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Birthday Blackmail

Call me crazy, but I always thought birthdays of children should be about the parents and a few close relatives relishing a few gifts (if they choose to!), some cards and some cake.

Well, figure me shocked when I saw this come up on my Facebook feed from a woman I know this morning:

“Well im done giving a s**t about anybody in this world! The only person in this world to make an effort and send something to our daughter for her birthday was her uncle [blank] & he is locked up in prison! We appreciate it and she certainly loves it! As for everyone else thats ever been apart of [blank]’s life feel free to hit the unfriend button!”

Since when did it become OK to openly be such a gimme pig on Facebook about your child’s birthday (with blackmail about unfriending and exclusion included)? It’s pretty rich to assume that her 200 friends and acquaintances (most who have never even met her daughter) will be sending gifts. I myself do not even know of the date of her daughter’s birthday and she did not post anything about it, otherwise I probably would have wished her a happy birthday on the post.

For some background, this woman is famed for gimme pig behaviour (threatening to sue competition runners because her daughter didn’t win, openly embroiled in a spat on Facebook with a cleaner who she didn’t pay, moaning about how she never has money constantly but wants to take her child to this and that and sitting back and waiting for someone to offer to her).

I would love some advice on what I could say to this woman about her gimme pig behaviour before I do unfriend her. I am choosing not to be a part of her gimme lifestyle any longer, but I feel it needs to be pointed out to her why I feel that way.    0212-15

I had a similar situation last year.   I reconnected on Facebook with a person I had known from early childhood but had lost contact after we went to college.  She posted a similar guilt manipulative rant that no one had acknowledged her eldest son’s graduation or wished her a “Happy Birthday”.   Friends rushed in to remedy this deficit in her life, not realizing that by doing so they were enablers of future such rants.   I quietly unfriended her from Facebook.

What is the point of saying anything to this person other than to get a load off your chest?  She won’t listen to you and you will have started a conflict you cannot end well.   Better to just quietly ease her completely out of your life.


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • ketchup February 25, 2015, 3:20 am

    Poor child. That’s not a very good role model.

    • AnaMaria February 25, 2015, 11:00 am

      I just picture that little girl in years to come wondering why no one will come to her birthday parties, and the reason is that her friends’ parents don’t want to deal with the crazy mom. Poor kid.

  • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 3:51 am

    Exactly. Just hit ‘unfriend’ and eventually, hopefully, mama gimmerant will find that she’s unfriended and maybe, just maybe, the glimmer of why will seep through her brain. Though there are those that will ‘rush to the side’…. (faceplant into a hand). For your peace, just unfriend. If you run into her and she wants to know why you unfriended her, THEN tell her. And expect a rant.

    • The Elf February 25, 2015, 8:55 am

      This. Exactly this. Unless you’re going to a child’s birthday party, a gift is not expected. And that’s just the end of it. OP can expect more of this for any other milestone for the kid, so unless there’s another reason to keep this person around as a Facebook friend, unfriend. If OP doesn’t want to take that step, I suggest using Facebook’s settings to reduce the liklihood that her posts will come up on the news feed.

      • The Elf February 25, 2015, 8:59 am

        Forgot to add: I wouldn’t bother with any choice words about her gimmie-pig behavior. That’ll just give her a new reason to feel aggrieved. Nothing you will say will ever convince her, so just…. back away.

        • mark February 25, 2015, 1:32 pm

          This is so true, the only thing some people ever understand is the “sound of your silence”. And some people never get that.

          • Mary February 25, 2015, 3:35 pm

            To be fair, your “friend” already solved this issue with the words “feel free to hit the unfriend button”. That’s sage advice in my book. Go ahead, unfriend and you’ll be free of this whole mess!

  • David February 25, 2015, 5:15 am

    I completely agree with the Admin on this.

    All that will happen if you say anything to her before you unfriend her is she will post vague-book rants about “some people don’t want her daughter to have nice things” that will clog up the feeds of those people who still don’t have her blocked.

    Better to just unfriend her and be done with the drama.

    • Lizza February 25, 2015, 7:27 pm

      And then when someone asks about said vague rants, they’ll get a, “Text me,” or, “they know who get are” response.

  • just4kicks February 25, 2015, 5:25 am

    I wouldn’t be able to hit the “unfriend” button fast enough.

  • Margo February 25, 2015, 5:35 am

    Wow. If she is simply an acquaintance, I’d be hiding her feed or unfriending her.

    Of course, I might be very tempted to respond with a grovelling apology for not having bought a gift or card for a child I barely knew / didn’t know and whose birthday I was unaware of, before I defriending the mooch, but I I would try to resist the temptation!

    • Spencer February 25, 2015, 4:01 pm

      If they were far enough removed, then I’d just unfriend, but if they were a person I had to interact with regularly or attached to somebody I cared about, I’d be fighting the urge to rant about how I’m not going to send a card to a person who hasn’t figured out object permanence yet or about how I my invitation to the party must have gotten lost in the mail and that I would gladly make the traditional trade of toys for cake at their earliest convenience in a place of their choosing. Craigslist rules.

  • B February 25, 2015, 5:59 am

    So she fights on Facebook, doesn’t pay her cleaner, makes threats, then writes a barely literate lot of foul-mouthed nonsense abusing people for not giving her daughter presents…

    Why exactly were you friends with this woman on FB?

    • Just Call Me J February 25, 2015, 6:35 am

      I was going to ask that very same question, B.

      Life’s too short for needless BookFace drama. Unfriend this gimme pig quietly (nothing you could say will have a positive effect anyway) and hopefully that will be the end of it.

    • Raven February 25, 2015, 9:36 am

      Facebook has really changed the definition of the word “friend,” to “someone I know.” Sometimes I forget this myself, when I find myself annoyed at something I see a “friend” post. Then I realize, wait – we’re not actually friends! We met at a few events and know some mutual people, but we’re not friends! Then I delete them and move on.

  • inNM February 25, 2015, 6:29 am

    Were you a part of the daughter’s life? Was any of her social media friends? I mean, that is the qualifier she gave. So, that would narrow down the gift, I mean guest list considerably.
    I would just unfriend her and move on. The woman sounds like she lives for public drama and that kind of feud is exhausting to keep up, and it is rare that there is a “winner”.

  • crebj February 25, 2015, 6:51 am

    Do you need this drama in your life?

  • Stephbwfern February 25, 2015, 6:54 am

    Just a thought (I know she has a history, so I am clutching at straws here)….
    I’m wondering if she was not directing this message to all 200 hundred friends, but, rather, just close friends and family who genuinely did not so much as acknowledge a young child’s birthday. If the child did, indeed, not get so much as a a phone call or card from, say, the grandparents, then, if I were her, I’d be pretty upset (and fighting the urge to FB rant) too.
    Just trying to picture the story from different angles….

    • Anonymous February 25, 2015, 7:19 am

      @Stephbwfern–That was my interpretation of things as well, so in that situation, I’d figure that the rant isn’t directed at me, and I wouldn’t say anything.

