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ConstanceS

Would you attend?

102 posts in this topic

13 minutes ago, skipped said:

BSW- I agree that being polite and cordial gets tiring and old especially in long term relationships.   

However, in this case, it doesn't sound like the OP sees her DIL much at all, they are already on extremely low contact, this is very early in the relationship, and we are talking about a major life event here and a couple hour appearance. 

BSW, I know that you've had a LONG history of putting up with your MIL, it took you a long while to LC, and you are on LC, but you still did see your MIL recently for a few hours. I think you said you did it for your kids and your husband.

That's what we are talking about here.

Regarding the wedding- I am not in the OP's situation, I wasn't at the wedding, I don't know if there were non verbals that would make me feel uncomfortable, but I agree with many others- the fact that the bride or the brides mother didn't introduce me around wouldn't make me upset.  That hasn't been my experience at weddings either.   My DILs parents did not introduce us to their side of the family.  I didn't introduce them either.  My  DIL was buy being a bride like she should be.  She did smile, speak to us a few times, as did her parents.  That was enough for me.

However, couple that with making excuses at the last minute for not showing up at events, staying in the car on Christmas (don't get how this is on the son- unless you are saying he needs to make a separate trip without his wife to drop off a present on another day and he can't spend 6 minutes with his parents on THE DAY because that's what DIL wants)  makes this DIL sound difficult.

Difficult- but I would still go to the shower, unless I want to completely cut her off.  If you are only on LC, you go to the shower.  If you never want to see her ever again, then don't

 

I think the reason it's on the son is, who the heck does a flyby on Christmas Day? Either make time to visit, or choose another day. I think I'd be more hurt w/a flyby. Schedule another day when you can stay and visit. Sounds to me like the ds insisted on stopping in on the way somewhere else, and DIL knew that if she went in, it would make them late for where ever they were headed.

I know that w/Wolf and I, when we don't have time for a visit, one of us will run in for whatever we're picking up or dropping off, if it's something urgent. Otherwise, we plan for a time when we *can* visit for. Wolf and I both know folks that 'come in and say a quick hello' is never less than a few hours.

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13 hours ago, Mame925 said:

Weddings have become horribly stressful events for everyone. And it's possible for anyone involved to become 'zilla. I've been the bride, MOB (twice) & MOG... My MOB roles were to be charming, not the hostess...DH & I didn't pay for anyone's wedding...we did provide top of the line photography. I did go to dress selections & food tastings. DsD's new MIL was a ridiculous woman with whom I will never have anything in common except the grandkids; I still greet her pleasantly the once or twice a year I see her at kids' events. My former SonIL is also a ridiculous man-child who keeps trying to guilt her back into the marriage so she will take care of him. Not my kind of man, but am I polite to him? Of course...he's barely civil, not my problem. My MOG stint was just to be pleasant & polite and let the couple to their thing and now that I think about it, there wasn't much family mingling from either side....they are divorced now, both remarried....I adore my new DIL (they eloped to Hawaii, not an issue) and helped my xDIL with her gown & veil and attended the wedding (her mom was out of town during the fittings, she called to say she needed a mom, would I help)...I made the birdcage veil because she couldn't find anything she liked in the shop. I now do contract work for the shop...

And the topper of wedding co-mingiling....my SonIL is first generation Chinese American and only HIS generation speaks fluent English. We didn't mingle much at all other than smile & nod. However in 15 years these people have been generous & welcoming to her. They did a traditional tea ceremony at the reception, all the ladies crowding around the couple...when they backed away DD was covered in jade & pearls...

My point is that these relationship will largely be what you make it...if you go in taking offense at what might be mismatched expectations, you will never be satisfied...and it will always be the other person's fault in your eyes. This is your child's choice for a spouse....you don't get a vote. Your job is to be accepting, open minded and considerate of their status as a new family. If you can't do anything else, you wear beige, smile and pass the bean dip.

 

Thank you, yes, if you go in taking offense, it will always be the other person's fault in your eyes- That's about as direct/concise of a description anyone could provide- Totally to the point and points to the heart of the matter -- in my opinion ..

