Author Topic: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5  (Read 5324 times)

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GreenEyedHawk

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So, my cousin R divorced her husband of 10 years about 2 years ago or so.  Recently on Facebook she's announced she is doing a purge of her belongings and is putting a bunch of stuff up for sale.  She posted pictures and prices on Facebook and in browsing through them out of curiosity, I started to recognise everything she was selling as being wedding gifts she was given when she married her now-XDH, including the gift another cousin and me had gone in on together (and gone to a LOT of trouble to get the specific thing she wanted).

I know that once you give someone a gift, it's theirs to do what they want with, but by the same token, I'm a little offended that she is being so ham-handed about it that many relatives she has on Facebook now know she is selling/giving away the gifts they gave her.  I can also understand after her divorce-drama that she would want to do things for herself so that she feels closure on that chapter of her life.

I don't really intend on saying anything; what would be the point?  But I'm kind of wondering if I'm overreacting by being a bit stung.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 09:20:17 PM by GreenEyedHawk »
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Kaypeep

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2013, 09:07:28 PM »
I'm torn.  It's possible the really needs the money so she has to sell as many things as she can, especially if she's downsizing to a smaller place and won't have the room.  But I think I agree with you that with so many relatives on her FB list, posting pics of their gifts and announcing they are among the purge is a bit tactless.  She could have just sold the stuff on CL or Ebay or a consignment shop and left the gift givers out of the loop.  I'd give her a pass though if it seems she's hurting for money and the divorce is messy. Drastic times call for drastic measures sometimes.

Millionaire Maria

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2013, 09:14:53 PM »
You can feel however you like, but honestly? This woman got twelve years worth of use out of your gift. She's not doing anything wrong.
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Dazi

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2013, 09:16:15 PM »
I totally get where you are coming from on this.  At this point, I'm not going to say you are necessarily overreacting.  It's not like you sent her a nasty message or anything. Your feelings are a bit bruised.

You see your gift as some thing super special that you went through a lot of trouble and resources to get and she is intending to trash it/sell it/donate, etc.  While it probably meant a lot to your cousin at the time, it now may remind her of her failed marriage and bitter divorce.  Try not to be too hard on her. 

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Isometric

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2013, 09:16:54 PM »
I would be a little offended too. If I wanted or needed to sell things like that, I'd do as Kaypeep suggested and use a more anonymous source like  eBay.

To me it seems like she maybe wants everyone to know she doesn't want anything to remind her of that marriage. Which is fine, but there are more discreet ways to do it. Or to get the cash from selling them, if that's what she's after. 

GreenEyedHawk

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2013, 09:19:56 PM »
Important to add:  Her divorce was finalised about 2 years ago, and she hasn't downsized to a smaller place...in fact, after the divorce she lived with her parents for a year or so, then moved into a different apartment in the same complex where she and her ex-DH lived while they were married.  She recently took a rather extravagant holiday to London so I don't know that she's hurting for money, unless she *really* overspent.
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peaches

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2013, 09:22:59 PM »
I think the etiquette of handling of gifts is that you can return or dispose of a gift, as long as you don't do it in a public way that would offend or embarrass the gift giver.

That seems sensible to me. And I think it applies to this situation.

Seven Ate Nine

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2013, 09:24:04 PM »
I don't think that you are overreacting.  It's one thing to sell your stuff, and another to sell your stuff to the people who gave it to you in the first place! 

peaches

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended?
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2013, 09:26:21 PM »
Important to add:  Her divorce was finalised about 2 years ago, and she hasn't downsized to a smaller place...in fact, after the divorce she lived with her parents for a year or so, then moved into a different apartment in the same complex where she and her ex-DH lived while they were married.  She recently took a rather extravagant holiday to London so I don't know that she's hurting for money, unless she *really* overspent.

I don't think any of this matters. Those are all personal choices she's entitled to make.

She still can dispose of gifts, if she does it discreetly. But she's not being discreet, and that is the problem. The only problem IMO.

TootsNYC

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2013, 09:44:58 PM »
Any of those gifts were surely received with great appreciation. 10 years ago.

But now, every one of them is a negative force. So I'm all for her getting rid of them.