    • Kategillian February 25, 2015, 7:33 am

      But when is it OK to EVER berate someone for not giving a present? It doesn’t matter if it’s directed towards all 200 people, or just one person. This is unacceptable behavior, & I would have unfriended her before I even came on here to tell us about it.

      It’s incredible to me how much Facebook has changed the world. And not for the better!

      • Lady Catford February 25, 2015, 4:40 pm

        The behavior has always been there. Facebook enables more people to show who or what they really are.

    • JO February 25, 2015, 8:12 am

      Even if the message is only intended for close friends and family, publicly posting it on Facebook is incredibly tactless and rude.

      • Anonymous February 25, 2015, 9:30 am

        Of course it’s rude; I was just saying that maybe this mother didn’t expect all 200 of her Facebook friends to be there/send gifts or cards for her daughter’s birthday.

        • Kategillian February 25, 2015, 12:51 pm

          Then why did she put in a forum that would be seen by all 200 of them?

          • mommawhopper February 25, 2015, 7:02 pm

            She might not have — you can set your post to only go to specific people

    • don't blink February 25, 2015, 8:58 am

      If the mother did not get a phone call or gift from close family members ( grandparents and the like) and the mother felt it somehow needed to be addressed, then that is a conversation to be had privately and not in a public facebook rant designed to squeeze the maximum amount of sympathy out of casual friends.

    • Meegs February 25, 2015, 9:00 am

      This is exactly what I was thinking. Though her other behavior in the past does make that less likely.

    • CW February 25, 2015, 9:08 am

      No, if that’s the case, you direct the disappointment to the people who ignored the child’s birthday. You do not put a (basically passive aggressive) post on Facebook where all 200+ of your friends, family and acquaintances will see it and get annoyed or feel guilty.

    • Huh February 25, 2015, 9:22 am

      I wondered the same thing, though the OP basically quashed that with the history of being a gimme pig comments. I had something similar happen with a certain section of “family” who ignored my youngest’s birthday. Didn’t come to the birthday party and didn’t call to decline the invitation, just no-showed, didn’t call on the actual birthday or even send a card. And youngest was upset that they didn’t come to the party, because this was allegedly “close” family members, not friends of the family or distant relatives.

      But I didn’t go on Facebook and rant, I just decided I was done making any effort with them.

    • JWH February 25, 2015, 10:05 am

      This is a possible angle, although taking it to a public FB rant is a whole ‘nother kind of rude. Dunning people for gifts is rude, but shouldn’t she be able to say, privately, to a couple close relatives that she and her daughter are hurt that they didn’t remember kiddo’s birthday?

    • Devin February 25, 2015, 10:10 am

      My mother used to get upset at our relatives for failing to connect with my brother and I on our birthdays, graduations, etc. We weren’t young children, we just both moved several states away for college. One Aunt always sent us funny cards, but the rest seemed to forget (out of sight, out of mind). This was before Facebook was open to everyone. Now days I can expect nice posts from my family on my birthday, which is one reason Facebook is so great for people living far away.

    • Stephbwfern February 25, 2015, 2:41 pm

      Oh, please hear me, people – I’m not excusing the FB rant. It is boorish behaviour, whatever the situation. I’m just saying that 1) there may well be a bit of a sad story behind the rant and b) I don’t think it’s correct for OP to assume this is directed to all 200 friends. Also, if we didn’t have the background about this woman, I thibk it’s also incorrect to assume that the rant is all about the gifts and her being a “gimme pig”, but rather just acknowledgemt of the birthday and conveying happy wishes for the day.

      • MM February 25, 2015, 6:15 pm

        I agree with you. I don’t want to excuse FB rants but at the same time, sometimes people feel like they need to express something and FB is there. Not saying it’s right/polite/tactful but it happens and I can understand the need to rant in whatever forum is available. I kind of feel bad for the woman.

        I’ve seen FB rants before and I assume they’re not directed at me unless I happen to be involved. If it’s really something.

        OP, my suggestion is to take Taylor Swift’s advice and shake it off. Unfriend her if you want to or block her.

    • Billia February 25, 2015, 6:14 pm

      Facebook ranting is never ok in my book. It’s the epitome of immaturity…

      If that were the case, no phone call from close family members, which I did consider too, she needs to mention it quietly to those who have so offended. I don’t mean telling them they should have bought a gift but just “hey mum/dad just letting you know its your granddaughters birthday today, you hadn’t rung yet and I know she’ll be said if she doesn’t hear for you so I thought I’d give you a reminder”. If you do need to, additionally, get something off your chest, this is when you vent privately to a close friend or your partner.

      The background on this lady makes me think this isn’t the case anyway.

  • JO February 25, 2015, 8:08 am

    I agree with admin 100%!! Saying something will only cause you to become a target of her rants, and why subject yourself to that? Just unfriend her. She sounds too self-absorbed to even notice.

  • imc February 25, 2015, 8:45 am

    All I’m wondering is why she would vaguebook and invite people to unfriend her, instead of unfriending the offending parties herself, possibly after they had the chance to see her rant.
    The rant and the attitude are still wrong, but if she’s blaming people for not paying enough attention to her life and her wishes, chances are that no one will give a second glance to her “request rant”. Much ado about nothing, really.

    I’m with Stephbwfern in giving the ranter the benefit of the doubt in that she might not be addressing her whole friends list but just close friends and family. That still doesn’t make the rant proper or right, but it would make her fury a little (if not completely) more righteous.
    The again, I adhere to the school of thought that it’s always better not to post unpleasant things, unless one is purposely fishing for sympathy or pity. And that’s not a form of entertainment that should be pursued.

    I agree that if the OP has no interest in pursuing her online (or live) connection to this person, she should just unfriend her, rather than hope anything she might say could have any positive effect on the situation. I’d be curious to know if the rant has acquired any likes or comments, though.

    • Abby February 25, 2015, 9:44 am

      I think she’s just fishing for validation by posting that, and counting on comments like, So sorry you have to go through that, people are so rude sometimes, etc. If she just unfriends people, she gets no such validation.

      • Phitius February 25, 2015, 12:40 pm

        I think this is exactly it.

        I know a lot of people who crave FB validation. They get upset when their hourly updates don’t get a lot of likes. It’s so weird to me. Twitter as well. Am I supposed to care about your every meal, that you saw a pigeon, took a picture of a crack in the sidewalk, and went grocery shopping?

        • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 9:49 pm

          This… oh yeah, this.

          I got a phone that it doesn’t cost me a fortune to text on and is actually easy to do; I am educating some friends that have found this out that that doesn’t mean you can send me 183 texts an hour about inane drivel. If you wouldn’t CALL me to talk to me about it, then don’t text it. I don’t care what you ate, what you read just now, your comment about a show I’ve never seen and don’t want to. My life is not texting. My life is living. I am not OMG junior high teen, neither are you, act like it, please. I don’t have facebook but it seems that this is the equivalent… have to live in the fishbowl clogging up the internet. Please, spare us all.

          As I said earlier, the gal said unfriend me if you don’t like it, so unfriend her. If she needed that rant to only go to close family, then contact them more personally!

        • Elizabeth March 5, 2015, 10:59 am

          Oh Phitius, you are SO right. Silly FB drivel over-taking real life. A lot of ‘look at me!’ blather, along with facade creation. And validation is expected/demanded. I don’t have the time.

