Author Topic: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....  (Read 6112 times)

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kckgirl

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2013, 08:21:15 PM »
As far as the cards, open them to ensure there are no checks/cash. Donate the cash and return the checks and shred the cards.

One thing I would do is stop trying to give the children their birthday cards. I, too, would open the card and donate any cash (or put it in a fund of some sort), but I would not return a check. Just shred it and forget it. She'll figure it out when it never gets cashed.
Maryland

NyaChan

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #16 on: July 26, 2013, 08:28:24 PM »
This is one of those situations where I truly wonder what the purpose of posting such a request on FB has other than to notify people that "something" is happening.  Anyone that doesn't know why you were asking is immediately going to wonder about it, those who do are reminded of it - and "it" is no one's business, not even yours.  Why take it upon yourself to post that and call attention to someone else's personal tragedy?  It is borderline gossiping IMO.

So for people who believe in God and the power of prayer, they shouldn't ask for prayer for those they love?  I see that was all that the OP was doing so I don't understand how it is gossiping.  The purpose of posting is to use the power of prayer to help the OP's FIL.

FTR, I am an atheist.

Not if asking reveals something that is private.  Make prayers for them yourself, sure, but to go around soliciting them from others when it isn't something the recipient would necessarily want attention drawn to is not appropriate.  If I heard a friend had a miscarriage, I would pray for her myself, but I would not post on FB "Please make prayers for Friend" as it is not my place to draw attention to her loss.

For example, my dad had to go to the hospital last week and called his friend who is a doctor to ask if it was really an emergency.  That friend then proceeded to announce at our masjid to please make prayers for Brother [Dad's Name]'s health.  Now this hospital trip wasn't some big secret, but that doesn't mean that he wanted a community's worth of people talking about him, speculating, and then ultimately calling us for details. 

Tabby Uprising

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #17 on: July 26, 2013, 08:28:51 PM »
This is one of those situations where I truly wonder what the purpose of posting such a request on FB has other than to notify people that "something" is happening.  Anyone that doesn't know why you were asking is immediately going to wonder about it, those who do are reminded of it - and "it" is no one's business, not even yours.  Why take it upon yourself to post that and call attention to someone else's personal tragedy?  It is borderline gossiping IMO.

So for people who believe in God and the power of prayer, they shouldn't ask for prayer for those they love?  I see that was all that the OP was doing so I don't understand how it is gossiping.  The purpose of posting is to use the power of prayer to help the OP's FIL.

FTR, I am an atheist.

I think it's natural though when you post "so and so needs prayers" that people are going to want to know the reason. They get concerned.  Is FIL sick?  Is he okay?  What's going on?  What happened?  And it puts people who know FIL in the awkward position of having to deflect those well-intentioned questions if they don't want to divulge sensitive information. 

A divorce is something many people would consider private information and if you post that FIL needs prayers it invites questions into why.  Certainly it's okay for people to pray for ones they love, but when you publicly post about it you are inviting inquiry into the issue. 

Piratelvr1121

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2013, 08:33:49 PM »
Perhaps if you want to ask for prayers, a fbook post could be worded so that no one knows who they're praying for.

Ie "In the interests of privacy, I cannot specify who, but would like prayers for a family member going through a rough time." Course it might still invite questions but as long as you stand firm on not giving up the info it could not count as gossiping.

ETA I'm part of a group at my church that has a prayer list but it's kept completely confidential, only women in the order know why the people need prayers and it's just for praying, not a subject of gossip amongst the members.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 08:36:41 PM by Piratelvr1121 »
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tinkytinky

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #19 on: July 26, 2013, 09:33:43 PM »
OP here. Thank you all for your views on these situations.

I honestly didn't post on FB to stir the pot. most of my FB friends as well as myself request prayers for various situations, and there is hardly ever a reason given. If someone in our group needs prayers we just pray. My post didn't mention the court date, just asked for prayers for DD and FIL. I didn't have anyone question why, and I would have given a vague reason if they did (rough time, struggling, etc). To the poster that asked, DD turned 15. the reason that she had a rough time was the court date actually being on her birthday. It really doesn't matter why she had a rough time, emotions were running really high with all of them. The people questioning SIL only knew about the divorce because BIL (her husband) told them what was going on.  They then put two and two together, had that lightbulb moment and said "oh, so that's why she asked for prayers".

The cards always have cash. I will probably have the kids donate the money. They work in a food kitchen in our community, so that seems like a good cause for it. That was a really good idea and I thank all of you for that. Sending them back was my kids idea, they wanted to send a note saying don't waste your money. I will talk with them and explain why this would be a better idea.