But as I think about it, I don't think it's all that polite to be quite so blatant about it. Every etiquette source I've read has spoken about getting rod if them discreetly.

(Though, 12 years later, it's not as bad a thing, since she presumably got a lot of use out of them. I wonder if she even remembers they were wedding gifts.)



Important to add:  Her divorce was finalised about 2 years ago, and she hasn't downsized to a smaller place...in fact, after the divorce she lived with her parents for a year or so, then moved into a different apartment in the same complex where she and her ex-DH lived while they were married.  She recently took a rather extravagant holiday to London so I don't know that she's hurting for money, unless she *really* overspent.

I don't think any of this matters. Those are all personal choices she's entitled to make.

She still can dispose of gifts, if she does it discreetly. But she's not being discreet, and that is the problem. The only problem IMO.


And I agree w/ peaches--it makes not the TINIEST difference whether she needs the money, needs the space, whatever. In fact, God forbid that she should somehow be required to keep crap she doesn't need--stuff that gets in her way and takes up storage space and makes life difficult--stuff that makes her feel guilty every time she looks at it--simply because she doesn't need the money or hasn't downsized. (In fact, if you consider that it is now 10 years later, she doesn't NEED to have downsized for her home to have become MORE crowded. Stuff has been coming into her house in a steady stream--10 years of Christmases, birthdays, anniversaries, etc.)


I've never met the woman nor seen her house, adn yet I firmly believe that she has WAY too much stuff she doesn't want or need or use, and that this stuff is having a negative effect on her quality of life.

So, I personally would be the tiniest bit disappointed that my gift wasn't a treasured item. But I'd also be relieved for her that she was creating more space in her life for the things she wants most of all.

Academically, however, I don't think advertising the sale to the ame group of people who gave you the present is a polite thing to do.

NyaChan

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2013, 09:46:43 PM »
I don't think this is rude.  I can totally see her waking up some day and realizing she was surrounded by her wedding gifts from a marriage that had ended 2 years ago - I can understand wanting to get rid of the items and she had them for 12 years already - how long is she supposed to keep them?  At some point they stop being gifts people gave me and become possessions I've had forever and no longer need.  Better that she is selling them like this than you driving by and seeing it sitting on the curb, or at least I would prefer that.

johelenc1

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2013, 09:49:43 PM »
I think you are completely over-reacting.  She's had this stuff 12 years.  That's a pretty long time.  So she wants to get rid of a bunch of stuff she either A:  no longer needs, B: no longer likes (her tastes could have changed in a decade) or C: remind her of her ex.

I don't see the problem.  She's getting rid of (rejecting, if you must), the stuff.  Not you or the people who gave it to her.

Not being able to get rid of such-and-such because Auntie/Grandma/Cousin/Friend, etc gave it to me/will get mad/be hurt, etc is why people have so much stuff!


eta:  Also, I don't have a problem with the facebook sell.  It's not like she emailed you personally offering to sell you back the gift you gave her.  She's offering all her stuff to everybody.  Friend A might like what Cousin gave, Friend B what Grandma gave, etc.  I can remember what things were gifts from my first marriage (20 years ago!!) but with the exception of a very few things, I couldn't tell you who gave me what towels.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 09:54:49 PM by johelenc1 »

GreenEyedHawk

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2013, 09:53:56 PM »
Thank you, TootsNYC.  That's what I am trying to say.  I'm not offended she is getting rid of all the stuff that was wedding gifts.  It's her stuff and she can do whatever she wants with it.  What I am a little stung by is that she's advertising that she is getting rid of the gifts TO the people who gave her the gifts.  That's the part that's bothering me.

I can totally understand her wanting rid of the stuff that reminds her of her failed marriage.  I can understand wanting to divest herself of that stuff and close the book on that chapter of her life.
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rigs32

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2013, 09:59:55 PM »
I think remembering who gave you which wedding presents 12 years ago is a lot to ask.

peaches

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Re: Am I overreacting by being somewhat offended? Clarifications post #5
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2013, 10:40:29 PM »

I can totally understand her wanting rid of the stuff that reminds her of her failed marriage.  I can understand wanting to divest herself of that stuff and close the book on that chapter of her life.

Let's go with this sentiment. And believe - charitably - that she probably doesn't remember who gave her what, after 12 years.