    • Cass February 25, 2015, 10:01 am

      “All I’m wondering is why she would vaguebook and invite people to unfriend her, instead of unfriending the offending parties herself, possibly after they had the chance to see her rant.”

      So she can see who, on her terms, cares about her. It’s behavior I’ve seen a lot on social media – I use a platform that predates Facebook but has a lot of the same features, and every so often people people will post variations of “Cleaning up my friends list! If I cut you by accident, leave a comment to be re-added!” It’s not charming, it’s not an accident: you hovered over someone’s name and said “I do not have any interest in continuing this e-relationship” and then posted in such a way that it puts the onus on the person cut out to say “Gosh, I didn’t know things were that bad between us, but I still really like him/her, I’ll comment.” I know that there’s some confusion as to whether someone is reading you still if they never interact with you, and I know that people abandon their accounts, but it’s always presented as a variation of “it’s not MY fault that I cut your account out of my reading list.” And to my mind, it puts the onus for taking responsibility for someone’s feelings on the cuttee, not the cutter.

      The woman in OP’s example now has the information that some number of people will carry water for her perception of the justice of the universe – I find it unlikely that out of 200 readers, no one at all sent a gift – and she can play the put-upon martyr who made a reasonable request that her friends understand what and who is important to her, so it’s not HER fault that a bunch of people severed ties with her, they’re too mean to understand how much her daughter means to her, and how could THEY have taken offense to her vaguebook that wasn’t intended for them????

      • Goldie February 25, 2015, 12:01 pm

        ““Cleaning up my friends list! If I cut you by accident, leave a comment to be re-added!” makes no sense. How can they leave a comment after they’ve already been cut? PM maybe.

        That said, I’ve never be able to figure out a good way to delete people from facebook. If you delete them and not say anything, they find out later and ask you why – what have they ever done to you for you to treat them so? If you delete and tell them about it, all hell breaks loose. (As it should – I’ve been on the receiving end of an unfriend notification and it really did feel like a slap in the face – then again, the person could’ve worded it better than “I feel weird and uncomfortable being friends with you on facebook”.) Most of the time when I delete, it’s for privacy reasons – I don’t know the person that well, or I know them from an online community – it’s not even that I don’t want them to see my real name, my personal information, personal comments from my colleagues and friends – it’s also that I don’t feel comfortable having their personal info readily available on my phone screen. I’m protecting their privacy more than I do mine. I tried explaining it to people recently when I deleted a number of online acquaintances, and people still got offended, even after I told them I was doing it for their benefit. It’s like you can’t win. Personally, other than that one incident, I don’t mind when people delete me – usually it’s old casual friends whom I haven’t seen in years – one day I notice that “Brian” isn’t showing on my friend list anymore and go, “Oh well I’ve lost touch with Brian anyway, good for him to delete me and help me keep my friend list trim”. But I guess not everyone has the same reaction?

        • Dippy February 25, 2015, 2:34 pm

          I’ve never gotten an unfriend notification, I know people have unfriended me. Is it a setting?

          • Goldie February 25, 2015, 6:26 pm

            Nope, the person very thoughtfully emailed me. There’s no setting.

        • eeek March 4, 2015, 9:06 am

          Goldie, we can be in the same “oh well” club. I have a very small “friends” list, all of whom I regard as actual friends, not “followers”. I look to them for actual interaction – not to provide or receive applause (though that happens). If we were all at a cocktail party with people milling around, I’d happily circulate and talk with them all, and enjoy that they talk with each other, too. To extend the metaphor, though, I use lists so these folks can easily congregate in appropriate rooms – family, work friends, acquaintances whom I like but with whom I do not share personal information. I have a list of “distant” friends with whom I was once close, and who sometimes float into a closer category. My closest friends are in a private group, where we can talk together without being “overheard” by a coworker or boss. I have my default privacy set so people in the “acquaintance” or “distant” category only see what I intentionally share with them.

          It’s complicated, but I’ve found that it replicates the way my actual friendships work. I don’t share everything with everybody; people who are near and dear know more about me than do people who are more distant. I assume that this is so with most people, whether they acknowledge it or not. And I don’t take offense when I discover that I’ve miscalculated my closeness to someone else, or their perception of closeness to me. Most such misunderstandings can be smoothed with an apology – though there have been a few dramatic, flouncy unfriendings. Most of the coming and going from the cocktail party is quiet and undramatic, though. But if it happens, as you say, “Oh well.”

    • mark February 25, 2015, 1:42 pm

      She probably derives some perverted sense of satisfaction from her drama. I feel some consider drama one of the essential food groups as often as they serve it up.

      • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 9:50 pm

        Love it, Mark. Just love it. Thank you for the smile.

  • AnaMaria February 25, 2015, 8:56 am

    She told them to feel free to hit the “unfriend” button. I wonder how she will feel when all or most of her friends actually do it.

  • Goldie February 25, 2015, 9:09 am

    I would be tempted to take her up on her generous offer! What on earth?! The only person who owes her child a birthday gift is MAYBE herself.

    I used to have a lot of vaguebooking, PA-booking and otherwise using FB to stir up the drama, Facebook friends. I hid or unfriended (or waited for them to unfriend) and I honestly don’t think I have any of those left in my feed anymore. My Facebook feed is such a nice, entertaining read now.

  • Melissa February 25, 2015, 9:13 am

    I totally agree with the Admin, drama queens like this are not entitled to a response or explanation, as much fun as it could be to tell them exactly what you are thinking! Most likely, they are so self absorbed that they will never see your side anyway. I also don’t think it’s acceptable even if it was only directed towards a smaller group of people, that is still very inappropriate. We all may feel like ranting sometimes, but Facebook is not the place to do it, despite so much evidence to the contrary.

    I have hidden a lot of people on my newsfeed who may be lovely people, but just over share a little too much. If I had an acquaintance who acted like the woman in the OP, I would definitely quietly de-friend, and I have. Now, if anyone ever contacted me asking me why I de-friended them? I think at that point I would have the right to offer my opinion/viewpoint, but only then.

    • mark February 25, 2015, 9:49 am

      Facebook enables drama. It’s so easy to just toss of a quick message dripping with drama to all your friends and family. It’s one of the reasons I barely use Facebook.

      • Amanda H. February 25, 2015, 3:55 pm

        I think the problem is that Facebook has the feel of anonymity associated with posting online (such as on a blog or forum), but coupled with the ability to reach so many people in your social circle as though you had decided to stand in the middle of the living room or church store or some other place with a lot of people you know and shout your rant at everyone. People don’t do the latter because it gets too much attention, but they tend to overshare online because there’s that “mask” of a computer screen between them and their audience…except that on Facebook that mask doesn’t actually exist.

        So you end up with these rants that no one in their right mind would make if they were actually in the company of their friends and acquaintances because they would immediately have to own up to it, but on Facebook there’s that digital disconnect that causes people to rant and later have to backpedal with things like, “Well I didn’t mean it THAT way” or “You completely misunderstood what I meant.”