Edited by Komorebi

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I get where this op is coming from, before my ds got married at least he came around with her and with out her sometimes, after marriage he hasn't come alone since. At least she has that,,,,,,,,ds talked one way then they do the opposite.........I do however get along very well with dil family..........and even though I did feel the invite to the last baby shower was given just because she felt she had too. I did go and had a great time with her family as she had a great time with her friends. They see the issue is not me and actually have tried to talk to me about it in the past and I won't go there with them............however a photo was posted of her holding up the gift I gave her complete with pierced lip. So I say go because this is your sons baby also. Would I be happy with drive by drop off gifts? While her family got all the time not at all! My cousins son told her that she don't get the time because momma don't put up a fuss her dil made all the plans and I guess dil's some tend to forget he has a family also. I've heard all the excuses yes we are coming then backed out, okay every time? There is an issue? Got to love FB for outing ones self...........don't use the excuse too sick to make it then post about how much fun you had that day with friends........So op I do really get it.......but give your dil ammo by not going........and sometimes yes we do behave our way it to getting what our worst fears are........what if the invite is sort of an olive branch? Time will bear that out. But something like a missed baby shower could seal the deal forever and not in your favor. 

Edited by JustaGrandma

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1 hour ago, ImpishMom said:

I think the reason it's on the son is, who the heck does a flyby on Christmas Day? Either make time to visit, or choose another day. I think I'd be more hurt w/a flyby. Schedule another day when you can stay and visit. Sounds to me like the ds insisted on stopping in on the way somewhere else, and DIL knew that if she went in, it would make them late for where ever they were headed.

I know that w/Wolf and I, when we don't have time for a visit, one of us will run in for whatever we're picking up or dropping off, if it's something urgent. Otherwise, we plan for a time when we *can* visit for. Wolf and I both know folks that 'come in and say a quick hello' is never less than a few hours.

I personally would be more hurt in this order 1) a DIL who agrees to come and then makes a lame excuse for even granting an appearance on the "alternate: day Christmas I am given. 2) a drive by where DIL stays in the car-  that's just plain rude However or why ever you got there by not getting out of the car you have just made yourself look like a jerk.   You've driven long enough to drop a present off- you mean you can't spend 30 minutes for a cup of coffee 3) Not only not getting the day but no sign or suggestion of ever getting the day in the future. I personally could deal with Christmas (and do) but at least I get other on the day holidays.  OP gets NO holidays.  Not just Chrsitmas. 4) A drive by visit would be the least offensive of the above options (OK NOT 10 minutes but how about long enough to have breakfast-, coffee and muffins - 30 minutes??? before they spend the entire rest of the day  (and every single other holiday with DILs family.  

ETA- I've changed my mind 1 and 2 are equally rude and hurtful.

Edited by skipped
ETA that OP gets NO holidays- not just Christmas
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I have cooked a 10:00 breakfast for one AC and child and a 1:00 lunch for the other family.  Usually parents do bend over backwards to try to see an AC on the holiday if given a chance.  

I'd take this invitation and go even if only for a quick hour and do the best I could with what I was offered.  There are no do overs with our AC and their families.  In the same vein, if I couldn't act appropriately in public, I'd stay away...same reason, no do overs.

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On 10/24/2017 at 9:14 PM, ConstanceS said:

DIL & family ignored us during her & son's wedding. We were not introduced to anyone, the few people we met came and introduced themselves. Her relatives also sat at one reception table while we were at another, at the opposite side of the room. There was no attempt to invite us to sit with them, or include us.

We have been on the back-burner as far as holidays....We get a few minutes the day before or the day after when son does a drive-by to shove a present at husband or me while DIL waits in the car.

On 10/24/2017 at 11:54 AM, ConstanceS said:

.....sending son by himself, with some obviously made-up reason as to why she was not able to attend. So we have adjusted by trying to schedule when DIL has to work (she is in the medical field, so lots of nights and weekends), allowing son to attend by himself. As a result we have not seen her in many months, but son seems quite happy to do it this way and we get to catch up with him.

As for the wedding, son did spend time with us during the reception and dragged her over once and we complimented her on her dress and the ceremony and exchanged a few polite  words.

I must not be understanding the nuances here. People are making crazy from nothing.

None of this is a big deal, except it is for Constance.

Weddings in my family - 2 families are always at separate tables, groom and bride try to visit with most people. I don't remember talking other than a word or ten with our kids new ILs (and their family) at weddings. The wedding is for the couple, I think this DS did his best.

Constance says her son drops off gifts while DIL waits in the car. She ALSO said that she invites him over while DIL is at work, they visit to "catch up" - happily without DIL.

