Author Topic: Feeling like our events are less important than others....  (Read 20388 times)

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perpetua

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #90 on: March 01, 2014, 01:24:39 PM »

The only acceptable reasons for bailing on plans is illness or something unavoidable or serious - say a blizzard making travel very dangerous.

I actually disagree with this. I think it's a judgement call. While obviously you don't do something like 'Hey, Joe, I know we have plans to hang out on Thursday but I'd rather hang out with Bob instead so I'm cancelling', I think sometimes an event *is* important enough to cancel prior plans for. Knowing which is which is just basic common sense.

Take it the other way around: if you have plans for lunch with a friend 3 weeks on Tuesday and then someone suddenly decides to throw a surprise 80th lunch for Grandma's birthday at the same time, are you *really* going to say 'Sorry, I committed to lunch with a friend', or are you going to ask your friend if she minds rescheduling because something really important came up?

In this case, the MIL didn't even cancel. She still attended. I think she did the best she could in a difficult circumstance.

Two Ravens

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #91 on: March 01, 2014, 01:42:02 PM »
While I do think the MIL was a bit rude to cut out early, I don't think being a bit rude once, and especially for a 50 year anniversary party, is cause for calling her a rude person in general, or for giving her a social death sentence. Of course, if this were a long standing pattern of behavior, that would be something else.

I also think its ridiculous for people to be calling the anniversary-celebrating couple rude, for planning an anniversary party on the same day as a birthday party that they weren't even invited to... Or for declaring that their anniversary party was not important because it wasn't planned weeks in advance. I know a couple who planned their entire wedding in a week. Does that mean it wasn't important, and I should have skipped it to attend my book club meeting, that was planned a month in advance?
« Last Edit: March 01, 2014, 07:44:08 PM by Two Ravens »

perpetua

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #92 on: March 01, 2014, 01:51:35 PM »

I also think its ridiculous for people to be calling the anniversary-celebrating couple rude, for planning an anniversary party on the same day as a birthday party that they weren't even invited too... Or for declaring that their anniversary party was not important because it wasn't planned weeks in advance. I know a couple who planned their entire wedding in a week. Does that mean it wasn't important, and in should have skipped it to attend my book club meeting, that was planned a month in advance?

Yeah, that's exactly my point. Common sense and discretion. Sometimes, things *are* more important than 'what's already in the calendar' and I think this was one of those situations, and that it was handled very fairly by MIL.

Also, it doesn't do a teenager harm to learn that sometimes things are more important than what's going on in their world.

HoneyBee42

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #93 on: March 01, 2014, 02:15:29 PM »
Well, sure a teenager should know that there's more important things than what is going on in the teen's world--but, I don't think it's the teen's grandparents who should be teaching that lesson, and I'd absolutely be not inviting them to future parties for my children or any other event where their attendance or lack thereof would be obvious because I don't want my children being taught that it's ok to be treated like an afterthought or an obligation to be checked off a list. 

Honestly, I don't know why the MIL/grandmother couldn't have, upon receiving the birthday invitation & knowing the date of her sister's 50th, call up and say, "Sis, are you going to be planning a celebration for your 50th?" or otherwise checking for potential conflicts before RSVPing for the birthday party.


nayberry

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #94 on: March 01, 2014, 02:20:23 PM »

I also think its ridiculous for people to be calling the anniversary-celebrating couple rude, for planning an anniversary party on the same day as a birthday party that they weren't even invited too... Or for declaring that their anniversary party was not important because it wasn't planned weeks in advance. I know a couple who planned their entire wedding in a week. Does that mean it wasn't important, and in should have skipped it to attend my book club meeting, that was planned a month in advance?

Yeah, that's exactly my point. Common sense and discretion. Sometimes, things *are* more important than 'what's already in the calendar' and I think this was one of those situations, and that it was handled very fairly by MIL.

Also, it doesn't do a teenager harm to learn that sometimes things are more important than what's going on in their world.


i disagree entirely.  the birthday party was planned and invites sent & accepted well in advance of the anniversary party.  the year before my grandparents (both sides) reached their 50th anniversaries plans were already in motion for what was going to happen and where.

all this taught the DD was that she wasn't important to her grandparents.

gen xer

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #95 on: March 01, 2014, 02:25:59 PM »

I also think its ridiculous for people to be calling the anniversary-celebrating couple rude, for planning an anniversary party on the same day as a birthday party that they weren't even invited too... Or for declaring that their anniversary party was not important because it wasn't planned weeks in advance. I know a couple who planned their entire wedding in a week. Does that mean it wasn't important, and in should have skipped it to attend my book club meeting, that was planned a month in advance?