  • kolobok February 25, 2015, 9:13 am

    I’m sure this isn’t healthy behaviour, but sometimes I like to keep the drama queens/gimme pigs/etc. as facebook friends. I block them from my newsfeed (by unfollowing them), but keep them around as “friends” because, sometimes, when I’m in a particular mood, I like to look at their page and marvel at the faux pas, self-indulgent behaviour and general attention seeking. It’s easier to creep on a “friend” than to creep on someone you’ve blocked/aren’t linked to on Facebook.

    My personal favourite: an acquaintance from university that posts press releases about herself that she wrote.

    • vjcole February 25, 2015, 11:39 am

      Would you be willing to share your uni acquaintance’s Facebook link? I could use that kind of entertainment!

      • kolobok February 26, 2015, 9:14 am

        Sorry, I don’t feel comfortable calling her out. While it’s definitely not polite of me to snicker to myself about her, it’s a whole other level of disrespect and rudeness to actually invite others to join me.

        I should probably take the example of Shannan (and advice of most others here to the OP) and just delete her from my account, since I’m using her for my own entertainment.

    • Shannan February 25, 2015, 12:22 pm

      I had a friend that I kept on FB for that very reason……their drama was entertaining. My husband thought he was trashy so I hid him from my newsfeed o he wouldn’t see the guy’s posts. I finally realized there wasn’t much point in keeping him around if his personal drama was my entertainment so I unfriended him…

    • Goldie February 25, 2015, 1:46 pm

      I have a childhood friend that I was very close with growing up, we’ve grown apart now, but have been keeping in touch despite our differences. On one occasion though, in the pre-Facebook days, this man interviewed himself, in the Q&A style, and sent the interview to his entire (very large and worldwide) mailing list. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. He said such nice things about himself in some of those questions (“You are so talented and hardworking. How’d you get to be so awesome? – Well, let me tell you…”) I actually stopped talking to him for a while after that. But he’s a nice guy who was a great childhood friend and we eventually reconnected.

  • babs February 25, 2015, 9:18 am

    I had the same thought as Stephbewfern, because I’ve seen this happen many times on Facebook. It’s such a childish thing to do in any event, but I’m thinking she directing her rant at family and close friends who didn’t acknowledge her daughter’s birthday, not her whole entire friend list. People lash out at publicly that way with “you know who you are” rants because they want others to rush to their defense, and basically feed the drama. I wish OP had included some of the responses, if any. I really feel sorry for the kid.

    • Amanda H. February 25, 2015, 3:59 pm

      They want validation by having people rush to their defense and reassure them that they’re completely in the right in their complaint, and they also want to call out the person they feel has wronged them by publicly shaming them (though not always by name, but frequently by dropping enough hints that others can deduce who the complaint is about). As others have pointed out upthread, there’s no validation and support if they just unfriend the offending party, so instead they call them out to “win” over them.

  • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 9:21 am

    I understand the impulse.
    A friend’s behavior is so far over the line that you are angry and offended.
    And you want to point out why their behavior is over the line and why they ought to be ashamed of themselves before you climb atop your noble steed and gallop off into the sunset.

    But it isn’t worth it. All you are going to do is stir up a new drama tornado.

    Your friend doesn’t feel she is in the wrong. And no matter what you say to her, she will feel she was justified. That is the thing about Gimme Pigs, they feel entitled. They are entitled to your time, resources, and attention. They are entitled to rant, rave, and whine when they don’t get their way. They are entitled to complain about, finger point at, and demonize anyone who refuses to give into their demands.

    An example of drama seeking, gimmie pigs from my life:

    A former friend of mine is married and has 3 kids. She and her husband tend to get fired every 8-12 months (never their fault, of course).

    I would often watch her kids for the weekend and the kids had even lived with me for a couple of weeks one year after they’d been evicted from their apartment. My friend and her husband couldn’t abide by my “no illegal drugs – yes that includes pot – in my home” rule. So they were sleeping in their car.

    So one summer day on Facebook she posts “Husband has a new job, but won’t get paid for another week. We are dead broke and there’s no food in the house. I don’t know how I’m going to feed the kids. If they were in school they’d at least have free breakfast and free lunch. But it’s summer. Anyone know of a local foodbank or someone who could help us out?”

    I went out and picked up a ton of groceries: Bread, peanut butter, jelly, butter, milk, eggs, spaghetti, spaghetti sauce, mac-n-cheese, a big package of chicken legs, a big package of hamburger, pound of bacon, package of brown-n-serve sausages, lettuce, carrots, celery, tomatoes, salad dressing, a big bunch of bananas, a big bag of oranges, block of cheddar cheese, 2 different types of cereal, ramen noodles, rice, canned black beans, canned kidney beans, a big bag of animal crackers, a big container of raisins, 2 packages of generic Oreos, two big things of goldfish crackers, granola bars, 2 half gallon tubs of ice cream.

    I figured that covered the basics plus some treats. And should certainly see the 5 of them through the week.

    When I knocked on her door to deliver the food, she got mad at me. She actually said “When people ask for food the polite thing to do is give them money!”

    I told her that I was sorry for offending her and asked her if she wanted the food. If not, I was happy to take it home with me.

    She sighed and rolled her eyes and said “Kids can be picky eaters. They might not even be willing to eat that stuff.” <—- That killed me. I've taken care of her kids for days at a time. Everything I bought was stuff they were willing to eat when they stayed with me. It wasn't liked I'd show up with a bunch of raw oysters, caviar, liver, and Gorgonzola.

    So I picked up the bags and started to leave when she said "Wait! Go ahead and leave the food. Oh, and do you have the receipt?"

    I left the food but told her I'd lost the receipt.

    Then when I got home, I un-friended her on Facebook.

    • B February 25, 2015, 10:08 am

      I’d have told her to get lost and left with the food to give it elsewhere.

      • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 11:26 am

        Hindsight being 20/20 – that’s probably what I should have done.

        But I was really concerned for the 3 kids.

        It was possible that there really wasn’t much food in the house, and she was just trying to shake me down for some cash in addition to the food.

        Especially since my groceries didn’t include any alcohol or any pot which are my ex-friend’s and her husband’s two basic food groups.

    • Bellyjean February 25, 2015, 10:11 am

      Yeah… I’m thinking that all of the money that you spent on food, she would’ve spent the majority on something else. Wow – these people should not have kids. Poor kids. 🙁
      But lucky that they had you in their lives for a while. It’s good to see someone compassionate enough to spend their own money AND TIME on buying groceries (including treats!!) for a family not their own.

      • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 11:52 am

        I’d know her since we were both in school. In middle school and high school she practically lived at my house during the summer because there was no food in her house. Her mom was a single mom who picked up new loser boyfriends every couple of months.

        It was really hard to see her perpetuate the same mistakes her mother had made into a new generation.

        In some ways she did better. When she got pregnant our senior year, she married the father (her current husband). They’ve been married for 15 years now. So rather than having a string of losers in and out of her life, her kids have had the stability of 2 parents.

        But neither she nor her husband can seem to hold down a job. They are constantly having items repossessed. They are constantly in a cycle of crashing with friends, getting a new job, moving into their own place, losing their job, getting evicted, back to crashing with friends.