Seems to me DS and DIL have some sort of agreement -- DS visits his family alone when he wants. And DS drops off gifts the day before or after holidays quickly as they are on their way to his ILs -- likely because he wants to see his parents a couple of minutes, make sure they receive their gift, and say "happy whatever".

Maybe not what everyone here wants, but it sounds like a compromise. He sees his parents for 5 minutes fly-bys and additionally for visits while DIL works. DS keeps his parents and wife totally separate. DS is doing as he wishes, or he'd organize differently.

 

Edited by JanelleK
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2 hours ago, ImpishMom said:

I think the reason it's on the son is, who the heck does a flyby on Christmas Day? 

Sounds to me like the ds insisted on stopping in on the way somewhere else, and DIL knew that if she went in, it would make them late for where ever they were headed.

Constance said day before or day after - during the drive to DS PILs.

I think your assessment is what happened. DS wanted to stop, tiny stop was a compromise.

DS has a voice, he's likely happy with this solution/compromise or he'd do differently.

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1 hour ago, JanelleK said:

Constance said day before or day after - during the drive to DS PILs.

I think your assessment is what happened. DS wanted to stop, tiny stop was a compromise.

DS has a voice, he's likely happy with this solution/compromise or he'd do differently.

But do we even know that it's "during the drive to DS PILS?" And if  it is related to the visit w/ the ILs, it it's on the "day after," wouldn't they be on the way home?

So since DS is already coming on an alternative day, I don't get why he can't do so on a day when he can come alone and spend some time. If it is on the way to/from PILs, perhaps he and DIL live too far away to make the trip twice in such close succession? Or maybe he thinks that the fact that he comes to the various family dinners makes up for missing the holidays?

Come to think of it, perhaps DIL wants all holidays w/ her FOO b/c Constance's family has a lot of non-holiday dinners (if that's the case - we don't know how frequent they are, obviously).

The fact that DIL texts to the point where DS turns off his phone when he's at his parents, makes me suspicious, however, that she is trying to curtail his involvement w/ his FOO in additions to her own... So IDK...

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On 10/24/2017 at 5:06 PM, ConstanceS said:

The drop-off was a stop on the way to DIL's parent's house for Christmas

35 minutes ago, RoseRed135 said:

But do we even know that it's "during the drive to DS PILS?" And if  it is related to the visit w/ the ILs, it it's on the "day after," wouldn't they be on the way home.  See above

 

 

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4 hours ago, skipped said:

I personally would be more hurt in this order 1) a DIL who agrees to come and then makes a lame excuse for even granting an appearance on the "alternate: day Christmas I am given. 2) a drive by where DIL stays in the car-  that's just plain rude However or why ever you got there by not getting out of the car you have just made yourself look like a jerk.   You've driven long enough to drop a present off- you mean you can't spend 30 minutes for a cup of coffee 3) Not only not getting the day but no sign or suggestion of ever getting the day in the future. I personally could deal with Christmas (and do) but at least I get other on the day holidays.  OP gets NO holidays.  Not just Chrsitmas. 4) A drive by visit would be the least offensive of the above options (OK NOT 10 minutes but how about long enough to have breakfast-, coffee and muffins - 30 minutes??? before they spend the entire rest of the day  (and every single other holiday with DILs family.  

ETA- I've changed my mind 1 and 2 are equally rude and hurtful.

This goes back to, "Just b/c they're married doesn't mean they're a matched set at all times." Constance doesn't enjoy her DIL, why would she be hurt that the DIL doesn't show on holidays? Why wouldn't she prefer to visit w/just her ds? I will genuinely never understand why folks get upset that someone they don't even like doesn't visit.

Further, why spend holidays, of *all* days, with someone you don't like, and who doesn't like you either? I'd rather stay home, or spend holidays with people we ALL enjoy. I'm not going to choose to be unhappy, especially on holidays.

If folks think it's rude to just stay in the vehicle for a 5 min drop off or pick up, so be it. At least then I don't have to listen to guilt tripping as to why we can't stay longer, how about dinner, etc. No thanks.

Thinking about it, we borrowed an appliance dolly from a friend. Quick pick up and drop off, drop off on the way to the store. I waved from the van. Nobody was offended. We've also dropped off dessert and beer for a cpl who's dh got laid off. Left them on the step, texted once we were gone, b/c the last thing I wanted to do was have them think they needed to invite us in (they would, that's the kind of ppl they are) when they were dealing with a lot of fear and upset from dh being suddenly unemployed.

