Totally Petty Vent - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 03-11-2003, 05:57 PM - Thread Starter
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I know this is petty, but I can't seem to get over it!

Last year ds (at the time the only grandchild) was to celebrate his first birthday in May. SIL announced she was pregnant the previous November, due in August. MIL and FIL had a trip planned to Europe about 2 months after SIL's baby would be born. So they decided that they had to change their plans (I don't personally see why, but whatever), and the only other time they could go apparently was over ds's birthday. So they missed their only grandchild's first birthday, and never celebrated when they returned. I think they bought him some clothes. I was pretty hurt at the time.

So now SIL's baby is turning one this August. And MIL and FIL are going to be throwing the first birthday party. I am just so offended that not only did they choose to miss ds's first birthday so as to be here 2 months after SIL's baby's birth, but now they are going to throw a party for her baby.

We are all a close family, live in the area, and see each other often. I know in my heart that there is no favortism going on, that it is just circumstantial, but it still hurts me. Even though ds won't have any memory of it, it feels like SIL's baby is more special. For ds's first birthday we ended up just having dinner at my house and my mom and sister came over. No party, no big presents, no big deal. But SIL will have the big party at the big fancy house with all the trimmings.

Like I said, I know this is totally petty. Waah waah for me. But why does this bug me so much? It makes me not want to attend the party! I hang my head in shame at the pettiness of this.
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#2 of 15 Old 03-11-2003, 06:13 PM
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Your post breaks my heart. I am sorry that they don't seem to notice what they are doing.

I think maybe your DH should say something to them. Just mention to them that it's odd that they missed your child's b'day but are actually throwing the other party.

I'd be hurt too!
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#3 of 15 Old 03-11-2003, 06:38 PM
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I don't think it is petty - it sounds very hurtful to me. I'm so sorry you are having to deal with this.

I think having dh mention it would be a good idea - if you can get your dh to mention it, that is. We have a slightly similar problem with my in-laws (only it isn't another's their f*&^%$ holiday home!), but I can't get my dh to say a word about it...

I just try not to let things bother me, although that's easier said than done. Could your dh suggest that the in-laws do something special with you for your ds's second birthday?
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#4 of 15 Old 03-11-2003, 07:46 PM
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I am sorry. I too am worried about this issue. My dp's parents are so involved in the lives of the two grandchildren that live near them, that I know mine will always be seond tier, even if no favortism is involved.

If she is thier daughter that may have something to do with it. Studies show that in developing soiceties, the involvment of maternal grandmothers has a direct infludence on the survival rate of babies, but there is no measurable effect by paternal grandmothers.

So (based on that study, which may or may not translate into grandmother issues in the "developed" world) there may be a tendency for grandmothers to be closer to thier daughter's children than their son's children.
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#5 of 15 Old 03-11-2003, 11:51 PM
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Not petty Oceanbaby
I understand and would be hurt too....
I am so sorry about the il's actions....I hope it is not intentional on their part...I wish they could see what you see though and at least try to be more thoughtful.....
hang in there.....

for your little one

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#6 of 15 Old 03-12-2003, 12:36 AM
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Yeah... On the one hand 'boo hoo for you' but ya know, at the same time... OUCH!

I agree that if your Dh can find a relaxed way to broach the subject it may be for the best. Sure, it is circumstancial, and fortunatly none of the kids involved is old enough to realise right now, but that kind of behavior, if it continues, sends a really hurtful message and I think you are right to be aware of it. At the same time, your SIL and her babe are not responsible for M&FIL's behavior, so of course you should go to the party, coo over your niece/nephew, etc.
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#7 of 15 Old 03-12-2003, 01:10 AM
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I've had similar things happen in our family, just similar not the same DS is the only grandchild.

ANYHOO - I think once someone has said something, then things will be really weird afterwards, you'd always feel that they were only doing something because someone said something.

I chose to simply ignore what happened to us, and to go on, if the people involved were not interested - then so be it.