        And they have no idea how to save money. One year she was working as a receptionist for a lawyer. The lawyer was part of a team that won some huge case. He gave her a $10,000 bonus. They used that money to buy 5 new iPhones and then put the remaining $5,000 down on a brand new SUV. But they couldn’t afford the payments on the SUV so it got repossessed within 6 months. And they couldn’t afford the AT&T contract with the iPhones so they were shut off in about 4 months.

        I’ve known her kids their whole lives.
        So I always tried to be a good honorary “auntie” to them. I made sure they always knew that no matter what happened, my door was open. And I’d do things like take them for a weekend and we’d go somewhere educational (a museum, the aquarium, the zoo etc…) on Saturday and then if they behaved I’d take them to Bush Gardens on Sunday. I made sure they got to do things like go to plays, musicals, symphonies, book readings, Shakespeare in the Park, ballet etc…

        Because their mom and dad never did those things as kids, so they didn’t see any value in “staring at a bunch of old paintings” or “listening to a bunch of old dead white guy music” etc… But those things can be really valuable and enriching. At the very least kids should be exposed to them because you never know when they might find something they’ll love their whole life.

        I’ve un-friended her, but her kids know that I’m always available if they need me. I make sure to keep in touch with them and let them know that simply because their mom and I had a disagreement it doesn’t mean I don’t like them or don’t want to see them.

        Her husband will still call me to see if I can take the kids for a weekend here and there. They are teens and tweens now, so I’m not nearly as “Cool” as they used to think. And most of the time they’d prefer to spend the weekend hanging out with their friends than going to the museum with me.

        • Cathy February 25, 2015, 12:56 pm

          Sounds like drugs and alcohol are a big part of their problem, along with the inability to handle money in a responsible way. Very unfortunate for those children. I hope your influence will help them to have better lives as adults than what their parents are modeling for them.

          As for the food, I’d have taken it home too. Her response was incredibly ungrateful. That is a very sad situation all around.

    • Callalilly February 25, 2015, 10:15 am

      I’d have packed up that food and taken it back to the car — and to a food bank — so fast her head would spin.

    • Heather February 25, 2015, 10:33 am

      Wow… just… wow.

    • Charliesmum February 25, 2015, 10:50 am

      I think I might have taken the food and the children with me. That kind of story terrifies me. I think it’s fairly safe to assume the ‘money for food’ she was speaking of would be ‘money for drugs’ or something else.

      I really hope those kids are okay. You are a really kind person for helping them.

      • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 1:29 pm

        There have been times when I wanted to pack up the kids and just keep them.
        But there are these pesky “kidnapping” laws that get in the way.

        They are doing alright. The oldest one is going to be 15 this summer and she is going to a magnet high school (the IB program). The middle one is just turned 13 and is super excited about highschool next year. He really wants to get on the Varsity Baseball team. And the youngest is 10 and super excited about middle school next year. He is trying to get into a math & science middle school, and he wants to join the cross country team.

        They are good kids. They’ve just had kind of a chaotic up-bringing.

    • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 11:09 am

      I’d agree I would have just left and either kept the food or taken it to a foodbank, soup kitchen, or homeless shelter that could use it.

    • AnaMaria February 25, 2015, 11:26 am

      This story is disgusting but not at all surprising. As a teacher, my colleagues and I have bought things from our own pockets for students- hats and mittens, school supplies, some have even bought clothes or winter coats- only to have the student show up at school without them and say, “Mom took it to put it away for me and then she lost it.” I wish stores wouldn’t take returns without receipts or tags.

      • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 2:10 pm

        Me too. (the no receipt and detagged). That one I had to use the jack on my jaw, for ‘incredi-crass’. Give the kid something they need and the parent cashes it in. You have that happen, start going to the thrift store and buy there–the stuff is perfectly good but no way is it going to be taken back as a return. Or cut the care tags off. I don’t know of a store that will take something that is altered like that back.

        Still shaking head.

        • AnaMaria February 25, 2015, 3:47 pm

          Yup, that’s the route a lot of us have gone!

          Unfortunately, winter coats don’t last long in thrift stores (and I came from Wisconsin and now teach in Minnesota, so a good winter coat is vital!), but you can usually get them for a good price if you watch sales at Target or Sears. Nothing more frustrating than seeing a child walk into school numb and almost in tears from standing at the bus stop in -20 degrees, asking, “What happened to the coat we brought you yesterday??” and finding out that Mom “lost it.” Hope you enjoyed your pack of cigarettes, Mom. Your child sure suffered for you to have them.

          • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 10:26 pm

            I wish you could call Social Services over something like that and they could and would actually do something. It’s sad.

          • NostalgicGal February 27, 2015, 12:22 am

            I talked to a friend that runs a charity (he rustles the money himself sometimes out of his own pocket) for getting kids winter coats. They get gently used donations, go to Burlington Coat Factory (seconds store) and stuff like that.

            They actually went to getting some volunteers to do some alterations to the new coats that are not really obvious but if you try to return the coat, it looks used and mended (a patch inside the hood or near the area where the tags were cut off) so mom can’t ‘lose’ the coat. He said some places he could go back three times in a week and the same kids would be coatless, so they had to go to that. The kids stopped losing their coats. Sad.

      • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 2:23 pm

        Teachers are pure awesome and do not get enough credit.
        Thank you for being so wonderful!

        I’m sorry that your good works are sometimes misappropriated by the kids’ parents. Those kids deserve better.

      • kingsrings February 25, 2015, 4:36 pm

        I’ve also heard the same sad stories regarding child support. The parent gives the other parent child support money, and instead of being spent on the children, it’s spent on the parent’s needs and wants. I can’t believe how someone can do something like that to their own children.

    • Lisa H. February 25, 2015, 11:32 am

      My jaw hurts from dropping to the ground after reading this. Wow. Bless your heart.

    • JWH February 25, 2015, 11:42 am

      Great googly moogly, that’s a lot of stuff. If you’d brought that by my house (and I needed the help), I’d invite you to stay for dinner … and I’d detail one of the kids as your batman for the next month.

      • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 2:22 pm

        I’ve always wanted a batman.

        Yeah, I was pretty surprised when she got angry that I’d brought all that food. I had expected her to be happy and relieved. Not mad and snotty.

    • Goldie February 25, 2015, 12:20 pm

      Oh my god!!! How do people even??? You were such an amazing friend to her though. Too bad she didn’t deserve it. And too bad for her kids, who are growing up with a terrible role model. Did she expect to get cash from “a local foodbank”, I wonder?

      Something like that happened when my kids were young and we lived back in the “old country”. Economy was bad and just about everyone in our apartment building was broke. One family had it worse than most, they were a single mom with four kids aged from teenagers to a seven year old. Mom didn’t seem to be able to hold down a job, there was a lot of drinking and various drinking buddies of hers coming and going through their apartment. We all felt bad for the kids. So one time in early summer, one of the neighbors took a large sack of potatoes from her own garden and took it to that family. She gave the sack to the mom and the mom asked her, “Are these new harvest potatoes or last year’s?”

