My in-laws cancelled Christmas dinner - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 12:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This morning. Apparently they sent DH an email yesterday, but he didn't read it carefully and didn't realize they had decided not to host the extended family for dinner on Christmas.

 

I'm really annoyed. I'm eight months pregnant, and I invited them for Christmas morning because MIL LOVES to watch kids open presents. So they are coming here, having breakfast with us, and watching the kids open gifts. Then, the plan was for all of us to drive to their house about 45 minutes away, and have dinner. I'm not sure who else was planning to come - I'm assuming my two SILs, and their kids, possibly one BIL and his family, and maybe BIL2. BIL2 just got out of prison (again) a couple of weeks ago, and that's why MIL and FIL cancelled. They're going to go visit him, in the house where he lives.

 

I don't get why BIL2 can't just join everyone else. He lives near one of the SILs, and not that far from us (maybe 30 minutes east? MIL and FIL live 45 minutes south). Surely we could work out rides!

 

I just don't like last-minute change. I feel like it's rude to tell everyone we're getting together for dinner, and then change plans. I don't understand why they would choose one child over having the whole family together. And selfishly, I'm annoyed that I now have to cook a big Christmas dinner when I am already planning a big Christmas breakfast. DH said Christmas dinner "didn't need to be anything special" but that won't really work for me - it won't feel festive.

 

I did run to the crazy-packed grocery store and buy a few things, so we should be fine.

 

Now I just need to be nice to the in-laws tomorrow morning, and not say what I really think!

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#2 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 12:14 PM
 
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I would be frustrated too! Really that is pretty rude.

But I am sure you will pull together a lovely meal!

I hope you enjoy it too!


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#3 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 01:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaofprincesses View Post

And selfishly, I'm annoyed that I now have to cook a big Christmas dinner when I am already planning a big Christmas breakfast. DH said Christmas dinner "didn't need to be anything special" but that won't really work for me - it won't feel festive.


It sounds like no one cares about you making a big meal -- except for you. So don't do it, or only do it if you can enjoy it.  We aren't having one. We go out for Indian food!

 

And while I can't understand or explain why your in-laws made the choice they did, I hope that none of us are EVER in that situation.

 

It sounds like they have bigger problems. Compassion and loving kindness.

 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#4 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 01:13 PM
 
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I'm so sorry, I would be totally frustrated if I had to plan a family holiday meal with basically no notice, especially at 8 months pregnant, because just like you I want to have something festive for Christmas. I don't want to eat my Christmas dinner at a restaurant.

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#5 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 04:16 PM
 
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I understand that it's probably frustrating, but think of it from the in laws point of view.

 

They probably get to see you, your DH and kids as well as various other members of the family every year at least. Where as their one son that just got out of prison is someone they haven't been able to spend nearly as much time with. Add to that the fact that there maybe a reason they don't want to expose your BIL to their grandkids and/or other family members, it can lead them to choose a Christmas dinner with him instead of everyone else. It is entirely possible they aren't favouring anyone and simply trying to make up for lost time with BIL without risking the unpleasantness of what might happen if someone doesn't like the idea of a former inmate at dinner or if there is something else relating to BIL that the grandparents don't want to expose others too.


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#6 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 04:36 PM
 
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That sounds like an ideal Christmas day to me!  No running out the door after opening gifts would give the kids (and me) time to play with our new goodies.

 

Take it easy on yourself and have an easy, casual dinner. You might just end up with a new family tradition!

 


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#7 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 06:09 PM
 
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That is not cool. I would cancel their Christmas morning visit, lol

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#8 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 06:24 PM
 
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i can see the frustration in the last minute change. i mean if the BIL got out of prison a week or two ago they could have let everyone know then. and i get the wanting a nice dinner. i always look forward to the tasty goodies of the holidays. but i am sure you can pull something nice together and get the family involved. it might be nice to not have to rush out to go spend the day someplace else... unless it is always a nice time. (not always that way with my folks. LOL).