Now we wait for her to show up at our house (99% sure she will) to act like nothing has ever happened........

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AnnaJ

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2013, 09:57:34 PM »
The problem with Vaugebooking is that people will try to guess what you mean and obviously in this case they figured it out fairly easily, not surprising in a small town.  I think I would simply distance myself from the whole affair as much as possible, at least publicly - no posting about it on Facebook, for example. 

As for the cards, I agree - donate the cash, don't cash the checks, and toss the cards.

GSNW

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2013, 10:06:30 PM »
I think it's easy to forget that the OP is also in a difficult situation here.  She might not be particularly upset about MIL leaving (she doesn't sound so wonderful), but I think it might be especially hard to watch one's children grapple with this and feel pain on their grandfather's behalf.  I know LOTS of people that solicit prayers for lots of things, and frankly, I don't spend a lot of time wondering about the reasons.  I don't pray, but I send them my positive thoughts because I'd want them to do the same for me.

It seems like OP was reaching out to her circle because her family is going through a rough time.  BIL has no business dictating how she does that.  She didn't post personal information and he was rude to say anything at all about it.

aussie_chick

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #22 on: July 26, 2013, 10:18:44 PM »
I would avoid posting anything about anyone else's lives on facebook full stop. Even if it is to kindly ask for prayers and to be vague about it. I agree with other posters that requests for prayers without detail will make people curious.
I'm not religious so I don't know how common requesting prayers from other people is.
You may not have intended to stir the pot Op however posting about something you had been asked specifically not to (even if that request was some time ago) could be perceived that way by those closest to the situation - the divorcing couple and their children.

Was the request to not post anything on facebook made to anyone else or just you?

I personally don't like the idea of anyone posting anything about me on facebook. My facebook is for my life, their facebook is for theirs.

As for the birthday cards, if the children don't want them, don't bother giving them or sending them back. Take the cash, donate to charity and recycle the cards.

I hope I don't sounds harsh Op. It sounds like a particularly trying time for the whole family and I wish your family all the best for the future.

tinkytinky

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2013, 10:38:26 PM »
In my community, it is very common to ask for prayers. Most of my friends are from my church. I can have anything from 20-50 requests for prayers in my feed in any given week. so my asking for prayers didn't raise red flags per se. again, we see a request, we pray.

And it wasn't a REQEUST to not put on facebook, it was a DEMAND. MIL has control issues. She has never had anything come back to her from facebook that I have put on there, because I don't post that stuff on there. The demand was made to me, because I have a facebook, others don't. She made different demands on them, suited to their past times.

The only reason she told my husband she was leaving on the day she did was because we saw her in our bank and she had guilty feelings because she was cleaning out the accounts. We had no way of knowing that was what she was doing. when someone is in a bank, it's to do their banking business. I was doing my own so I wasn't paying attention, but she told DH that she was afraid that we would know something was up with the traffic going by our house, and seeing her in the bank. She was going to have DH pick FIL and other family member and take him back to empty house. DH wouldn't even know she was gone until dropping them off.

No, you aren't harsh, and I appreciate the well wishes. It is just really hard trying to explain everything that has happened, there was so much. Trying to post enough info but not making a novel out of it is really difficult.

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TootsNYC

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #24 on: July 26, 2013, 10:40:49 PM »

However, I think it is disingenuous for you to pretend that you are not stirring the pot on Facebook. If most of your friends already know what happened, and you post asking for prayers for your FIL, then yes, you are signaling something about the divorce. While it was rude for BIL to speak to you in a demanding, ranting way, there is a very fine line here.  If you live in a small town and friends are asking your BIL about family business in reaction to your coded messages on Facebook, he is not completely off-the-wall in asking you to respect the family's privacy.  If you really want your Facebook to be "nothing to do with him," I think it is your responsibility to not be dropping hints that will get him dragged into the middle, or else use your privacy settings so that nobody who will go to him sees your posts.


I disagree.  I don't think OP is stirring the pot at all.  Absolutely ANYTHING could have happened to FIL the day she asked for prayers; unless anyone else knew the court date, there is no reason to think it was specifically about that from an outsiders perspective.  People may assume that, but it could be any other number of things.

It certainly creates a situation in which people are going to be saying, "why are we praying for FIL? What's going on? What's wrong with him?" And asking all the family members.

It creates gossip. Don't do it.