      Don’t remember what happened to the potatoes, but we all heard the story and none of us were any longer inclined to give that woman anything. Not that any of us had a lot to give in the first place! I still continued to give some apples and snacks and such to her younger daughter when I saw her outside, but I don’t think anyone ever offered anything to that mom. Because seriously, who wants their gift, given from the heart, thrown in their face?

      Also, you’re welcome to show at my doorstep with a bunch of raw oysters, caviar, liver, and Gorgonzola anytime. I’ll provide the wine! It’ll be a great party!

      • Lera99 February 25, 2015, 2:20 pm

        I have found that the most generous people are the people who are just barely keeping body and soul together.

        When everyone is struggling, when everyone knows what it is like to go to bed hungry some nights, when everyone is living on that knife’s edge between security and homelessness – that is where you will find people willing to share the small things they do have.

        Before I was born my dad was in a terrible mining accident where his legs were crushed. My mom, injured dad, and 2 year old brother were living in the barrio outside of Albuquerque in a tiny shotgun house.

        There wasn’t enough food. My dad was injured and my brother was a baby. My mom lost a lot of weight and even started losing her hair because she was making sure they ate before she did. And some days there just wasn’t any left over.

        It was the barrio so everyone was poor. On Christmas Eve the woman from across the street, who had never spoken more than maybe 2 words to my mom, brought over a heaping plate of food with rice, beans, chicken, and a bunch of orange slices. To this day my mom gets tears in her eyes talking about it. It was her Christmas miracle. A moment of kindness and humanity in a terrible year. A single plate of food was so welcome that more than 36 years later it is remembered.

        It is so sad that your neighbor tried to help that woman only to have her kindness so rudely questioned. A sack of potatoes can go a long way to filling empty bellies. That gift should have been celebrated.

        Also, you sounds like fun! Next time I have a cart of raw oysters, caviar, liver, and Gorgonzola – we will totally party!

        • Goldie February 25, 2015, 6:30 pm

          Wow, that is a great story. And I agree with you about the people who don’t have much themselves, being willing to share – I had this happen to me a few times too when the kids were young and we didn’t have much to live on.

          Okay, it’s on 🙂

        • Bellyjean February 27, 2015, 3:12 pm

          Beautiful story. Thank you for sharing.

      • JWH February 25, 2015, 4:16 pm

        On the point of “last years” versus “this years” harvest, I have read the food banks can have a devil of a time with donated foods. It seems that donations can often include food that’s expired or very close to expiration. Food banks obviously don’t want to turn around and pass expired food on to their customers. But they also don’t want to appear ungrateful to people who donate food …

        • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 10:32 pm

          I’ve seen many a commodity dole or food pantry handout of expired food. Just because it hit date doesn’t mean it’s still not edible. They actually call that one program America’s Second Harvest as they are reclaiming still edible food and handing it out to those that would have nothing otherwise. It depends on the pantry or foodbank on stuff near or at or past date. One I volunteered at, we had to marker out or remove and relabel some stuff to remove the company’s name on it, as part of it being donated. Stuff usually was in date but there was a store fire or a semi turned over, and the food got sent to them. They also had one large dumpster for the stuff that couldn’t be salvaged, handed out, or was too far past date. … I appreciated that stuff when I needed it, and in return I worked as volunteer to show that gratitude after I no longer needed it.

          • AnaMaria February 26, 2015, 9:47 am

            I’m so glad to hear programs like that exist. When I hear about semi-crashes or store-fires, my first question is if everyone involved is okay. My second thought is, “Shooooot, all that food that could feed starving people has to be thrown out!” Once you’ve visited a third-world country (or been a college student without grocery money), watching food get thrown away becomes pretty unbearable.

          • NostalgicGal February 27, 2015, 12:31 am

            Amanda, it depends on the company and the insurance. A lot of dollar stores are stocked on ‘pallet reclaims’ where someone scraped up the load and it goes on a wholesaler list. I used to get one that you could buy frozen food, canned stuff, clothing, electronics, and miscellaneous; stuff that was 605’ed (returned to a store and sent to liquidation, it may or may not work), and it was incredible what you could get. You bought by the pallet and you might get all trash… the list came out on phonebook paper in 4 pt type and was weekly…

            Sometimes the store handled it themselves, and I won’t say which grocery store chain used to send a lot of their cargo reclaims or warehouse accidents (someone rammed a pallet with a forklift or dropped it) to this one pantry, and we had to remove their name and contact info from everything. Still, I applaud that sometimes at date but still edible food is reclaimed and someone that needs it gets to eat.

        • psammead February 26, 2015, 12:27 am

          I think it’s two separate, but related problems. There’s good research to suggest that much food remains fit to eat, its quality undiminished, even after its expiration date, so that throwing it out as soon as the expiration date is reached is wasteful. I’m pretty sure the “gleaners” who stock the shelves of one of the local food pantries take food that is at or just before its expiration date, provided that it is still good to eat. On the other hand, there are also people who use food banks to dump food that they don’t consider fit to serve their own families–food that’s moldy, stale, a year or more past its expiration date, or otherwise marginally edible–with the expectation that “those people should be grateful for anything.”

          • JWH February 26, 2015, 10:03 am

            There is some leeway … although I’ve seen accounts from food banks where people bring dented, expired cans where the food inside is almost definitely no good anymore … or of businesses that drop off expired food, complete with infestations …

          • NostalgicGal February 27, 2015, 12:35 am

            The ones I’ve volunteered at, the food was checked; and there was a goodly amount tossed that was truly inedible, or was ‘infested’ or had turned green or the can bulged or the seal was broke, but. The best by date on a lot of items, the food is still good, tasty, edible, and nutritious past that point. Yep we got a lot of drop-offs that were ‘who are you kidding’ but we still smiled and thanked them, then after they left, fed the dumpster. …

          • Ergala March 1, 2015, 9:01 pm

            In my area the food banks give primarily cake mixes and hamburger helper and stuff like that. An elderly lady that was my neighbor used to go to the food bank and she was diabetic. She told them she was diabetic and they would load her up with dessert mixes, jello, pudding….she ended up giving most of it away. However that is what they got. Once a year we do a haul out of our cupboards and I donate stuff like instant breakfast (Carnation) that I didn’t like the flavor of, boxes of pasta, rice…you name it. We usually have that in excess. I’ve even brought in spices that were brand new that I got really cheap. When my son would outgrow a size of his diapers or graduate from a type of baby food I brought the left overs of those too.

    • Cat February 25, 2015, 5:19 pm

      I would hazard a guess that she was interested in getting drug money, not in feeding her family, and intended to take the cash or to return the groceries for cash for that purpose and for no other.
      If you are concerned for the children, make casseroles in disposable containers that can be frozen and then reheated. Otherwise, you are being played and are enabling drug users.

  • daisy February 25, 2015, 9:28 am

    I always make a point to send someone B-day greetings on FB. On my birthday last year I did not get one. Doesn’t bother me, I will still keep on sending them.

    • JWH February 25, 2015, 10:08 am

      I did that for a while, but after three or four years, it got to feel like an empty gesture. A couple years ago, I very quietly hid my birthday on FB for that very reason.