If I want to visit w/folks, I make arrangements to do so. If it's a quick drop off/pick up, that's all it is.

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6 hours ago, skipped said:

BSW- I agree that being polite and cordial gets tiring and old especially in long term relationships.   

However, in this case, it doesn't sound like the OP sees her DIL much at all, they are already on extremely low contact, this is very early in the relationship, and we are talking about a major life event here and a couple hour appearance. 

BSW, I know that you've had a LONG history of putting up with your MIL, it took you a long while to LC, and you are on LC, but you still did see your MIL recently for a few hours. I think you said you did it for your kids and your husband.

That's what we are talking about here.

 

Yes, I went with DH and our kids to the IL's last Christmas morning.  I went mostly because I wanted to be with DH and the kids on Christmas, and at the time I was trying to work through forgiveness with regard to my IL's - for myself, not for them as I knew there was nothing more for me from them - and seeing them in person was part of this process.  So, this wasn't a visit in any way to see them or interact with them or to work on a relationship with them.  In fact I recall saying nothing to them during this visit except for Merry Christmas to my FIL.  My MIL spent the visit with her head thrown back on the couch snoring very loudly, as she had not slept the night before, so I had no interaction with her except for when she tried to take my hand when I was leaving which I did not want her touching after the vile words she had to say about DH, me and our marriage and parenting.  I actually thought this would be the last time I would see my MIL as she is so sick, but she has managed to hang on to the point that she may be around for another Christmas. 

So, my situation is a bit different than Constance's.  I do think that one rule we tell DIL's when dealing with a difficult IL relationship is only attend or be present at IL gatherings/get togethers if your DH is there to take the lead and deal with his parent(s).  I think you can substitute Constance's DS here.  She can adopt a rule in which she only attends gatherings involving her DIL if her DS is present to act as a buffer and make the gathering more palatable to attend.   In this case, the baby shower would not pass that test, so Constance would take a pass on it. 

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16 hours ago, JanelleK said:

 

 

Ok, right. Thanks, Janelle! I forgot that.

But I'm still wondering if DIL doesn't think that spending all holidays w/ her FOO doesn't balance the number of non-holiday family dinners Constance's family holds (not that DIL always attends, of course or is every really "there" when she does).

And I'm still wondering if Constance couldn't invite DS and DIL for a holiday celebration on an alternative day - and not when they're on their way to DIL's parents. @ConstanceS- Have you ever tried that?

ETA: Also, please keep in touch - let us know if you attended the baby shower, in the end, or not and how things go moving forward. :)

Edited by RoseRed135

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11 minutes ago, BSW said:

Yes, I went with DH and our kids to the IL's last Christmas morning.  I went mostly because I wanted to be with DH and the kids on Christmas, and at the time I was trying to work through forgiveness with regard to my IL's - for myself, not for them as I knew there was nothing more for me from them - and seeing them in person was part of this process.  So, this wasn't a visit in any way to see them or interact with them or to work on a relationship with them.  In fact I recall saying nothing to them during this visit except for Merry Christmas to my FIL.  My MIL spent the visit with her head thrown back on the couch snoring very loudly, as she had not slept the night before, so I had no interaction with her except for when she tried to take my hand when I was leaving which I did not want her touching after the vile words she had to say about DH, me and our marriage and parenting.  I actually thought this would be the last time I would see my MIL as she is so sick, but she has managed to hang on to the point that she may be around for another Christmas. 

So, my situation is a bit different than Constance's.  I do think that one rule we tell DIL's when dealing with a difficult IL relationship is only attend or be present at IL gatherings/get togethers if your DH is there to take the lead and deal with his parent(s).  I think you can substitute Constance's DS here.  She can adopt a rule in which she only attends gatherings involving her DIL if her DS is present to act as a buffer and make the gathering more palatable to attend.   In this case, the baby shower would not pass that test, so Constance would take a pass on it. 

That role tends to be more about one on one visits. A lot of folks still attend stag/doe baby showers without their spouse, b/c there are other ppl involved.

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I think it's important to remember that Constance didn't have a problem with her DIL until she saw certain behaviors in her DIL.  I think not turning up to one dinner is ok, however this DIL has done this on more than one occasion.  Constance would have prepared extra food for her DIL only to have a no show.  This is incredibly rude and wouldn't be acceptable in any social setting.