Yeah, that's exactly my point. Common sense and discretion. Sometimes, things *are* more important than 'what's already in the calendar' and I think this was one of those situations, and that it was handled very fairly by MIL.

Also, it doesn't do a teenager harm to learn that sometimes things are more important than what's going on in their world.

I can see your point about discretion in some cases....I mean I wouldn't hold casual plans for grabbing a drink after work sacrosanct....but this wasn't the case here.  This was a party - planned with some thought by the OP.

I also don't think the anniversary couple was rude for throwing their party on the same day....just that you can't expect people to drop everything in its favour.  It doesn't mean it's not important....just that if it means that much for you to have certain people there then it's probably a good idea to solicit workable dates in advance.  Like I said if you choose a fixed date there is nothing wrong with that - just don't be surprised if there are people that can't make it.

perpetua

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #96 on: March 01, 2014, 02:31:29 PM »

I also think its ridiculous for people to be calling the anniversary-celebrating couple rude, for planning an anniversary party on the same day as a birthday party that they weren't even invited too... Or for declaring that their anniversary party was not important because it wasn't planned weeks in advance. I know a couple who planned their entire wedding in a week. Does that mean it wasn't important, and in should have skipped it to attend my book club meeting, that was planned a month in advance?

Yeah, that's exactly my point. Common sense and discretion. Sometimes, things *are* more important than 'what's already in the calendar' and I think this was one of those situations, and that it was handled very fairly by MIL.

Also, it doesn't do a teenager harm to learn that sometimes things are more important than what's going on in their world.


i disagree entirely.  the birthday party was planned and invites sent & accepted well in advance of the anniversary party.  the year before my grandparents (both sides) reached their 50th anniversaries plans were already in motion for what was going to happen and where.


Well, that seems fairly extreme, unless you're organising the kind of event that requires advance booking of a hall or some such.

Quote
all this taught the DD was that she wasn't important to her grandparents.

I disagree. I think it should have taught her that she *was* important enough to see on a day when an event that needed to take priority was also happening.

gen xer

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #97 on: March 01, 2014, 02:45:13 PM »
Also, it doesn't do a teenager harm to learn that sometimes things are more important than what's going on in their world.

I agree with this principle when it comes to kids....but rude is rude.  Children are as deserving of respect as their elders.  I get wanting to teach children that the world doesn't revolve around them....but I don't agree with being rude to do so. 

You don't teach kids manners and thoughtfulness with rude behaviour!

Idlewildstudios

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #98 on: March 01, 2014, 02:45:25 PM »
I guess I don't see an anniversary being more special than a birthday.  I don't expect my whole extended family to celebrate my milestone anniversaries with me, it's between me and my husband.

I hate the term "milestone" either used towards a birthday or an anniversary.  14 is just a number, as is 50.  You don't win a prize or get additional years for making it.

Grandparents accepted an invite.  They got a better/ different on the same date.  Instead if declining, citing a prior commitment, they accepted the second invite.  They then were rude to rush their first commitment.  They are trying to have their cake and eat it too.  They also made it clear why they were cutting out early.  Rude again.

I believe they were rude by not being mature enough to stand by their commitment and for letting everyone know why they were bailing.  If I was the granddaughter I would be hurt.  If I was her mother I would be angry.

Edited to add that the time to make a statement that maybe as a child your wants/ needs take second fiddle is *not* at her birthday party!  Having grandparents blow off a party last minute like this, I think, would actually damage that relationship.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2014, 02:50:40 PM by Idlewildstudios »

Jones

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #99 on: March 01, 2014, 03:05:21 PM »
Seems to me, if the kids were taught anything by their grandparents spending more time driving than visiting at a long-planned and promised event, it was that it's OK to leave an event to which they were committed if something better came up. I wouldn't want my kids to learn that lesson, especially in their teen years.

It's hard to say what is important and what isn't from an outsider's view. 14 is actually a somewhat important birthday in my religious culture. 14 is when we are bumped up in our teen Sunday school classes, allowed to attend mixed gender dances and events, and become role models to the younger girls. Generally it's also when we're allowed to start wearing makeup and get a little autonomy in other social situations. I knew people who didn't make it to 15th birthday, or 16, or 18. I find it admirable that a 14 year old wanted her family with her, and sad that they rushed through food and gifts and raced away to spend hours at a more adult event. I believe the common phrase for that on these boards is a "dine and dash"...we'll come for your food but not your company.

nayberry

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #100 on: March 01, 2014, 03:51:03 PM »

I also think its ridiculous for people to be calling the anniversary-celebrating couple rude, for planning an anniversary party on the same day as a birthday party that they weren't even invited too... Or for declaring that their anniversary party was not important because it wasn't planned weeks in advance. I know a couple who planned their entire wedding in a week. Does that mean it wasn't important, and in should have skipped it to attend my book club meeting, that was planned a month in advance?