      • Kimstu February 25, 2015, 10:57 am

        The Garfunkel and Oates song “Happy Birthday to My Loose Acquaintance”, about posting birthday wishes to Facebook friends, is highly relevant here:


  • Raven February 25, 2015, 9:31 am

    This is not someone you need in your life. Accept her very gracious invitation to remove yourself from her friends list, and move on.

  • DGS February 25, 2015, 11:09 am

    My rule with The Book of Faces Passive Aggression and Made-Up Drama is as soon as I spy those types of posts, see family or personal laundry being aired out on FB, get saturated with direct sales sales pitches, political rants or racist/sexist/homophobic rants, I unfriend. I say nothing, as what’s there to say – people who engage in this type of behavior are usually impervious to sensible suggestions, and I simply move on with my life.

  • GeenaG February 25, 2015, 11:17 am

    Delete her and move on. There is nothing you can say to entitled people like this that will make them realize the error of their ways, They will just turn it around and make it your fault all over again. No one needs people like this in their life. I truly hope everyone does just exactly as she asks.

  • Lisa February 25, 2015, 11:24 am

    Since this is a person who clearly doesn’t mind getting into FB feuds, why would you want to pitch yourself headlong into one by commenting on her childish behavior?

    Either quietly unfriend her, or leave her there as a reminder of how not to make a donkey of yourself on social media.

  • vjcole February 25, 2015, 11:34 am

    I wouldn’t be able to hit the “unfriend” button fast enough on that one. If she wants to go off on her family and close friends, who MIGHT actually have been aware of when her daughter’s birthday was, that’s bad enough. But to attack her Facebook friends, who probably had no clue? Tacky, tacky, tacky.

  • Rod February 25, 2015, 11:39 am

    My wife and I often wonder at things like this, on FB and in real life – the “feel free to unfriend me”, or similar ultimatum.

    We often simply let the relationship peter away. It’s very seldom worth it.

    We both take a humorous look at it – we even have a little song for it, Franz Ferdinand’s “You’re the reason I’m leaving”.

    • Amanda H. February 25, 2015, 4:24 pm

      The “feel free to unfriend me” type of ultimatum allows the person who says it to continue to play the victim. If she unfriends you, she gets no validation and possibly admits she’s wrong. If she issues that ultimatum instead and then you unfriend her, she then gets to say, “look how many people hate me!”

  • Shannan February 25, 2015, 12:18 pm

    Unfriending her would be no problem for me…….she’s not much of a friend to begin with..

  • Jessica February 25, 2015, 1:02 pm

    Honestly, she didnt mention gifts, she was upset that no one acknowledged her child’s birthday, there are ways to acknowledge something without giving gifts, a card, a call. Sometimes we forget the people we dont communicate regularly can see our fb posts we only think in our minds of the intended audience.

    • LadyV February 25, 2015, 8:59 pm

      Except she DID mention gifts – she said “the only person to make an effort and SEND SOMETHING to my daughter”. (Caps mine)

      • Jessica February 26, 2015, 9:31 am

        A card is still something

  • Cathy February 25, 2015, 1:03 pm

    I’d vote with those who say “unfriend her and move on.” She doesn’t sound like much of a friend.

    Reminds me of a former friend, many years ago before FB. She wasn’t very good at acknowledging others’ special days or events, but she expected a ticker-tape parade for her own. Her father died, and she berated me for not acknowledging this and supporting her during her time of need. I didn’t know he had died, because she didn’t tell me (that was another thing of hers – everyone was supposed to figure out what she needed and give it to her without being asked), and he wasn’t local, so there was no obit in the newspaper or any way to know he’d died. I had met him once, so it wasn’t like I knew him well. She really ripped me a new one and kept going on about how I wasn’t a very good friend to her, etc. I realized she was just too much of a drama queen and gradually ended the friendship.

    • Ergala February 25, 2015, 5:19 pm

      I had a friend whom had hemorrhoids banded. She was on vicodin for like 2 weeks after and didn’t go to her work commitments. She posted constantly about how she was in a lot of pain. I had a hysterectomy and not once did she even come see me. I lived a few doors down from her. I finally called her out on it saying that it would have meant a lot to just talk to someone. She said that since I was up baking muffins a few days later she figured I was fine and that her rear end still burned from her procedure and she needed to take it easy. I tried to explain that life doesn’t stop just because I am in pain or recovering so yes I was taking care of my family but knowing she even cared via text or phone call if not visit would have made me smile. She told me I was being self centered.

  • lakey February 25, 2015, 3:29 pm

    A lot of this stems from a person’s being self-centered. My daughter is the center of the universe for me, she should also be the center of the universe for you. It doesn’t even occur to her that people aren’t focused enough on her daughter to know when her birthday is, much less send a gift.

    We see the same mentality with some brides. It’s my special day, everything is supposed to revolve around me.

    I’m more than happy to celebrate the events in the lives of my actual friends within reason. But special snowflakes who think my life revolves around their events, are in for a rude awakening.

    • NostalgicGal February 25, 2015, 10:42 pm

      Like the one in the annals where the neighbor’s daughter shows up on the doorstep with her friends and tells the neighbor lady, who doesn’t even know her name, that she owes the girl $100 for her graduation and since she’s going to the mall today she can just give her the money now. The families barely ever said hi to each other and the girl certainly hadn’t given the neighbor a graduation announcement. Why $100? Because that’s what everyone else gave her. The girl left confused, disappointed, and without a cent from the porch, as the neighbor refused to give her anything. Special Snowflake may have had the world revolve around her at home but the rest of the world didn’t know they were supposed to–they never got the memo.

      • hakayama February 26, 2015, 1:02 pm

        @NostalgicGal: …… And that was just the Kindergarten graduation?…. 😉

        • NostalgicGal February 27, 2015, 12:37 am

          High School. Wonder what her kindergarten graduation was like…?

      • JWH March 2, 2015, 3:56 pm

        This reminds me of an old joke.

        A butcher had his store next to a lawyer’s office, and he positively hated the lawyer. One day, the lawyer’s dog came into the butcher’s store and absconded with a piece of steak. The butcher thought, “Aha!! I have the lawyer now!!!”

        The butcher marched next door and barged into the lawyer’s office. “I have a question for you,” he said. “What would you tell a client if somebody’s dog stole their meat?” The lawyer thought for a moment, then replied, “Well, I would tell my client that the dog’s owner owes them the cost of the meat.”

        “HA!! ” said the butcher. “Your dog just took a prime cut of steak. You owe me a hundred dollars!”

        “Is that so?” asked the lawyer.


        The lawyer called his secretary, and immediately had his secretary cut the butcher a check for $100.

        The butcher was ecstatic.

        He was still feeling great when he checked the mail the following week. In the mail was an enveloper from the attorney. Inside the envelope: An invoice that read “Counseled butcher regarding theft of meat by neighbor’s dog. $200.”

  • rachel February 25, 2015, 4:43 pm

    There is zero reason to say anything, just unfriend her and go on with life.