Or, this:
This is one of those situations where I truly wonder what the purpose of posting such a request on FB has other than to notify people that "something" is happening.  Anyone that doesn't know why you were asking is immediately going to wonder about it, those who do are reminded of it - and "it" is no one's business, not even yours.  Why take it upon yourself to post that and call attention to someone else's personal tragedy?  It is borderline gossiping IMO.

Honestly, I don't think it's appropriate to so publicly ask for prayers for another person unless they are OK with it.

That sort of public request is a form of announcement. It's very common in my church to ask for prayers for other people or for yourself, but it is a form of revelation or announcement. It just is.

I don't think that Facebook is an appropriate place to make that sort of request unless the other person specifically agrees or is OK with that aspect of their business being bandied about.

My DD went to Italy for the summer--she's telling everyone, it's not a secret, and so for me to say, "please pray for her to be safe on her summer trip" is OK. She had a surgery--she was closer-mouthed about that, so it would not have been OK to bring it up even obliquely.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 10:44:33 PM by TootsNYC »

NyaChan

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2013, 10:42:20 PM »
In my community, it is very common to ask for prayers. Most of my friends are from my church. I can have anything from 20-50 requests for prayers in my feed in any given week. so my asking for prayers didn't raise red flags per se. again, we see a request, we pray.

And it wasn't a REQEUST to not put on facebook, it was a DEMAND. MIL has control issues. She has never had anything come back to her from facebook that I have put on there, because I don't post that stuff on there. The demand was made to me, because I have a facebook, others don't. She made different demands on them, suited to their past times.

The only reason she told my husband she was leaving on the day she did was because we saw her in our bank and she had guilty feelings because she was cleaning out the accounts. We had no way of knowing that was what she was doing. when someone is in a bank, it's to do their banking business. I was doing my own so I wasn't paying attention, but she told DH that she was afraid that we would know something was up with the traffic going by our house, and seeing her in the bank. She was going to have DH pick FIL and other family member and take him back to empty house. DH wouldn't even know she was gone until dropping them off.

No, you aren't harsh, and I appreciate the well wishes. It is just really hard trying to explain everything that has happened, there was so much. Trying to post enough info but not making a novel out of it is really difficult.

I guess my point was more about considering FIL's privacy, not so much your MIL.  The reason not to do it isn't because MIL demanded it of you so that she could make a clean getaway (and man is that messed up! I feel very badly for your FIL), but because this is a private aspect of FIL's life.

TootsNYC

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2013, 10:46:05 PM »

The cards always have cash. I will probably have the kids donate the money. They work in a food kitchen in our community, so that seems like a good cause for it. That was a really good idea and I thank all of you for that. Sending them back was my kids idea, they wanted to send a note saying don't waste your money. I will talk with them and explain why this would be a better idea.

Now we wait for her to show up at our house (99% sure she will) to act like nothing has ever happened........

You could just put all the cards in a box and then when she gets there, hand them back and say, "we're not comfortable accepting this money." It would be less hurtful if you removed the cards and only handed back the cash.

*inviteseller

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #27 on: July 26, 2013, 10:49:52 PM »
BIL approached you incorrectly, but I agree it was a vague reference that leads people to ask questions.  Remember, this is his parents and he is probably so very hurt by his mothers actions so I would respect his request, even if it was done rudely.  As far as the cards, let the kids decide what they want to do, but I wouldn't go out of my way to get them back to her.  I wouldn't want them either, but I also wouldn't try to make a point about it.

EllenS

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #28 on: July 26, 2013, 11:05:57 PM »
Almost nobody in this crazy life is ever 100% right, or 100% wrong.  OP, your inlaws may be rude, and demanding, and a circus of dysfunction, but asking that you not post about them on Facebook is a reasonable request.

Whether or not you intend to respect that reasonable boundary is up to you, and if you choose not to, then the consequences (i.e., your inlaws being upset because people are coming to them with gossip) is also your responsibility to deal with.

I encourage you once more, to investigate your privacy settings and exclude people who will go back to BIL about your posts.  Obviously someone does.

weeblewobble

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Re: You can't force a rel[color=black]ationship[/color]....
« Reply #29 on: July 26, 2013, 11:08:01 PM »
Honestly, I think it boils down to BIL being very angry with his mother and embarrassed about the situation, but being unable to express it to his mother either because he isn't in contact with her or is incapable of being honest about his feelings.  So instead, he takes his anger out on an available, convenient target.  No matter how angry he is, it's not OK for him to yell at OP like that.