Author Topic: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift  (Read 3308 times)

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StoutGirl

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Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« on: August 15, 2013, 03:29:21 PM »
Hi E-Hellions, I need some advice and can always trust y'all for your wisdom.  This will be a little long, but please bear with me.

My family is really good friends with another family.  Rather than think of them as "friends" I tend to think of them as "extended family."  There are 3 adult children: Daughter 1, Daughter 2, and Son.  All are married and the two daughters now have children.  The other day, I found out that Son and his wife are expecting.

A bit of additional background is that Son and I are the same age, went to school together, and his wife is a couple of years younger than us.  I have seen her true colors after having her in classes and being in the same social settings and to say that she is a snot is an understatement.  It is to the point where I am starting to back away from the friendship of this family so that I do not have to be around her.  When they got married, we were invited to the shower and received a thank you note.  However, we did not receive one for the handmade wedding gift and we have never seen it displayed at their house.

Here is the sticky part: I made gifts for the two daughters for their first borns.  Son's wife has seen the gifts.  I always felt like I have to make her something as well, but my mom is telling me that I am not obligated to.  I currently have a lot of mixed emotions regarding this.  I feel that it would be a very obvious snub if I did not give a handmade gift as well, not only to the wife, but to the son and his family.  I try to tell myself that the gift is for the sake of the baby and the son.  I am trying to find ways to get rid of oodles of scrap material and a blanket would be a great way to do it.  I also have the attitude (maybe its the wrong attitude, feel free to call me out on it) that if I gift well, I may receive something nice if an occasion ever comes for me, though this is not a driving force.  I also worry that whatever I make will not be "good enough" for the wife and my time would be completely wasted.

So what is your opinion? Do I have an obligation? Make and give something just to keep the peace and not put a lot of emotional value into it, or skip out?  Any other ideas (including fabric based crafts) are welcome.  Thank you!   

PennyandPleased

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2013, 03:38:50 PM »
In this sutation try and think of the Son, baby, and his siblings, parents over the Snotty Wife. Do something for this baby because you love the family and they love the baby. Does that make sense?

So if I were you I would make something small for the baby. Maybe a small blanket with a pattern that is easy and not too time consumeing and just not put too much emotion in to it.

Then, to stay on Snotty Wife's good side buy something small from her registry. You will appeal to Son's family with the home made gift and appeal to Snotty Wife with the small registry gift.

Margo

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2013, 03:41:20 PM »
I don't think you have any obligation to provide a gift.

If you feel that for the sake of your friend you would like to give his child a gift, even though you don't like his wife, then making something but not investing too much, emotionally, in it,  sounds like the way to go.
If you decide to make a gift, perhaps thinking of it as an investment into your ongoing relationship with the wider family?

(I like Penny's suggesion about a small registry gift, too, if you think wife won't apprecciate the hand made gift)



Firecat

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2013, 03:45:06 PM »
I don't think you have any obligation to provide a gift.

If you feel that for the sake of your friend you would like to give his child a gift, even though you don't like his wife, then making something but not investing too much, emotionally, in it,  sounds like the way to go.
If you decide to make a gift, perhaps thinking of it as an investment into your ongoing relationship with the wider family?

(I like Penny's suggesion about a small registry gift, too, if you think wife won't apprecciate the hand made gift)

I think this is a good way to go, too. You could also go with something like a gift card to somewhere like Target or Babies R Us rather than actually buying a gift off the registry if you prefer. That way you're giving one special, handmade gift, and one that will allow the wife to select something she will appreciate. (Yes, I know, some people feel gift cards are impersonal...in this case, I don't see that as a bad thing.)

Sharnita

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2013, 03:45:18 PM »
I think you could also provide a gift that isn't jandmade. Not everyone loves handmade stuff so if it is easier to buy a token gift, I wouldn't feel guilt becaise the others got handmade gifts.

esposita

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2013, 03:45:36 PM »
I'd give a package of diapers and a box of chocolates (for mommy). That is my signature gift, and the special thing for mommy always goes over very well.

Don't spend time making something, is my advice. It is just going to drive you crazy if its under appreciated (and it sounds like it will be).

I'm so sorry that a good relationship has ended like this. :(

CocoCamm

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2013, 04:12:29 PM »
Has the wife/son ever commented positively on the homemade baby gifts? If so then I would provide one to them as well, or else it will look like a snub.

If they have never commented on the homemade gift, coupled with the fact that they don't seem to appreciate homemade items, I would purchase a small token gift.

SlitherHiss

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2013, 04:17:29 PM »
Give the gift if you believe the Son would like it, or would appreciate a gift for his child. Don't think about it being for his snooty wife at all. This is for your family friend and his baby. If the wife likes it or doesn't, that doesn't matter.