  • Ergala February 25, 2015, 5:16 pm

    I absolutely LOATHE this type of behavior. I have friends whom don’t even try to hide the fact they are demanding stuff. One person I know is pregnant with her 4th child (the youngest is a few months old and was born with a severe heart defect) and neither her nor her husband are employed. She is constantly asking for stuff on facebook, usually baby stuff or food for her cravings. She is also the one who publicly ask for people to RSVP to her children’s birthday parties and when people mention they never got an invitation she will declare that she sent out event invites and the people invited THERE needed to RSVP. Cue awkward comments. Then she will say “Well if you really want to get Tommy something he really wants XYZ new expensive toy…we can’t afford it”. >_<

    I think the best ones are the people whom create a wishlist on Amazon and post it on FB and say "If anyone ever wants to surprise me with something here is my wishlist!"…

  • Cat February 25, 2015, 5:31 pm

    This struck me as funny as I just unfriended my very first person on Facebook. Whomever came up with the “unfriend” idea knows a great deal about human nature. I, too, would have unfriended anyone who sent out a blanket condemnation to all and sundry over birthday gifts for a child they did not know.
    In my case, it was a sister I have never met. I found my birth family over fourteen years ago, but my sisters refused to meet me. A niece explained via email that they had decided that they did not like me and that we didn’t get along. (No, no idea as to why. I don’t know them. No explanation was given.)
    After fourteen and a half years, I got a notice from Facebook that one of my sisters had sent me a “friend” request. I agreed, posting that I was happy to friend her, but was surprised because I had been told for years that she didn’t want to meet me as she didn’t like me and we didn’t get along.
    She emailed me that she just wanted to know how I was. She had no interest in meeting me or in speaking with me on the phone. Since we live about ten miles apart, I decided to tell her I was fine and unfriended her.

    • hakayama February 26, 2015, 1:08 pm

      @Cat: Talk about dodging a bullet… A lifetime of bullets. I’m so glad that the negatives (as I recall from your previous posts) in your adoptive family were less numerous. You have my sympathy all around. Blessings and best wishes.

      • Cat March 1, 2015, 2:13 am

        Thank you. The whole nature vs. nurture question comes to mind. I have never decided if it is the seed or the garden in which it is planted that determines what one becomes.

  • Ellex February 25, 2015, 7:19 pm

    ” I am choosing not to be a part of her gimme lifestyle any longer, but I feel it needs to be pointed out to her why I feel that way.”

    Nah. Getting the last word in is way overrated.

  • OP February 25, 2015, 8:55 pm

    OP here.

    I’ve been waiting for the response from Admin before I decided to do anything and for a chance to let myself cool down and not do anything rash.

    In the two weeks since I sent this letter, Gimme Pig has begged for someone to look after her daughter and pay for a hotel stay for her and her partner because they “never get alone time and I don’t want to lose him!”, she has posted (hinted) shared pages of Disney items, Wiggles items etc that she wants people to buy her with comments like “My queen would love this!”.

    To be honest, it kind of makes me feel nauseous. When I saw the advice from Admin about just unfriending her quietly, I did just that.

    I feel great knowing that load of negativity is out of my life. My sister is still friends with her, so it will be interesting if she soon follows suit- she can’t believe some of the stuff posted some time, but chooses to hide her in the feed, only checking occasionally to see what latest drama she has stirred up.

  • iwadasn February 25, 2015, 10:22 pm

    And I’ll bet she’ll be completely shocked when she sees that a good portion of people took her at her word and unfriended her. People like that who rant about what they “deserve” and issue ultimatums when they don’t get it never seem to realize how unreasonable their demands are. Maybe a mass unfriending will be a wake-up call to her.

  • sunnydi84 February 26, 2015, 12:37 am

    Ah, the drama queen. The bane of social media. Thankfully, most of mine have un-friended me for not playing their little game: “Oh no, looks like my hubby thinks I’m fat” “My daughter hates me!” “Off to the ER”. I refuse to acknowledge or comment on these. Most of them I hide. But, I’m usually happy to be un-friended by these people. I had a super drama queen un-friend me because I refused to pat her on the back with her vague-booking and prop her up with her complaints about her family. The last straw was, she had a birthday party for herself (we all had to pay for our own meals, of course) and no one showed up. I had actually planned to because I wanted to see some mutual friends, but my son broke his arm that day, and I certainly wasn’t going to leave him alone. I even PMd her on Facebook and posted x-ray pix for everyone to see (not to prove anything to her). Apparently, that wasn’t a good enough excuse. I should have left my son home alone, in pain and rushed to her party that I told her I would be coming to. It is refreshing not to see all her drama though!

  • Weaver February 26, 2015, 3:50 am

    I agree with admin – someone that disgusting isn’t going to listen to reason. Let your unfriending speak for itself.

  • JWH February 26, 2015, 7:24 am

    When my birthday and/or Christmas are near, I like to find ridiculously priced items on Amazon — especially near-worthless items that are obviously priced in the seven figures due to an error — and hint that my birthday is near. Fortunately, my friends know this is a joke. One year, a relative noted one of these items (a rug that had been priced at around 50 grand) and bought it for me for Christmas … after she found it elsewhere for sale for fifty bucks.

    • twoferrets February 26, 2015, 9:47 am

      I do this too! I know I have family and friends who have come to rely on the Amazon wish list when they shop for holidays & birthdays, so I try to make it entertaining. I have included a hovercraft, a baby giraffe, a ridiculously overpriced adult Big Wheel, and 100 bags of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos (crunchy of course). I actually did get a portion of the Cheetos, because my best friend is awesome.

      • NostalgicGal February 27, 2015, 12:40 am

        Flamin’ Hot… awesome 🙂

      • JWH March 2, 2015, 3:57 pm

        “Dear friends. I CLEARLY asked for a hovercraft for my birthday. If you did not send me a hovercraft, you clearly hate me. So hit that unfriend button now.”

  • ss February 27, 2015, 3:09 pm

    The snarky side of me would consider posting and asking if she had bothered to send a birthday present to everyone in her friends list since she was expecting all of us to send presents.

  • Sylvia February 27, 2015, 8:11 pm

    Life is short, and you’ll meet many gimme-pigs along the way. Get rid of ’em, they’ll just wear you out

  • Angel March 1, 2015, 1:04 pm

    In general I really hate it when people use FB as a means to rant about anything and everything that has ever gone wrong in their lives. Including relatively trivial stuff that for most of us would not even be a blip on our radar. The example in the above letter is really trivial and honestly, I would just quietly unfriend. One of my friends in real life divorced her husband and was using FB for a while to air a bunch of dirty laundry. I had known her husband quite a bit longer than her, and let’s just say at least 90 percent of the crap she was posting was simply not true. The one saving grace was that some of her ex hub’s relatives were able to screen shot the postings before she could delete them. I don’t understand how people can post all this stuff and actually believe it will not come back to bite them later on. People really do believe that only the ones they WANT to see the post will actually see it. Truth is everybody can see it if enough of them share it! Often behavior on FB is a good indicator of the kind of person they are in real life. So if you wouldn’t like or be friends with this person in real life, why are you friends on FB lol?

  • NicoleK March 4, 2015, 2:24 am

    My guess is no one called, sent a card, or showed up to the kids birthday and mom was dealing with a hurt kid.

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