I also think Rosered makes a good point - when the son is visiting Constance, he has to turn his phone off on occasions because DIL is hounding him so much he can't visit properly.  This isn't normal.

I also can't believe that on Mothers Day, Fathers Day and Christmas DIL will spend all holidays with her own FOO but can't get out of the car to drop a present off.  As Skipped said, 30 minutes won't kill you, or even 5 minutes but to sit in the car and not even say Merry Christmas - unbelievable. I think these are pretty big red flags.

I do think Constance has overreacted in regards to the wedding, I don't see anything that occurred that was out of line.  I also don't think not going to the shower will ruin the relationship forever as long as Constance buys a really good gift - pick something expensive on the registry list.  DIL has sent an invitation when she will get something out of it, a present, however when there is nothing in it for her such as a family dinner, she is a no show.

They obviously have an agreement that Constance's son visits when the DIL is working and this would work well however I can understand how annoying it would be that the DIL then expects Costance's son to visit with her own FOO, live with them and spend every holiday with them, he is certainly making much more of an effort than this DIL is. I would find this hurtful.

Someone suggested celebrating holidays on a separate day, the day before or after and this can work really well, it's something to think about.  I would be putting all my energy into maintaining a great relationship with the son as he will be the only gateway to any grandchildren.

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In our area, there are hostess that "give" the shower.  The expectant mother is asked for a list of family members she would like to invite, but the community women are all invited automatically.  Some places just put posters at the grocery, gift shops and publish it in the local weekly paper.  Heck, it some cases it is even in the Church bulletin.  It is an announcement, not a demand for a gift.  Sometimes I send a gift and sometimes not.

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2 hours ago, Layla said:

I think it's important to remember that Constance didn't have a problem with her DIL until she saw certain behaviors in her DIL.  I think not turning up to one dinner is ok, however this DIL has done this on more than one occasion.  Constance would have prepared extra food for her DIL only to have a no show.  This is incredibly rude and wouldn't be acceptable in any social setting.

I also think Rosered makes a good point - when the son is visiting Constance, he has to turn his phone off on occasions because DIL is hounding him so much he can't visit properly.  This isn't normal.

I also can't believe that on Mothers Day, Fathers Day and Christmas DIL will spend all holidays with her own FOO but can't get out of the car to drop a present off.  As Skipped said, 30 minutes won't kill you, or even 5 minutes but to sit in the car and not even say Merry Christmas - unbelievable. I think these are pretty big red flags.

I do think Constance has overreacted in regards to the wedding, I don't see anything that occurred that was out of line.  I also don't think not going to the shower will ruin the relationship forever as long as Constance buys a really good gift - pick something expensive on the registry list.  DIL has sent an invitation when she will get something out of it, a present, however when there is nothing in it for her such as a family dinner, she is a no show.

They obviously have an agreement that Constance's son visits when the DIL is working and this would work well however I can understand how annoying it would be that the DIL then expects Costance's son to visit with her own FOO, live with them and spend every holiday with them, he is certainly making much more of an effort than this DIL is. I would find this hurtful.

Someone suggested celebrating holidays on a separate day, the day before or after and this can work really well, it's something to think about.  I would be putting all my energy into maintaining a great relationship with the son as he will be the only gateway to any grandchildren.

A lot of good points in this post, IMO.

But about the first part I bolded. I would notice the discrepancy, too, and, yes, it might bother me. It suggests that this isn't a yours/mine practice, but rather, DIL is deliberately avoiding DH and me, etc. However, IMO, this difference is more of an issue between DS and DIL than between DS and Constance. If DIL is asking more of DS than she's willing to give in return, that's unfair to him (unless there are reasons he understands), but it doesn't directly affect Constance. DS seems to have accepted this discrepancy, which is his choice. It seems to me that he tried, in the past, to get more DIL more involved w/ his FOO, to no avail, and it now, understandably, just focusing on making sure he gets time w/ them.

As for the second part I bolded, I'm one of those who asked if Constance could do a holiday on an alternate day. However, not to be picky, but "the day before or after" is when DS and DIL already stop by so DS can drop off a gift and go. If Constance wants to find an alternate day when he can spend some time, it would probably have to be further away from the actually holiday, like maybe on the weekend before or whatever.