Good luck and I'm so sorry!

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#8 of 15 Old 03-12-2003, 02:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for your replies. I feel a little better that it would bother other people too, and it's not just me being immature about it.

I don't know if I want to say something or not. I think I'll play it by ear and see how the conversations go.

Their love and devotion to ds is not in doubt - they adore him. But it does seem like the little things seem to favor my neice - more pictures up in their house, the whole birthday thing, etc.

The hardest part for me is doing what Kama'aina Mama mentioned - going to the party and not taking it out on my SIL and neice. Just another way in which being a mom has forced me to grow up.
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#9 of 15 Old 03-13-2003, 12:57 AM
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That is very gracious of you, Oceanbaby - I don't think I would be quite so mature about it. I would be pretty mad if my ILs did that to me and DS.
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#10 of 15 Old 03-13-2003, 01:09 AM
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I wouldn't bring it up. The best you can do for now is to let it go. See how his second birthday goes. I understand you feel slighted. i certainly would. it was very insensitive of them to at least not make a deal when they came home. But what good is it going to do you drag it up now? If however you begin to see a pattern that would change things. That is defintiely someting that needs to be addressed.

And yes I do think it makes a big difference that that is her dd's baby. i can't explain it but it just seems natural - unfair though.

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#11 of 15 Old 03-13-2003, 02:15 AM
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maybe you or dh could say something like, "what a great party! we really missed having you at ds's first last year. maybe we can do something really special for his second."?

personally, i wouldn't have wanted my mil or even my own mother planning dd's first b-day. we didn't do anything too big, either, but it was mama and daddy's day to celebrate our li'l tyke. due to difficult circumstances this year (my dad in the hospital) we didn't have a big celebration for number 2, so number 3 might have to be the biggest, yet!


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#12 of 15 Old 03-15-2003, 02:24 AM
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I hear ya! My DD is the only biological grandchild of my MIL (the other grandkids are from stepkids) and she has made it a point to be at every grandchild's first birthday, no matter where in the country it is, except (you guessed it) my dd's. And, she missed birthday number 2.

When she said (flippantly) to me "well, she won't know the difference since she's so young" I said, "that's true. Until she sees the pictures one day."

She is coming to dd's 3rd birthday but almost didn't...DH finally told her off so she is gracing us with her presence.

I personally couldn't care less if she is there but I don't want my DD to feel slighted either.

Good luck!
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#13 of 15 Old 03-15-2003, 11:51 PM
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Why do inlaws do this? I have no idea, but we have our own version of this, too.

I have noticed, that many grandparents tend to favor their daughter's children over their son's children. Anyone else???
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#14 of 15 Old 03-18-2003, 10:04 PM
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You ought to try being the stepdaughter! My step-mother could not come to my DD's first birthday (she was having open-heart surgury three days later but she could go to her grandson's 14th birthday party the night before my DD's party). One month after the surgery, she was "well" enough to go to her great-grandchild's 2nd birthday. I mean, I ought to just go ahead and dye my hair red cause I'm treated like a red-headed stepchild.

My father and step-mon never come see the kids (they live 10 miles away) and then they wonder why my little one screams when they try to hold her. She doesn't know them.

Thanks for letting me vent.
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#15 of 15 Old 03-19-2003, 02:08 AM
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my mother got my son a ten dollar outfit from Target and mailed it unwrapped to me for my ds's birthday.

my father and step mother sent a check for 15.00 for his first birthday.

when my son was born my father gave me a check for ninety dollars. No crib, stroller, car seat offer...nothing. that was it. He has no sense how to behave properly. And when my step mother had her grandchildren..they somehow seemed to get it together.

And yes, my father has money.

If you think it stinks when Inlaws show favortism....let me tell you how lame it is when your own parents cant' get it together and find a generous bone in their entire body.

I've cut back on my contact with the whole lot. My father still hasn't driven the 30 miles to see my son in over a year.

In my case my inlaws are nothing but generous and loving. Thank god my ds has them!

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