 

i hope you can find some peace and have a great day! :)

 

h


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#9 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 06:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the sympathy! It DOES have some upsides - we'll spend a quiet, relaxed day at home, and it will be fine. There were just things I was looking forward too - seeing my SILs, watching my kids play with their cousins. We do all get together frequently, so I can understand if they want to see BIL2 but. . .it's not like they haven't known his release date for months, you know? And you do have a point, MusicianDad - he's a heroin addict who's been convicted of statutory rape and armed robbery, so he's . . .questionable? company for small children.

 

The weird thing is, I asked DH a couple more questions about why, and he said his dad said they didn't want to take time away from the individual families. As in, you should all be spending the day together, and not be traveling. Ok. . .but if I didn't WANT to see extended family, I wouldn't have made the plans!

 

(I'm probably also resentful that MY side of the family is 1500 miles away, and my mom has stage 4 colon cancer and I won't be able to see her for at least another six months. Add to that the hormones of being 36 weeks pregnant and DH and the in-laws are lucky I'm being so calm!)

 

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#10 of 16 Old 12-24-2010, 07:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaofprincesses View Post

it's not like they haven't known his release date for months, you know? And you do have a point, MusicianDad - he's a heroin addict who's been convicted of statutory rape and armed robbery, so he's . . .questionable? company for small children.

 

The weird thing is, I asked DH a couple more questions about why, and he said his dad said they didn't want to take time away from the individual families. As in, you should all be spending the day together, and not be traveling. Ok. . .but if I didn't WANT to see extended family, I wouldn't have made the plans!

 

(I'm probably also resentful that MY side of the family is 1500 miles away, and my mom has stage 4 colon cancer and I won't be able to see her for at least another six months. Add to that the hormones of being 36 weeks pregnant and DH and the in-laws are lucky I'm being so calm!)

 


I suspect that there's more to the story than you are currently being told. I think that some thing BIG would have to happen to cause most women to cancel Christmas dinner with their children and grandchildren. Something is wrong.

 

I'm very sorry about your mother and I hope your family has a wonderful holiday.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#11 of 16 Old 12-25-2010, 03:21 AM
 
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I wouldn't want to deal with the drama around the excon bil.I suppose the ils have their reasons. Enjoy your family time at home.I am cooking a simple meal.Some actually get pizza or chinese food rather than cook.

 

You could always invite all the other family members to your home for an short notice gathering.Everyone could bring some food.Kind of like a potluck. I would suggest it to the others and see if they want to get together.Otherwise have a nice dinner at home!

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#12 of 16 Old 12-25-2010, 05:25 AM
 
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Their reasons seem sound enough, but it is rude to cancel on such short notice, and by email. As it leaves you with very little time to reorganize your meal planning, grocery shop, etc.

 

Otoh, at least you're not in the position of spending a holiday with someone who sounds unstable - I would be very reluctant to let my kids spend time around someone who is actively addicted to drugs and has shown poor judgment in the past.


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#13 of 16 Old 12-25-2010, 05:56 AM
 
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I'm so sorry about your mother's health. This must be a really stressful holiday, already. hug.gif

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#14 of 16 Old 12-25-2010, 01:09 PM
 
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If he served all of his time, then this wouldn't apply, but if he is out on parole, I can guarantee you one of his conditions of parole is not to be around minors. I'm willing to bet on it given that he was convicted of statutory rape. Technically he is now a sex offender, and will be treated as such by his parole officer. That's my guess as to why they canceled, and they just didn't want to say anything about it, probably because they are embarrassed.

I agree, it was rude to cancel last minute like that. They should have warned you all ahead of time that dinner was off this year. And as for breakfast, they would have gotten OJ and some donuts winky.gif  I hope you had a good day anyway.


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#15 of 16 Old 12-25-2010, 06:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The conviction for stat. rape was years ago - he served his sentence for that, got out, and then committed the armed robbery. Honestly he CAN be a great guy when he's not being selfish or high on drugs. Last time he was out for a long time (6 years ago?) the family really made an effort to welcome him back.

 

And the day really turned out well. I love my in-laws, they are great people, and this was just one thing that was probably a bigger deal to me than they realized. They came, had a great time watching the kids open gifts, and we sent a cinnamon roll and some breakfast casserole with them for BIL.

 

But thanks to everyone for letting me vent!

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#16 of 16 Old 12-25-2010, 08:04 PM
 
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So what did you make for dinner?

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