Also, I realize that she and DH would have to decide what to do regarding their other DS if they generally see him on holidays (she didn't say). Would they still see him on the actual Day or have both DSs over on the alternate day? Or perhaps the other DS would see his parents both days? It shouldn't be too hard to work this out, one way or another, but it does need to be considered.

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1 hour ago, RoseRed135 said:

I would notice the discrepancy, too, and, yes, it might bother me. It suggests that this isn't a yours/mine practice, but rather, DIL is deliberately avoiding DH and me, etc. However, IMO, this difference is more of an issue between DS and DIL than between DS and Constance. If DIL is asking more of DS than she's willing to give in return, that's unfair to him (unless there are reasons he understands), but it doesn't directly affect Constance. DS seems to have accepted this discrepancy, which is his choice. It seems to me that he tried, in the past, to get more DIL more involved w/ his FOO, to no avail, and it now, understandably, just focusing on making sure he gets time w/ them. You hit the nail on the head, this is an agreement between DS and DIL and it has nothing to do with Constance, nor is it any of her business. IMO, her only worry is being polite and kind when and or if she does see her DIL and staying in a good relationship with her son, the person who is her relative.

Also, I realize that she and DH would have to decide what to do regarding their other DS if they generally see him on holidays (she didn't say). Would they still see him on the actual Day or have both DSs over on the alternate day? Or perhaps the other DS would see his parents both days? It shouldn't be too hard to work this out, one way or another, but it does need to be considered.  Why does this matter? Not everybody thinks they have to have all chicks in one basket at the same time - we don't always have all our kids together at one time, they do have other things to do that impact their availability. Other son is an individual too.

I can't find a post that says if this is the first child for this couple - that is worrisome for some new parents and makes them act out in odd ways.

Also I have no idea if this is a first GC - makes a lot of GPs turn into idiots. Unnecessary, most people can just go with the flow, wait, stay calm and content. Some don't. One of my sisters and BIL overbought, overdid, were just stupid when their first GC was born. Horrible behavior. They were held at arms length for years for acting fools prior to/at that birth -  PILs were in the babe's inner circle 24/7 it seemed - totally cause and effect.

eta: as usual - stay calm, be patient, wait - there's nothing to lose waiting quietly.

Edited by JanelleK
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I went back and read the original post, Constance says her DS/DIL now live with her parents. Perhaps this will make new traditions for all involved. Constance might try in advanced to invite her DS/DIL to do a breakfast on day of holiday or supper.  If there is still push back from the DIL then Constance knows there will probably never be a good relationship.

I would go to the baby shower, bring a nice gift and a big smile. As others have said this might be a way of offering the olive branch, if she passes she may hurt her relationship with her future GC.

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I think what it boils down to is a cpl of questions:

1. Do I want a relationship w/ds, DIL and gc?

2. Will attending/not attending at the baby shower have a positive or negative impact on #1?

Since we have no control over anyone else, looking at it solely from "What do I want, and what consequence does it have on what I want?" can help clarify the issue.

All anyone can do is make the choices that best work to get them to what outcome they want. What other parties do, you have no say over, only what you do.

I just don't want attending/not attending to be 'the straw' as far as this particular relationship goes.

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And I phrased question #1 deliberately, b/c the chances of seeing a gc, w/out DIL in the early days of gc babyhood is slim to none, esp if she's breastfeeding. If she returns to work the time they have to spend w/baby is even more precious, and unlikely that she's going to be ok with not being with her child when she's home. Her and baby are going to be a 'package deal' for a while.

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I think some people are just more willing to put up with crap from other people.  I would go maybe because I'm willing to accept discomfort to do what I feel is the right thing even if there is no guarantee that I will get anything in return from it. I also wouldn't want to give the DIL ammunition to legitimize her complaints about me.

I think OP is not willing to put up with crap.  It sounds to me like the OP has a history of zero contact (it sounded like zero contact not low contact)  with her own MIL so is comfortable with it   I wonder with their prior issues if her MIL came to her baby shower.   OP doesn't sound like she wants to inconvenience herself in any way and put up with a difficult DIL.  She's had it and that's that. She isn't going.   Her right.  And while it is true that you have to accept the consequences of that, whose to say for sure if her not going really would change the outcome. She might not  have any contact with the DIL/ GC  anyway even if she does go.  It just gives DIL ammunition to legitimize her distancing

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6 minutes ago, skipped said:

I think some people are just more willing to put up with crap from other people.  I would go maybe because I'm willing to accept discomfort to do what I feel is the right thing even if there is no guarantee that I will get anything in return from it. I also wouldn't want to give the DIL ammunition to legitimize her complaints about me.

