Author Topic: Eating a present you gave someone  (Read 10233 times)

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Yvaine

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #45 on: February 18, 2014, 03:40:13 PM »
My problem with her eating them is that she has mislabeled them. She specifically gifts them to the child.

If she just brought them along "for everyone," all would be good.

So i might call and say, "MIL, DD was distraught to discover that there weren't any cookies left; she had been thinking of them as hers alone, since you gave them to her and told her they were for her. Next visit, could you set aside her share in its own, smaller box? Separate from the ones that are for us all to eat? And we'll put it somewhere safe, so she can enjoy the feeling of eating Grandma's cookies 'just for her.' "

"Child, Grandma loves to make your favorite cookies, but a batch of cookies are made for sharing!   Be sure to thank her graciously and offer her one!"

If my child was particularly distresses - well first I'd try to explain that we don't cry over cookies.  But I think I'd work with her on what she expects - if she was particularly set on having a couple for desert, than she can put a couple aside for later.  But no hording, no hiding.

Do you feel this way about any gift given to her, or only food gifts?

GratefulMaria

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #46 on: February 18, 2014, 03:41:52 PM »
My problem with her eating them is that she has mislabeled them. She specifically gifts them to the child.

If she just brought them along "for everyone," all would be good.

So i might call and say, "MIL, DD was distraught to discover that there weren't any cookies left; she had been thinking of them as hers alone, since you gave them to her and told her they were for her. Next visit, could you set aside her share in its own, smaller box? Separate from the ones that are for us all to eat? And we'll put it somewhere safe, so she can enjoy the feeling of eating Grandma's cookies 'just for her.' "

"Child, Grandma loves to make your favorite cookies, but a batch of cookies are made for sharing!   Be sure to thank her graciously and offer her one!"

If my child was particularly distresses - well first I'd try to explain that we don't cry over cookies.  But I think I'd work with her on what she expects - if she was particularly set on having a couple for desert, than she can put a couple aside for later.  But no hording, no hiding.

It seems to me that the child is crying over what she perceives as a broken promise.

Yvaine

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #47 on: February 18, 2014, 03:45:06 PM »
My problem with her eating them is that she has mislabeled them. She specifically gifts them to the child.

If she just brought them along "for everyone," all would be good.

So i might call and say, "MIL, DD was distraught to discover that there weren't any cookies left; she had been thinking of them as hers alone, since you gave them to her and told her they were for her. Next visit, could you set aside her share in its own, smaller box? Separate from the ones that are for us all to eat? And we'll put it somewhere safe, so she can enjoy the feeling of eating Grandma's cookies 'just for her.' "

"Child, Grandma loves to make your favorite cookies, but a batch of cookies are made for sharing!   Be sure to thank her graciously and offer her one!"

If my child was particularly distresses - well first I'd try to explain that we don't cry over cookies.  But I think I'd work with her on what she expects - if she was particularly set on having a couple for desert, than she can put a couple aside for later.  But no hording, no hiding.

It seems to me that the child is crying over what she perceives as a broken promise.

This. Threads like this always descend into discussion of whether people care too much "about food"--I remember one about a gift of cake being given away without the recipient's permission a few years ago--when you could really extrapolate the principle of the thing to all sorts of non-food gifts. Nobody wants to have someone take away a gift that was given to them and consume or destroy it before the recipient has had a chance to enjoy it at all.

lowspark

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #48 on: February 18, 2014, 03:45:54 PM »
I think I would just try to keep things as simple as possible so I wouldn't confront MIL. Too much possibility for misunderstanding and hurt feelings there.

Instead I'd take a few cookies and set them aside in a Tupperware container and announce, "I'm setting these aside especially for Daughter."

