Author Topic: Feeling like our events are less important than others....  (Read 19447 times)

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LETitbe

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #165 on: March 02, 2014, 01:44:44 PM »
I would see the opportunity to plan whatever I want to do for my birthday weekend as a gift, not a punishment.

My reference to it punishing the kids is more along the lines of tipping them off to the issues with grandma.
I also think it's kind of contradictory to say that the kid prefers doing whatever she wants- except for a family party- while at the same time insisting she's crushed that one family member left early from said family party. If the family party isn't what the daughter likes to do for her birthday, I doubt a member of that party leaving really mattered to her, unless someone else was making an issue of it.

Kids aren't blind. They can see their grandparents staying for just an hour.

Yeah, I could keep going around in circles here with people, but I've already explained that I've had the same experience growing up, and I was more damaged by my mom's dealing of it than my grandmother's actions (and, no, I didn't notice the unfairness until it kept being brought up by my mom. I may have noticed when I got older, but then I would have no one to blame but grandma. As it stands, I have grandma & mom to blame, which I'm guessing OP would prefer to avoid). Furthermore, if grandma were OP, I'd be happy to tell her how her actions might be perceived (although, like I said, I don't think they're really egregious- I think it would be much more "unfair" if the grandma were bailing on grandkid As bday to go to grandkid Bs), but, since she's not, I can only ask the OP to reconsider how she may be making her children feel even worse.

cass2591

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #166 on: March 02, 2014, 03:47:48 PM »
The aunt is not MIL's sister.  The aunt is married to FIL's brother.

OK, so, the husband upsets his brother by not going, and she has to go because she's his wife. Same level of relationship. In which case, if it's not the MIL making the decision, why is she getting slated for it? Why isn't FIL getting slated for it? It's his brother, after all.

I think there's probably a bit of backstory here we're not getting, because if it's FIL's relatives, I'm not seeing why MIL is at fault.

Because the FIL is dead?  The OP stated he died in 2012.

Well, that wasn't in the OP, which just stated the husband's aunt, and I don't have time to read through 10 pages for extra information.

Still - who does the woman upset? Her family who are hosting an important, one-off, never to be repeated, or her granddaughter, who will have another birthday the following year? Why is nobody understanding this? She was in an impossible position.

Seriously? If you don't want to bother taking the time to read the thread so you know of what you speak, then why take the time to post and be argumentative, unless the point is to be argumentative for its own sake. Only you know the answer to that.
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perpetua

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #167 on: March 02, 2014, 04:02:33 PM »
I read the OP and the original problem, which is what I was offering my opinion on - the original question posed. I'm not being 'argumentative'. I have a different opinion. I thought that was the purpose of a discussion forum. Am I mistaken?

mj

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #168 on: March 02, 2014, 04:12:07 PM »
Yes, those things all seem mildly annoying, and I know you're claiming you don't let your kids onto your frustration, but I feel like this is what is still really rubbing me the wrong way:

So this year MIL asks if we're planning a party for DS who will be 10, and I simply stated that we didn't do big parties anymore, and just let the birthday child pick out what he or she wants to do for that entire weekend instead. 

Do you really think a 14 year old isn't picking up on this? How many other people were at the party? Did you guys have fun after your MIL left, regardless?
Yes, your MIL seems a bit flaky. What she did was borderline rude (as were #2 & #3 on your other examples. #1 seems straight up rude, but I'm wondering what their situation was at the time...was FIL ill? What kind of illness? Were they like this before? Not that I need that info, but it could play into it), but your reaction to it doesn't seem to be "punishing" your MIL (not your job, anyway), but your kids. Plan what you'd like to plan, and just assume she may be flakey. Don't let that ruin your time, and don't let it ruin your kids' time.

There is a fine line here, and I think the OP stayed on the polite/good side when dealing with Grandma.  Kids will pick up on things, so you have 2 options.  OP can keep being a doormat and let her kids see/experience it too (which one already has, so there goes that) or put a stop to it, stand up for herself and family.  And she did it with grace too.  The amount of money (yes, she didn't cite it, but boat rides and all that add up) she has spent to host her MIL only to have it wasted is enough to drive most people batty, imo.

The OP didn't vent, gripe or unload on Grandma in front of the children, she simply stated her boundary.  I have a hard time viewing that as punishment of the children.  I see it as a good example for her children on how to deal with difficult people.  They will need those tools one day and Mom here did a good job without crossing the line, imho.  It would be very easy to get really upset over what happened here and show her hand, from her OP she did not.  But she's also not going back for more.  Good job, Mom!

chigger

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #169 on: March 02, 2014, 04:14:56 PM »
I read the OP and the original problem, which is what I was offering my opinion on - the original question posed. I'm not being 'argumentative'. I have a different opinion. I thought that was the purpose of a discussion forum. Am I mistaken?

However, you have bothered to read and argue with people that posted after your original post; people that made the time to read the whole thread.

kudeebee

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #170 on: March 02, 2014, 04:20:04 PM »
I would see the opportunity to plan whatever I want to do for my birthday weekend as a gift, not a punishment.

My reference to it punishing the kids is more along the lines of tipping them off to the issues with grandma.
I also think it's kind of contradictory to say that the kid prefers doing whatever she wants- except for a family party- while at the same time insisting she's crushed that one family member left early from said family party. If the family party isn't what the daughter likes to do for her birthday, I doubt a member of that party leaving really mattered to her, unless someone else was making an issue of it.

I don't think it is contradictory. 
Her dd was crushed by what happened; she was old enough at the time to figure it out.  After that incident and other ways mil/fil acted, OP decided no more family parties and to let the kids pick something to do for their birthday celebration.