I think OP is not willing to put up with crap.  It sounds to me like the OP has a history of zero contact (it sounded like zero contact not low contact)  with her own MIL so is comfortable with it   I wonder with their prior issues if her MIL came to her baby shower.   OP doesn't sound like she wants to inconvenience herself in any way and put up with a difficult DIL.  She's had it and that's that. She isn't going.   Her right.  And while it is true that you have to accept the consequences of that, whose to say for sure if her not going really would change the outcome. She might not  have any contact with the DIL/ GC  anyway even if she does go.  It just gives DIL ammunition to legitimize her distancing

That's why I'm saying that the answers are important. If you're (general you) totally fine with the potential consequences, then have at it. If you're not, then you may need to reassess your choices.

All you can do is make the choices that will best get you to where you want to be, b/c that's the only aspect you have control over.

Yes, attending may not change anything. But, if nothing else, Constance would know that she didn't add to the problem.

I'm with you, in that I wouldn't want to give ammo, and I would value my relationship w/my AC more than not attending the shower. 

Basically, it's a risk assessment for me. If I go, what's the possible negative? I'm uncomfortable, and spend a few hours someplace I'd rather not be. What's the possible negative to not attending? Further hurt feelings on the part of DIL/ds, possible further breakdown of the relationship, possible estrangement.

I'd rather risk a few hours of blech than lose the relationship w/my kids. After all, I put a LOT more hours of more than blech to get them here to start with.

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Also, I realize that she and DH would have to decide what to do regarding their other DS if they generally see him on holidays (she didn't say). Would they still see him on the actual Day or have both DSs over on the alternate day? Or perhaps the other DS would see his parents both days? It shouldn't be too hard to work this out, one way or another, but it does need to be considered.  Why does this matter? Not everybody thinks they have to have all chicks in one basket at the same time - we don't always have all our kids together at one time, they do have other things to do that impact their availability. Other son is an individual too.

Agreed, @JanelleK. But some people feel strongly about having all their AC together at the same time, etc. IDK if Constance and DH feel that way or not, if their DSs have any opinion about it or if any of them could/would adjust their thinking about this if they do.

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1 hour ago, ImpishMom said:

That's why I'm saying that the answers are important. If you're (general you) totally fine with the potential consequences, then have at it. If you're not, then you may need to reassess your choices.

All you can do is make the choices that will best get you to where you want to be, b/c that's the only aspect you have control over.

Yes, attending may not change anything. But, if nothing else, Constance would know that she didn't add to the problem.

I'm with you, in that I wouldn't want to give ammo, and I would value my relationship w/my AC more than not attending the shower. 

Basically, it's a risk assessment for me. If I go, what's the possible negative? I'm uncomfortable, and spend a few hours someplace I'd rather not be. What's the possible negative to not attending? Further hurt feelings on the part of DIL/ds, possible further breakdown of the relationship, possible estrangement.

I'd rather risk a few hours of blech than lose the relationship w/my kids. After all, I put a LOT more hours of more than blech to get them here to start with.

It sounds like Constance and DIL are already fairly estranged. I can totally relate to her negative feelings towards DIL, not for any one instance but the pattern that has emerged.  So as many have commented, the issue is more about her relationship with her son. The only thing I can add as a new grandma is that while Constance thinks she will be ok with minimal contact with her GC, she may be under-estimating how emotionally involved she may feel. At least, I did. I had the attitude before he was born that seeing DGS would be "icing on the cake" of seeing DS, I still feel that way now that he's almost two months, but I didn't realize how totally adorable I would think he is. So for the sake of her "future self" as a grandma, she could decide to go to the shower. 

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This might sound extremist, but thinking about it some more, I think not going to that shower is just as bad as DIL sitting in the car while her DS drops off the gifts.  You can try to excuse it away, but it just looks bad.  And 2 me sucking it up for 2 hours and just being ignored (no one is going to attack me) is not that bad a thing.  So the whole thing makes me wonder if there is such a thing as an I just don't wanna MIL  ETA= This DIL does sound difficult.  I just wouldn't want to stoop to her level.  And I get the impression this is a newer marriage (correct me if I'm wrong) and IMO it's way too early to completely give up. 

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