At three years old, it can be very hard to understand how a present for you isn't really a present for you and not to get your hopes up. How many cookies can/should a three year old eat out of a batch? Set aside that many and it can be open season on the rest.

miranova

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #49 on: February 18, 2014, 04:24:41 PM »
Technically, I agree that grandma is mislabeling the cookies as a gift when they aren't really a gift only for the child.  However grandma isn't posting here so we can't advise her to change the way she is labeling the cookies.  In this case, this certainly wouldn't be a hill to die on for me.  I would just explain to my child that when grandma brings cookies, she wants us to share them.  I would put some aside for my child but I would not tell my MIL to stop presenting the cookies to my daughter.  Yes MIL is making things a bit more difficult for me but that's not the only time in my child's life that they will have to deal with disappointments.  This is a perfect example to teach my child that sometimes the "fair" thing doesn't happen, and we need to deal with it gracefully and not throw a fit.  I do understand this is a difficult lesson for a 3 year old, but it needs to happen at some point.  I can't protect my child from every situation in which someone might be slightly less than fair to them.  And I DO see this as VERY slight.

TootsNYC

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #50 on: February 18, 2014, 04:30:05 PM »
Technically, I agree that grandma is mislabeling the cookies as a gift when they aren't really a gift only for the child.  However grandma isn't posting here so we can't advise her to change the way she is labeling the cookies.  In this case, this certainly wouldn't be a hill to die on for me.  I would just explain to my child that when grandma brings cookies, she wants us to share them.  I would put some aside for my child but I would not tell my MIL to stop presenting the cookies to my daughter.  Yes MIL is making things a bit more difficult for me but that's not the only time in my child's life that they will have to deal with disappointments.  This is a perfect example to teach my child that sometimes the "fair" thing doesn't happen, and we need to deal with it gracefully and not throw a fit.  I do understand this is a difficult lesson for a 3 year old, but it needs to happen at some point.  I can't protect my child from every situation in which someone might be slightly less than fair to them.  And I DO see this as VERY slight.

The bolded part confuses me.
Can't we advise the OP to ask Grandma to change the way she is labeling the cookies? I thought that was what we were doing--advising the OP (who -did- post here) what it is that she can do.

And if I were hesitant to ask Grandma (I see lowspark's point), then absolutely *I* would be re-labeling some of the the cookies, and taking a few out and setting them aside for the child, and making it quite clear that these were the ones that were only for Child.

And yeah, I can teach my child that the "fair" thing doesn't happen, but why should I have to, with this? If I can be proactive on her behalf, isn't that actually a valuable lesson as well?

And of course I would be talking about this with my kid before Grandma got there, since this is a trend, so my kid would be prepared. But I'd also like to teach my child how to look out for herself, and how to -not- be like Grandma.

miranova

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #51 on: February 18, 2014, 04:42:28 PM »
Technically, I agree that grandma is mislabeling the cookies as a gift when they aren't really a gift only for the child.  However grandma isn't posting here so we can't advise her to change the way she is labeling the cookies.  In this case, this certainly wouldn't be a hill to die on for me.  I would just explain to my child that when grandma brings cookies, she wants us to share them.  I would put some aside for my child but I would not tell my MIL to stop presenting the cookies to my daughter.  Yes MIL is making things a bit more difficult for me but that's not the only time in my child's life that they will have to deal with disappointments.  This is a perfect example to teach my child that sometimes the "fair" thing doesn't happen, and we need to deal with it gracefully and not throw a fit.  I do understand this is a difficult lesson for a 3 year old, but it needs to happen at some point.  I can't protect my child from every situation in which someone might be slightly less than fair to them.  And I DO see this as VERY slight.

The bolded part confuses me.
Can't we advise the OP to ask Grandma to change the way she is labeling the cookies? I thought that was what we were doing--advising the OP (who -did- post here) what it is that she can do.

And if I were hesitant to ask Grandma (I see lowspark's point), then absolutely *I* would be re-labeling some of the the cookies, and taking a few out and setting them aside for the child, and making it quite clear that these were the ones that were only for Child.

And yeah, I can teach my child that the "fair" thing doesn't happen, but why should I have to, with this? If I can be proactive on her behalf, isn't that actually a valuable lesson as well?

And of course I would be talking about this with my kid before Grandma got there, since this is a trend, so my kid would be prepared. But I'd also like to teach my child how to look out for herself, and how to -not- be like Grandma.