Lynn2000

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2013, 04:18:19 PM »
I think what I personally would do, is to make the handmade gift for Son's baby. Maybe I would use up fabric scraps (while still having it look nice) rather than buying all new material, but I would make it generally equivalent to the gifts I gave the Daughters for their first-born children. I would be doing this to satisfy my own sense of fairness and peace of mind, so the wife would have no rational reason to feel snubbed.

After that, I would pull away from Son and his wife, but try to pull closer to the Daughters and their families. Then I could still give/make them gifts, without doing the same for Son, with the natural reason that I'm closer to them. (I would make sure to give Daughters the gifts privately, like at lunch between the two of us, rather than at a larger celebration including Son.) Or, if you want to drop Daughters, too, you can pull away from the whole group evenly, without having unbalanced anything as you left.

That's just what *I* would do, I think. I would even everything out for this occasion, and then I would consciously make a reason why things weren't going to be even in the future--because I've become obviously closer to Daughters (or, I am equally not-close to anyone, so no one gets gifts anymore).
~Lynn2000

snowdragon

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2013, 04:25:13 PM »
I would not make another hand made gift, if I thought they would not appreciate it.

Cami

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #10 on: August 15, 2013, 05:23:02 PM »
My rule with handmade gifts is that if I don't receive a thank you and/or they don't seem to like it, I don't ever make them another handmade gift.

Failing to acknowledge the time and love that went into a handmade gift immediately puts you into the "ungrateful wretch" column. Ungrateful wretches don't get my time and love again.

Not liking my  handmade gift is fine. I just won't waste my time providing something you don't like.  No biggie.

So in this case, not having received a thank you note for the handmade wedding gifts means they are in the UW column and I'd send them a nice card with a gift card in it. End of story.

magicdomino

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2013, 05:58:20 PM »
If you are reasonably cordial with Son's Wife, you could ask her, "I made baby quilts for Son's nephews/nieces.  Would you be interested in that for a baby gift, or should I get something else." 

jpcher

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2013, 06:44:24 PM »

Here is the sticky part: I made gifts for the two daughters for their first borns.  Son's wife has seen the gifts.  I always felt like I have to make her something as well, but my mom is telling me that I am not obligated to.  I currently have a lot of mixed emotions regarding this.  I feel that it would be a very obvious snub if I did not give a handmade gift as well, not only to the wife, but to the son and his family. I try to tell myself that the gift is for the sake of the baby and the son.  I am trying to find ways to get rid of oodles of scrap material and a blanket would be a great way to do it.  I also have the attitude (maybe its the wrong attitude, feel free to call me out on it) that if I gift well, I may receive something nice if an occasion ever comes for me, though this is not a driving force.  I also worry that whatever I make will not be "good enough" for the wife and my time would be completely wasted.

So what is your opinion? Do I have an obligation? Make and give something just to keep the peace and not put a lot of emotional value into it, or skip out?  Any other ideas (including fabric based crafts) are welcome.  Thank you!   

First Bold -- How did Son's Wife see the previous gifts? Were they shown to her as in "Look what StoutGirl made for our first born!" What was Son's Wife's reaction when she saw the gifts?

If she saw the gifts and it was pointed out to her that you were the giver/maker, then it would probably seem like a snub to her if she wasn't gifted the same . . . something that she could very well try to hold over your head in the future. I don't usually comment on other's personalities but, given the description you gave of her, I think it likely that she might take it as a snub and possibly try to use it against you.

The above is certainly not a reason to give a gift.


The below is.

Second Bold -- The Son. I take it he's been a long time friend of yours. Having a first child is a huge step in his life.

Is there a reason (other than his wife) why you want to treat him differently than you did his sisters? If you took the wife out of the equation, would you be excited to make a gift for his baby?

I think you should take the high road and make your "traditional" gift . . . for the last time, if not properly thanked (i.e. giving them one more chance). You have oodles of scrap material and here's a perfect reason to clean out your scrap pile, so why not?


You certainly have no obligation to give any gift whatsoever. Weigh the pros and cons and do what you think is right.



Third bold -- what about bibs?

From a quick google here's one site (there are plenty more sites out there): http://gingercake.typepad.com/gingercake/2013/03/super-simple-little-bib-tutorial-for-my-slobberer-and-craft-hope.html

Just a thought.

Phoebe

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2013, 06:59:11 PM »
Do you ever see the son on his own?  What about making the gift and giving it to him on one of those occasions?

onikenbai

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Re: Sticky Situation Regarding Baby Gift
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2013, 07:03:55 PM »
I fully admit to putting in varying levels of effort into hand made gifts, depending on the person.  If you're trying to use up lots of bits, make up a crazy quilt.  Use lots of colour and babies love them, and they quilt up fast as there is no fussy pattern to follow.  Best of all, they usually end up looking like you put a lot more work into them than you really did.