Yeah, that's exactly my point. Common sense and discretion. Sometimes, things *are* more important than 'what's already in the calendar' and I think this was one of those situations, and that it was handled very fairly by MIL.

Also, it doesn't do a teenager harm to learn that sometimes things are more important than what's going on in their world.


i disagree entirely.  the birthday party was planned and invites sent & accepted well in advance of the anniversary party.  the year before my grandparents (both sides) reached their 50th anniversaries plans were already in motion for what was going to happen and where.


Well, that seems fairly extreme, unless you're organising the kind of event that requires advance booking of a hall or some such.

Quote
all this taught the DD was that she wasn't important to her grandparents.

I disagree. I think it should have taught her that she *was* important enough to see on a day when an event that needed to take priority was also happening.


not really extreme, needed to work around many adults who had to book time off and be able to guarantee it being available.  (paternal side 20 adults and numerous children, maternal 10 adults and less children)

the grandparents accepted an invitation to the birthday party first.  they should have made apologies to aunt and said they had a prior engagement.  they pretty much taught their DD  "invite us but if we get a better offer we're off!".


LETitbe

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #101 on: March 01, 2014, 04:48:05 PM »
I know it's a bummer that they left early, but it seems they did the best they could to make it to both events. I can see why it might be slightly annoying, but I don't think it's really egregious, especially if this is just a one time thing. It seems like there should be more focus on the people who did stay and celebrate the party and whatever memories your daughter made with them than her grandparents leaving early. Honestly, at 14, I can't imagine that I would've been thinking my grandparents didn't care about me (as long as my friends were there, that's probably all I cared about), unless someone else somehow implied that.

Idlewildstudios

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #102 on: March 01, 2014, 05:13:15 PM »
I know my 13 DD has lost  repect for my IL's due to them constantly being late/ leaving early/ whatever to deal with Other Grandkids.  Most any thing we invite them to without Other Grandkids has them showing late or racing to leave early to go pick up the other girls.  My DD doesn't want to talk on the phone with them any more and I think would be okay with limited contact at this point.
A bit of a different deal, but still the same idea- grandparents ditching one event for something else.
So yeah, even at 13-14, a grandparents actions can matter, a lot.

Venus193

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #103 on: March 01, 2014, 05:16:57 PM »
The OP states that there were other, lesser examples in the past year.  I don't blame her for being fed up.

LETitbe

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Re: Feeling like our events are less important than others....
« Reply #104 on: March 01, 2014, 05:35:33 PM »
I know my 13 DD has lost  repect for my IL's due to them constantly being late/ leaving early/ whatever to deal with Other Grandkids.  Most any thing we invite them to without Other Grandkids has them showing late or racing to leave early to go pick up the other girls.  My DD doesn't want to talk on the phone with them any more and I think would be okay with limited contact at this point.
A bit of a different deal, but still the same idea- grandparents ditching one event for something else.
So yeah, even at 13-14, a grandparents actions can matter, a lot.

Yeah, my grandma did the same thing. The thing is, I wouldn't have really picked up much until I was older, except that my mom constantly brought it up (not necessarily to me, but you hear things when you're 14), which made me feel bad. I really think it would've been a small blip on my radar if I hadn't heard my mom discussing it constantly. I know she didn't mean it, but that was more damaging than my grandma actually going to other events & I kind of resent it a bit. I hate to rehash my own issues, but my mom didn't have a great relationship with her MIL (not horrible or anything, just not close), and I think that it subconsciously affected how my grandmother prioritized her time. She still did the best she could to be a good grandma, and behave "fairly", but, ultimately, there were little things that weren't really fair. I think my mom cutting her some slack probably would have kept things from continuing on that way. I don't want to project my own experiences on the OP too much, but I just don't think such upset (and cancelling future birthday parties) over such a minor thing is really healthy for the daughter (even if there were a few other minor incidents, without knowing the details, it's really hard to assume the grandparents are so horrible to their granddaughter). That's just my perspective based on my experiences, and something for the OP to consider. It may not apply, but I think it's fair to bring up. I've seen it happen to other families, too. Best of luck to the OP, I know familial relationships can be difficult.