I save my requests for my MIL to change the way she is doing things for the more important stuff. I guess we are just in disagreement over how important this is.  When my MIL thinks sunscreen for the kids is optional, or thinks she can be 3 hours late getting them back to me, etc....those are talks I'm going to have.  My child having fewer cookies that he was expecting/wanting?  I really don't think I'm going to micromanage the way my MIL presents the cookies.  Just doesn't seem to be a hill to die on for me. Plus, I really wouldn't like the idea of one child eating an entire batch of cookies regardless.  That's not healthy, and it's not something I would promote.  I would be encouraging her to share regardless of MIL's wording.

I am not a person who believe in CREATING an unfair situation just to teach my children that life isn't fair.  But I also don't think it's my job to PREVENT every unfair situation that they may encounter.  My job is to help them work through life's disappointments.  This is a minor one, and I'd want to be teaching my child that, yes, I know you were expecting to eat all of the cookies but grandma meant for them to be shared. 

I do agree that I'd be setting some aside from now on.  We agree there.

lowspark

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #52 on: February 18, 2014, 04:45:53 PM »
Technically, I agree that grandma is mislabeling the cookies as a gift when they aren't really a gift only for the child.  However grandma isn't posting here so we can't advise her to change the way she is labeling the cookies.  In this case, this certainly wouldn't be a hill to die on for me.  I would just explain to my child that when grandma brings cookies, she wants us to share them.  I would put some aside for my child but I would not tell my MIL to stop presenting the cookies to my daughter.  Yes MIL is making things a bit more difficult for me but that's not the only time in my child's life that they will have to deal with disappointments.  This is a perfect example to teach my child that sometimes the "fair" thing doesn't happen, and we need to deal with it gracefully and not throw a fit.  I do understand this is a difficult lesson for a 3 year old, but it needs to happen at some point.  I can't protect my child from every situation in which someone might be slightly less than fair to them.  And I DO see this as VERY slight.

Yeah, I agree that the lesson has to be learned at some point. I'm just not sure that at three years old, and concerning grandma's cookies, is the right time or way to do it.

At some point, three year old will grow up and realize what's going on and make her own evaluations of grandma's way of doing things. But at three? I'd definitely want to protect her from the harsh realities of life, so to speak, especially if it was as easy as putting away a few promised cookies for safe keeping.

TootsNYC

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #53 on: February 18, 2014, 04:49:38 PM »
We also agree on the idea that it's important to help kids cope with the unfairness life throws their way, so yes, I'd be proactively talking to my child about it.

But I'd never, ever say to my child, "We don't cry over cookies." That's really dismissive.

I used to get upset when my MIL would say, "You're crying over nothing." Ticked me off.  Way to belittle my kid's emotions! I'd interrupt and contradict, "No, Grandma, she's not crying over nothing. She's crying over being disappointed. That's perfectly understandable." And then I'd say to my child, "I know you are disappointed, I get it. That's really frustrating. But this big teary scene is really a bigger reaction than is needed; us grownups want you to save your tears for when it's a bigger deal. Please, can you get your tears under control?" Very similar message, but not dismissive in approach.

Because yes, kids need to learn scale, and balance, and appropriate reactions. But telling them  "you are wrong to be this upset" in a dismissive way.

4children

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #54 on: February 18, 2014, 05:06:05 PM »
You could also tell your DD before grandma comes this " DD grandma likes to make cookies to share, she could make any kind of cookie there is but because you are so important to her she makes your favorites to bring." Then, like others have said, set some aside just for your daughter.  Makes your DD feel better and avoids conflict with MIL.

shhh its me

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #55 on: February 18, 2014, 05:18:38 PM »
  How about "MIL dd is very literal  and is misunderstanding she hears "I made you cookies" as " I made these cookies, to be your  personal property.". Seh feels bad we have been stealing her cookies. Would you mind terrible telling her "I made cookies for US , shortbread your favorite""

Personally though I would go with just putting some aside for DD.


turnip

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #56 on: February 18, 2014, 05:24:18 PM »
My problem with her eating them is that she has mislabeled them. She specifically gifts them to the child.

