Well, I think that is plain rude, not to mention cowardly. They thought enough to want to spend some money on your child and you hand it off to the neighbors as a freebie? If I was your mil, I'd be hurt and angry at your total dishonesty and callousness toward a well-meaning gift.
If you don't want your child to have it (by the way, it is listed for children age 3 years and up, so your son is too young for it anyway), show some backbone and tell them honestly. Thank them for the thought and ask that they return it and get their money back as it just isn't something you want your child to have.
Tell them you appreciate the idea (they were just trying to do something nice, for gosh sake, not ruin your child) but that it just isn't the right time for such a toy. That you don't have the room for it at your place nor a safe area for it to be used and that your child is too young for such an active toy in any case.
And, if you son't like it for your child at your place, don't be a hypocrit and allow it at their place. Don't want your child to have the toy? Then don't allow him to have it anywhere.
Second, I don't think they were 'trying to ruin your child' but sounds like they are blaitantly questioning your parenting stlye, and your rightfull discisions as a mother. I don't think 'doing something nice' is reason to drop all personal veiws on a subject that you obviously feel uncomfutable about. IF that were the case, many of us would be compromising our veiws.
Third, You are NOT a hypocrit by asking them to keep it at their place. It is not black and white. By asking them to keep it at their house you are doing a few things:
1) allowing DS to enjoy the toy, and still keeping within a safe invironement appropriate for his age.
2) Keeping the large toy out of your house.
3) allowing room to explain to DS that some toys are for ocasional use, and not everyday use. (this can be a special event at grandparents home, giving them special time with him, etc.)
4) Standing your ground with MIL that you will not bend just because she made a 'nice' effort, but at the same time not placing judgement or taking away her right as a grandmother.
Way to go, and hang in there, stand your ground, and you are right to be respectfull, after all, she is Ds's grandma, and as different as the veiws may be, there should be a bridge of love and commen ground.
Happily unmarried to DP Parenting: DD (March '06) , DS (August '10) , and our furry kids Guiney Pig, Po the POlice, and Mrs. Puff. Loving WAHM life in the Mortgage Bizz with DP.
Yeah, since no one got hurt, it was pretty funny. Nana doesn't talk much because she is hard of hearing, but I imagine a string of cuss words going through her head.
Someone has video of it, the whole thing lasts maybe 90 seconds. The whole time he is yelling to the dog "Watch out". No one panned the camera to me, standing there looking horrified with my hand over my mouth.
I had already decided to get through that day, I was going to have some beers.
Heather , momma to ' Parker- 10, Carlee- 7 and our baby Genevieve Faith - 8-27-10
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