly, were they going to tell people they weren't hosting the family Easter celebration this year? Either they had to get the word out, or other people would start to contact them, asking for the time, what to bring, etc. And what if people waited until a few days before Easter to contact them? Then there'd be a couple of families scrambling around trying to figure out what to do for Easter.

Yes, the OP could have worded her message a little bit differently. But I'm not sure that would have changed the reaction of the brother and SIL. I really do feel that they either had an obligation to let the rest of the family know of the change in plans, or they have to accept that the rest of the family would assume Easter would be at their house again. I don't think they are rude for not wanting to host the whole gang, but I do think they were slightly rude in how they handled things.

Agreed. If they don't want to host, fine. Copping an attitude is rude.
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Aeris

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #24 on: March 17, 2013, 01:41:04 AM »
I don't think the OP was rude, or wrong, for assuming she was invited to her Brother and SIL's Easter Party. If they've been hosting it every year for the past 12 years, it's a fair assumption to make that they'll be hosting it again this year. As a PP said, is the OP supposed to be mind-reader?

I personally think their response was over-the-top, although it's unclear whether the SIL was genuinely upset, or whether the Brother was exaggerating somewhat. It was kind and generous of the OP to be the bigger person and send them that text.

I agree with this, and with Daydream's earlier post wholeheartedly.

The OP did assume, but you know, not all assumptions are unreasonable (or interesting). We also 'assume' every night that the sun will rise again the next morning in the east. The OP made a perfect reasonable assumption that what had occurred for the past 12 years would occur again. The Brother and SIL aren't obligated to continue that, but they are obligated not to be snotty and childish when people make that reasonable assumption.

Sharnita

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #25 on: March 17, 2013, 05:25:33 PM »
I did want to add that as one of the kids who got older I enjoyed watching the littles trick or treat, sit on Santa's lap, etc.  It was almost better than when I did it. I think it would be one thing of OP's kids had complained last year but I don't know that their aunt should assume they have no interest.  If she wants to do something else it is fine to say so but I wouldn't pawn it off on them.

katycoo

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #26 on: March 17, 2013, 07:39:35 PM »
I would reply:

"I apologise if I put you on the spot.  I assumed only due to the past years tradition, and not having heard otherwise, which was presumptious.  It didn't occur to me that easter egg hunting might be a reason why you not longer wished to host.  In any event, it is certainly not a problem that you have other plans this year.  I'll let you know what our plans end up being in case yours fall through and you would like to join us.  Have a lovely Easter."

siamesecat2965

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #27 on: March 19, 2013, 12:15:39 PM »
If you've been hosting the same event at the same time for over 10 years, it is not surprising that other people would start to consider it a tradition. And if you are cancelling a tradition, you should let everyone know.

When, exactly, were they going to tell people they weren't hosting the family Easter celebration this year? Either they had to get the word out, or other people would start to contact them, asking for the time, what to bring, etc. And what if people waited until a few days before Easter to contact them? Then there'd be a couple of families scrambling around trying to figure out what to do for Easter.

Yes, the OP could have worded her message a little bit differently. But I'm not sure that would have changed the reaction of the brother and SIL. I really do feel that they either had an obligation to let the rest of the family know of the change in plans, or they have to accept that the rest of the family would assume Easter would be at their house again. I don't think they are rude for not wanting to host the whole gang, but I do think they were slightly rude in how they handled things.

I agree with this. I think since they've hosted for the last 12 years, its not a stretch to think they would still be doing so, unless the rest of the family is otherwise notified. I don't see where SIL was put on the spot. She and bro are free to change the "normal" plans whenever they want to, but if its something that's been done for that many years, a simply "hey, just wanted to let you know we will not be hosting Easter this year" would have sufficied. Esp. since the OP was ok with that.

KarenK

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #28 on: March 25, 2013, 10:33:55 AM »
I don't think the OP did anything wrong at all. She did make an assumption, but it was a logical assumption to make. Bro and SIL's reaction tells me that they had probably gotten tired of hosting Easter and didn't want to any more. But, instead of stepping up to the plate and letting the family know within a reasonable time frame, their thinking was if they didn't contact the family as per usual, the family would figure it out without them having to come right out and say it. Passive aggressive and cowardly to boot.

We kind of have a similar situation in my family. Only one of us "kids" has enough room to host the family for holidays, etc. I'm very careful never to assume what they're doing, because I do feel guilty that I'm not able to hold up my end of this stuff (no room, too far away), so I always wait to hear from my SIL about what they're willing to do. For instance, this year for Easter, they're having a lunch the Saturday before. Last Christmas, the had dinner Christmas Eve instead of on Christmas Day, because they wanted a quiet day. Whatever they're willing to do is okay by me! If they decided they wanted to do nothing at all, I'd deal with it. Luckily, my SIL is not averse to expressing herself!

Emmy

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Re: Easter expectation
« Reply #29 on: March 26, 2013, 05:15:52 AM »
I don't think the OP was rude, or wrong, for assuming she was invited to her Brother and SIL's Easter Party. If they've been hosting it every year for the past 12 years, it's a fair assumption to make that they'll be hosting it again this year. As a PP said, is the OP supposed to be mind-reader?

I personally think their response was over-the-top, although it's unclear whether the SIL was genuinely upset, or whether the Brother was exaggerating somewhat. It was kind and generous of the OP to be the bigger person and send them that text.

I think technically the OP should have asked if they were hosting, but I don't think she did anything rude or wrong to assume because they seemed happy to host for the past 12 years and it seemed like status quo for her family.  However, I do think your brother's blunt reply was not polite and it was over the top to text and tell you that his wife was upset and felt pressured.  You gladly accepted his answer and didn't complain, whine, or demand they provide you with an Easter party so I don't see why they would be so upset.  If your brother and SIL have been hosting for the past 12 years, it would have been a kindness to let the guests who are normally invited know they were planning something else this year so the guests would have time to make other plans. 

I would reply:

"I apologise if I put you you felt put on the spot.  I assumed only due to the past years tradition, and not having heard otherwise, which was presumptious.  It didn't occur to me that easter egg hunting might be a reason why you not longer wished to host.  In any event, it is certainly not a problem that you have other plans this year.  I'll let you know what our plans end up being in case yours fall through and you would like to join us.  Have a lovely Easter."

I like this with that little edit and hopefully that will smooth things over.