I am a grandmother and I would take a lot for me to not be at one of their parties, especially one I knew about 3 months in advance that had been planned with specific activities based around those attending.  I would have tried to make the bbq if at all possible, but would never have hurried along events at the grandchild's party so I could leave.  What a message that would send to my grandchild!  The grandchild is family, too, and in my mind her event which I knew about for 3 months takes precedence over a sibling's event. JMHO

I think the OP is doing the right thing.  MIL cannot be counted on to show up for events, even those to which she has done the inviting!  I would not plan anything around her or count on her to show up either.  I think OP is doing the right thing and as we say here, is living her boundaries.

KenveeB

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #171 on: March 02, 2014, 04:57:11 PM »
I honestly don't see why everyone is saying that Grandma was put into an "impossible situation." There was a perfectly acceptable solution here -- go to the birthday party, spend the majority of the party there, leave at an acceptably early time (ie, after the majority of the events have occurred), and then go to the anniversary party, arriving a bit late but able to stay later as well. This isn't impossible, this is normal time management. There was no reason to cut out so early on the birthday party that all the events had to be rescheduled. Just when you accept the last-minute invitation to the anniversary party, say, "Oh, we can't wait! GD's birthday party is earlier that day, so we'll be a little late, but we're looking forward to it!"

It only became drama because of Grandma's refusal to stick to plans that were already made and willingness to sacrifice her granddaughter's side of the family, something she apparently does regularly.

Paper Roses

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #172 on: March 02, 2014, 05:11:15 PM »
I actually empathize with the OP.  I don't really think the nature of the events is relevant - the fact is, the ILs had already committed to attending the birthday party and being there for a significant portion if not all of it, and everyone was planning on it.  Then, a few weeks before, they decided something else was important enough to cut their attendance time down to just an hour - apparently a pretty small portion of the party; a "brief cameo." 

The OP is left wondering whether, if it were the other way around (if the anniversary party had been planned first), the ILs would have just not gone to the birthday party, or would they have told them they had to cut their attendance short because of the birthday party?  And the OP is thinking, probably not. 

It leaves you feeling like you don't want to plan on anything with them because you know they'll drop you at a moment's notice.  And I totally understand your feelings, OP.
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cass2591

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #173 on: March 02, 2014, 05:26:30 PM »
I read the OP and the original problem, which is what I was offering my opinion on - the original question posed. I'm not being 'argumentative'. I have a different opinion. I thought that was the purpose of a discussion forum. Am I mistaken?

It helps to be informed and saying you don't have time to read the last 10 pages does not help your credibility and I would strongly suggest you stop arguing with me.
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sammycat

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #174 on: March 02, 2014, 08:30:02 PM »
I honestly don't see why everyone is saying that Grandma was put into an "impossible situation." There was a perfectly acceptable solution here -- go to the birthday party, spend the majority of the party there, leave at an acceptably early time (ie, after the majority of the events have occurred), and then go to the anniversary party, arriving a bit late but able to stay later as well. This isn't impossible, this is normal time management. There was no reason to cut out so early on the birthday party that all the events had to be rescheduled. Just when you accept the last-minute invitation to the anniversary party, say, "Oh, we can't wait! GD's birthday party is earlier that day, so we'll be a little late, but we're looking forward to it!"

It only became drama because of Grandma's refusal to stick to plans that were already made and willingness to sacrifice her granddaughter's side of the family, something she apparently does regularly.

Exactly.

I have a sister, but neither of us have grandchildren yet (and considering the ages of our chidlren that's just as well!). But when the time comes, I would certainly expect her to put her grandchild's event, especially her birthday, ahead of any party I'm throwing on the same date.

Paper Roses

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #175 on: March 02, 2014, 08:35:06 PM »
Oh, and wait - isn't it considered rude to throw your own anniversary party anyway? 
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lollylegs

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #176 on: March 02, 2014, 08:53:46 PM »
I think we definitely do prioritize which event is "important", it's just that what's important to us may be different. I remember a thread a couple of years back where somebody had a friend bail on her because her teen's sport event got rescheduled. A *lot* of people were of the opinion that the friend was OK to bail because it was her kid's event, and that was more important. I didn't actually agree with that but I do remember a lot of discussion about when it's OK to bail because "something else came up".

That makes me think of another good question, and if it's too much of a thread derail I'll start a new one, but what is the etiquette when the event you RSVPed to is rescheduled and the new date clashes with a prior engagement? Is the original RSVP voided when the date is changed?

sammycat

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #177 on: March 02, 2014, 09:13:15 PM »
That makes me think of another good question, and if it's too much of a thread derail I'll start a new one, but what is the etiquette when the event you RSVPed to is rescheduled and the new date clashes with a prior engagement? Is the original RSVP voided when the date is changed?

If the event is rescheduled through no fault of yours, then I think you're in the clear to attend the event that was originally scheduled for the new/second date and send your regrets to the rescheduled/original event. In other words, yes, the original RSVP is voided.

sammycat

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #178 on: March 02, 2014, 09:22:47 PM »
Yes, I don't understand why a 50th anniversary BBQ is more important than a 14 year old's family party planned three months in advance.  14 year old comes once in a lifetime too.  But then, I never understand why "milestone" days and dates ending in "0" are so special. 

I don't think this issue is about age either.  The issue is family who keeps accepting invitations and bailing (yes, showing up but leaving early is bailing).  Even if granddaughter is 16, 18, 21, or 50, MIL would have still done what she did because that's her habit.  This time it was two events.  Next time it may be three, four, five, six, and it sounds like she will make it to all of them.  That's rude and hurtful to the people of all those events.

POD.

ladyknight1

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #179 on: March 02, 2014, 09:58:12 PM »
I too see MIL as taking a better offer instead of staying throughout the first event.