If she just brought them along "for everyone," all would be good.

So i might call and say, "MIL, DD was distraught to discover that there weren't any cookies left; she had been thinking of them as hers alone, since you gave them to her and told her they were for her. Next visit, could you set aside her share in its own, smaller box? Separate from the ones that are for us all to eat? And we'll put it somewhere safe, so she can enjoy the feeling of eating Grandma's cookies 'just for her.' "

"Child, Grandma loves to make your favorite cookies, but a batch of cookies are made for sharing!   Be sure to thank her graciously and offer her one!"

If my child was particularly distresses - well first I'd try to explain that we don't cry over cookies.  But I think I'd work with her on what she expects - if she was particularly set on having a couple for desert, than she can put a couple aside for later.  But no hording, no hiding.

Do you feel this way about any gift given to her, or only food gifts?

I feel this way about _this_ batch of cookies _this_ girl's grandmother is bringing to her, because from all evidence this is how the grandmother intends to give them.   If this was a one-time-event, I'd be more sympathetic, but the OP has implied ( "So whenever she comes to visit (2 or 3 times a year) she brings her a batch " ) that this is an occurrence that has happened several times over the course of a year or more.   I think it's time for the OP to accept that this is how Grandma operates and prepare her daughter rather than scold the GM on cookies she made - presumably out of love, presumably not intending to upset or offend anyone.


wildkitty

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #57 on: February 18, 2014, 05:25:57 PM »
Everybody keeps saying that Grandma wants to share and that the child should be encouraged to be "gracious", but really it doesn't seem as though grandma wants to share. She seems to eat as many cookies as she wants without regard to the child she promised the cookies.

jaxsue

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #58 on: February 18, 2014, 06:22:23 PM »
I'm going to go completely against the other posters here...

My MIL visits a few times a year - it is a considerable drive, she stays with us, she often brings food and treats with her.  Frequenlty she brings cookies she knows I am particularly fond of.

I would be _mortified_ if she thought that during her stay she wasn't allowed to eat the cookies she lovingly prepared and brought to our home.  Completely mortified - it goes against all of my ideas of what is required of a gracious hosts.  And I do believe that my children are 'hosts' also.  I would be discussing with my _daughter_ how to graciously accept gifts and how important it is that your guests are comfortable in your home.  I would be working with my _daughter_ on saying "Thank you Grandma!  Let's both have a cookie together!"

Nobody's saying she can't eat any of them! Just that if Grandma is eating the majority of them, and digging into them without asking the person she ostensibly brought them for (whether that's the OP as hostess, or the 3yo to whom she's presenting them), they're not really a hostess gift or a gift for the child.

Exactly! Sharing is one thing; eating the vast majority is quite another.

miranova

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Re: Eating a present you gave someone
« Reply #59 on: February 18, 2014, 06:24:12 PM »
We also agree on the idea that it's important to help kids cope with the unfairness life throws their way, so yes, I'd be proactively talking to my child about it.

But I'd never, ever say to my child, "We don't cry over cookies." That's really dismissive.

I used to get upset when my MIL would say, "You're crying over nothing." Ticked me off.  Way to belittle my kid's emotions! I'd interrupt and contradict, "No, Grandma, she's not crying over nothing. She's crying over being disappointed. That's perfectly understandable." And then I'd say to my child, "I know you are disappointed, I get it. That's really frustrating. But this big teary scene is really a bigger reaction than is needed; us grownups want you to save your tears for when it's a bigger deal. Please, can you get your tears under control?" Very similar message, but not dismissive in approach.

Because yes, kids need to learn scale, and balance, and appropriate reactions. But telling them  "you are wrong to be this upset" in a dismissive way.

I'm not sure if you are responding to me specifically, but I did not make the comment about not crying over cookies.  That was another poster.  I don't tell my children what they are allowed to cry about.  That's not how I parent. 

My point was that I don't think it's worth having a big conversation with grandma over.  I do think she's wrong, but I don't think it's my job to correct everything she does that is wrong.  That's all.